I Spilled Some.

That was the rather laughably unlikely explanation an ex of mine once gave for the astonishingly rapid disappearance of a half gallon of gin, but it was admittedly delivered tongue-in-cheek.  Not so laughably, however,  we now are hearing from the CIA, in its heavily redacted document dump, that quite a lot of detainees were simply “lost.”  Had I ever suspected people were that easy to “lose,” my life would have been much more pleasant.  It’s just my bad luck I don’t work for the CIA.  They can lose people routinely, poof, like on “Bewitched,” and very few people even bother to say that that’s kind of extraordinary, and about as likely as that gin having been “spilled.”  The glaringly obvious fact that we tortured dozens, if not hundreds, of detainees to death is quite clear, but the unredacted parts have provided a handy sideshow about drills, diapers, and sex, and no doubt someone will soon bring David Vitter on TV to explain how those things aren’t torture at all, except maybe the drill part.  The “lost” will clearly remain so, in the long-established media storyline.

The only punch I can find in this turdbowl is the fact that Cheney, and many on the right, are doing the two stupidest things murder and torture suspects possibly could: defend their revolting and criminal behavior by continuing to lamely invoke imaginary catastrophes, as they have for years with steadily decreasing success, and attack the president, which leaves them open to being attacked back.  Worse, Cheney had the guts to say, amid multiple investigations, that Obama was politicizing the justice department. If Obama is capable of anger, which I’m unfortunately beginning to doubt, Cheney’s unwise and intemperate little temper tantrum might do the trick, and what a good thing that would be.  No doubt Obama won’t say too much publicly, because he’s too big of a pussy, but no president can possibly put up with the fact that Cheney still thinks and behaves as though he’s running things, and the media idiotically continue to hang on his every word even to this dark, discrediting day.  Obama has to put a stop to this or he cannot function in his job, assuming he wants to.

If I were he, I would tersely state that given Dick Cheney’s obvious involvement in the crimes Cheney defended, asking his opinion on such a subject was tantamount to asking Charlie Manson for his own explanation of the Tate murders.  Rail on his deserved lack of credibility and his vaunted position as the least popular member of the despised Bush administration.  Tell the media, in your special, reasonable way, that they need to interview more credible people if they’re planning to receive reasonable answers.  To all of our great misfortune, Obama probably doesn’t read the Hag, and will say none of these things, which are crying out to be said.  Somewhere.

Still, this gives me my first glimmer of hope that the new investigation can no longer be an utter whitewash; Obama, the man, has found a sworn enemy in Cheney, who is literally taunting him and his justice department into going after him by being so offensive and obnoxious that it’s now become necessary to Obama, the president, that he be well and truly discredited for good, and perhaps in jail.  It would be ridiculously easy to do, and now it’s been made sorely tempting.  They say anger is a negative emotion, but in this case it’s all we have to hope for.


  1. timothy3 says:

    Few and far between are those who’ve stated the obvious, as you have; Cheney is too invested in this (and it ain’t no smoking gun–it’s more like the smoldering remains of a nuclear weapon) and why media continue to cover that psychopath’s statements is beyond me.
    Also, someone mentioned somewhere (probably at UT) that no one has seen hide nor hair of Khalid Sheikh Mohammed’s children since they were taken captive several years ago.
    I suppose they’re dead. Certainly, it’s unlikely they’re kicking it at a Bed & Breakfast in Vermont.

    • cocktailhag says:

      The Bushies were always so good at looking guilty, a fact only the media didn’t notice. They’ve forgotten they aren’t in power anymore, hopefully to their everlasting sorrow. If ever there were a time for Cheney to shut up, it would be now. He doesn’t get it. Goody!

    • Jim White says:

      Yeah, my latest post over at The Seminal was about the kids. Lots of good additional links turned up in the comments, too.

      Imagine if Woodward and Bernstein kept running to Nixon to get “his side” of the story at every step along the way, and treated those quotes with respect. That’s where our poor excuse for news media is today…

      One point occurs to me, though. Is Cheney getting worried enough at this point that we should look at his blather carefully to see which parts of his story he feels are weakest and need shoring up?

