Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Interrupt State of the Union : Investigate Corruption!

I attempted to watch the 2006 state of the union speech last night. Twice, actually. I watched the beginning, calmly enjoying the Pomp and Circumstance as some sort of Masquerade of Nobles. I enjoyed the dynamics of clapping, and ritual noisemaking for several minutes of Bush's speech. I thought that I would watch the whole speech and political commentary.

At one point, though, Bush was talking about Democracy on the March and Fighting for Freedom. On the subject of Iraq, he talked about a "clear plan for victory." Then he said "we're continuing reconstruction efforts, and helping the Iraqi government to fight corruption and build a modern economy."


Did he not read yesterday's post.

Well, here is an excerpt
Millions of reconstruction dollars [were] stuffed casually into footlockers and filing cabinets, an American soldier in the Philippines ... gambled away cash belonging to Iraq, and three Iraqis ... plunged to their deaths in a rebuilt hospital elevator that had been improperly certified as safe.... Much of this money was not American at all, rather it was seized Iraqi oil money and other Iraqi government assets. The TimesOnline (British) reports
nearly $9 billion (£5 billion) of Iraq’s oil revenue disbursed by the US-led Coalition Provisional Authority (CPA), which governed Iraq until mid-2004, cannot be accounted for.

This investigation only focused on $88 million dollars and how it was dispersed. This may be an illustration about how billions of dollars were systematically mishandled by unelected American officials. Of course, there is no way to be sure because there is no paperwork to account for the rest of the money.

I had to distract myself and talk to family. After 20 minutes I came back, mostly ignoring Bush while concentrating more on the behavioral dynamics of some of the better known senators. I really enjoyed when Sen. Schumer refused to get up, laughing, clapping and mouthing to his neighbor "we will never surrender to evil."

Then the President started discussing "expanded budgets" and cutting the "deficit in half by 2009". He then asked the rhetorical "you to join me in creating a commission to examine the full impact of baby boom retirements on Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid. This commission should include members of Congress of both parties, and offer bipartisan solutions."


They don't even have a proper investigation of Katrina yet, where government corruption, neglect, and mismanagement took the lives of thousands and displaced thousands more. That same sort of corruption and influence peddling associated with Jack Abramoff, Tom Delay and others also played an univestigated role in Katrina.

According to Inter Press Service
What is clear is that Brown was named FEMA's deputy director by his college roommate, then-FEMA director Joseph Allbaugh, who secured Brown's elevation to the top spot after Allbaugh, a Bush campaign director in 2000, left government as U.S. troops invaded Iraq to create his own consulting firm for clients in the overseas disaster-relief business, including Halliburton Co., which, of course, was headed by Vice Pres. Dick Cheney in the 1990s and has received many billions of dollars in Iraq-related contracts.

I just couldn't take it, I started yelling, "Investigate Katrina, Investigate Iraq, Investigate corruption."

It reminded me of a day in mid-April 2003. (Wow! It's been three years since the invasion of Iraq.)

If the State of the Union Speech is such an act, why doesn't the opposition ever call the president out for lying. All they would need to do would be chant over the clapping, hell, let the President of the senate hammers the gavel and calls on the capitol police to drag out some law makers.
Post script: Looks like Cindy Sheehan had the same thing in mind.

1 comment :

the bklyn brawler said...

thats a good idea, people should shout and interrupt and go crazy during state of the union addresses. In fact, I think America would be very well served by switching to British parlamentrian mores, where you can shout bloody murder while anyone is talking, pretty much whenever you want. Bush can hardly speak when everyone is being polite and quiet and politely laughing at his "wit." I would fucking love, love to see him try to give speeches while ted kennedy is shouting at him, while actually inebriated (also something elected officials should be able to do - be very drunk in public and while performing official duties). I can almsost hear it: "BULL SHIT, BULLSHIT, THAT'S BULLSHIT, YOU DON'T EVEN KNOW WHERE THAT COUNTRY IS! BULLSHIT!"

Now THAT I would have watched. I might even have gotten a TV just for that.