Monday, August 4, 2014

Benghazi: Reductio Ad Absurdum Redux

And the beat goes on, the beat goes on
Drums keep pounding a rhythm to the brain
  - Sonny Bono, The Beat Goes On, 1967


Finally, they had him.

Oh, they had him. 

Republicans were full of joyous bloodlust.

At last, they were going to finish him. They were absolutely sure.

It was bigger than Watergate.

It was bigger than Iran-Contra.

It was bigger than Bill Clinton’s … cigar. Okay, maybe not that big, but it was big, folks. Big.

May, 2013, with great fanfare, Conservatives held press conferences and made the rounds on Fox and talk radio and announced that the House Intelligence Committee led by Republicans would open the definitive investigation into the 2012 attack on the US Consulate in Benghazi, Libya.

And by God, they had Obama. They had him.

There was no doubt.

It was only a matter of time. 

It was as if conservatives just couldn’t say the word “impeachment” enough.

In May of 2013 when the committee convened, Republican Senators such as James Inhofe (R-OK) openly declared that the president should be impeached over Benghazi,

“Of all the great cover-ups in history, the Pentagon papers, Iran-Contra, Watergate, all the rest of them, this is going to go down as most egregious cover-up in American history.”

Inhofe went on to say that Benghazi would "endure" and impeachment could come after the 2014 midterm elections when Republicans were sure to take control of the upper chamber.

Steve King (R-IA) did the math,

“I believe that it's a lot bigger than Watergate, and if you link Watergate and Iran-Contra together and multiply it times maybe ten or so, you're going to get in the zone where Benghazi is.”

Obama equals Nixon plus Reagan times ten.

And math don’t lie, Folks.

House Speaker John Boehner took charge. After promising that the Republican investigation was about “getting to the truth. This is not going to be a sideshow. This is not going to be a circus. This is a serious investigation. Our system of government depends on transparency and accountability,” he continued with,

“Who’s been fired over the targeting of conservative groups by the IRS? No one that I’m aware of. Who’s gone to jail for violating the law? When is the administration going to tell the American people the truth? They’ve not told the truth about Benghazi. They’ve not told the truth about the IRS. They’ve not told the truth about Fast and Furious. Now, only one would have to guess. If they’re not willing to tell the American people the truth, it must not be pretty.”

You know it’s a serious investigation dedicated to the truth when the guy running it publically declares the foregone results before it even starts. Almost makes you nostalgic for those old Soviet Era show trials and you have to wonder if John Boehner doesn’t spend his private time in the bathroom with a tube of self tanning lotion and glossy pictures of Siberian gulags. 

Led by Boehner,  conservatives came down with raging Benghazi Fever. Michele Bachmann, Steve Stockman, Darrell Issa, Tom Coburn, Louie Gohmert, Blake Farenthold,  Michael Burgess, Steve King, Trent Franks, Tom Tancredo, Alan Keyes, to name but a few demanded that the Articles of Impeachment be implemented against the president.

Hell, even Ralph Nader joined in and you talk about strange bedfellows – but then that’s nothing really new for conservatives, is it? Wide stance, Ralph, remember wide stance.

As the investigation moved forward in fits and starts, Boehner became more and more convinced that he had Obama by the short hairs,

“The administration’s withholding of documents, emails showing greater White House involvement in misleading the American people, is a flagrant violation of trust and undermines the basic principles of oversight upon which our system of government is built. And it forces us to ask the question, what else about Benghazi is the Obama administration still hiding from the American people? This dismissiveness and evasion requires us to elevate the investigation to a new level. I intend for this select committee to have robust authority, and I will expect it to work quickly to get answers for the American people and the families of the victims.”

In the Senate, Republicans Lindsey Graham, Kelly Ayotte, and, of course, John McCain demanded a committee of their own.

“We have called for a select committee since November 2012 and we are pleased that one will finally be established. The committees in both the Senate and the House that have held hearings have made an important contribution, but in light of the many remaining unanswered questions and the recent evidence that the administration has withheld critical information, it is clear that we need a Select Committee that can bring sustained focus across jurisdictions. We owe it to the families that lost their loved ones in the Benghazi attack to finally get to the truth.”

The committees in both the Senate and the House, which failed to find anything. Those committees John McCain meant, I guess. But, damn it, we must investigate until we find us a blowjob! Ur, I mean, uh, well, we owe it to America, man, America!

