In religion and politics, people’s beliefs and convictions are in almost every case gotten at second hand, and without examination

Elizabeth Edwards gives Ann Coulter a rather mild rebuke and now Coulter and friends are portraying Coulter as some kind of victim. Part of Ann’s justification is the lie that Bill Maher wished that Dick Cheney would have been “assassinated” – The lies go on and on. As right-wing tongues wag so does their never ending spin.
Which brings up another point. If the Conservative lie didn’t serve its purpose the first time around just keep repeating it. Just yesterday yet another Bush loyalist repeated in another blog comment section lies about Iraq and WMD. It is though they read something Judith Miller wrote at the NYT or some nonsense by Glenn Reynolds several years ago and has not read any news since then, Ten Lies Bush Told About Iraq

LIE #1: “The evidence indicates that Iraq is reconstituting its nuclear weapons program … Iraq has attempted to purchase high-strength aluminum tubes and other equipment needed for gas centrifuges, which are used to enrich uranium for nuclear weapons.” — President Bush, Oct. 7, 2002, in Cincinnati.

FACT: This story, leaked to and breathlessly reported by Judith Miller in the New York Times, has turned out to be complete baloney. Department of Energy officials, who monitor nuclear plants, say the tubes could not be used for enriching uranium. One intelligence analyst, who was part of the tubes investigation, angrily told The New Republic: “You had senior American officials like Condoleezza Rice saying the only use of this aluminum really is uranium centrifuges. She said that on television. And that’s just a lie.”

LIE #3: “We believe [Saddam] has, in fact, reconstituted nuclear weapons.” — Vice President Cheney on March 16, 2003 on “Meet the Press.”

FACT: There was and is absolutely zero basis for this statement. CIA reports up through 2002 showed no evidence of an Iraqi nuclear weapons program.

LIE #4: “[The CIA possesses] solid reporting of senior-level contacts between Iraq and al-Qaeda going back a decade.” — CIA Director George Tenet in a written statement released Oct. 7, 2002 and echoed in that evening’s speech by President Bush.

FACT: Intelligence agencies knew of tentative contacts between Saddam and al-Qaeda in the early ’90s, but found no proof of a continuing relationship. In other words, by tweaking language, Tenet and Bush spun the intelligence180 degrees to say exactly the opposite of what it suggested.

LIE #5: “We’ve learned that Iraq has trained al-Qaeda members in bomb-making and poisons and deadly gases … Alliance with terrorists could allow the Iraqi regime to attack America without leaving any fingerprints.” — President Bush, Oct. 7.

FACT: No evidence of this has ever been leaked or produced. Colin Powell told the U.N. this alleged training took place in a camp in northern Iraq. To his great embarrassment, the area he indicated was later revealed to be outside Iraq’s control and patrolled by Allied war planes.

One argument that is still used by many Bush dead enders is that Bush went to war because of some things that President Clinton said in 1996 or 1998. So obviously flawed an argument one would think that the dead enders would be embarrassed to make it. Intelligence is not canned goods, it’s shelf life doesn’t extend from 1996 to 2003.

A President Besieged and Isolated, Yet at Ease

Bush has virtually given up on winning converts while in office and instead is counting on vindication after he is dead. “He almost has . . . a sense of fatalism,” said Rep. Peter T. King (R-N.Y.), who recently spent a day traveling with Bush. “All he can do is do his best, and 100 years from now people will decide if he was right or wrong. It doesn’t seem to be a false, macho pride or living in your own world. I find him to be amazingly calm.”

To an extent, Bush walls himself off from criticism. He does read newspapers, contrary to public impression, but watches little television news and does not linger in the media echo chamber. “He does a very good job of keeping out the extreme things in his life,” Conaway, the congressman, said. “He doesn’t watch Leno and Letterman. He doesn’t spend a lot of time exposing himself to that sort of stuff. He has a terrific knack of not looking through the rearview mirror.”

Rep. Jack Kingston (R-Ga.), who attended a legislative meeting with Bush last month, said his impervious nature works both ways. “The things that make him unpopular also help him deal with all the pressure,” Kingston said. “He’s stubborn. He’s loyal to his philosophy.”

As disturbing as Bush’s lack of inward reflection is even more so is who Bush thinks he has to answer to,

He seeks guidance, like every other president does, in prayer. And that means trying to be sure he’s doing the right thing. And if you’ve got that set, all the criticism, it doesn’t faze you very much. You’re answering to God.”

He was elected, well at least as far as we know in 2004 to answer to the American people. If Bush’s beliefs or attitude sound familiar, ” The government is committed to supporting God’s religion, the country remains a strong bulwark for religion, and the people are among the most protective of God’s religion, and the keenest to fulfill His laws.” – Osama Bin Ladin. Bush thinks that after he dies, in a hundred years or so he’ll be thought of the Churchill of America. It sounds like snark, but this is a good reason to amend the Constitution to read that the president must be certified to be mentally competent every year in order to continue in office.

Larry Johnson was on Keith Olbermann and talked about the recent London bomb scares,

Johnson contrasted how the media glaze over deadly car bombings in Iraq which occur every day “And then you have a non-event in London and we’re going to battle quarters and beginning to give the hairy eyeball to every Muslim.”

[ ]…As Johnson outlines, fewer than 50,000 people worldwide have died as a result of terror attacks since the 60’s, and as we recently highlighted , accident causing deer, swimming pools and peanut allergies have all proven more deadly than international terrorism.

To put terrorism in its proper perspective is not to be dismissive of it, but to put it in its place along side all the threats that face us from tainted spinach to domestic violence and murder. They are problems to be confronted not to be shrill and paranoid about. The article goes to to predict that these recent terror attempts will make it easier for Britain’s new Prime Minister to push through laws that further erode civil liberties such as holding suspects without charge for longer periods.

Three Words for Bush and His Judges – Just say no to letting the judiciary slip further into right-wing activism.

“In religion and politics, people’s beliefs and convictions are in almost every case gotten at second hand, and without examination.” – Mark Twain