Bush’s boys on the hot seat

Two architects of the Bush administration’s dismantling of the Constitution and this nation’s immersion into an ill-conceived war based on lies find themselves on the hot seat this week – one for memory lapses and the other for letting his Johnson overcome his judgment.

Attorney General Alberto Gonzales tried, and failed, Thursday to convince skeptical Democrats and Republicans in the Senate that his memory is so bad that he needs to be reminded when he fires someone, when he tells an aide to fire someone or when he even tells the President of the United States he fired someone.

Gonzales, testifying about the ever-escalating scandal over dismissal of U.S. attorneys, repeated “I don’t recall” so many times that people in the audience of the Senate Judiciary Committee hearing kept tally sheets. His bumbling yet arrogant performance is just the kind of in-your-face political theater that defines the failed administration of President George W. Bush. It led to a second GOP Senator calling on Gonzales to resign and a public dressing down by Senior GOP Committee member Sen. Arlen Specter.

Memo to Gonzo: When members of your own party think you are a liar, it’s time to pack your carpetbag and hightail it to Mexico (extradition is difficult there, even with a treaty).

Gonzales, we must remember, succeeded Attorney General John Ashcroft, a former Republican Senator so incompetent that he lost his re-election bid to a dead man. Ashcroft authored, with Gonzales help, the rights-robbing USA Patriot Act, the law that civil rights advocates call the single greatest threat to our way of life since England’s King George tried to stamp out talk of freedom in the colonies.

Yet as bad as Ashcroft was – and he ranks right up there on the “bad to the bone” scale – even he opposed many of the Constitution ignoring recommendations that Gonzales made as White House Counsel.

And after Gonzales got Ashcroft’s job, he used the USA Patriot Act to replace U.S. Attorneys who failed to put loyalty to Bush ahead of the law of the land.

Bush, through his White House press spokesman, said he was “proud” of Gonzales’ performance before the Senate. Ah, the arrogance of power.

Over at The World Bank, Paul Wolfowitz, the man who sat on the right of former Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld’s throne and played a major role in manipulating false intelligence information to justify the invasion of Iraq, is caught up in an old-fashioned sex scandal.

Seems Wolfie, as President of the World Bank, promoted his girlfriend into a job with a tax-free salary higher than that of Secretary of State Condi Rice. Shaha Riza must be great in bed because Wolfowitz engineered a $60,000 salary hike for her in a job whose ever-changing title varies from “communications specialist” to “a senior gender coordinator” in a World Bank operation called the “Foundation for the Future.”

We’re not sure what the “Foundation for the Future” does but it apparently does great things for the financial future of Shaha Riza, whose tax-free paycheck now gives her a take-home salary of $193,590 a year.

Wolfowitz, like Gonzales, is ignoring calls for his resignation. Bush, who appointed Wolfowitzh to the job as a reward for rigging the Iraq war, says he is “proud” of Wolfowitz too.

Wolfowitz should remember the words of former New York Senator Alfonse D’Amato who – during the Bill Clinton-Monica Lewinsky scandal – said “when the little head gets hard the big head goes soft.”

But at least Wolfowitz has one part of his anatomy thinking for him. We’ve yet to see evidence that Attorney General Alberto Gonzales is able to think with any organ.

20 Responses to "Bush’s boys on the hot seat"

  1. Wayne K Dolik  April 20, 2007 at 3:49 pm

    Great article today Doug. It really kept me laughing. Heres a point you made which really made me think.

    “Loyalty to Bush over the law of the land”.

    It seems to me that the same thing happened during the rule of Hitler. What Hitler was able to do was to replace the rule of law and the Constitution with blind support to the ruler. Your point is well made. The decider favors blind loyalty.

    I for one have no problem with Gone-Zalez’s ancestry. I have a problem with what policies he has favored. I hope for the sake of this great republic he gets what he deserves.

