George is exactly right, but he left out one other reason many Democrats got behind an obvious lie, for the same reason all republicans did: profit.
The war is like local politics writ large with the Chamber of Commerce seeing it as a way to "socialize risk and privatize profits."
Dick Cheney & Halliburton are most obvious about doing this, but he is far from alone, and not in entirely Republican company.
Unfortunately, one of our own Democratic senators here in California, Dianne Fienstein, falls into this category. Her husband got rebuilding contracts in Iraq.
The Democrats are still our best hope of setting this country right, but it can't be done until a firewall is built to keep the profit motive from influencing their thinking.
As Upton Sinclair said, "It is difficult to get a man to understand something when his salary depends upon his not understanding it."
I Am a Liberal. There, I Said It!
Too many people run away from the label. They whisper it like you'd whisper "I'm a Nazi." Like it's dirty word. But turn away from saying "I'm a liberal" and it's like you're turning away from saying that blacks should be allowed to sit in the front of the bus, that women should be able to vote and get paid the same as a man, that McCarthy was wrong, that Vietnam was a mistake.
The fear of been criticized can be paralyzing. Just look at the way so many Democrats caved in the run up to the war. In 2003, a lot of us were saying, where is the link between Saddam and bin Laden? What does Iraq have to do with 9/11? We knew it was bullshit. Which is why it drives me crazy to hear all these Democrats saying, "We were misled." It makes me want to shout, "Fuck you, you weren't misled. You were afraid of being called unpatriotic."
Bottom line: it's not merely our right to question our government, it's our duty. Whatever the consequences. We can't demand freedom of speech then turn around and say, But please don't say bad things about us. You gotta be a grown up and take your hits.
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