“Liars & The Lies They Tell” and “Consequential Kvetching”

If politicians and bureaucrats ever stopped lying for even five minutes, the ensuing silence would make the rest of us think we’d gone deaf.

For instance, we’re being told repeatedly that we have nothing to fear from the fellow down in Dallas who, instead of bringing back a souvenir t-shirt reading “I’ve Been to Liberia, Don’t Ask Me Why,” brought home a case of Ebola.

We’re being told by medical professionals, who just happen to be paid by the federal government, that the disease is terribly difficult to transmit. I’d almost be willing to believe them if every time I see one of these victims being transported to a hospital, he or she wasn’t being accompanied by people decked out from head to toe in hazmat suits.

Perhaps I’m simply being too doggone cynical, a trait I seem to have been born with, a trait I keep trying to overcome, but the politicians and bureaucrats simply won’t let me. For instance, just in the past few years, they lied about funneling weapons to Mexican gangsters and they lied about ObamaCare; they refer to Islamic terrorism as workplace violence, lied about the IRS not targeting conservatives and they let our veterans die while waiting for medical attention.

The bastards even lied to the Ebola victim, sending him home from the hospital the first time he showed up, essentially telling him he had a bad cold even after he came clean about where he’d just come from. On the other hand, he’d lied to the Liberians about having had no contact with Ebola victims just so he could get an exit visa. Makes a person wonder if once he’s cured, assuming he’s one of the lucky ones, Thomas Duncan plans to run for public office.

Even Obama’s former Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta blames the President for what’s happening in Iraq. Unfortunately, like every other schmuck in Washington, he waited three long years to write a book, expressing his dire warnings.

It’s simply not in the DNA of political appointees to ever quit over a matter of principle. We are told, belatedly, that even Secretary of State Hillary Clinton urged Obama to maintain a force of at least 10,000, but preferably 24,000, soldiers in Iraq to avoid the likes of ISIL filling the inevitable vacuum.

But, clearly, it is too much to expect public servants to forego the limos, the free junkets to exotic locales, the five-star hotels and the kowtowing entourages, over such a minor issue as national security.

It’s as if a lack of principles has become a prerequisite for those employed in Washington, D.C. We are constantly seeing the same lack of character and patriotism every time some bureaucratic nonentity claims to take total responsibility for an act of incompetence or criminality, but doesn’t resign or, unfortunately, ever face an indictment and a prison term.

One of the ironies of life is that the Democrats have assumed as one of their favorite themes the Republican War on Women. Talk about chutzpah! This is the party of Jack, Bobby and Ted Kennedy, Lyndon Johnson, Bob Packwood and Bill Clinton. Each of them was married and an Olympic-class sexual predator. One of them was a rapist and one of them left his paramour to drown in his car while he ran home and got his family’s legion of suck-ups to provide him with an alibi.

Just about the only woman who has come through an association with the higher-ups in the liberal camp virtually unscathed was Julia, the fictional character the Democrats came up with to illustrate how benevolent their policies are when it comes to females. Of course, Julia was shown to be entirely dependent on a man, Uncle Sam, to clothe, feed and house her, even though the likes of Hillary Clinton, Debbie Wasserman-Schultz, Nancy Pelosi and Elizabeth Warren, are constantly telling young women how independent and powerful they are in this post Roe v. Wade America.

But a great many single women are so stupid that they can’t even see the obvious contradiction between being sold Julia on the one hand and flattery carrying the aroma of manure on the other hand.

When I say that single women, who vote overwhelmingly for the Democrats, are stupid, I’m not out to insult them, I’m merely stating a fact.

For instance, they’re so dumb that they actually think abortion on demand is a boon for them. Actually, Roe v. Wade has been one giant Get Out of Jail Free card for irresponsible males. It ensures that they can have unprotected sex with 10 different women in the same day, knowing they won’t be stuck having to provide even one cent in child support. Is it any wonder that Bill Clinton has been such an ardent supporter of the 1973 Supreme Court decision?

Finally, it is time for yet another Prelutsky poll. This time, there are just two questions: Will the GOP reclaim control of the Senate in the midterm elections? If they do, will it make any real difference?

Please send your votes to me at BurtPrelutsky@aol.com without any commentary, just a simple Yes or No if you’d be so kind.

Consequential Kvetching

We all have things to complain about. We always have and we always will. But it strikes me that the things we have to gripe about have become increasingly important over the past 30 years or so because so often they leave America and the world in worse shape than before.

Our education system, once the envy of the world, has become hostage to progressive teachers, professors, administrators, fascistic student bodies and Islamic pressure groups.

Our mass media, which at one time, at least made the attempt to deal objectively with the news has, in the wake of Woodward and Bernstein’s enormous success, tossed off even the pretense of being anything other than a propaganda outlet for a liberal agenda.

Our politicians, who used to at least try to appear bi-partisan on issues important to the well-being of America, made it possible for voters who claimed they voted for the man, not the party, to sound principled and not merely self-deluded.