McCain went on Face The Nation and said,

"I don't know if it's either a cover-up or the worst kind of incompetence, which doesn't qualify the president as commander in chief."

Conservatives running for office in 2013 used Benghazi as a rallying cry. Texas Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst (R) running for reelection, openly declared that President Obama should be served with articles of impeachment.

“This election is about protecting you and your freedoms, which are given to you by God, but which are being trampled on by Barack Obama right now. I don’t know about you, but Barack Obama ought to be impeached, not only for trampling on our liberties, but what he did in Benghazi is just a crime!”

Fox News, Redstate, Breitbart, The Daily Caller, Western Free Press, World News Daily, NewsMax, The Wire, Free Republic, Before It’s News, and The Blaze all were certain, absolutely certain, of what the committee would find. They were certain, absolutely certain, that Obama’s impeachment would come just in time for the 2014 mid-terms. After all, the deck was stacked, conservatives had loaded the committee, they’d laid all the groundwork, the verdict was all but in the bag.

Conservative pundits began ripping at their own flesh in a Benghazi feeding frenzy. Blood painted the water red and sharks came from miles around for a taste.

Rush Limbaugh proclaimed “This dwarfs Watergate!”

Ron Christie agreed, “This is worse than Watergate??!! WTF?”

Donald Rumsfeld appeared on Sean Hannity and they concurred, Benghazi was Obama’s Watergate.

Newt Gingrich nodded in agreement, Libya was worse than Watergate.

Mike Huckabee boldly stated that the president would be impeached and that,

“I believe that before it’s all over, this president will not fill out his full term. I know that puts me on a limb, but this is not minor. When a president lies to the American people and is part of a cover-up, he cannot continue to govern, and as the facts come out, I think we’re going to see something startling. And before it’s over, I don’t think this president will finish his term unless somehow they can delay it in Congress past the next three and a half years.”

They rounded up fat old National Guard Generals and Vietnam era Colonels and every disgraced Lt Colonel they could find. All agreed, Benghazi was worse than Watergate, and Obama’s role – whatever that might have been – qualified as “High crimes and misdemeanors.”

Even Steven Seagal took time out from saving America to say,

“If the truth about Benghazi were to come out now, I don’t think that this man would make it through his term. I think he would be impeached.”

Steven Seagal, Chuck Norris, you know you get kicked in the head enough, it all becomes clear. 

I mean, honestly, Steven Seagal couldn’t be wrong, right? Right? That vast towering intellect? No.

I could go on and on … and on and on and on and on and on la de da de de quoting conservatives on Benghazi.

I could. And I’m tempted to.

But I think at this point it would be best to let let Sarah Palin sum it up and put a bow on top,

“You lied again, Team Obama, but light shall shine on what’s hidden in Washington’s darkness with Republican lawmakers’ laser like focus on the truth. America deserves nothing less! With gravel in his gut and pitbull tenacity this is what America needs. Thank you, Congressman Trey Gowdy and others who are determined to avenge the murders of our brave Americans in Benghazi, and will also prove the insulting, sinful Obama Administration Benghazi cover-up.”

A year ago conservatives were positive, absolutely 100% without any doubt positive, that they had him.

They were positive that they had grounds to impeach President Obama and Benghazi was the smoking gun.

They were utterly certain. That’s not speculation or exaggeration, those are their own words, that’s what they told America. Impeachment. They had him. No doubts.

And so here we are.

And House conservatives are suing the president … over some idiotic inane issue, an issue that not only amuses the President but even conservatives think is just plain stupid. And, oddly, all those “scandals” that were such a big deal, Benghazi chief among them, are missing from the lawsuit. The best they could do was to sue the President for not implementing Obamacare fast enough.

Now that’s just damned peculiar.

I mean, they had him, right? That’s what they told us, they were sure.

So, why bother with this piddly little Obamacare lawsuit? When you can hang the president on Benghazi, right?

It’s time.

It’s impeachin’ time!

The report is complete.

The House Intelligence Committee, led by republicans, has finished its investigation.

Last week the Committee voted to declassify the final report.

Just one little, tiny, almost insignificant problem…

… seems the committee, led by Republicans, could find no, repeat no, repeat no, repeat no, evidence of deliberate wrongdoing by the Obama Administration.

