Friday, April 19, 2002

Charles Kuffner takes Avedon Carol to task for her defense of Congresswoman McKinney.

He has three main points. One is that her comments were essentially out of line. The WaPo article about her comments does its best to make it seem that her comments were unreasonable. What the article does, and what most people have done, is conflate two entirely separate points she makes, which she herself likely didn't mean to do. She says two basic things:

a) The administration likely knew something beforehand.


b) There are people who are close to the administration that stand to profit from the war on Terra.

It is only if you link these two things that her comments were potentially over the line. At least, over the line if she has no further evidence. In doing this, it makes it sound as if McKinney was saying the administration caused or let 9/11 happen in order to reap great profit. Though her radio remarks could be interpreted this way by a reasonable person, I admit, she didn't actually say it. And, her written statement makes quite clear what she meant.

Points a) and b) above are well-established.

Kuffner's second point is that congressional investigations are generally just a big waste of time, and this is best left to journalists. While the public face of congressional investigations, the hearings, are undermined by too much grandstanding (often by those trying to derail them), the behind-the-scenes part of the investigations can be very valuable. Without subpoena power, and given the Justice Department's current stance on FOIA requests , there is little journalists can do absent the resurrection of Deep Throat.

His third point, the Al Gore Has Oil Interests Too comment is really silly. First, the "everybody does it" defense is never worth much. Second, this isn't just about oil, but defense. And, third, many members of Bush's administration were around for the Last Great Looting - those wonderful 80s scandals that were of such mindbogglingly huge proportion that the media decided it was best if we just forgot them all. People who dwell on such things are dealt with by asking the simple question, "Why DO you hate America so much?".