Liar, liar, world’s on fire!

Here at Capitol Hill Blue we have a simple test to determine whether or not President George W. Bush is lying: If his lips move he’s lying.

OK, that’s the smartass answer but in these troubled political times it is possible to be both a smartass and correct. Bush lies out his ass so much that an occasion when he actually told the truth would be front page news.

Which brings us to Eric Alterman’s incisive column in The Nation.

Writes Alterman:

Once upon a time, only people with bad manners took note of the fact that George W. Bush was an inveterate liar. One such person, pundit Michael Kinsley, observed back in April 2002, "Bush II administration lies are often so laughably obvious that you wonder why they bother." Back then it was undeniable but all but unsayable in the mainstream media. Even when addressing himself to the very topic of Bush’s myriad lies six months later, Washington Post scribe Dana Milbank combed his thesaurus and came up with "embroidering," "taken some flights of fancy," "taken some liberties," "omitted qualifiers," etc. But even this artful linguistic circumlocution so infuriated Karl Rove & Co. that the White House pressured the Post to reassign the reporter. When asked to comment on an incontrovertible, unarguable, prime-time presidential lie–Bush publicly claimed that Iraq would not allow inspections, when in fact the UN inspectors had to be kicked out for his war to begin–on CNN’s Reliable Sources program, Milbank said, "I think what people basically decided was this is just the President being the President." What, after all, is the big deal about lying about why you started a war?

Bush had been lying right from the start, of course, but just for fun, one assumes, he recently decided to double-down on his bet. On the day after the election, Bush explained to the media that the discrepancy between his insistence just a few days earlier to reporters that Donald Rumsfeld would stay in his job come hell or high water while, in fact, he had already started the process to replace Rumsfeld with Robert Gates could be explained by… well, heck, Bush just felt like lying about it. His exact words: "I didn’t want to inject a major decision about this war in the final days of a campaign. And so the only way to answer that question, and to get you on to another question, was to give you that answer."

Bush’s bald admission proved a breathtaking break with presidential precedent. After all, presidential lying is nothing new, but on virtually every occasion I studied for my book on the topic, When Presidents Lie: A History of Official Deception and Its Consequences, presidential lies were said to rest, somehow, on national security needs. (The obvious exception was Bill Clinton’s blowjob lie, which he attributed–compellingly in my view–to his constitutional right to privacy under the Fourth Amendment.)

Alterman goes on to deal with Bush’s big pre-election lie: That Donald Rumsfeld would finish out his second term as Defense Secretary. After the election, Bush admitted he lied and made no apologies for misleading the press and the nation.

He concludes:

What’s more, now that Bush has come out and all but said, "I lie because I feel like it," nothing he says can be taken on faith. Some will no doubt resist this. Having been deprived of the "It’s not a lie if the liar believes his own lie" argument that had previously proven so popular, This Week’s George Will excused Bush on the grounds of his apparent imbecility. "The English language is not always the President’s friend," Will explained, as if Bush had been reared speaking Sanskrit. But this dog is not likely to remain in the media’s hunting party for long. Bush’s revealed contempt–both for the truth and for the reporters whose job it is to find it–has created a kind of existential crisis for reporters and their bosses: "If the President is willing to call himself a liar, how can we go on pretending it isn’t so?" And yet, if they remain unfree to call the President a liar, well… you get the point.

So far, nobody in the MSM really has a handle on the issue. The Washington Post, to its credit, ran five separate news stories that touched on the lie–two online and three in the paper. (This was originally misreported in the liberal blogosphere, which charged the paper with changing the wording of its stories to protect the President from his lie. In fact, the Post merely printed multiple stories with differing descriptions of the lie, with no subsequent changes in any of them.) All were reasonably straightforward, deploying phrases like "appeared to mislead," which is as close as the paper’s editors can bring themselves to calling a lie a lie. Unfortunately, the only story devoted exclusively to the lie itself was by Howard Kurtz, who could think only to ask if Bush’s lie about Rumsfeld was "on par with President Bill Clinton’s hair-splitting defense in the Monica S. Lewinsky investigation that ‘it all depends on what the definition of is is.’" The New York Times barely touched on the question–treating the decision to replace Rumsfeld as a typical Washington soap opera. Save for the occasional op-ed, the issue soon disappeared under an avalanche of stories about Nasty Nancy Pelosi (the new Wicked Witch of the West in Morton Kondracke’s phrasing) and "maverick" John McCain, the MSM’s President-in-Waiting. We were back to business as usual in George Bush’s America.