After two years of investigation, after millions upon millions of taxpayer dollars, it turns out that, well, in the words of the report:

“No one was deliberately misled, no military assets were withheld and no stand-down order (to U.S. forces) was given."

They couldn’t even find a blowjob – and you know there has to be a blowjob in there somewhere.

Has to be.

Highlights of the report released so far include:

* Intelligence agencies were warned about an increased threat environment, but did not have specific tactical warning of an attack before it happened.

* A mixed group of individuals, including those associated with al Qaeda, (Moammar) Khadafy loyalists and other Libyan militias, participated in the attack.

* There was no 'stand-down order' given to American personnel attempting to offer assistance that evening, no illegal activity or illegal arms transfers occurring by U.S. personnel in Benghazi, and no American was left behind.

* The administration's process for developing talking points was "flawed, but the talking points reflected the conflicting intelligence assessments in the days immediately following the crisis."

So, a Tea Party driven committee led by the president’s biggest opponents and dominated by conservatives has, after 23 months of investigation, in their own words concluded “There was no ‘stand-down order’ given to American personnel attempting to offer assistance that evening, no illegal activity or illegal arms transfers occurring by U.S. personnel in Benghazi, and no American was left behind” 

In point of fact, the committee concluded that Barack Obama was telling the truth all along.

Since 2012, Benghazi has been examined in more detail than nearly any other event in US history. It has been torn apart item by item by ideologically driven fanatics determined to remove the president from office. Benghazi has now been investigated by the House Intelligence Committee, the Senate Intelligence Committee, the independent State Department Accountability Review Board, the Senate Armed Services Committee, the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, the House Armed Services Committee, the House Committee on Oversight & Government Reform, and the House Committee on Foreign Affairs.

All of them have found exactly the same thing. 

All of them, every single investigation, has come to the same conclusion, exactly, the same conclusion: Dick.

There is no scandal. They can’t hang a single thing on the president other than being in office when America was attacked.

There’s no scandal.

There never has been.

The administration did everything it could. Given what was known and given the confused picture on the ground, given what assets were available, given the timeframe, the administration did everything it could.

But sometimes that’s just not enough.

Sometimes, no matter what, shit happens. 

Exactly, exactly, as I said a year ago.

For two years conservatives have been demanding “the truth.”

And they’ve got it.

By their own hand, from their own people.

And suddenly, the party of personal accountability is strangely quiet on Benghazi. 

But then it really wasn’t the truth they were after, was it?


La de da de de, la de da de da

And the beat goes on, yes, the beat goes on
And the beat goes on, and the beat goes on
The beat goes on and the beat goes on
The beat goes on…


  1. If the Benghazi incident is really the horrorshow they say it is, you'd think they'd be able to get their story straight about exactly what it is. After all this time and all the Sturm und Drang, I still don't know just what the hell the R's are actually accusing Obama of covering up.

    'Benghazi' is just a word that fits their desperate narrative; it's the kind of thing that ni...gentleman in the White House would mess up, unless of course he planned the whole thing. (Which is stupid by itself even once you're past the patent absurdity- the bad guys get their guy into the Presidency and this penny-ante bullshit is all they can think of to do with him?)

  2. It isn't Benghazi, it is Bergdahl.

    And we've always been at war with Eurasia

    1. Newspeak, the R are masters of it: manipulation of words is the ONLY thing they can do these days. They stopped governing under Nixon and haven't gotten the hang of it since.


  3. I suspect that this won't be the end of it. If the wing-nuts had an ounce of integrity (I know), they would come on National TV, state the fact that there's no smoking gun, that the POTUS didn't lie, that his Administration didn't lie, then apologize to America for wasting so much time, effort, resources and money.

    1. Ha! And when they do, there'll be MASSIVE herds of little pink piglets, in the hundreds of thousands, circling overhead.

  4. "All of them, every single investigation, has come to the same conclusion, exactly, the same conclusion: Dick. "

    Weird. A lot of us came to that very same conclusion about the wingnuts who kept ululating about it: Dicks.


    Of course they will find a way to keep ululating about it. Facts mean nothing to these people. As you so eloquently point out, time and time again.

    But that's the thing about dicks. Got only one thing on their "minds". And it ain't even in the same time zone as "thinking".


