Wednesday, September 28, 2005

Muddying the Waters

Among the most disturbing abuses of the current administration is their recurrent, almost inevitable strategy of "muddying the waters." This technique has nothing to do with truth or facts,or good governance or even expediency - only with winning in the short term.Curiously, Bush and Co often seem to be on the defensive.

Since we first learned of George Bush and his mentor, Karl Rove, muddying the waters has been operative. In the course of the 2000 primaries (especially when you're falling behind) spread a few rumors about John McCain's brown adopted child; they don't have to be factual.But you can muddy the waters enough that people will talk, and some ill-informed or prejudiced individuals will be turned your way.

One exigent element is a complicit media, the kind that proclaims its objectivity no matter what kind of half truths, no truths,or whatever they convey. Reporting is done by telling any and all viewpoints with no accountability or even the simple fact checking expected in a second-rate Journalism School.Muddying the waters creates that small seed of doubt that gives you just enough of an edge. If it's too close to call,the Supreme Court can then place you in power. This is what was done to Al Gore, of course.The Corporate Media went along with the many little lies told about Al Gore in 2000, even when they knew better: it was a kind of journalistic sport to chuckle about.

Plant the seed, no matter what the facts are. I believe this is how the Salem elders killed more than one witch - all based on sworn testimony. This is how John Kerry was Swiftboated out of his wartime heroism. It doesn't matter what the real issue is. When Dan Rather was driven out of CBS, we never did find out how George Bush spent that last year of his military service, did we? The waters became too muddied.

This drill also appears to work against the best efforts of the world's scientists. If the science of Global Warming threatens your profits, you hire an agreeable scientist from the Heritage Foundation (pay him/her well) to muddy the waters - to create some semblance of a study that you can point to - see? So there! The waters are dirty.In the name of fairness, we are told that Intelligent Design should be taught as an alternative to Evolution in Science classes, though ID is speculation based on religious expectancy with no chance of scientific proof unless the God Jesus walks among us again.

Muddying the waters continues to this day when Right Wing policy wonks attack Cindy Sheehan ad hominem, claiming to know what she and her dead son should be thinking. Muddying the waters is at best a defensive strategy which lacks any reality or substantial content.The transparent inadequacies of the current leadership in saving Iraq and Louisiana may have finally shown all the flimsy underpinnings of Bush World.The current polls say this is so.In any case, future generations will look back and decide whether this deceptive kind of political machination has been good for our country. No way.


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