President Barak Obama changed his tune Wednesday, softening his "no prosecution, no way" stance on investigation and prosecution of members of the administration of former President George W. Bush who sanctioned torture of prisoners.
Obama caved to pressure from members of his own party who want blood — lots of blood — from the rotting corpse of the so-called Bush legacy.
Which begs the question: How did they change Obama’s mind?
They probably waterboarded him. Former Vice President Dick Cheney says it works wonders. So do the handful of former Bush Administration clones who still cling to the discredited notion that their President actually accomplished something during his eight years in the White House.
Or maybe Democrats subjected Obama to hours of Rush Limbaugh radio show tapes. It would only take about 15 minutes of listening to Limbaugh’s blather and I’d confess to killing former President John F. Kennedy.
Or maybe they just showed him a picture of Limbaugh in swim trunks: Whale on the beach! God knows the mouth that roared can’t match Obama in the buff.
Whatever method of "aggressive interrogation" the Democrats used on Obama, it apparently worked. If Obama follows through and gives the green light to a full-blown pursuit of the Bush crime family the stampede will make Sherman’s march to the sea look like an Easter Parade.
Blood lust runs high along the banks of the Potomac. Some Democrats won’t be satisfied until they see Bush, Cheney, et. al pounding rocks at Levenworth and Republicans want Obama tagged as Socialist of the Century.
So much for bi-partisanship but while the concept of America’s two dominant political parties working together made for a good campaign stump speech it never had a chance in the bitter, partisan world of big-time Washington politics.
The divide between Republicans and Democrats has never been wider. As the fog of bi-partisanship faded, both parties retreated to their extremes: Republicans to the right while Democrats shouted "go left young man" to their new President.
For the most part, Obama seems willing to find solace in his party’s extreme left wing. His programs are mostly liberalism at its core: Big government, big spending and a system that takes care of Americans from the cradle to the grave.
Moderates from both parties hoped Obama would govern from the middle as Bill Clinton did after his brief flirtation with the extreme left during his first two years in office. As Obama heads toward the media-manufactured "first 100 days" milestone, his performance will be measured more for its liberal performance than by moderate expectations.
But Clinton shifted back towards the middle after voters in the 1994 mid-term elections delivered a stinging indictment of his liberalism. If voters do the same next year, Obama could recognize that a shift to the center is a way to assure a second term.
This, of course, is all specutation. Polls show Americans support most of Obama’s actions and having the electorate on your side gives a President a lot of room.
Yet Obama’s toughest critics may be the liberal base of his own party, a base that demands more and more capitulation from the President.
He appears to have caved on the question of prosecution of Bush and his band of renegades.
Which brings us back to the original question: Who waterboarded the President of the United States?