Howard Dean was the featured guest on December 1st’s “Diane Rehm Show” on WAMU Radio. Some of Dean’s true colors showed through during this exchange:
Caller: Once we get you in the White House, would you please make sure that there is a thorough investigation of 9/11, and not stonewall it?
Dean: Yes. There is a report, which the president is suppressing evidence for, which is a thorough investigation of 9/11.
Rehm: Why do you think he’s suppressing that report?
Dean: I don’t know. There are many theories about it. The most interesting theory that I’ve heard so far–which is nothing more than a theory, it can’t be proved–is that he was warned ahead of time by the Saudis. Now who knows what the real situation is? But the trouble is, by suppressing that kind of information, you lead to those kinds of theories, whether they have any truth to them or not. And eventually they get repeated as fact. So I think the president is taking a great risk by suppressing the key information that should go to the Kean commission.
Although Dean doesn’t commit to believing that Bush had prior knowledge of 9/11 he certainly has played with the idea. What I hear in this exchange is not Howard Dean as a respectful opponent of G.W. Bush but a Howard Dean who may or may not think Bush to be completely evil but certainly hasn’t written the possibility off.
If Bush had been previously warned about 9/11 by the Saudi’s and did nothing to prevent the deaths of two thousand innocent people – presumably so he could have an excuse to start a war to take over Iraqi oil fields for all his friends – everyone would agree to the simple fact that G.W. Bush is purely and completely evil. He would not represent simple abusive father type evil, or even serial killer type evil: if all the above were true Bush would be a singular instance of a Super-villain type evil. He ruthlessly schemes to take everything for himself, not caring if he has to kill two-thousand innocent people, hundreds of loyal soldiers, and put thousands of soldiers in harms way. All the time, behind the scenes, he laughs maniacally at the entire situation. G.W. Bush is Lex Luthor, Dr. Claw, the Kingpin, and the Joker rolled into one.
As someone who has read many comic books I always found Super-Villains to be the most difficult part to believe. Superheros are easy. We hear about people who are unabashedly good every day. Gandhi, Mother Teresa plus thousands of “feel-good stories” make all of us firm believers in goodness. Evilness, is a slightly more difficult subject. We began with Hitler. He’s easy; unquestionably evil. Then we stutter. Some of us might mention Stalin. Maybe Pol Pot and Lenin can be thrown in the mix.
It is, however, interesting to note that even the members of this short list of history’s monsters trodded over piles of dead bodies only to bring about a utopian vision of society. Super-Villains don’t even get that proviso. They want it for themselves. More gold, more cars, more houses, world domination.
Quite frankly, I am amazed at the ease with which many people believe in the complete evilness of G.W. Bush and, more generally, Republicans. There is a very stark disparity between the political sides on this level. Republicans criticize Democrats but do not turn the disputes of political ideologies into the base demonization that the Democrats are so prone to do. Their decision process seems to be simple: Bush is suppressing information (which Clinton, Nixon and Carter, not to mention scores of other presidents have done), Bush is a Republican, therefore something malicious, sinister, and downright evil must be going on. It is ironic that for a party that eschews such facile categorizations as “evil” – practically going into a fit of relativistic rage when Bush uses the term – is so quick to infer such attitudes from the simple combination of “lack of information” and “Republican.”
You go girl
You need to get your fact straits before spotting about things you don’t understand. I am not a republican or democrat because of people like you- to call a whole group evil is very ignorant and shows me your true colors.
I must admit I am somewhat remiss…I didn’t call anyone evil in this posting. I, in fact, was pointing out the ease with which the political sides, particularly the left, will call the others “evil.” The post is meant to point out Dean’s possible belief in Bush’s foreknowledge of 9/11 and from that extrapolate Dean’s ability to believe Bush to be evil of a Super-Villain nature. I apologize for any confusion.
Trevor Burrus: I loved your article, but believe you would be far more convincing if you used a spell checker (malacious, manaically, studder, malacious)! Keep up the good work, though.
You’re right. Thanks for pointing out the misspellings, they’ve been changed. I wrote it on-site without a spell checker. Also, thanks for the positive feedback. Stick around, things are just getting interesting…
You’re right… Dean should be more careful with what he says, given the number of partisans who would go to great lengths to read malicious accusations into his words.
Dean may have been disingenuous in mentioning conspiracy theories without committing to them (a dirty trick that is sadly becoming more and more common), but the suggestion that Bush ignored 9/11 warnings *in order to* wage war on Iraq is your idea. Dean didn’t speculate on why the warnings were ignored, and it is a bit of a stretch to say the accusation was implicit in his words. It seems more likely Dean was criticizing Bush for ignoring repeated warnings about terrorism because he was focused on other objectives, like building the national missile defense system (remember that?).
Perhaps both the left and the right should hold back from questioning the good-intent or patriotism of others and enter the political debate without trying to vilify their opponents.
“Dean may have been disingenuous in mentioning conspiracy theories without committing to them (a dirty trick that is sadly becoming more and more common), but the suggestion that Bush ignored 9/11 warnings *in order to* wage war on Iraq is your idea.”
This is very true. I appreciate you pointing it out.
Your post is a good addendum to mine. People should watch what they say and not spend so much time vilifying opponents. Thanks for commenting.
Interesting blog, does this site get lots of activity or is it usually slow around here?