Once upon a time, Republican moral high-grounders turned a blowjob and land deal-gone-wrong into the end of the world. If you didn’t buy those arguments at the time, you’re probably fairly annoyed at how things have gone with the current administration. If you were convinced that the Clinton “scandals” merited special prosecutors and articles of impeachment, then I imagine you’re just about beside yourself with shame over the job your boys have done since taking office.
Since I don’t see these things catalogued and bullet-pointed as often as I feel like I should, I want to pause and take stock:
- Iraq: It was about 9/11 and al Qaeda up until it was proven conclusively that Saddam had nothing to do with any of it. And even after the White House admitted as much, you still had to keep an eye on the Vice President, because if he thought nobody was paying attention he’d trot out the faux connection again. Then it was about Weapons of Mass Destruction, except that weren’t any and the conclusive evidence that there was turned out to be fiction (and the only way to not know this was to ignore the counsel of your own intelligence people). It’s also about bringing democracy to the region. Of course, the only thing that’s been brought to the region so far is a strong and compelling case for all Arabs to unite against our occupation. (See also: “hillbilly armor” and “Mission Accomplished.”)
- Katrina and Rita: You’re doing a heckuva job, Brownie (and by the way, give us our money back).
- Homeland Insecurity: Whereby an alleged felon is nominated to head up the task of protecting the country.
- Memogate: “From 2001 to 2003, Republican staffers on the Senate Judiciary Committee illicitly accessed nearly 5,000 computer files containing confidential Democratic strategy memos about President Bush’s judicial nominees. The GOP used the memos to shape their own plans and leaked some to the media.” (Salon)
- Plamegate: Administration thugs commit … treason? … by outing an active CIA operative to exact political revenge against someone who had the audacity to point out that they were lying about the Iraq WMD evidence.
- E-mail Gate: Oops – I accidentally hit the delete key. 5 million times.
- Walter Reed: Injured veterans re-up for extended tours of Iraq so they won’t have to suffer further as Bush demonstrates his support for the troops.
- Gonzogate: Attorney General cans eight Federal attorneys for – as best anybody can tell – investigating GOP corruption. He screws up so badly the Republicans are on him like his name was Clinton.
- Wolfiegate: Presidential ally and neo-con architect is in all sorts of hot water for inappropriately helping his girlfriend up the ladder at the World Bank.
- No bid? No problemgate: “Unprecedented” five-year no-bid love for Vice President’s former company. Good old American know-who at its best….
- Iraniburton: By the way, was Halliburton doing business with Iran – Iran?!! – while Cheney was CEO?
- Abramoffgate: Influence peddling debacle that Federal authorities are still working on.
- Tom DeLay: ’nuff said.
- The best independent source money can buy: Armstrong Williams got paid pretty well for unbiased expertise.
- Bird-hunting: This wasn’t a scandal, exactly, although it’s clear that they weren’t going to tell anybody VP Cheney went all Soprano on a hunting buddy unless they absolutely had to. Episode wasn’t a real trust-builder with the American public, although it was a bonanza for late-night comics.
- Abu Ghraib: A picture is worth a thousand words. And nobody’s fighting to get into Gitmo, either.
- Jessica Lynch: What if she wasn’t a real hero, but it would make America love the war if they thought she was?
Did I forget anything? Probably, but I don’t have time to cover all of it. Do review the Salon profile when you have time.