March 17, 2006

“What Kind of Message Does It Send…?”

In the aftermath of 9/11 mostly everyone rallied behind the President. It was the worst attack on US soil since Pearl Harbor, and we were thrust into our biggest conflict in decades. Not since Vietnam have we had so many troops deployed in active fighting, being killed and maimed on a daily basis.

Back in 2001 I wasn’t as politically astute as I am now. I wasn’t paying attention enough to comprehend the corruption of the political machine known as the Bush Administration. I recall The Dixie Chicks were the first to openly criticize the President, voicing their shame having emanated from the same state. They were harshly criticized for not rallying behind the President in time of war. After all… “What kind of message does it send to our enemies when our country isn’t fully behind the President in time of war?”

I’ll tell you what kind of message it sends. It sends a message that our country puts the very highest value on freedom. In particular - the freedom of speech, the very first amendment of our Constitution. Our forefathers had the foresight to understand that dissent and debate is not only allowed, but encouraged. Only through exhaustive internal struggle would we have policy and decisions that are the very highest quality.

Iraq and the 2004 Presidential Campaign

Flash forward a few years and George is up for re-selection. Let’s not forget that we already knew there were no weapons of mass destruction, no connection between Osama bin Laden/al Qaeda and Sadaam Hussein/Iraq, and no real justification for his preemptive war on Iraq. Most progressives already knew Bush lied us into this war, but the Downing Street memos hadn’t come out yet. Some level-headed Democrats were calling for an end to the war and to bring our troops home. “What kind of message does it send to our troops?” I heard Mr. Bush say as he debated Senator Kerry.

I’ll tell you what kind of message it sends. It sends a message that we care about our troops. We value their lives enough to not have them in harms way for foolishly contrived, arrogant, selfish, greedy reasons. What kind of message did YOU send our troops Mr. Bush, when you sent them into harms way without the proper preparation, intelligence, planning, and equipment? What kind of message did YOU send our troops when you slashed their benefits and combat pay?

The Arab People

What kind of message did you send to the Arab people around the world when you bombed the shit out of a sovereign Arab nation and killed tens (perhaps hundreds) of thousands of their innocent civilians? What kind of message did you send the Arab people when it was revealed that you tortured thousands of their brethren, refused to accept responsibility for any wrong-doing, and refused to discontinue the internationally-condemned practice? What kind of message did you send the Arab people when you occupied Iraq and gave the plum reconstruction contracts to your buddy’s (American) companies instead of first-and-foremost allowing Iraqis to rebuild their own country? What kind of message did you send the Arab people when you gave India the “nucular” green light while threatening Iran about their nuclear program?

The Katrina Debacle

What kind of message did you send the American people when you heard the warnings, you knew the Gulf coast was being flooded, and you still flew off to photo-ops and fundraisers for four days while poor people either drowned or saw their lives washed away. AND THEN you had the tenacity to say that no one anticipated the breach of the levees.

The Dubai Debacle

Most recently, Dubya again dug his heels in and threatened to veto any contrary legislation to the Dubai Ports deal. Fortunately, Republicans in an election year trying to distance themselves from an unpopular president, finally had the cajones to stand up to the Bush Administration and forge a veto-proof block. But, not before George got in his signature dissent-squashing rhetoric… “What kind of message does it send to the world when we’re willing to do business with one country and not another?”

Well George… since we know you’re a pathological liar, since we know you’ve never had the interests of the American people in your heart, and since we know you couldn’t care less about what our international allies think, we know you’re not at all concerned with what kind of message you’re sending.


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