...I'm okay with being REALITY-based.

Tuesday, September 09, 2003
      ( 12:07 PM )
Other People's Sacrifice

Krugman. Today.

Surely the leader who brought us to this pass, and is
now seeking a bailout, ought to make some major
concessions as part of the deal. But it was clear from his
speech that, as usual, he expects to take while others
do all the giving.

The money is actually the least of it. Still, it provides a
clear test case. If Mr. Bush had admitted from the start
that the postwar occupation might cost this much, he
would never have gotten that last tax cut. Now he
says, "We will do what is necessary, we will spend
what is necessary. . . ." What does he mean, "we"?
Is he prepared to roll back some of those tax cuts, now
that the costs of war loom so large? Is he even willing to
stop urging Congress to make the 2001 tax cut
permanent? Of course not.


But the most important concession Mr. Bush should make
isn't about money or control — it's about truth-telling. He
squandered American credibility by selling a war of choice
as a war of necessity; if he wants to get that credibility back,
he has to start being candid.

Yet in the speech on Sunday he was still up to his usual tricks.
Once again, he made a rhetorical link between the Iraq war
and 9/11. This argument by innuendo reminds us why 69
percent of the public believes that Saddam was involved in
9/11, despite a complete absence of evidence. (There is, on
the other hand, strong evidence of a Saudi link — but the
administration's handling of that evidence borders on a
cover-up.) And rather than acknowledge that the search for
W.M.D. has come up empty, he declared that Saddam
"possessed and used weapons of mass destruction" — 1991,
2003, what's the difference?

[...] Maybe it's time for him to do a couple of things he's
never done before, like admitting mistakes and standing
up to the hard right

As if.

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