  1. Susan

    Nothing’s ever Shrub’s fault. If everyone would just do what he wants, he would be a happy man. He’s an antisocial psychopath. He has no conscious and is unaffected by normal emotions. He’s not chastizing himself – he’s cursing the world for not understanding his genius. He truly believes history will remember him as a great man, how he sees himself. He lives in a fantasy world.

  2. Wendy

    For me, the word that best describes Bush (and includes his lies, bold faced as well as innocent) is “delusional”. He really believes he has the authority and power to do anything and say anything without fear. Only this election has opened a window or two in his head to the fact that he is neither invincible nor untouchable. He declared boldly prior to the election that the Republicans would NOT lose control of Congress, said with such surity that I really felt that “the fix” was in. In fact, I used those very words the moment I heard him. He has isolated himself in an ivory tower constructed by his own imagination and the incessant emotional strokes by his band of buddies to where he truly believed he was in an impenetrable fortress. Non unlike, I’m sure, the families and friends of some of the horribly deficient singers attempting to become our next American Idol (you know – they’d been told repeatedly how good they were and how they were sure to win because no one dared damage their fragile psyches by telling the truth of their short-comings). Anyway, Bush lives in a world of delusion with a lot of help from his caretakers.

  3. dave

    Mmmmm… Ted space aliens are in controll of Bush and his intire staff.It’s called mind controll.Not all aliens are bad,only the Reptiles or are the demons from another demisnion.
    go to and get connected.

  4. Ted

    South Point Man:

    “Who performed the analysis you specified: Name your source, the individual, not the web site!!!”

    Your answer:

    You gave me a web site not what I asked for…. the name of the individual who made the allegation.

    You dodge a true answer just like W. Bush does. WTF???????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????

  5. Ted

    South Point Man you like GW Bush are not related to reality. Your rant is as long as it is absurd.

    Your $20 dollar bills are in the mail like Bush’s integrity. Enjoy your fantasy.

  6. South Point Man

    Ted, this is indeed your lucky day! You’re about to become a millionaire!

    And don’t forget who turned you on to the contest… ahem ahem ahem… You’ll of course want to be generously grateful to whom helped you become fabulously wealthy after you collect your prize… ahem ahem ahem…

    I’d prefer that in small bills, please. 20s and lots of them will work just fine. Thank you. Oh boy oh boy oh boy, now I’ll be able to afford to get that 60 inch screen tv I’ve been lusting for…

  7. South Point Man

    “Who performed the analysis you specified: Name your source, the individual, not the web site!!!”

    Welcome to the wonderful world of the use of search engines.

    Have at it. Prepare to spend a WHOLE lot of time doing research as a lot of the rest of us have done. Many of us have spent who knows how many hundreds of dedicated hours going over this with the proverbial fine-tooth comb. We’re not dummies. And if something is outside our current field of expertise, we can spend time learning it. As we did. We know a lot more about building engineering and architecture and chemical reactions, etc, etc, so on and so forth than when we started.

    How come those who support the official theory NEVER support a criminal homicide investigation like what was supposed to have done in the first place with all its forensic analysis trimmings? I do mean never. Not one single time have I come across someone who supports the official theory be willing to support a criminal homicide investigation. There’s always some blah-blah-blah reason why not. If what they believe is so truly true, then a criminal homicide investigation would prove it. Right?

    What does 9/11 have to do with this article thread? Everything. 9/11 is what started this whole crappy-assed mess and is the most fundamental lie of the Bushoid cabal of evilness. Nearly 3000 people were first degree murdered right in front of our eyes and still more people are dying or have been dehabilitated by their exposure to the toxic debris released by the collapse of the buildings and we want don’t want to put up with some fluffy fluff that’s been tossed out as “the real truth” when NO criminal homicide investigation has been done.