I was once married to a woman who, as a child, had come up with what I regarded as so diabolical a plan, she could have easily have taken top prize in a Machiavellian competition, if there had been such a thing. When she was about seven or eight, she took it upon herself to teach her brother, who was three or four at the time, the colors. But she intentionally taught them wrong, so he thought orange was blue and yellow was black and green was red. When I asked her why she had done it, she couldn’t recall. I guess when you’re seven or eight, you do evil things for no other reason than that it’s fun.

That’s the case, unless you’re a liberal at any age. Then you can pretend that global warming is settled science when, in reality, it’s merely a way for some people, people like Al Gore, to get rich and for other people, people such as Obama, Reid, Pelosi and Schumer, to gain even more control over the economy and the electorate, as they did with the satanic Affordable Care Act.

I used to question the mere existence of NATO. Knowing the European nations for the contemptible, leftist cowards they are, I couldn’t imagine why we continued to be a member. Once the organization threw the doors open to Turkey, an Islamic fox in the chicken coop, I knew that whatever past excuse there may have been for our membership, it no longer existed. Perhaps others were surprised by Turkey’s refusal to allow us to have airbases within its borders for the purpose of attacking the Islamic State, but not I. The fact is that Muslims, as we’ve seen time and again, haven’t the slightest objection to killing other Muslims, but they really hate it when non-Muslims, otherwise known as infidels, get in on the fun.

People who aren’t thinking straight complain that we’re stuck with a do-nothing Congress. It strikes me as the ideal situation. I mean, why would anyone want these people passing more laws and creating more regulations? If a toddler marks up your walls with crayons, would any sane person deal with the situation by providing him with an open can of paint? If it were up to me, Congress would meet for one month a year, and I would cut their salaries, pensions and staffs, by an equivalent 87.5 %.

Every once in a while, the difference between having talent and possessing wisdom, decency or even commonsense, is as obvious as an elephant in your kitchen. I happen to think that England’s Emma Thompson is not only a great actress, but a wonderful screenwriter, but that doesn’t prevent her from being an anti-Semitic apologist for the Arabs and Muslims trying to exterminate Israel.

I also happen to think that Carl Reiner is a gifted actor, writer and director, and a nice guy so long as you’re not discussing politics. I’ve been a fan for about 65 years, ever since he was a regular on the Sid Caesar Show. But a few years ago, he told me that he had two photos on the wall behind his desk. One was of FDR; the other was of Barack Obama.

He also told me that next to the Gettysburg Address, he thought that Obama’s speech about there being neither a blue America nor a red America, but only a purple America, was the greatest speech in human history.

Now even if Obama hadn’t proven himself to be most divisive president ever, outdoing even Lincoln, who only divided America geographically, it is outrageous for an educated person to accord Obama’s speech such homage.

Would anyone seriously claim that it was greater than Christ’s Sermon on the Mount? Greater than FDR’s first inaugural, in which he assured Americans midst the Depression that they had nothing to fear but fear itself? Greater than Lou Gehrig’s farewell to baseball in which the doomed 36-year-old claimed to be the luckiest man on the face of the earth? Greater than Patrick Henry’s inspiring address in 1775, in which he rallied his countrymen to the Revolution by declaring, “I know not what course others may take, but as for me, give me Liberty or give me Death”? Greater than Indian Chief Joseph’s concluding his speech surrendering the Nez Perce tribe to the U.S. Army with the eloquent “From where the sun now stands, I will fight no more”?

How about Reagan’s address to the nation after the Challenger’s explosion, honoring the seven Astronauts for their courage as “they slipped the surly bounds of earth” in order to “touch the face of God”? Or any of Churchill’s morale-boosting speeches to the British people during the darkest days of World War II, but especially his 1940 address to the House of Commons, in which, employing the rumbling voice of God, which he often borrowed for such occasions, he said, “Let us therefore brace ourselves to our duties, and so bear ourselves that if the British Empire and its Commonwealth last for a thousand years, men will say, ‘This was their finest hour.’”

In conclusion, it is worth noting that in 1850, California became the 31st state in the Union. Way back then, the people had no electricity. The state had no money. There were gun fights in the streets. Much of the land was desert, inhospitable to humans or agriculture. And most people spoke Spanish.

In other words, nothing much has changed in 164 years, except that it’s gotten a lot harder to find a parking space.

Burt’s Webcast is every Wednesday at Noon Pacific Time.
Tune in at K4HD.com His Call-in Number is: (818) 570-5443

©2014 Burt Prelutsky. Comments? Write BurtPrelutsky@aol.com.

Panetta Confirms Again That Waterboarding Helped Get Bid Laden; Media Still Confused

panettaOn Sunday, Defense Secretary Leon Panetta confirmed what many have believed since the death of Osama Bin Laden: Our waterboarding of top Al Qaeda operatives in the wake of 9/11 ultimately led to the whereabouts and killing of the terrorist mastermind.

