Well, the chatterati won’t give it a rest. I like to see what all sides of the aisle have been making of the Trump interview, so I tuned in to The Late Show With Steven Colbert. He played a bit from the interview where President Trump asked a question that has been setting the Democrats’ hair on fire, viz:
Bill O’Reilly: But Putin’s a killer!
President Trump: There’s a lot of killers. We got a lot of killers. What, do you think America is so innocent?
Steven Colbert then jumps in and says “Oh, I know that one”, and wags his finger in our faces as if we were naughty children and shouts “Yes!”.
The audience goes wild. They are comforted, Colbert says America is innocent, all’s right with the world. He continues:
I mean not totally, I mean obviously, but I mean compared to Vladimir Putin we’re innocent. We’ve done a lot of bad things over the years but we eventually feel bad about it. Then Ken Burns does a documentary. There’s a process. You gotta go through the steps. that’s how it goes.
The audience finds this totally hilarious, of course, it relieves them of any guilt about bad things in the past. Colbert goes on.
I can’t believe he said that, a President of the United States said, “You think our country is so innocent?”. Has there ever been a President who hates America more?
Again the audience breaks out in laughter, while I’m thinking, Trump hates America? What is Colbert smoking that he thinks Trump is anything but a rabid patriot? Trump hates America? Who knew?
But I see Colbert’s main argument. Colbert says yes, we ARE as bad as Putin, but we feel bad about it afterwards so it’s OK … moral relativism at its finest.
And Colbert is not alone in this pearl-clutching. Mitch McConnell and Paul Ryan got their precious feelings all hurt about Trump’s comment, the mainstream media has killed an untold number of electrons misrepresenting the interchange, and of course the Democrats were ecstatic.
I gotta say, this is a curious view of history.
To take one example among far too many, Obama just attacked and smashed Libya and killed Muammar Khadafi, who was no threat of any kind to us. We were not at war with Libya, Obama didn’t have authorization from the Senate, no Declaration of War, there was no reason to do it, and yet he just went and bombed the sh*t out of them. I guess it’s the best part of having a Nobel Peace Prize, you never have to say you’re sorry …
Hillary Clinton was a major force behind the destruction of Libya, and she famously commented “We came, we saw, he died.” A charming expression of compassion for a fellow human being.
Well, yes, Khadafi did die, as did lots of innocent Libyan women and children, maimed and flayed and blasted with shrapnel by American bombs from American planes … is Colbert saying that our hands are clean in Libya? All we did with our bombing was to open the door for ISIS and Al Qaeda to set up shop, and also to KILL A STACK OF INNOCENT PEOPLE FOR NOTHING … remind me again just how innocent we are?
But wait, you say, Putin poisons his enemies … surely you haven’t forgotten that President Kennedy tried to poison Castro? Yeah, he didn’t succeed, so I guess Kennedy was as bad as Putin … but just not as successful. But heck, it’s the thought that counts.
Funny how all of this U.S. innocence is making my stomach uneasy …
And Kennedy, of course, also approved of the murder of the President of an allied country, South Vietnam, in the name of fighting communism … how can anyone claim that our hands are clean? We murdered the head of an allied country because we didn’t like his politics, and Colbert thinks we are all pure and innocent?
Then there was Reagan, who cut a secret illegal deal with the Iranians to clandestinely arm contras in Nicaragua, contras who of course ended up killing all kinds of civilians … it’s that kind of upright honest transparent action that clearly demonstrates the U.S. innocence to an unbelieving world.
Ah, you say, but Vladimir Putin was head of the KGB, which kidnapped people off the street and tortured them in secret locations, “black sites” where their friends and relatives couldn’t locate them … yes, and George Bush was in overall charge of the CIA, which kidnapped people off the street and tortured people in secret locations where their friends and relatives couldn’t locate them …
… I can only say, may the spirit that watches over simple warriors like myself please spare me from ever experiencing the full gamut of U.S. innocence in a CIA black site …
Then we have such charming things as the “Trail Of Tears”, and the brutal massacre of women and children at Wounded Knee, but I can’t even discuss those, my heart won’t take it … U.S. innocence at its finest.
And to close by returning to the present, Obama killed several US citizens with drone strikes, without a trial, not in a war zone, without a warning, just blew them to bits. Not only that, but Obama consistently refused to tell us what law authorized him to do that—he just did it, and screw us for asking. Here’s the ACLU on the matter:
The ACLU and CCR have filed a lawsuit challenging the government’s targeted killing of three U.S. citizens in drone strikes far from any armed conflict zone.
In Al-Aulaqi v. Panetta (Al-Awlaki v. Panetta) the groups charge that the U.S. government’s killings of U.S. citizens Anwar Al-Aulaqi, Samir Khan, and 16-year-old Abdulrahman Al-Aulaqi in Yemen last year violated the Constitution’s fundamental guarantee against the deprivation of life without due process of law.
The killings were part of a broader program of “targeted killing” by the United States outside the context of armed conflict and based on vague legal standards, a closed executive process, and evidence never presented to the courts.
And Putin is the bad guy, while Obama is innocent?
Funny. Until now, I was totally unaware that U.S. innocence involved so many corpses.
So yes, indeed Putin IS a very bad guy, one of the worst. But Putin being bad doesn’t mean that the US is innocent … like the man said, “We got a lot of killers”.
Finally, please note what Trump did NOT say, but which people are acting like he said. He did NOT say the US is as bad as Russia, or as bad as Putin. He never made that comparison. That’s the media and the commenters moving the goal posts. Note that Colbert’s whole claim, as well as the claims of McConnell and Ryan, are all based around that incorrect idea, that Trump said the US was as bad as Russia. He did not say that.
Instead, the President said we also have blood on our hands, that we are not innocent in any sense of the word … and that, sadly, is all too true.
Here, we’re looking at about three more days of rain … and who knows how many more days of the talking heads whining about Trump’s interview and Putin …
PS—if you comment, please QUOTE THE EXACT WORDS YOU ARE DISCUSSING so we can all understand what you are talking about.