Omertà (or a code of silence) has become the final bond holding the Bush administration together. Honesty is dishonorable; silence is manly; penitence is weakness. Loyalty trumps law. Protecting higher-ups is patriotism. Stonewalling is idealism. Telling the truth is informing. Cooperation with investigators is cowardice; breaking the code is betrayal. Once the code is shattered, however, no one can be trusted and the entire edifice crumbles...It's the same thing in Iraq, of course, where Teh Surge is a monumental failure, the electicity system is close to breaking point, and the Iraqi "unity government" has collapsed, but we still have to wait for General Petraeus to say so - in September (or maybe November) - before we all get to hear the next big excuse for further time-wasting.
Bush cannot afford to have Gonzales resign or be removed. Gonzales' leaving would ratchet up the administration's political crisis to an intense level. Bush could not nominate a replacement without responding to the Senate Judiciary Committee's inevitable request for information on every matter that he has attempted to keep secret. On every unresolved and electrified issue the Senate would demand documents -- the entire cache on the development of policy since 2001 on torture, the gutting of the Civil Rights Division, the U.S. attorneys and much more. Only Gonzales' perpetuation in office holds back the deluge.
By that time we should have fully-armed robots on the battlefield and other cool new taxpayer-funded weapons, so we won't have to worry about casualties from anyone but the Untermenschen. Maybe that will keep our war alive for a few more years.
And with a bit of luck, we might hold off the global stock market meltdown for a few more months too:
We are now beginning to feel the first tremors from the massive credit expansion which began 6 years ago at the Federal Reserve. The trillions of dollars which were pumped into the global economy via low interest rates and increased money supply have raised the nominal value of equities, but at great cost. Now, stocks will fall sharply and businesses will fail as volatility increases and liquidity dries up. Stagnant wages and a declining dollar have thrust the country into a deflationary cycle which has---up to this point---been concealed by Greenspan’s “cheap money” policy. Those days are over. Economic fundamentals are taking hold. The market swings will get deeper and more violent as the Fed’s massive credit bubble continues to unwind. Trillions of dollars of market value will vanish overnight. The stock market will go into a long-term swoon.And who knows, maybe the lid will never be blown on all those trigger-happy "security" contractors in Iraq:
The internet is alive with videos of contractors seemingly using Iraqi vehicles for target practice, much to the embarrassment of the firms involved. Yet, despite these incidents, and although 64 US soldiers have been court-martialled on murder-related charges, not a single armed contractor has been prosecuted for any crime, let alone a crime against an Iraqi. US contractors in Iraq reportedly have a motto: "What happens here today, stays here today."And so we wait, and we wait...
Because, after all, what is the alternative? To admit that we were wrong is to invite accountability, and that would be terrible indeed.
And so, for example, Australian Prime Minister John Howard must fight to contest the next election, whether he wants to or not, because the thought of an opposition government asking hard questions is just too much to bear. And even members of his own party cannot be trusted to take the helm - even those whose hands, like Howard's, are bathed in Iraqi blood.
So we go on, we go on... Waiting for that moment when it all ceases to matter any more.