Democrats & Liberals Archives

A Tagline for My Generation

The hot topic for today’s morning talk shows was all about “those 16 words.” Honest - that’s how Condeleeza Rice and George Tenet refer to this episode. And thankfully, Kerry and Graham both had the sand to insist this isn’t over, despite what W thinks.

So I guess it’s okay to allow false information through - and face no consequences for doing so. The press and others keep referring to Tenet as “the fall guy.” That implies…a FALL. If he stays where he is, which I admit remains to be seen, you can’t call him a fall guy.

Experience has taught me that when a politician makes a statement "standing behind" someone, the object of those kind words is usually one foot out the door already. My sense here, though, is that our CIA Director is in no danger of losing his job over this, despite former Dem Richard Shelby's headline-grabbing position. Shelby and I agree on something. Never thought I'd hear myself say that - and I worked for the media consultant that got him elected. Or maybe it's because I worked...but I digress.

And the best part? Bush has declared that this issue is over. I LOVE that concept. "It's over." The president will tell the press and the public what's newsworthy and what's worth investigating. Think of the time it will save us if we just all sit down, shut up and do what GWB tells us to do. Think of how simple life would be if we could ALL decide when something's over.

But I am struck by one thought - why didn't Bill Clinton find a loyalist to "take a fall" and claim he'd (or she'd) suggested a presidential blowjob in the Oval Office and then found a willing service provider for the President of the United States. And then Clinton should have just told the press and the public - 'it's over, someone's taken responsibility but I still have faith, it's over.' No Ken Starr, no grand jury, no blue Gap dress, no impeachment.

But the Clinton episode did produce one good thing - what I believe should be the official tagline for our generation: Define what "is" is. (I swear I had this thought before I read Maureen Dowd today). And once again, we're being taught a lesson about the awesome power of words. Rumsfeld states what Bush said about uranium was "technically correct." Can't argue with that, can you? Damn right you can. This could be dismissed as a case of simple semantics - but that would be tragic. Because someone(s) made the subjective decision in crafting that SOTU speech of what was acceptable and what crossed a line. They were wrong. And there should be consequences when you're that wrong.

So, what does this have to do with Campaign 2004? Well, being the idealist that I am, I again hope "these 16 words" prove to be the undoing of GWB's popularity and will help bring down the current administration. And that the Gang of Nine, and the voting public, insist on telling Bush that it's not over - until those injured by this say it is.

Posted by 9thwave at July 13, 2003 7:43 PM