The Death of Hyperbole Over 9/11
Of the torrent of words spoken Monday before, during, and after the many ceremonies that marked the fifth anniversary of the terror attacks upon America, the remarks that resonated most with me were spoken by Keith Olbermann on MSNBC. In a scathing critique of the Bush Administration's reaction to the 9/11 attacks, Olbermann said:
"Yet what is happening this very night? A mini-series, created, influenced -- possibly financed by -- the most radical and cold of domestic political Machiavellis, continues to be televised into our homes. The documented truths of the last fifteen years are replaced by bald-faced lies; the talking points of the current regime parroted; the whole sorry story blurred, by spin, to make the party out of office seem vacillating and impotent, and the party in office, seem like the only option. How dare you, Mr. President, after taking cynical advantage of the unanimity and love, and transmuting it into fraudulent war and needless death, after monstrously transforming it into fear and suspicion and turning that fear into the campaign slogan of three elections? How dare you -- or those around you -- ever 'spin' 9/11?"
A little hyperbolic, I thought last night, but certainly a courageous thing to say at a particularly emotional time in the life of our nation. (Read the entire transcript from msnbc.com if you really want to know the depth of Olbermann's outrage). But then, about 12 hours or so after I watched Olbermann's rant, I see that House Majority Leader John Boehner (R-Ohio) actually said about the Democrats, aloud and in public: "I wonder if they're more interested in protecting the terrorists than protecting the American people."
In another age, that sort of slanderous insult might have caused Rep. Boehner to be attacked with a cane on the floor of the House. In this age, it just proves again that there is no shame or honor in politics and that the war on terrorism in its various forms indeed has turned American against American the way Olbermann in his most dramatic sense claims. It's no wonder that all of the polls suggest a great desire on the part of the American people to drum the current lot of bums out of office.
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