Sunday, January 11, 2009


I'm really pissed about something: politicians lie.

OK, that's a man-bites-dog story if I've ever heard one but let me continue.

All politicians lie, it's true. Indeed, all politicians lie most of the time or at least hedge the truth with truthiness.

That doesn't bother me. I don't really want to know what's going on behind the scenes for most things until the public roll out happens. Too many details, too much information and then you'd have people arguing about how they didn't know, as opposed to why they didn't know.

Like I don't need to know wiring to appreciate electricity, I don't need to know the processes behind most legislation and administration.

Here's the thing, tho. We've just come out of eight years of the most egregious lying in the history of America, and that's pissing me off. Why? Because it makes Barack Obama look stupid, is why.

Bill Clinton lied. Indeed, he was the consummate liar of both stripes: the lies I can live with and the lies I hate. When Clinton was in his element, say with encouraging Congress to pass legislation, his lies were spot on, and again, I could live with not being told something was going on when indeed something was going on.

Clinton, when he was out of his element, like with the Lewinski scandal, was a horrible liar. He was out of his comfort zone. Rather than not revealing truths, he was forced to deny the truth. Those are the lies, I think, most people get offended by.

Bush et al, took this to a brand new level. Under the guise of hiding the truth, in reality, people like Cheney and Gonzalez, Libby and Rove ended up bald-faced lying to us. For eight years!

In the end, I think part of Bush's horrendous polling numbers was a direct function of this: there's only so much that Americans will put up with before screaming "ENOUGH!"

Now, to Barack Obama. I've read a little of his stimulus package. I know there's dissembling in there, of course. For one thing, it has to be based on last year's budget numbers and last year's budget numbers are not the whole truth, to be sure. In most places, it will be worse than the budget tells us. In some, better.

Here's the thing, though. The first lie, white or black, that Obama is caught up in will be magnified and turned into a major crisis of confidence. Just look at how the Richardson withdrawal played out in the MSM: Obama misstepped.

No, he didn't. He can't be blamed because Richardson flat out lied, except to the extent that his vetting team fell flat on its face. For that, he needs to take responsibility, but not to me. I don't care. I expected it, in fact.

No, I'm talking about the first lie in his numbers, which of course are inaccurate as I've just outlined. The hue and cry will be awful.

Bush lowered the bar for many things in the Presidency: accountability, humility, communication, bipartisanship (remember how he would work with Dems?).

But in this, in honesty, there might be the greatest tragedy of all his failures and flaws.

For that, he must never be forgotten or forgiven.