|Tom, tell me something I don't already know...|
Former Secretary of Homeland Security Tom Ridge, the guy who invented the laughable color-coded scale that supposedly gauges the threat of a terrorist attack on the United States on any given day, has just put out a book that would seem to confirm the assumptive truth that those who hate Junior Bush have lived by: Junior and the gang were using Secretary Ridge's ridiculous threat-level for specific political goals.
In Ridge's book, the Test of Our Times, he alleges that, the weekend before the national election in November 2004, Defense Secretary/war criminal Don Rumsfeld and Attorney General/puritan freak John Ashcroft pushed Ridge to raise the threat level in the hopes that it would give Junior that extra little push he needed to win the general election. Ridge says he was dismayed and troubled by this manipulation; offers it as the final straw that caused him to leave the administration shortly into its second term.
From Think Progress' website:
Osama bin Laden had released a videotape with one more ominous sounding but unspecific threat against the United States. Neither Mr. Ridge nor any of the department’s security experts thought the message warranted any change in the nation’s alert status.Media pundits are calling this revelation a "block-buster," but to me, this is no surprise at all. It is just another data point that confirms everything I believe about the complete and total insincerity and lack of integrity inherent in the Bush administration.
“…at this point there was nothing to indicate a specific threat and no reason to cause undue public alarm,” he writes.
But that view met resistance in a tense conference call with members of the intelligence community and several other Cabinet officers including Attorney General John Ashcroft and Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld.
“A vigorous, some might say dramatic, discussion ensured. Ashcroft strongly urged an increase in the threat level and was supported by Rumsfeld.”
Noting the correlation found between increases in the threat level and the president’s approval rating, Mr. Ridge writes, “I wondered, ‘Is this about security or politics?’” --Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, August 9, 2009
Ridge now joins the list of former Bush administration officials that have publicly protested the cynical and criminal behavior of that entity during its horrendous tenure. (One wishes he had had the stones to say something back when it mattered.)
He can now take a seat at the table with Colin Powell, John Snow, Richard Clarke, and Scott McClellan.
And watch how quickly and vehemently the Bush defenders will savage him. I do have some sympathy. Bush bleaters, like vicious scavenger birds, will pick away at whatever is left of his reputation. But, hey... he signed up with that crew. And it should have been obvious that Junior and Cheney and Rove were no ordinary band of snarky, dishonest politicians, but rather an entirely new breed.
The funny thing is that those who still, at this late date, contend that Junior was a real leader, a visionary, a prophet, will not be swayed in the least by what Ridge has to say. It is easier and safer for them to defy logic and believe that Powell, Snow, Clarke, McClellan and Ridge are all liars pursuing their various selfish agendas than to face the realization that those they call "Bush bashers" were right all along.
To do otherwise would be to admit that they are, in fact, gullible idiots.