  2. geyser  April 20, 2007 at 6:29 pm

    Someone corrected us saying Gonzalas was born and bred in Texas, not Mexico. It really doesn’t matter where he came from. What does matter a lie is a lie. Apperently Gonzalas is added to the long list of bush appointments, not qualified and not ready to take on the responsibilities of the position handed to him. Gonzalas is too young to claim a memory lapse as his excuse.
    Paul Wolfowitz is also added to the list. He went from a Defense Dept. position to head the World Bank, I checked to find nothing common to both. He is good at manipulation. The World Bank ought to keep this in mind when an audit is done. PW produced a letter written to explain his association with the woman also, advising of the new position and money involved. He claims the letter was written and given when he first became the head of the Bank. It wasn’t produced until after the story broke, but of course.
    There hasn’t been two weeks where some impropriety doesn’t come to light, just one thing after another. It is a sad state how this country has been run. There is nothing to say, “I am proud of” or “Good job” The saddest of all, we have two more years to endure, I hope we can make it.

    Taking One Day at a Time

  3. Ladywolf55  April 20, 2007 at 9:00 pm

    That was a particularly good one.

    Oh, and Carlos, Doug acknowledged they have an extradition treaty.. he just inferred that they don’t ABIDE by it. And he’s right.

    Impush Beach!

  4. SEAL  April 20, 2007 at 10:30 pm

    You hit the nail squarely on the head when you identified arrogance as the root cause. But it is only the Bush arrogance that is responsible. Also, “blind” loyalty to Bush is not a factor for either of these two mercs. Their real loyalty is to themselves. Their loyalty to Bush is opportunism.

    Gonzales and Wolfowitz recognized that arrogance is the all consumming passion of Bush and fed it to further their own careers. They give him what he wants without regard to right-wrong, legal-illegal. The more power they can feed him the more arrogant he can become. Therefore, it is he who becomes loyal to them. Now that the wheel broke on their wagon they are depending on that loyalty to save them. However, Bush’s history proves his loyalty is only to himself when the shit hits the fan. He is a totally self absorbed individual. Without party support, neither of these clowns stand a chance of surviving.

  5. carlos  April 21, 2007 at 12:15 pm

    I wish Doug would simply have said: “my mistake, there is an extradition treaty”, and left it at that. He did not imply in his first version of the article that extradition was difficult, he stated that there was no treaty.

    On the other hand, to say that extradition is difficult is a lot more accurate than to say that Mexico does not abide by the treaty. Poorly written laws, incompetence, and corrupt judges can explain a lot of the “difficulty”. The frase: “…they don’t abide by it.” would suggest to me a government policy, and it certainly is not that.

  6. gene  April 22, 2007 at 7:27 pm

    Dam right Warren (above) its the 90% of the rest of this evil gain of murderers that bothers me too. Bush is nothing but a thug who still has a few brain dead americans thinking he actually cares about anything they or anyone else thinks.

    Bush is a lier and murderer who has gathered snakes to do his biding. Congress still acts like spineless shits that they are.

    When this other (90%) rears its ugly head then we will truely see what hell is all about.

  7. SEAL  April 21, 2007 at 4:28 pm

    This is what Doug said: Memo to Gonzo: When members of your own party think you are a liar, it’s time to pack your carpetbag and hightail it to Mexico (extradition is difficult there, even with a treaty).

    That does not say there is no treaty. I don’t see how you could interpret it that way. Doug’s message is very clear. Gonzo has screwed up, gotten himself caught, and embarassed the party so badly, he should get out of the country ahead of the republican lynch mob. Being of mexican decent, Mexico would be the logical place for him to go, plus, in spite of the treaty we have with them, he might be able to prevent his extradition back to the US. At least for a long time. Doug just said it better with fewer words.

    It appears there is a problem with reading comprehension, not with what Mr. Thompson wrote.

  8. SEAL  April 21, 2007 at 7:57 pm

    I see I am the guilty party. The only version I saw was the one above so I couldn’t understand why the conversation about it. I did not read thoroughly. Blame it on the drugs. My appologies.

  9. Warren  April 22, 2007 at 1:54 pm

    The corruption we see is the 10% that’s above the waterline and that someone cares to notice. It’s the other 90% we don’t see that really worries me.

    —W—

  10. Jenifer D.  April 23, 2007 at 3:20 am

    That statement alone made me shudder knowing what Wolfie looks like…YUK! He’s the ugly guy in the Mystery Date game in my opinion! LOL!!!

