By MARC MCDONALD
The Aug. 22 edition of The Wall Street Journal features an article that is so breathtakingly stupid and devoid of logic that it's likely even causing this right-wing rag's own readers to scratch their heads in puzzlement.
In the article, "How Oil Dependence Fuels U.S. Policies," author Gerald Seib starts off with a fairly reasonable, sober assessment of America's voracious appetite for foreign oil.
So far, so good.
However, midway through the piece, Seib lets loose with a stunning lapse of logic that has to be one of the stupidest comments made in the right-wing media this year (and that's going up against some formidable competition).
After apparently checking his brain at the door, Seib makes the following observation:
"Cynics, of course, thought President Bush decided to invade Iraq to acquire its oil cheaply, but it turns out they were exactly wrong. Whatever the president's motivations in Iraq, one can hardly claim now that inexpensive oil was one of them."
You don't have to be a Bush-hating "cynic" to realize that this has got to be one of the stupidest justifications for Bush's Iraq policy to come down the pike in years.
To be fair to Seib, though, it's important to note that variations of this argument have been floating around the right-wing blogosphere and media for several months now. And it only shows how desperate the neocons are in their efforts to defend their leader as Bush's approval ratings hit new lows every month and as an increasingly skeptical America takes a cold, hard look at the Iraq fiasco.
Why, exactly, is oil not gushing from Iraq these days? You don't have to be a rocket scientist to understand that it's hard to pump oil from a country that is in the midst of chaos and looming civil war. (In fact, oil production in Iraq is lower than it was before the U.S. invasion).
Which brings us to the question: why is Iraq in chaos in the first place? Could it have something to do with the fact that the Bush team rushed into war in Iraq without doing the slightest bit of homework in planning for America's post-invasion occupation of the country? The fact is, the current mess in Iraq is totally the result of the Bush team's ineptness and lack of foresight.
The Bush team waved off all warnings from America's intelligence and military experts who warned of the looming catastrophe in post-invasion Iraq. But it shouldn't really be surprising: this is the same administration that promised America that the Iraq war would be a "cakewalk" that would result in zero casualties.
So, to recap: the Bush team rushes into the Iraq war on false pretenses and then proceeds to thoroughly screw up the post-invasion administration of the country. Oil production in Iraq then tumbles as the country descends into chaos.
And then the likes of The Wall Street Journal come along and make the bizarre argument that Iraq's falling oil production amidst anarchy must somehow mean that Bush's rationale for rushing into war couldn't have had anything to do with oil.
Over the past five years, the Bush team and its lackeys in the right-wing media have resorted to all sorts of tricks to defend the White House's policies. From paying money to right-wing columnists to fabricating "news" stories to bringing in non-journalists to lob softball questions at press conferences, there is no depth to which the right-wing goons haven't sunk.
Gerald Seib's The Wall Street Journal piece shows a right-wing media that is increasingly out of touch with reality in its desperate scramble to defend Bush at any cost.