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Dude, you can’t edit away the truth

May 5, 2014

For some reason, every time I see the White House press secretary speak, I hear his voice, but I see Baghdad Bob. Some trick of the mind, or is it the mindless denial of the truth, the defense of the indefensible, that seems so familiar?

Perhaps one wouldn’t expect any employee, no matter how insignificant, to stand up and call his boss an inept manager, much less a liar. Well, at least not unless conscience  overrides blind obedience.

Some people do manage to make that distinction. The health care providers at the Arizona V.A. hospital did so, even though they publicly say they expect retaliation. They didn’t run off and use the information to benefit a foreign government. They just put it out there, and let the chips fall where they will.

Cover-ups aren’t new things at the White House, and it’s more than probable that most administrations have skeletons in the closet. When those bones rattle loudly enough and get sufficiently smelly, someone generally wants to open the closet door to see what’s rotten. Sometimes it does open, and then we get things like Nixon’s resignation.

It seems that this administration’s tactic to keep that door closed is to deride, dismiss and defame the searchers. Either that, or to claim a condition more often found in victims of severe head trauma, long-term memory loss.

 If you just have a gut feeling that something is terribly wrong in Washington, you are apparently part of the “loud delusional minority” as former senior White House adviser David Plouffe put  it this weekend.

 It’s probably true that a majority of the people don’t have a personal interest in what comes out of the Benghazi investigations, or politically driven witch hunts, as the administration sees them.  They do understand that it is the government’s job to defend Americans here and abroad, even when it isn’t politically convenient.

Collectively, there does seem to be a national nose that senses that something is unusually smelly in Washington.

Occasionally someone turns up the heat on an issue, whether it is lying to the American people about the true effects of the ACA to win an election, an attack in Benghazi, the IRS being used to silence opposing views ahead of an election, the true effect of government policies on the cost of living or the number of people out of work due to government policies. As soon as that happens, some mouthpiece like Tommy Vietor pops up like a wind-up jack-in-the-box toy, perhaps reclaimed from Twitter.

This administration seems uncommonly good at being crass, dismissive  and disrespectful not just of normal social etiquette, but of the mental capacity of the people they are addressing.

That’s hardly surprising. The administration and its minions really think that way. They are so in love with themselves and their view of the perfect world that the idea that anyone could actually find any fault with them, their tactics or their ethics  is simply unimaginable.

The fact that the former NSC communications director used slang vernacular during his Fox News interview could possibly be excused on the grounds that the Me generation was weaned on a steady diet of believing in their own exceptionalism. Etiquette and honesty are probably some of those out-of-date words that are being dropped from the SAT tests.

What is inexcusable is that he honestly thinks that lying for political gain, even when it involves the lives of real people is OK. In his words “…that’s what bureaucrats do”.

Dude, that’s the problem with Washington. Too many bureaucrats, way too few Americans. 

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