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When Life Gives You Lemons
Make propaganda. A New York Times editorial about how Bush's early warning about the London plot made for a real PR opportunity:

It comes like a punch to the gut, at times like these, when America's leaders blatantly use the nation's trauma for political gain. We never get used to this. It never feels like business as usual.

On Wednesday, when the administration already knew that British agents were rounding up suspects in what they believed was a plot to blow up planes en route to the United States, Vice President Dick Cheney had a telephone interview with reporters to discuss the defeat of Senator Joseph Lieberman of Connecticut in a Democratic primary. Cheney went off on a rather rambling disquisition, but its main point was clear: In rejecting Lieberman, who supported the war in Iraq, the Democrats were encouraging "the Al Qaeda types." Within the Democratic ranks, the vice president added, "there's a significant body of opinion that wants to go back - I guess the way I would describe it is sort of the pre-9/11 mind-set, in terms of how we deal with the world we live in."

The man who beat Lieberman, Ned Lamont, lives in Greenwich, a suburb full of commuters who work in New York high-rise buildings. They are completely aware of the way international terrorism can come crashing down on an ordinary family, leaving the survivors stunned and bereft. A dozen of their neighbors died at the World Trade Center. They will never be able to go back to a "pre-9/11 mind-set."

But that did not seem to deter Lieberman from scoring a cheap sound bite on Thursday. Leaving Iraq, as Lamont advocates, "will be taken as a tremendous victory by the same people who wanted to blow up these planes in this plot hatched in England," he said. "It will strengthen them and they will strike again."

Here is what we want to do in the wake of the arrests in Britain. We want to understand as much as possible about what terrorists were planning. To talk about airport security and how to make it better. To celebrate what worked in the British investigation and discuss how to push these efforts farther. It would be a blessed moment if we could do that without turning this into a political game plan.

Is it just me, or didn't public service used to have a little more public and a little less self in the service?

Posted by aalkon at August 12, 2006 5:32 AM

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> didn't public service used to have
> a little more public and a little less
> self in the service?

No. It never, ever, did.

This is still a shitty time though

Posted by: Crid at August 12, 2006 7:39 AM

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