Here’s the opening of the New York Times editorial today:
Looking at America
Published: December 31, 2007
There are too many moments these days when we cannot recognize our country. Sunday was one of them, as we read the account in The Times of how men in some of the most trusted posts in the nation plotted to cover up the torture of prisoners by Central Intelligence Agency interrogators by destroying videotapes of their sickening behavior. It was impossible to see the founding principles of the greatest democracy in the contempt these men and their bosses showed for the Constitution, the rule of law and human decency.
It was not the first time in recent years we’ve felt this horror, this sorrowful sense of estrangement, not nearly. This sort of lawless behavior has become standard practice since Sept. 11, 2001.
The country and much of the world was rightly and profoundly frightened by the single-minded hatred and ingenuity displayed by this new enemy. But there is no excuse for how President Bush and his advisers panicked — how they forgot that it is their responsibility to protect American lives and American ideals, that there really is no safety for Americans or their country when those ideals are sacrificed.
What’s wrong in that third paragraph? Bush and his junta didn’t “panic”–you don’t suddenly squat out the Patriot Act in a fight-or-flight squirly moment–and they certainly didn’t “forget” their responsibilities.
C’mon, New York Times, it was intentional the moment those corrupt bastards stole the election in 2000. Destroying our freedoms was intentional. Removing habeus corpus was intentional. Letting New Orleans drown was intentional. Bombing the country that didn’t contain the terrorists that bombed us was intentional. Underfunding deployed troops is intentional. Underfunding returned troops is intentional. Torture is intentional.
Suddenly saying Burma!…well, that’s panic.
At least the end para strives for hope:
We can only hope that this time, unlike 2004, American voters will have the wisdom to grant the awesome powers of the presidency to someone who has the integrity, principle and decency to use them honorably. Then when we look in the mirror as a nation, we will see, once again, the reflection of the United States of America.