    1. You win the comment IMO for the accurate and correct use of "ululating". My hat is off.

  5. What's that rule of lawyering? When the facts are against you, argue the law. When the law is against you argue the facts. When the facts and the law are both against you, scream bloody hell.

    To which I will add: And when that doesn't work, turn the matter over to the propagandists. Because propaganda allows you some.... freedom with the facts and the law.

  6. Wonder if Fux Noise and Lush Rimjob will broadcast this?

  7. ScottK, I think thats the thing, They have nothing, they've never had anything, on anything. What's their alternative to the ACA? What's their plan immigration laws? They are all still hung up on the fact that this intelligent, honest, compassionate black man, kicked their asses, with the peoples help! They just can't stand it, and it will be their down fall… la de da de da, la de da de da...

  8. All of those idiot Republicans/Teabaggers should be put on trial and dealt w/accordingly. They have wasted time, lied horribly about President Obama (and Hillary Clinton as USSOS), conveniently wasted our taxpayer money, have taken too much time off and assuredly are not 'working' for the people that put them in office! Plus, they are the most dysfunctional U.S. Congress on record. Not something I'd be proud of were I a member of it!

    Voters need to get every Republican/Teabagger they can out of office (especially in the U.S. Congress!) in the upcoming elections. They are nothing more than anti America and could care less about jobs, the poor, the middle class, the EPA, and on and on and on!

    1. Incorrect. Of COURSE they're working for the people who put them in office. If you think that's the electorate you're dreaming. It's the rich money bags who've been paying for their election campaigns that they're representing. It's been that way for two decades at least.

    2. Thank you, barking Republicans, for wasting two years of our country's life.

  9. Jim, I love you so damned much. Umm, let me correct myself before your wife shoots me, and I know she is armed. I love your political writing so much. I have finally made what is a pitifully small donation to the blog compared to the vast enjoyment I get from it.

  10. When you are out of ideas and have no plan for solving any of the problems the nation faces, your only option is to drum up sh*t. I gotta give it to the GOPTPers, they are good at taking direction. All they've done since the Heritage Foundation mandated that they not legislate but investigate is push BS.

  11. I don't think normal people are shocked that a bipartisan report has concluded that the Obama administration did nothing wrong before/during/after the Benghazi tragedy.

    Interesting that Democrats didn't try to impeach Bush over the 9/11 tragedy. Instead the country came together. That's how we should handle these types of tragedies. We are all sad that 4 Americans died in Benghazi. It's sad how politically polarizing their killings have become.

  12. late at night, if you look into a mirror and say 'benghazi' 3 times, you can hear the ghosts of the 200+ marines who died in Beirut ask "what about us?"

    1. Damned straight, Dan. How about the thirty or so attacks or attempts on US embassies when Shrub was prez? Anyone remember Karachi? June 2002? (7 killed, 25 injured). No Shrub wasn't responsible; it was a tragedy. For congresscritters to make Bengahzi a political football is an impeachable offense. Fucking shit-weasels.

  13. Nick formerly from the O.C.August 4, 2014 at 6:12 PM

    I have little of substance to contribute ... except the ad at the bottom of the pages says "Join NRA" and offers me a free duffel bag if I do so. I thought that was an amusing ad to find on this site.

    Also -- great post. I would not have known about the conclusions of the report if I only relied on accepted media sources. And by "accepted" I mean accepted in Texas.

  14. The Republican party is full of squirrels. And nuts. And squirrel nuts. But mostly squirrels.

  15. Wonderfully enjoyable read. So glad I stopped by.

  16. With conservatives, it's ALWAYS the same tactic: take control of the narrative EARLY and LOUDLY and especially REPEATEDLY so THEIR view on it becomes ingrained in people's minds as a "fait accompli" to a point where any investigation showing anything different can only be lies, cover up and conspiracy.


  17. It's sad that the only place where I've read that the commissions had finished their investigations and found no wrong-doing was here. Nowhere in mainstream media at all. Deafening silence,

  18. Mr. Wright,

    I found your website after the essay entitled "Absolutely Nothing" went viral. Although I may have edited the content in order to get to the "meat" of the issue, I found your passion a valuable portion of the content. Not to mention a missing voice from someone who "chewed the same dirt" as those in the face of fire. I now look forward to your next diatribe, because I know that I will not hear it anywhere else.

