I'm with stupid

Stuck on stupid

Poor Laura

It must be just awful for Laura Bush, having to watch her beloved husband screw up so spectacularly with the entire world watching. The latest crise de stupidité is the inept firing of eight US attorneys for transparently political reasons.

fired US attorneys
Fired US attorneys

While it is true that the US attorneys serve "at the pleasure of the President" and he can replace them whenever he wants, he can't do it to stifle investigations into, say, corruption on the part of, say, Republicans. And there is certainly more than a hint that that was involved, the case of Carol Lam in San Diego being the most patent. Congress is certainly right to try to get to the bottom of it all.

Here's where stupid comes in: Bush has decided to hunker down and protect his amigo Albert Gonzales and stymie the investigation by imposing absurd restrictions on any appearance by White House aides, all the while saying "People just need to hear the truth, and they're [AG Gonzales and WH aides] going to go up [to Congress] and explain the truth."

George Bush press conference

Bush's idea of a "reasonable proposal" is that the White House staff should be "interviewed" (not "testify") behind closed doors, not under oath, and no transcript or recording be made of the proceedings. Yeah, sure, they really "would like people to hear the truth" all right! That is obviously a proposal by someone who knows there is something to hide.

It's not about avoiding a "political spectacle" — it's about deniability, about preventing the truth from coming out. It's not about protecting "executive privilege." It's all about protecting Karl Rove. But then, wouldn't anybody want to protect a guy like Rove who knows as much dirt as he knows?

The Bushies have acted throughout this whole administration as if they are better than everybody else, know it all, and can do anything they want, everybody else be damned. They have shown nothing but contempt for the other branches of government, for the rule of law and international treaties, and ultimately for the American people. "The common welfare" is not a concept they understand — to them, it's all about getting power and giving goodies to your friends.

That attitude has been clear in all the debacles of this administration, the Iraq war and the response to hurricane Katrina being prime examples.

The worst of it is that they do not learn from their mistakes. Even after losing both houses of Congress in the last election, they went ahead with a knuckleheaded plan to oust a few US attorneys who weren't sufficiently loyal to the Bush political machine. Then, after doing it, they couldn't get their story straight on what the reason was for doing it, giving Congress a series of categorical assurances that were untrue. Now they have so little respect for the American people as to believe we will take their word for it one more time!

This administration is in desperate need of adult supervision.

In the end... Gonzales is going to have to go — the man has no credibility and no support, even among Congressional Republicans. Karl Rove, Harriet Miers, et al are going to have to testify and there will be a record made of their testimony — as Dan Froomkin pointed out in yesterday's Washington Post, they make a transcript of Tony Snow's press briefings, for crying out loud!

With everything else that needs attention, you'd think they wouldn't like to force yet another confrontation. You'd think. They wouldn't.

And let the cynical not forget: Every day that the firings occupy the headlines, the Iraq war doesn't.