Another painful experience for everyone involved, including citizen onlookers. (I do plan to have an excellent piece of chocolate on my person at all times when I’m in New York, so I can give it to Josh Marshall should I come upon him.) But I don’t have any insights into the events or their larger meaning that haven’t already been shared across the blog- print- and emrosphere. It’s the same depressing cesspool of cynical disrespect for any institution, complete and insouciant unconcern with principles, floating in a bath of relentless, pervasive incompetence. The ship of state has lashed the wheel hard starboard, cast a blanket over the moral binnacle, and set sail with a crew of landlubbers who don’t know a cleat from a sheet, officered by greedy ideologues who hate navigation and the sea.
What I haven’t seen in print and wish to launch into more common use is the word whine. Seeing Gonzales cowering in front of senators of both parties begging not to be hit again, hiding behind the career Justice staff he’s been trashing and the flimsy shield of “I don’t remember”, and then his boss at every recent public appearance, whimpering for someone to take him seriously as he asserts ludicrous or long-refuted bromides, all I can think of is that these men have adopted a regular speaking style that can only be described as whining. Fran Drescher is funny; these guys just make me want to avert my eyes. God help me, it’s working: I’m starting to feel sorry for these little men (it’s mere coincidence that they’re physically short) who fawned all their lives on big men they trusted to protect them, sold their souls and their honor again and again on instructions from people who seemed to know what they were doing, and find themselves all alone, despised, and cringing under assaults from which Cheney and Rove and the Texas business crowd (for Bush) and Bush (for Gonzales) can’t or won’t shield them.