  11. anthny  April 20, 2007 at 8:26 am

    anthny
    This is the right spot for these two usurps who are tried and true lover’s of dictatorships.
    That being said “I can’t recall” worked for the Reagan guys so it will work for anyone with a bad memory.
    This might be the end for Wolfowitz. We need more nepotism in the world bank, like we need more phoney Federal Reserve Notes, you know the money backed by air alone.
    What a world it would be if these two buttheads go down in a week.
    I’ll never forget Wolfowitz spitting on his comb for the camera in Fernhiett 9/11. What a loser.
    This guy problably never had any friends in Jr. High School, and was picked on.
    The powers behind the dictator are not as smart as they think they are. Gonzales’ look of confidence or is it the I’m smarter and better than any of you Senators, gets him in trouble. He is down right arrogant.

  12. Sandy Price  April 20, 2007 at 8:48 am

    Thank you chief, you do put things in a proper perspective.

  13. Razor  April 20, 2007 at 9:26 am

    Can anyone name one person in the Bush Administration that is not a crook, liar, or seems to forget everything that ever happened that may have been illegal? It seems Alzheimers disease infects the white house. I’m sure if I used the excuse of poor memory in court, the judge would lock me up in a heartbeat. How obvious it is when they always use the don’t recall lie.

  14. Sinjohn  April 20, 2007 at 1:10 pm

    But he had Alzheimer’s!

    What’s their excuse?

  15. brcarthey  April 20, 2007 at 9:56 am

    Mr. Thompson,

    I enjoyed this morning’s rant (as I do most mornings), but one thing caught me by surprise. You appear to be xenophobic with your comment, “…it’s time to pack your carpetbag and hightail it back of Mexico.”

    Although, I don’t like to admit it, Alberto Gonzales is a fellow Texan, born and raised, unlike our liar-in-chief. Mr. Gonzales was born in San Antonio and raised in Humble (just north of Houston).

    I hope this is just a case of misspeaking.

    Blitz Carthey

    –If Descartes’ declaration, “I think, therefore I am,” were true, then this world should be a lot less crowded!

  16. Steve Horn  April 20, 2007 at 10:53 am

    Again, the hot wind from the District continues to blow, angry words are exchanged, but no remedy is called for.

    When will members of congress get their collective heads out of their rectums, where they appear to have been lodged for the past six years (for those who survived the 2006 election cycle) and since January (for those who were elected last November) and impeach this President so that he can be arrested and held for crimes against humanity (perhaps as an enemy non-combatant, under the rules laid forth BY him, with no access to an attorney and no evidence requirements)??

    Until then it’s just same sh*t, different day.

    Peace

    Steve

  17. jennbeez  April 20, 2007 at 11:06 am

    Doing a great job Brownie, doing a great job Rummie, doing a great job Gonzo… we have become a country whose high officials cringe when offered praise by the commander in chief.

    Poor Bush. He thinks this is the way things are done. I’ve no doubt Bush was told “doing a great job” in all the jobs nepotism got for him even as he was running that company into the ground.

    What’s frightening is 30% of people in this country still think he’s doing a great job. Such is the power of propaganda.

  18. JudyB  April 20, 2007 at 11:32 am

    OUT! OUT! OUT!…I WANT THEM ALL OUT… YESTERDAY !

  19. AustinRanter  April 20, 2007 at 12:02 pm

    Look, Gonzales says nothing improper happened, that he’d check into it more…what’s more left for him to do?

    The Prez said he’s really happy about Gonzales’ testimony…proud of his boy wonder…so, what’s left to say or do?

    Until Congress says “GONZALES”…you’re a liar and a disgrace to the Constitution of the United States, we have to right to remove you from your appointment and we will begin to do so immediate….until then, I’m not going to get too excited.

    Wolfowitz is a professional ropa-dope strategist, but until the bank security grabs him up by the neck…sets him outside the building…Im not going to get to excited.

  20. carlos  April 20, 2007 at 3:00 pm

    Just an observation, Doug:

    Mexico and the US do have an extradition treaty.

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