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November 15, 2005
Wherein We Contemplate Criminality

During the Clinton years? If the Republicans had known in advance what kind of a mess the next Administration was going to create, they couldn't have done a better job of crippling our options.

What force do threats of grand juries and subpoenas and even impeachment have in the public eye today, with the public's memory of how the Right used them as petty partisan weapons so recently?

How much of the public actually understands how critically serious a threat of impeachment is...or should be? How serious it is...or should be, to have a White House senior staff member under indictment?

I just don't know.

The basic problem is that the Republicans are just so very criminal. Starting with Nixon all the way through today, their list of prominent elected officials reads like a Most Wanted poster.

Politicians, party officials, fundraisers, appointed diplomats and department heads. Every Republican Administration has been quilted with dozens of accused, indicted, and even convicted criminals, and some of these people keep reappearing again and again in subsequent Administrations, climaxing with the current Bush Administration where it seems difficult to find any appointments that don't fall into that category.

Is it any wonder that those on the Right assume that all politicians are crooks? The vast majority of those on the Right seem to turn out to be so.

Did they throw around so many accusations and so much paper during the Clinton years in a desperate attempt to make it looks as though the Left was equally criminal? Did anyone but the rabid partisan "base" fall for it?

What kind of minds think that's a solution, as opposed to cleaning their own house? The kinds of minds that are, themselves, equally criminal and consequently don't want to go there?

Who are those people and who put them in charge of my country?

A. Dangerous lunatics
B. The Supreme Court

Posted by AnneZook at 09:59 AM


C. All of the above.

Posted by: Ahistoricality at November 15, 2005 12:06 PM

"Is it any wonder that those on the Right assume that all politicians are crooks? The vast majority of those on the Right seem to turn out to be so."

It's a self-fulfilling prophecy.

I went to see my landlord on the day in January of 1993 when Clinton was sworn in. My landlord was a conservative white Southern good old boy and had campaigned hard for Ross Perot. My landlord believed, deeply, that everyone who went into politics was corrupt, except maybe outsiders like Perot.

The television was on in his office when I arrived. He was watching the ceremony as Clinton got sworn in. I came into the room and he looked at me and then gestured to the television and said, "Man, just imagine. He can have anything he wants now. Anything! If wants Cuban cigars, they bring Cuban cigars. If he wants girls, they bring him girls. If he wants drugs, they bring him drugs. If he wants to meet someone, they bring the person to him. If he wants to go anywhere, they take him."

The envy, and hatred, in his voice was unmistakable.

It struck me then how much conservatism, at least during the 90s, was going to be defined by a lack of idealism.

Posted by: Lawrence Krubner at November 15, 2005 04:35 PM

On the other hand, maybe we should all take three seconds to be worried that that's how the job of running this country is viewed by an "average" person?

Musing over this for two seconds...it occurs to me that this may be what Bush thought it was all about. Purely PR and grandstanding. Which would explain why he thought he was up to the job.

Posted by: Anne at November 16, 2005 08:34 AM