DAVID BRIN's world of ideas

 

A Cheat Sheet for Ostrich Hunters

by David Brin, Ph.D.

(Copyright © 2007)


[image from io9]

Visit the Bureau of Economic Analysis (http://www.bea.gov/) and check out Table 3.9.1. Percent Change From Preceding Period in Real Government Consumption Expenditures and Gross Investment. In summary:

Fact: Accusations that Democrats represent big government, fiscal irresponsibility or runaway debt are simply lies. Big lies. Giant whopping lies.

A BBC investigation estimates that around $23bn (£11.75bn) may have been lost, stolen or just not properly accounted for in Iraq. "For the first time, the extent to which some private contractors have profited from the conflict and rebuilding has been researched by the BBC's Panorama using US and Iraqi government sources.... A US gagging order is preventing discussion of the allegations..... And example cited in the article: "In the run-up to the invasion one of the most senior officials in charge of procurement in the Pentagon objected to a contract potentially worth seven billion that was given to Halliburton, a Texan company, which used to be run by Dick Cheney before he became vice-president. Unusually only Halliburton got to bid - and won."

In fact, this is the tip of the iceberg. Arguably THE biggest reason for the war may have been the excuse it offered, to bypass normal contracting rules using "emergency" clauses in the law. Now look back at how the far-right howled over the UN's "Oil for Food" program and some possible graft that might have added up, over a decade, to a billion dollars. Where is the same indignation over theft that directly betrayed our troops in the field, amounting to tens and even hundreds of times as much?

WHAT WOULD YOU HAVE SAID IF CLINTON HAD....

HOW WOULD YOU HAVE REACTED IF BILL CLINTON....

WHAT IF CLINTON...

WOULD IT HAVE ANGERED YOU IF BILL CLINTON...

DO YOU FIGURE YOU'D HAVE NOTICED IF BILL CLINTON...

WOULD YOU CRITICIZE YOUR "COMMANDER IN CHIEF" IF IT WERE BILL CLINTON WHO...

WOULD YOU HAVE LAUGHED ALOUD -- OR CRIED -- IF BILL CLINTON...

WHAT IF -- BEFORE YOUR VERY EYES -- "COMMANDER IN CHIEF" BILL CLINTON...

WOULD YOU HAVE PROTESTED, IF DEMOCRATS...

WHAT IF THE MOVEMENT YOU OPPOSED...

WOULD IT REDUCE DEMOCRATS' CREDIBILITY IF THEY...

WHAT IF A DEMOCRATIC PRESIDENT HAD...

WHAT IF BILL CLINTON HAD...

WOULD YOUR HACKLES RAISE IF IT WERE DEMOCRATS WHO...

WOULD YOU HAVE BEEN UPSET IF BILL CLINTON...

WHAT IF BILL CLINTON...

MORE OSTRICH BAIT (added 7/1/08)

Imagine how a Republican might feel if - late in the Clinton Administration - the Justice Department's own Inspector General reported that Clinton's White House staff had meddled with nearly all Justice Department hiring decisions, ending the traditional practice of hiring and promoting on advice from neutral commissions and instead applying blatant political tests, transforming the U.S.J.D. into a massive, private law firm serving one political party... relentlessly ignoring crimes by their "side" and pursuing vendettas against the other.

If This happened under Bill Clinton, and only fiercely partisan liberal Democrats were allowed inside Justice, would you have called it a scandal? But the Inspector General says that this did NOT happen under Clinton. It happened under Bush and the Republicans. So where's your righteous sense of anger?