« Engel vs. fake rubber schlongs | Main | Donut Democrats »

Downing Street Memo: So what, Part II

Tim Cavanaugh says it better than I did. Basically, he's underwhelmed. Contrary to popular belief, he says, the Downing Street Memo "establishes" nothing. Rather,

...[i]t presents hearsay evidence from a British politician. Outside of Tom Sneddon, it's hard to imagine the prosecutor who would consider this to be incontrovertible evidence. (Not that that's stopping believers from considering it exactly that.) In some of the less-frequently cited portions of the DSM, we find other UK officials qualifying these assertions ("It seemed clear that Bush had made up his mind..." -- my italics), hedging bets ("No decisions had been taken...") and seemingly contradicting the above paraphrase ("The Foreign Secretary thought the US would not go ahead with a military plan unless convinced it was a winning strategy").
Now we have another opinion supporting the little-known theory that Condoleezza Rice was impatient with United Nations and the novel argument that administration officials didn't think through the post-war consequences. It is now more clear than ever that by mid-July of 2002 President George W. Bush was going to invade Iraq. But wasn't it clear before 9/11 that Bush was going to invade Iraq? Wasn't it clear before he was inaugurated that Bush was going to invade Iraq? The left understands all this and believes it's a scandal, or should be. The majority of American voters understand it too, and they re-elected Bush handily and have yet to turn solidly against the war in Iraq.

It was elegant timing that another of history's droppings -- the revelation that Mark Felt was "Deep Throat" -- splattered into the middle of the DSM controversy. This relic of the pre-Reagan, pre-Clinton era when, it's now clear, politicians simply didn't understand how much they could get away with, gave perfect shape to the left's quaint faith in Gnostic wisdom. If the common people only understood -- if they would just attend to our media, read our books, empurple over our pet outrages -- surely the scales would fall from their eyes. But to respect the much-lauded American People as sentient actors, you have to give them credit for being able to act with malice aforethought. Most Americans already know what's in the Downing Street Memo. They knew it before the memo was even published. And they don't care.
The Downing Street Memo is here. It couldn't be starved to death by media inattention. It couldn't be smothered under a manure of Brangelina and Runaway Brides. It's escaped into the open -- to die of natural causes.