      • cocktailhag says:

        I believe that Woodward and Bernstein wrote their stories with the placeholder, “insert denial here.” Unfortunately for Nixon, they hooked up with a besotted John Mitchell, who with his mention of “Katie” Graham getting “her tit in a big fat ringer,” if such obvious truths were published, gave the game away early. Journalists today would be much more worried about the endangered breast than doing their jobs.
        Cheney is undoubtedly worried, which is the only silver lining in my cloud at this point.

  2. rmp says:

    All the media coverage tomorrow will be about the death of Ted Kennedy. I assume you have heard the news. A 47-year liberal giant in the Senate who will be sorely missed.

  3. timothy3 says:

    Yes, RMP, I first learned of this over at Salon. I’m sorry he didn’t have the opportunity to work on healthcare legislation–the first legislation in how many years?–since that was an important issue for him (and, of course, the rest of us).
    Someone at Salon said, and rightly, conservatives will show up and beat the Chappaquiddick drum until the cows come home, and I’m sure that’s true.
    CH, I respectfully request that you cheer me up. But, if you can’t summon the humor, I request that you be acerbic. That way I can find a bit of laughter.
    Good night, folks.

  4. sysprog says:

    A few words:


    “For me, a few hours ago, this campaign came to an end. For all those whose cares have been our concern, the work goes on, the cause endures, the hope still lives, and the dream shall never die.”
    - – U.S. Senator Edward M. Kennedy, 1980

    * * * * *


    Yo-Yo Ma’s tribute to Ted Kennedy:

  5. Two observations:

    1. Obama will do nothing. Cheney isn’t just a psychopath; he’s both the living embodiment of that smirking violence which practically everyone in power now openly accepts as the real America, and the principal spokesman for those who believe that Obama is a usurper imposed on a country of Spartans by the obsolete remnants of a foolishly democratic constitution.

    Having already given the hostages to fortune which are obligatory for presidential candidates these days, Obama no longer has any basis on which to challenge Cheney, and lacks any assurance, even in the Oval Office, that anyone important would back him if he did. We, of course, don’t count, and Obama can’t claim at this point that we do. He crossed that bridge long ago.

    2. I find it astonishing that Glenn Greenwald, a gay libertarian civil rights lawyer living in Brazil, should represent the only serious challenge to the immoral cesspit that American domestic and foreign policy have become in the penultimate days of our accidental empire. I’m astonished, but I’m also proud that the country can still produce people of integrity, no matter where or how that integrity was nurtured. What I’m not is reassured. One, or even a handful of Tom Paines in the midst of all of this reprehensible scumbaggery, can never offer us any real assurances — it would take the logical extension of their criticisms, a full-blown revolution, to accomplish that.

    • cocktailhag says:

      On my darkest days, I feel pretty much the way you do, WT. Watergate only turned out the way it did because back then we had a more responsible media, and more importantly, Americans were capable of outrage at government wrongdoing. Today, I’m not sure about either.

    • Karen M says:

      It’s interesting to compare Glenn with Tom Paine, who was, in his time, something of a pariah, too. At least to the establishment…

      And what are bloggers if not a new technological advancement over pamphleteers?

      We must support Glenn’s work so that he does not meet the same fate as Tom Paine, who spent time in prison, and when he died, his funeral was attended by only six people.

      • Amen. I admire him greatly, and will always support him in any way that I can. If we absolutely must talk about Real Americans, he’s been at the top of my list since I first started reading his posts. (Lordy, has it really been four years since someone first pointed me to UT?)

        • Karen M says:

          William, I don’t know if you saw a comment I left in a previous CH thread… asking if your new avatar is a representation of you as the Queen of the May? ;~)

          In any case, I like it!

          • No, I missed your comment, and yes, you nailed me. It’s taken from a watercolor portrait of me by a friend, done some 40 years ago, when the DFH in me was visible for all to see.

            The flower in the hair is fanciful, but I did wear a Sam Snead-style straw hat at the time, with a blue-and-white polka dot band. I stuck one of those glossy paper flowers with a long steel stem in it, which bobbed back and forth like a bicycle warning flag. Unabashed by much of anything in those days, I even wore it to work. (I was never one of those well-off DFHs who didn’t have to work.)

  6. Karen M says:

    Great story, William. If you ever decide to get on Twitter, you could tile that image for your home page there.