Speaking to Chuck Todd on NBC’s Meet the Press, Panetta revealed the information when asked about the accuracy of Kathryn Bigelow’s latest film, Zero Dark Thirty, which depicts the hunt for Bin Laden.

“The real story was that in order to put the puzzle of intelligence together that led us to Bin Laden, there were a lot of pieces out there that were a part of that puzzle,” said Panetta. “Yes, some of it came from some of the tactics that were used at the time, interrogation tactics that were used.

Panetta went on to remark that other intelligence factors outside of the harsh interrogations were instrumental as well, and expressed that he thinks we would have eventually got Bin Laden anyway.

Panetta’s admission has received a lot of media attention since Sunday morning, but it’s difficult to understand exactly why. After all, this wasn’t the first time Panetta credited enhanced interrogation techniques (including waterboarding) as having contributed to the successful raid on the Bin Laden compound. He also did so back in May of 2011, when speaking with NBC’s Brian Williams.

Panetta certainly isn’t the only one who has declared that the waterboarding of Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, Abu Zubaydah, and Abd al-Rahim al-Nashiri provided our intelligence agencies with invaluable information in our efforts against Al Qaeda. A host of other distinguished intelligence professionals have stated the same thing, including John Kirakou, Michael Hayden, Jose Rodriguez, and Michael Scheuer, whose insistence has been that some of that intel even prevented planned terrorist attacks both here and abroad. In addition, director Kathryn Bigelow’s presentation of the information gathered as a result of waterboarding came directly from unprecedented civilian access to U.S. intelligence reports granted to her by President Obama himself.

Yet, when inquiring if waterboarding contributed to the Bin Laden operation, Chuck Todd seemed as if he was asking a question he didn’t already know the answer to, or perhaps one that he was half-expecting to be answered with a “no”.

I think that’s revealing.

It suggests that when it comes to passionate, controversial subjects like waterboarding, there is a certain willful ignorance from the media (and certainly from people outside of the media as well) that accompanies a desperate need to be right on an issue, even when the facts tell them they’re wrong.

Case in point, there are still many people in this country who insist that the waterboarding didn’t work, and that we received no useful information as a result of it. For some reason, it has never been enough for opponents of the practice to stick with just a moral or legal argument for why we shouldn’t have subjected three high-ranking terrorists to waterboarding (which is a legitimate debate). Instead, these people have felt compelled to deny the effectiveness of enhanced interrogation, and they are so immersed and invested in that narrative that no amount of proof will ever convince them that they’re wrong.

As a wise man once said, “Lying is what we do in order to live with our delusions.”

One has to only perform a Google News search on the Panetta interview to find more media examples of what I’m saying:

Tom McKay of PolicyMic.com wrote a column entitled: “Leon Panetta On ‘Meet the Press’: Torture is Not What led to Bin Laden’s Capture.”

How does McKay explain his intriguing interpretation that waterboarding did not lead to Bin Laden? He writes that because Panetta described the interrogation intel as only being one piece of many pieces in a puzzle, it alone did not lead “directly” to Bin Laden.

With all due respect to Mr. McKay… OF COURSE it didn’t lead directly to Bin Laden! If it had, we would have found him years ago! The interrogation intel made up the initial (arguably the most important) pieces of the puzzle that Panetta described, so it was clearly significant.

Mackenzie Weinger from The Politico made a similar observation to McKay’s, as did Jake Miller from CBS News. None of the three are willing to concede any credit to waterboarding, simply because all credit can’t be applied.

Adalia Woodbury of PoliticusUSA.com went a step further, running with the headline: “Panetta Obliterates The Myth That Torture Led to Bin Laden”.

Obliterates? Really? Woodbury explains that because Panetta thinks that we could have eventually found Bin Laden without enhanced interrogation techniques, the fact that those techniques did indeed place our intelligence agencies on the right path is somehow worthy of being categorized as a “myth”.

Are you confused as I am?

One has to wonder if such hardened denials don’t just stem from instinctive ideological beliefs, but also from the fear of having to concede that the controversial policies of George W. Bush might actually deserve a decent amount of credit for finding Bin Laden.

Regardless, this kind of mindset has sadly become commonplace not only in the media, but also in how everyday people engage in political discourse. We’re losing our ability to begin an argument with a mutually accepted set of facts. These days, when one side feels their position may not be as strong as they’d like it to be, they deem it acceptable to simply spin reality into a false premise that better favors their argument. Then, they fool themselves into believing that false premise is true. The result is a perpetuation of falsehoods that, in some cases, were long ago disproved.

It’s tiresome, and emblematic of why we can’t deal with serious problems in this country.

The good news is that regardless of some people’s inability to admit it, waterboarding saved many American lives and helped bring the man responsible for the deaths of nearly three thousand people on 9/11 to justice.

No amount of denials can overturn those results, and thank goodness for that.