Saturday, September 11, 2004

Dick Cheney Rings the Bell 

From the Los Angeles Times:
Vice President Dick Cheney said Thursday that Saddam Hussein had given "safe harbor" to Al Qaeda when he ruled Iraq, reviving a debate about the nature of the former Iraqi leader's contacts with the terror network.

Speaking to about 400 Republicans at a convention center here, Cheney defended the U.S. invasion of Iraq, saying Hussein had refused to adhere to U.N. Security Council resolutions and had used chemical weapons against his own people.

Cheney added that Hussein had "provided safe harbor and sanctuary to terrorists for years … and had provided safe harbor and sanctuary as well for Al Qaeda."

Similar comments by Cheney and President Bush touched off a controversy in June, when the staff of the independent 9/11 commission issued a report which said that Hussein apparently had no "collaborative relationship" with Al Qaeda. The terrorism group, led by Osama bin Laden, is considered responsible for the Sept. 11 attacks on New York and the Pentagon.
For guest commentary we turn to faithful correspondent and Zemblan patriot Bill Krohn:
Cheney repeats the same lie everywhere he goes -- I have him flagged on google news so I get all the stories. It is a conscious strategy being implemented uniformly by a huge, widespread group of people in and out of government, who know exactly what they are doing, to brainwash enough people to get Buffalo Bob and Howdy re-elected despite the worst foreign policy blunder in US history.

Outfoxed, a terrific film, shows that repeating lies is the mission of Fox News. They drum them into people's heads until they become self-justifying. I heard some Administration flunky getting equal time after Clarke on KCRW yesterday -- he kept using the word "terrorist" to describe the insurgents, and by the end of discussing the topic (when do we get out?) he had made it sound as if uprooting Al Quaeda from Iraq was and is the mission.

I finally saw Bowling for Columbine and loved it. It was a mistake to go to Heston's house at the end -- Moore was being an auteur, repeating his own signature technique, and Heston, canny and with 24 hours to prep, bested him -- but the thesis propounded is brilliant, that it isn't really guns that kill people in the US, but fear deliberately promulgated by politicians and the media to make people look the other direction and consume. And the multiple ways he comes at it not only nail it, but make it an exhilarating filmgoing experience. Heston's campaign against gun control has ceased to be the issue by the time Moore gets to his house, and unfortunately that's what a lot of people remember. The issue isn't gun control (Moore is in the NRA) -- it's mind control.

And mind control has become the battleground of this campaign, because whether it's the economy stupid or the war stupid or 9/11 stupid, they can win if they convince enough people that night is day with what is euphemistically called the Republican "Spin" Machine. B. F. Skinner was right about a lot of things, and this adminstration has proven it again and again by treating the electorate like Pavlov's dogs and getting the saliva to drip on cue.

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