    You, Sir, have earned my respect, and my monetary contribution toward your endeavors.

    SDCulp USMC

  19. And the beat goes on....
    You are so right. Rand Paul made a speech last night in Iowa trying to blame Hilary Clinton for Benghazi.

    I guess the report isn't on Wikipedia yet, so he hasn't had a chance to read (or copy) it.....


    What does FOX say???

  21. But that was just the House! The House! Anybody can get into the House - bunch a fuckin' morons! Now the Senate is just getting ready to start THEIR definitive (nth) investigation! The Senate knows how to obfus- I mean, get to the truth! And there's NEW witnesses!! Because their investigation "appears" serious!!!

    Yes, according to the committee's chairman, the Senate's investigation has the appearance of being serious. This instills boatloads of confidence in me. Big boatloads.

    Yeah, this won't be over while there is still name-recognition to be harvested from it.


  22. When the committee is composed of twelve Republicans and nine Democrats, and they come to the conclusion that there was no wrong doing, one would hope that the issue would be dead. It is not like it was a committee of all Democrats or even a majority of Democrats.

    For that matter, according to one source it confirmed the conclusions of three other committees/boards, including one at the Senate level.

  23. Sigh. Of course they found nothing. Not that facts mean a lot to a group of extremists who are more concerned with ideology than reality.Thank you- as always- for your wicked ironic humor. Alas- I do not this this is the end of the Benghazi dead horse. At. All. Rabid extremism is irrational at it's core.

  24. Minor Editing quibble

    "Finally, they they had him."

    I think you've got a spare "they" in there.

    1. In the very first line too. Damn.

      Thanks, it's fixed. // Jim

  25. quote: With gravel in his gut and pitbull tenacity this is what America needs. Thank you, Congressman Trey Gowdy unquote.
    What is the guy? A chicken? Gizzard full of gravel, a brain too smal to stop pecking at the poop?"

  26. I loved how you were able to take the beginning and tie the end into it so neatly. Great writing. Another joyful read. Thanks

  27. I think you missed something, Jim.
    It's quite obvious that the Socialist, Kenyan, Muslim usurper cast his evil negro Mojo Ray in the direction of the committee, thereby causing them to become confused on the true nature of events and preventing them doing (what we all know was) their rightful (no pun) duty.
    Look under the bed, the fearful truth is probably hiding there.

  28. Depressingly, the damage has been done: they've got their paranoid, hate-filled followers brainwashed to believe the lie, so the quiet, little truth won't be heard and even then won't be believed.

  29. Of course they couldn't find a coverup. That proves there was a coverup. If they had found a coverup, that would mean it wasn't covered up. I don't know why I have to keep explaining this to people.

  30. I'm disgusted that I have to breathe the same air as these idiots. These willfully ignorant, brain-dead morons are an embarrassment to all thinking, feeling Americans. While I am proud to be an American and continue to believe that we can be a force for good in this world, I do not see how we can with “leaders” such as these. Historically, it is never good when a major political faction ceases to govern, but instead become dreadful, petulant children bent on destroying everything that has made us who we are. All because there is a black man in the White House. Sick.

    Chris in South Jersey

  31. Another greatest hit from the one and only! Need a cigarette and I don't even smoke!

  32. And, as always, if not for our vaunted Media Press Corpse's lust to "broadcast the controversy", because the truth is just no damn fun, none of this would have gone anywhere. The biggest joke in politics for the last 40 years has been "Liberal Media"...

  33. Damn I hope they impeach him anyhow. Over some BS. It would be so precious.

    --Medicine Man

  34. I thought it was all about hobbling Hillary in her expected presidential run. Not really going after Obama.

    What they will now do is point to this committee report to prove that Republicans are not partisan. It is the Democrats that play politics and cause gridlock by being partisan. That's how it will play on cable.

  35. So now we can't chant "Benghazi!" as counterpoint to the craziness. Thanks Obama!

  36. It is that darn "Hitler speak" that says if you say something often enough people will indeed believe it AND you can control them. Darn, it, and now on to the next control speak by our infamous Republicans.

  37. One local radio guy around here has been desperate to "get to the truth" about Benghazi. In the last few weeks, since the results of this investigation came out, I haven't heard a word about it from him.
    I guess he didn't really care about getting to the truth. He just wanted something that could be pinned on the President or Hillary Clinton.


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