    No more lies. No more disinfo. No more diversions.

    Elevator shafts hekping to act as blast furnaces? Hmmm… that means buildings with fires in them should be collapsing left and right all over the world as just about all of the have elevator shafts in them as few people enjoy walking up 20 or 30 or 50 stories of flights of steps. Yet they don’t collapse. The only buildings that did were three of them that were owned by Larry Silverstein. What a very curious coincidence, eh? All on the same day in the same place. And all looking very, very, very, very suspiciously like controlled demolition. How lucky for Silverstein who received billions of dollars in insurance money, and also fortunately had the towers that were abestos-ladened white elephants destroyed for free that would have cost otherwise legally hundreds and hundreds and hundreds and hundreds of millions of dollars to take down. Larry, you lucky, lucky dawg, you. Don’t let me be the first one to say I smell biggest insurance fraud scam in history…

    9/11 is the lie that set the world on fire. And some of us who aren’t completely brain-washed and brain-dead are a tad concerned about this…

    When George the Lips does the lying routine, ol’ Georgie sure does tell some whoppers, eh?

  8. Ted


    This hypothesis has not been rigorously and skeptically analyzed nor validated by peer review and is therefore not a verified or valid theory. I am a physicist and don’t buy this “STORY”.

    Who performed the analysis you specified: Name your source, the individual, not the web site!!!

    Consider that if the airflow dynamics in the elevator shafts caused a forced air situation (heat rises) and couple this with the energy contained in the jet fuel a resultant blast furnace effect would be present. This process has more than enough heat production capability to melt steel.

    Blow smoke where you will but I am not inhaling it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  9. David Rosenberg

    I don’t understand why this is being evaluated. Bush has lied from 2000 to present. The fact that he has come clean recently, on other lies, is what bothers me. Why is he all of a sudden changing his tune on certain lies. The Rumsfeld bit is basically not very important. A few weeks ago he admitted the war was for the Oil but, nobody seemed to pick that up and run with it. That was a biggie. Every Republican denied that the Oil was a factor for the war, calling anyone that said it, crazy or of being an idiot.
    Whether bush likes it or not, his administration plus his presidency, will be called one of or even the worse in American History. The Iraq war will certainly be more then a Comma, as bush believes, in the History books. Personaly, bush will be described as a liar and that he deceived the population on more then one occation. I’ve said it before and I will say again, bush, after he retires, will either have a nervous breakdown or take his own life. He will go into a deep depression and never recover from it.
    The main reason that this will happen, every behind the scenes, dirty deed, unlawful event that was done with his knoweledge, will come to the surface. It will all have the proof behind it, not allowing a rebut from bush. He might try and say they are all lies, made up now that he is no longer in office but, in the end, he will be ruined.

  10. Judy B

    The bottom line on GWB is that is the most inept, hubris, indulged liar ever to be called “Mr.President”

    The thousands of deadly dangerous and expensive lies Bush and his hand picked V.P., aides & advisors have told make the “Clinton Blow Job Lie”
    almost acceptable and definitly a whole hell of a lot less deadly and expensive than this administrations continuous
    “Snow Job” perpetrated on the American people & the world !

  11. South Point Man

    Citizen Rice is correct. The physics done by people who have analyzed the energy flux of the whole situation have revealed that jet fuel and office combustibles don’t come close to providing enough energy output as was observed. That extra energy had to come from somewhere. Every effect has its cause. Things don’t just magically happen.

    Bush has been lying to us from the beginning about the events 0f 9/11.

    No more lies. No more deceptions. No more excuses. We want the criminal homicide investigation that should have been done 5 years ago to be done NOW. No more dawdling, no more dithering.

    “I’m betting it was space aliens under control of the CIA. Yea thats it!”

    Is this one of those intentional disinfo things that I’ve been hearing about? Where someone is intentionally trying to to block and divert serious inquiry and investigation?

    All we want is the criminal homicide to happen that was supposed to have happened instead of an endless parade of nonsense. Is that too much to ask?