"We do not torture"

This isn't yet another post documenting how the Bush administration instituted an explicit--and evidently ongoing--policy of torturing prisoners and then denied it, cravenly letting privates take the fall. (For the latest evidence, see this piece from yesterdays NYT.
(For the latest delusional babble from the White House, go here).

Nope, this piece is about a politician who's actually telling the truth--and making his Democratic colleagues and the allegedly liberal media squirm in the process. This is William Grieder writing in The Nation.

A Peculiar Politician
Senator Russ Feingold is an embarrassment to the US Senate, which makes him an authentic hero of the Republic. The Wisconsin senator gets up and says out loud what half of the country is thinking and talks about every day. This President broke the law and lied about it; he trashed the Constitution and hides himself in the flag. Feingold asks: Shouldn't the Senate say something about this, at least express our disapproval? He introduces a resolution of censure and calls for debate.

Well, that tore it in the august chamber of lawmakers. Democrats scurried away like scared rats. And Republicans chortled at the thought. You want to censure our warrior President, the guy who defends us every day against terrorist attacks? Let's have a vote right now, the Republican leader demanded. Yuk, yuk.

The joke is obvious to everyone in the Washington club--politics trumps principle, especially when it is about something as esoteric as the Constitution. It's a nonstory, the club agrees, not a constitutional crisis.

The Washington Post runs an obligatory account on page 8, quoting Mr. Anonymous Democrat Strategist on the unwisdom of Feingold's gesture. The New York Times story on page 24 quotes the esteemed constitutional authority Dick Cheney. The House Repubican leader (who replaced the corrupt House leader who resigned) denounces Feingold's resolution as "political grandstanding of the very worst kind." Like the Republican impeachment of Bill Clinton for fellatio in the White House? Go away, Feingold, let us get back to the people's business.

The real story--naturally overlooked by cynical editors--is that an honest truth-teller is loose in the fun house and disturbing the clowns. Man bites dog, senator defends Constitution.


Nadir said...

More proof that neither the Democrats nor the Republicans are honoring their oath to defend the Consitution. Every one of them should be tarred and feathered.

Paul Hue said...

I enthusiastically support efforts to impeach Bush on this matter. It does not escape me that Bush, Cheney, and Rumsfield were draft-dogers, and of an especially appalling sort, especially Bush, whose draft-dodgery manifested as a really cool experiance flying fighter jets in absolute, guaranteed security. I am unaware of any Vietnam battlefield vets who advocate torture.