Memo To Tim Russert
I watched this week's episode of Meet The Press, and I came away with the impression that you are in shock.
This is to be expected when one's long-suppressed conscience returns to active duty. It strikes with Category 5 force and knocks you senseless.
I'm very glad that your conscience has made a reappearance, but I certainly wish it had come a lot sooner - like back in 1999. If it had, could you have presented George W. Bu$h as anything other than the stumble-bum he has just last week clearly demonstrated that he is? Would you have at least treated Al Gore with more respect? Enough to match that you showed GWB?
I don't know. I hope you would have.
But the fact that you are in shock - as we all are to varying extent due to the Katrina news coverage - blunted your outrage at the Bu$h (mi$)Admini$tration's incompetent and self-serving handling of the rescue efforts. Because you obviously weren't as well-prepared as you normally are, you yourself looked incompetent.
There were many times when - had Michael Chertoff been a Democrat - you would have gone into attack-dog mode, pinning back his arguments with factual counter-points (see: your treatment of Al Gore during the 2000 Campaign, for example). There is no way you would have let him off the mat once you had him pinned. But due to your state of shock, Chertoff was able to toss you off as easily as he would a piece of paper, layering on the GOP talking points and pointing the blame for the delayed and disjointed rescue effort toward local officials.
With so much data around to counter Chertoff with, how did you fail to take advantage of it? Your failure will come to haunt you as the continued incompetence of Bu$hCo adversely affects more of the nation in times to come.
But newly-rediscovered conscience or no, you forever share in the blame for the fiasco that is the New Orleans recovery effort. Your blatant partisanship toward GWB at Gore's expense (and toward non-Republicans since) helped to allow Bu$hCo to take and keep power unchallenged, and your defense of them any time a non-conservative rose to take them to task only made their control stronger. The suffering of the people of New Orleans could have been eased much sooner had a more competent administration been in power. You helped to ensure that didn't happen. All I can hope for from now on is that you won't let it get any worse for your nation.
I guess you could say that I'm disgusted that only now, with the video reports from New Orleans exposing Bu$hCo for what it is - and isn't - was your conscience finally able to escape the prison you placed it into. No amount of atonement, no matter how well-meaning you now are, can make up for your complicity in the crime against your nation - that of allowing Bu$hCo to destroy the republic so that Republicanism can replace it. Your partisanship blinded you to their reality. Sometimes a snake really is a snake.
Remember how to be an attack-dog investigative journalist - but this time bite the hand that led you into temptation - and negation.
Put your genuine outrage over the neglect of Katrina's survivors to a good purpose. Help end the reign of error that is Bu$hCo.