Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Sour Peaches

Here's Kucinich's motion (if "motion" is the right parliamentary term). It's mostly based on Cheney's statements to Congress and the public leading up to the Iraq War that turned out to be wrong, on accusations of manipulation of intelligence, and on threatening Iran.

Even if all those are true, I don't know that lying and cheating and blustering and fucking up rise to the level of "high crimes and misdemeanors. But I would be in favor of this resolution. Let's get it out in the open. Let's have the two major competing versions of what happened in 2002-03, of what Saddam was and wasn't doing, duke it out in one arena. Let's reassess the threat as it stood and the then-state of intelligence in all its degree of doubt.

Otherwise, we'll have two versions of history lodged in the national head for the rest of our natural lives. Like the 2000 election and the Vietnam War. The reasons that's not true in such a large way of, say, the Iran-Contra affair is that all the facts and players and versions came together in one Congressional hearing and were sifted through in front of everyone interested.

What else is Cheney going to be doing for the next 14 months? Nothing good, I'd wager, and this way he at least can defend his legacy. In the past, generals who found their careers under suspicion after some lost battle or other incident used to demand their own court martial as a way to clear their names. As Anthony Wayne did after the Paoli Massacre.

Personally, I'll take more Democrats like Kucinich. You know who he is and where to find him. If I'm going to have to deal with these self-proclaimed "progressives," I'd rather have them in the honest flesh than as some pod version that might or might not be what it says it is, or that wears progressive values like a Halloween costume over a naked lust for candy.

But we don't have them, as the honest, thinking neo-progressives realize today:

Cue massive hilarity and much back-slapping from Republican circles for making the Dem leadership jump through hoops so easily. As Captain Ed said earlier, "can't anyone in the Senate Democratic caucus play this game?"

Why did the Democrats pull the rug out from under the impeachment? Apparently in the interest of the party.

Majority Leader Steny Hoyer told reporters this morning that he would move to table the measure when Kucinich introduces it.

"[House Speaker Nancy Pelosi] and I have both said impeachment is not on our agenda," Hoyer told reporters. "That does not make a judgment on that issue."

The "our" in that sentence could theoretically refer to "the American people" or "the United States Congress." But it's hard to not think he meant "the Democratic leadership." Which is a sign they mistake their interests for the nation's -- the same mistake the Republicans have been making for years.

But the best laugh-line of the day comes from one of the people you've learned to turn to to listen for it. He says impeaching the vice president, a constitutional duty if "judgment" leads the Congress to think he deserves it, would interfere with the wonderful and useful work currently underway in that august body. (Like declaring the Iraq effort a failure just when it seems to want to become a success.)

House Judiciary Committee Chairman John Conyers, whose panel has jurisdiction over impeachment proceedings, has described the impeachment effort as a potential disruption.

"If the speaker were to let this thing out of the box, considering the number of legislative issues we have pending," the Michigan Democrat told Fox News, "it could create a split that could affect our productivity for the rest of the Congress."

"Productivity," after all, is to this Congress as "parenting" is to "Britney."

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