Thursday, October 07, 2004

Tie his hands and smear his good name

Creeping jargon alert: I’ve mentioned before the military’s use of the phrase “anti-Iraqi forces” to describe Iraqi insurgents. The NYT parenthetically mentioned today that the phrase has acquired initial caps (Anti-Iraqi Forces) and an acronym (AIF). Now, are the forces anti-Iraqi, or are the forces made up of Anti-Iraqis, possibly traveling here through a dimensional portal from a parallel universe exactly opposite to our own, where Saddam really had WMDs and Spock has a goatee? Because if that’s the case, I think we should be told.

Bush, spinning the Duelfer Report, which says that everything he ever said about Iraq was a lie, claims that it shows that Saddam Hussein was “systematically gaming the system... with the intent of restarting his weapons program once the world looked away.” Except that the system couldn’t be “gamed” and the world couldn’t “look away”: the sanctions were imposed by the UN Security Council and could only be removed by the Council, where the US has a veto. The sanctions worked. Bush’s arguments are getting stupider. The strongest retrospective case for invading Iraq, or rather the case they’re pushing now, is that he could have passed WMDs to terrorists, which is not the sort of thing he ever did.

The House Ethics Committee admonished (from the Latin admonere, meaning didn’t do doodly squat)(to quote Cicero) Tom DeLay two more times yesterday, for 1) the appearance that an energy company was buying access to him when he went to a fund-raiser they held on behalf of his PAC while energy legislation was pending. Appearance? That word just covers one of the senses, and it also sounds like that and it smells like...well, let’s just say it smells. And 2) getting the FAA to track down Texas legislators during the redistricting thing. DeLay’s lawyer says--and just to diagram this sentence--“Mr. DeLay has not done a lot that others may not have done,” adding, “It is just that he is under the microscope.” Lord, who would want to look at this under the microscope:

DeLay himself responded to calls by D’s that he step down as House R leader, calling them “relentless personal attacks”--which is just what they are not; they are attacks on his public behaviour--made in an attempt to “tie my hands and smear my good name,” and he already pays a hooker perfectly good money to tie his hands and smear his good name (if you know what I mean) every Tuesday night.

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