Saturday, September 11


Stumbled into the middle of a fascinating Hardball last night. Chris Matthews had a panel of 9/11 commissioners on the show to discuss how they conducted their work, their findings of fact, and their conclusions. When Chris asked why they didn't name names, point the finger of blame at specific people, the panel's explanation was that that wasn't their job -- "it's the president's." Consensus was that "the buck stops there" (Richard Ben Veniste chortled, "Harry Truman is looking better all the time, isn't he?"). They agreed that yes, it is pretty unbelievable that no one has lost his/her job or faced any adverse consequences for their non-performance in the disaster. It was the 9/11 families, they said, who really wanted to name names and take prisoners, but when it was explained to them that only a unanimous, bipartisan report would bring about the changes that the families want to see happen, the families "pivoted."

When reporting on their "conversation" with Bush and Cheney, one of the panel (I think it was Slade Gorton) pointed out that Bush started off well by graciously stating that he didn't agree with Ashcroft's attack on Jamie Gorelick and had expressed his displeasure with "the Justice Department" (why didn't he just say "Ashcroft"?). Tweety jokingly pointed out that that seems to be Bush's standard method -- apologize for what terrible things others have said and assert, "I don't agree with them."


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