Olbermann indicts an 'unhinged, irrational Chicken Little of a president'
Keith Olbermann offered a special comment on Thursday about George W. Bush's "cataclysmic deceptions about Iran." He began by presenting two alternative explanations of Bush's apparent concealment of the intelligence -- made public earlier this week -- that Iran had suspended its nuclear weapons program in 2003.
"We have either a president who is too dishonest to restrain himself from invoking World War III about Iran at least six weeks after he had to have known that the analogy would be fantastic, irresponsible hyperbole, or we have a president too transcendentally stupid not to have asked, at what appears to have been a series of opportunities to do so, whether the fairy tales he either created or was fed were still even remotely plausible."
It is clear, Olbermann stated, that Bush was informed by National Intelligence Director McConnell last August that that claims about an Iranian nuclear weapons program were "crap." And yet he still told the country on October 17 that "if you're interested in avoiding World War III, it seems like you ought to be interested in preventing them from have the knowledge to make a nuclear weapon."
"A bright man or an honest man," said Olbermann, "would have realized no later than the McConnell briefing that the only true danger about Iran was the damage that could be done by an unhinged, irrational chicken little of a president shooting his mouth off, backed up only by his own hysteria and his own delusions of omnicience."
Olbermann then pointed out that Vice President Cheney had been briefed in full as long as two weeks ago and yet had seemingly "never bothered to mention it to his boss." Recalling widespread suspcions that Ronald Reagan was merely the "front man" for behind-the-scenes manipulators, Olbermann suggested that "it is inescapable that Dick Cheney is either this president's evil ventriloquist -- or he thinks he is."
However, Olbermann continued, even the possibility that Cheney may have "cut [him] out of the loop" doesn't let Bush off the hook. Referring to an analysis by Dan Froomkin of the Washington Post, Olbermann pointed out that throughout last spring and early summer, Bush repeatedly warned of Iranian "pursuit" of nuclear weapons. Then suddenly, between August 6 and 9, Bush's language subtly altered and he began referring merely to technology or knowledge "that could lead to nuclear weapons."
"And we are to believe, Mr. Bush, that nobody told you any of this until last week?" Olbermann concluded. "Your insistence that you were not briefed on the NIE until last week might be legally true ... but ethically it is a lie. ... You have been yelling threats into a phone for nearly four months after the guy on the other end had already hung up."
"Instead of sharing this good, calming news with the people you have obviously forgotten you represent, you merely fine-tuned your terrorizing of those people to legally cover your own backside. ... Hanged by your own words and convicted by your own lies, you, sir, have no business being president."
The "Newsbusters" blog offers a critique of Olbermann's comment, describing his accusations as "name-calling," characterizing his comparison of Bush to failed presidents of the 19th century as "bizarre," and calling his suggestion that President Reagan had been merely a front man "a conspiracy theory."
A full transcript is available HERE.
The following video is from MSNBC's COUNTDOWN with Keith Olbermann, broadcast on December 06, 2007