[Assam] From NY Times
cmahanta at charter.net
Sun Jul 15 11:40:27 CDT 2007
Who's Sorry Now?
By MAUREEN DOWD
Published: July 15, 2007
There's not much lately that we'd like to import from China.
Certainly not the yummy steamed buns stuffed with shredded cardboard
soaked in a caustic agent used to make soap. Or the tasty toothpaste
laced with an antifreeze ingredient. Or the scrumptious seafood with
a chemical kick. Or those pet foods with kibbles and bits of poison.
But there is one thing made in China we could use: mea culpas of high
Zheng Xiaoyu, a top regulator who helped create China's Food and Drug
Administration, accepted $850,000 in bribes from drug companies and
became enmeshed in the mistakes that flooded the market with
dangerous drugs. Before he was executed Tuesday, he wrote a short
confession titled "How I Look on My Mistakes."
"Thinking back on what has happened these years, I start to see the
problems clearly," he wrote in prison. "Why are the friends who gave
me money all the bosses of pharmaceutical companies? Obviously
because I was in charge of drug administration.
"I am confessing here that I loosened self-discipline, ignored the
bottom line," he said, adding that he had to confess his mistakes "as
an act of saving my soul."
We would skip the execution - although perhaps there should be ranch
arrest for W., and Cheney could do community service passing out
condoms at Gay Pride festivals.
But it is time for the lethally inept duo running the country to do
some painstaking self-examination and confession. Just as the
Communist Party helped the late Mr. Zheng compose his thoughts, I
volunteer to ghost-write our leaders' self-scrutiny:
"How I Look on My Mistakes," by George W. Bush
The people trusted me with an important position. I didn't live up to
expectations. I let Dick supersize the executive branch and cast
Democrats as whiners and traitors. Why did I not suspect that Dick
might be power-hungry when he appointed himself vice president? Why
did I let him take over my presidency and fill it up with warmongers?
I was so afraid to be called a wimp, as my father once was, I allowed
Dick and Rummy to turn me into a wimp. I should never have allowed
Dick to conspire with energy lobbyists and steer contracts to
Halliburton. A tip-off should have been when Dick kept giving himself
all the same powers that I had. Or when he outed that pretty lady spy.
If only I had kept my promise to go after the thugs who attacked us
on 9/11, because now I've made Osama and Al Qaeda stronger. I know my
false claim about Al Qaeda's ties with Iraq led to Iraq's being tied
down by Al Qaeda. I see now that my bungled war on terror has created
more terror, empowered Iran and made America less secure. Oh, yeah,
and I'm sorry I broke the military.
I stained the family honor when I ignored the elders of the Iraq
Study Group. I should not have worried that I would be seen as
kowtowing to my dad's friends. The Oval Office is not the right place
for a teenage rebellion.
I should not have picked that dimwit Brownie, and I should have
trusted the gut of anyone besides that goof-off Chertoff to keep the
nation safe. And what was I thinking when I said Harriet Miers should
be a Supreme Court justice? That was loony. I'm sorry I made the
surgeon general mention my name three times on every page of his
speeches. That was childish.
How could I have let Dick bring in his best friend, Rummy, my dad's
old nemesis? Dummy Rummy let Osama escape at Tora Bora, messed up the
Iraq occupation and aborted a mission to wipe out top Al Qaeda
leaders because he was protecting Musharraf, who was protecting Al
Qaeda in the tribal areas. Even though I promised to get rid of
dictators who helped terrorists, I ended up embracing a Pakistani
dictator who helps terrorists.
I'm embarrassed that the Iraqi Parliament is taking a monthlong
vacation in the middle of my surge. Could I have set a bad example
when I rode my bike in Crawford while New Orleans drowned?
I'm sorry I keep pretending Iraq will get better if we stay longer.
It wasn't very nice of me to push the surge when I knew it couldn't
work. I just wanted to dump the defeat on my successor. I wish
Hillary the best of luck.
If I had left the gym long enough to read about Algeria or even one
of T. E. Lawrence's Seven Pillars of Wisdom, then I might have not
gotten bogged down in Iraq and let North Korea, China and Russia
Being the Decider is so confusing. I regret stealing the presidency
and wish I could give it back.
"How I Look on My Mistakes," by Dick Cheney
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