Tuesday, January 17, 2006

The FBI is swamped with false leads. Who woulda thought?

We see in the Bush administration a unique combination, AFAIK unknown in our history, of malevolence, in its love of torture and secret prisons and imperial and dictatorial powers; corruption, in the K Street project and outright bribery at every level of a pay-to-play government where we outsource essential tasks to Halliburton and Bechtel, the corporate equivalent of roving gangs of burglars and car thieves; and incompetence, in everything from Katrina to the ongoing Medicare drug fiasco to today's New York Times revelation that the imperial project of big-brother spying on millions of Americans, in outright violation of the law, has actually damaged national security by swamping the FBI with false leads.

Who can be surprised?

No one who pays attention.

I mean, look at it, we have all of the stuff mentioned above, plus the same gang of criminals and psychotic theocrats gambling with astonishing irresponsibility with the lives of our children and grandchildren (and presumably, the lives of their own children and grandchildren, which places their commitment to family values in a harsh bright light) as they put the pedal to the floor in the looting and poisoning of the physical world we live in, that we have to get our food and water from, to a degree that threatens the continuance of human civilization.

"Unsustainable lifestyles? Hey, we're sustaining ourselves handsomely, thank you very much," they murmur, in hypothetical moments of honesty. If anything I think they see permanent war and global warming and the uncertainties of climate change and the coming energy crisis and the possibility of increasingly severe pandemics all as short-term opportunity to seize more power for the Imperial Presidency and for corporate enrichment (assuming Republican connections, of course), and I suspect they either have a vague optimism behind it that Republican children will when the time comes have the wherewithal to build and stock fortified compounds and lay in supplies of vaccines, courtesy of the Commander in Chief, or that they will be provided for by Jesus after He returns to earth, courtesy of God.

The odd thing, to me, is that not only do Republicans conspire to destroy the Bill of Rights and rule by imperial decree the war powers of the Commander in Chief, enrich their friends (who God knows are rich enough already), degrade and destroy the planet; they take a perverse joy in it, like cannibals eating the brains of their victims and smearing themselves with blood as they do a victory dance, infecting themselves with kuru in that very moment they imagine themselves invulnerable. To mix a metaphor a little, the brains they have eaten seem to be their own.

So with people like this running the show, it makes an odd kind of sense that the National Security Agency, apparently now operated out of Karl Rove's office in the White House, damages the same national security President Bush cites as his rationale for spying on us.

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