End of the month which meant payday. One always looks forward to that and I find that I’m still very much a kid when I get a paycheck. I remember working jobs and getting paid and thinking that the coolest thing in the world. There are times it still feels that way. “They’re paying me to do this? Cool!”
I’m easily amused.
I made the mistake of watching PBS yesterday afternoon. You people who watch that and claim that’s where the truth is….wow. I’m rather, well, stunned. Bill Moyers going on about “Buying the War” and his interviews of such stalwarts of journalistic integrity like Dan Rather (who lied--or at very least was criminally lazy about the absurd Bush AWOL story) and various New York Times Reporters. Heck, take Moyers himself who had to apologize to former Secretary of the Interior James Watt when he lied about what Watt allegedly said. To hear Moyers giving sage wisdom about “telling the truth” is just a little hard to bear, I’d say. I used to love Bill Moyers and thought he was a tremendous reporter. But, he’s not. He’s a hack.
Like Walter Isaacson of CNN.
Like the lot of them.
Here’s the thing–and it’s the most important one that I can think of. I completely accept that Iraq is a mess and that the mistakes made there are horrendous and made by people who simply could not think their way through the problem. I don’t know why that is–and as a guy who teaches English and writes about wine and food, I won’t speculate. I think you can make a real case that ultimately, Iraq was not the right country to invade and that there were smarter moves that could have been made. But what I don’t accept is the nonsense that the President lied us into a war. I think you can make a case that there are some things that have been lied about here, but lying about getting into Iraq just does not appear to be the case by any standard. Saying so means negating all the intel. that so many countries had. That intel was not manipulated by the US. The French, Germans, Russians–everyone–thought Saddam well armed. And the Bush Doctrine, as it came to be known, was simply “you’re either with us–or you’re with the terrorists.” There was no nuance for the President–no gray areas. You can debate the wisdom of that. You can say it wasn’t right. But—what you cannot do is say it was a lie.
Daniel Patrick Moynihan used to say, “Policy makers are entitled to their own opinions. They are not, however, entitled to their own set of facts.” Indeed.