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I’ve Seen That Movie Too

rumsfeld_ford_cheney.jpg

Gerald Ford always seemed like a decent guy, from an era when it was possible to be a "moderate" Republican and not live the political life of a complete hypocrite.  But as the above photo of Rumsfeld, Ford and Cheney demostrates, Ford's legacy — at least the one that is wounding us all so greviously at the moment — is one he might not want to be remembered for.  As Digby says, in explaining a vote cast for Ford:

I did not understand the zombie nature of Republicanism and had no way of knowing that unless you drive a metaphorical stake through the heart of GOP crooks and liars, they will be back, refreshed and and ready to screw up the country in almost exactly the same way, within just a few years. In those days, I couldn't imagine that the Republicans would ever elect someone worse than Nixon. I thought we had gone back to "normal" where nice moderate guys like Jerry and Ike would keep the seat warm until the real leaders would return. Live and learn. 

When I heard Bill Clinton speak in Waterbury this past summer, he was trying to triangulate his differences with Lieberman and repeating his "forgive and forget" mantra about the past, calling for everyone to go forward in unision.  I guess the point is that there is no unision possible with the extreme right, they do not compromise and they will steal everything that isn't nailed down.  Letting the Cheney's and Rumsfeld's (and Libby's) have a medal and a pat on the head in the interest of "sparing the nation the scandal" (as Ford supposedly did when pardoning Richard Nixon) just means, as Digby says, that the same zombies will re-emerge and commit the same crimes again and again, or their heirs will, thinking there is no price to be paid.

As Steve Benen notes over at K-Drum's place today (I just wanted to say "K-Drum"), there is speculation as to whether the Democrats are going to be naughty or nice in the majority.  I just hope they don't wind up a bunch of co-dependent saps who give in to the GOP demands for quarter they never gave, and I most certainly hope that they do not accept the Clintonian notion of no accountability in the interest of moving forward.  That's hooey. 

As Digby says, it's stake-in-the-heart time for the right wing crazies and the crooks. Anything less is short-term political opportunism that shirks responsibility and endangers the future. 

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Jane Hamsher

Jane Hamsher

Jane is the founder of Firedoglake.com. Her work has also appeared on the Huffington Post, Alternet and The American Prospect. She’s the author of the best selling book Killer Instinct and has produced such films Natural Born Killers and Permanent Midnight. She lives in Washington DC.
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