By David R. Hoffman
Perhaps the most disturbing ability of human beings is the ability to rationalize anything. And this ability tends to rise in conjunction with the level of irresponsibility or stupidity an individual is attempting to justify.
Evidence of this reality has been painfully clear in America since the start of the new millennium, which ominously began with the coup of 2000, and the illegal occupancy of the White House by George W. Bush and his inept, deceitful, corrupt cabal of warmongers.
Almost immediately after this coup, Bush apologists leapt into action, endeavoring to rationalize everything Bush did, from his election thefts and shredding of the United States Constitution to his use of torture, rendition, and illegal detention. According to these apologists, the failure to prevent the September 11, 2001 attacks was not the Bush dictatorship’s fault (despite the fact that it was responsible for national security at the time). Instead these attacks were blamed on Bush’s predecessor Bill Clinton. And even during the twilight of the Bush dictatorship, after nearly eight years of arrogance, deceit and incompetence had culminated in two lingering wars and one of the worst recessions in decades, these apologists still attempted to blame Clinton for all the nation’s ills.
But with Barack Obama in the White House, suddenly the tune has changed. The rallying cry of the former Bush apologists has now become, “You can’t blame George W. anymore.”
If this isn’t the pinnacle of hypocrisy and speciousness, it would be impossible to explain what is. To now blame Obama for the mendaciousness, idiocy, hypocrisy, corruption and ineptness of the Bush dictatorship is like blaming a legitimate physician for failing to immediately cure an infection that a phony physician not only caused, but also neglected to treat.
The United States does not begin anew with each election. The Bush dictatorship’s “gifts” to Obama, besides the wars and the recession, were a detention camp at Guantanamo Bay, an amoral judiciary dedicated to destroying the Constitution, a shredded Bill of Rights that no longer protects America’s freedoms, and a cadre of torturers and war criminals who believe they are above the law.
Sadly, the infection spawned by the legacy of the Bush dictatorship is now plaguing the world. In Iran protests have erupted over the results of a disputed presidential election, inspiring America’s politicians and corporate-controlled media to respond with “righteous indignation.”
Yet where were these politicians and media when George W. Bush’s brother Jeb, acting in concert with an unethical Supreme Court “justice” named Antonin Scalia and a smirking Katherine Harris, helped Bush steal America’s presidential election during the coup of 2000? Aside from a few whimpers, the media largely ignored this undermining of democracy, allegedly so “the country could move forward.”
After so conveniently ignoring electoral fraud in their own nation, it is the height of hypocrisy for American politicians and media to now spew sanctimonious outrage over allegations of electoral fraud in other nations. It is also the height of hypocrisy for the American people to jingoistically permit their government to constantly engage in wars in other lands, purportedly to promote the principles of “freedom and democracy,” while they mutely let those principles be decimated at home.
To their credit, the Iranian people are now risking life and limb to protest the results of their presidential election. Yet in America, aside from a few scattered protests along the “inaugural” route, the people obsequiously considered the coup of 2000, and later the lies that led to the illegal invasion of Iraq, to be “business as usual.”
Even after Bush proclaimed, in the wake of the September 11th attacks, that terrorists hate America because of its “freedoms,” the people slumbered as his cabal of thugs demolished these freedoms more ruthlessly than any terrorist could ever hope to accomplish.
The infectiousness of the Bush dictatorship’s policy of “unilateralism” and defiance of international law can also be seen in the actions of the government of North Korea, which is currently using many of the same rationalizations to ignore world opinion about its nuclear weapons program that Bush used to ignore world opinion about the illegal invasion of Iraq.
And how can any American politician now condemn another country’s human rights record when the Bush dictatorship repeatedly tortured alleged terrorists, denied them legal due process, and held them in secret prisons where human rights abuses could remain undetected? How can justice be demanded in other nations when the Obama administration, which was supposed to usher in an era of change and hope, has essentially refused to prosecute the officials in the Bush dictatorship who are responsible for these crimes?
One of the most repugnant of these thugs is John Yoo, a law professor who, while serving in the Bush-era “Justice” Department, authored controversial memoranda advocating the use of torture.
During this same era another professor named Ward Churchill composed an essay that explored the possible motivations for the September 11th attacks. This essay subsequently generated significant controversy because Churchill labeled some of the victims of these attacks “little Eichmanns.”
Initially the responses from the respective universities where Churchill and Yoo were employed appeared to be similar: Their opinions were protected by the “freedom of speech” clause contained in the first amendment to the Bill of Rights; therefore they could not be fired for expressing them.
But the reality was much different. While this clause seemed to protect Yoo, Churchill suddenly became the target of a university “investigation” that subsequently resulted in his firing for “plagiarism” and other “research misconduct.”
Why the disparity in the treatment of these two academics? The answer is simple. Universities, despite all their “ivory-tower” posturing, are profit-driven institutions. Fears of losing tuition, alumni donations or tax dollars will invariably trump any “higher” principles an academic institution may have. This often means that administrators live by two sets of “rules,” demanding dedication and integrity from their students and faculty while ignoring the obligation to practice such values themselves.
To be continued…
David R. Hoffman, Legal Editor of Pravda.Ru