Some People Don’t Remember Clinton—MY Clinton

William writes:

Dear Ted,

I hate America.
I know that you likely get many letters prefaced with that. I don’t care. In fact, I’m close to not giving a fuck about a lot of stuff,
given that a) history repeats itself, and b) things move in cycles. Both of these rules give me little cause for comfort, especially when I keep an eye on political matters.
I suppose as a concerned citizen who occasionally speaks out, which is better than average, I could consider myself a participant in a democracy. Yet we both know we live in a de facto oligarchy where only the well-connected (read: rich) may participate in running for candidacy. We both know that machines, not citizens, win elections. We both know that southern Democrats and Northern Republicans are the same species. And we both know that the American Experiment has been dead since Washington died and the two party system took its place.
That said, I’m disappointed in you. You’re obviously smart and funny. I agree with you more times than not. Yet as I continued
to read your articles and cartoons, I must admit you make a better cartoonist than a columnist. Your stuff on Tillman was dead on.
But then I had a friend die in Iraq. And suddenly it wasn’t funny anymore.

Of course not. There’s nothing funny about it, really. Absurd, yes, but it’s not really the same thing. Still, I wonder–why did it only hit home after William’s friend died? Why didn’t the deaths of previous US troops affect him the same way? Why not the far greater number of Afghan and Iraqi deaths? Humanity’s inability to empathize is staggering.

I’m not trying to one-up you in moral outrage. I’m sure you know tons more people who are dead now. I know you think about it a lot. But I’m afraid that in hunting for Ann Coulter and Karl Rove, you have become part of the problem, not the solution. You have engaged in partisan hackery. Please do not deny it, Mr. male Ann Coulter. Yes, Bush has done pretty shitty things. But then again, so did Clinton. So have a lot of Democratic presidents. What makes Bush different? Party affiliation?

Long-time readers of my work know that I’m an equal opportunity politician basher, and that I’ve paid a high price for that. I called for Clinton’s impeachment while my peers were defending him, I attacked his response to the 1998 embassy bombings in East Africa, I declared his presidency the greatest example of squandered opportunity in American history. But these things do have a scale. It’s not partisan to note that Bush is the first American leader to have seized power by coup d’état. Right there, that makes him the most evil man to have ever participated in our political system. Previous presidents have started wars, even wide-scale conflicts, but few have done so with such glee or callous disregard for the loss of life and limb caused by their actions. Previous presidents have failed to defend America, but few have refused to do anything about an attack as large and monstrous as 9/11–yet that’s exactly what George W. Bush has done: nothing.

Bush has built a network of concentration camps to house thousands of Muslims kidnapped off American streets, where they are routinely tortured and murdered under direct sanction by the White House. He has transformed our record surplus into a record deficit.

Have other presidents fucked up? Sure. But none as spectacularly or with such abandon as Bush. So yes, he is different–and I’d be saying that if the dude were a Democrat. Count on it.

Can you forgive all of Clinton’s sins, yet scream non-stop about Bush? Granted, he deserves nearly all of it…just like TV, each successive president provides a new low standard of behavior. But then again, you’re not the Daily Show. You don’t make fun of EVERYONE. You don’t tell the truth about EVERYONE. So I can’t trust you anymore. You’re selective, just like any Beltway insider. I could quote Pogo or Neitchzie [sic] here, but you get the picture.

I get the picture, but I don’t recognize myself in it. And neither, I suspect, do people who were reading my work before 2000. Why don’t I go after the dumbass Dems as much as Bush? Because, quite frankly, they’re not responsible for most of what’s going on nowadays. They’re out of power. They’re impotent. Me, I attack those in power because they’re the ones to blame.

Besides, I’ve written an ENTIRE BOOK talking about what’s wrong Democrats. It’s called “Wake Up, You’re Liberal!” I suggest you pick up a copy before you accuse me of hackery. Besides, I do tackle dumbass Dems quite frequently.

Argue all you want about how the Republican party is evil and deserves to be destroyed. And what about the Democratic party? For example, what the hell has the Democratic party done for blacks? They get the black vote, but do they deserve it? No more than the Republicans deserve the religious right vote. It’s all pandering and half-promises which are not fulfilled.

True. But it hardly compares with the systematic slaughter of 200,000 innocent people, now does it?

So in the end, save some of your venom for Ted Kennedy, who surely deserves it. Or the entire Democratic party, which has done a fair impersonation of a convulsing, headless snake. In the meantime, please try to convince me that Northern Democrats aren’t as insane as Southern Republicans.

Ted Kennedy is worthy of criticism, sure, but he’s not a neo-fascist fuckhead like Bush and his gang of traitors. So, given the three cartoons and one column I have to draw and write each week, where do you think I should focus my attention? Fox news et al., moreover, already have the TK-bashing well in hand.

PS oh and also, referring to the subject title which made you open this message, don’t print anything about Roberts. See her [sic] most recent article for more details.

Thanks, but I’ll write what I like.

On Roberts, though:

We would be well-advised to give John Roberts a quick confirmation since he’s going to get one anyway. Focus on Rove, Libby, and the other White House traitors–they’re the key to bringing down the whole shebang.

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