It's hardly news anymore, but our friend slippery Scott racked up a couple more “false” ratings from the fact checkers at the nonpartisan PolitiFact website in recent days.
They were the 37th and 38th verdicts of “false” given to various claims and statements by Wisconsin’s part-time governor and full-time presidential candidate when PolitiFact took a closer look at what Walker said. They go along with 10 absolute worst “pants on fire” ratings and another 20 “mostly false” verdicts.
That compares to PolitiFact finding 16 “true” statements and 29 “mostly true.”
It’s all gotten to the point where folks really ought to be taking his claims with a grain of salt.
But none of PolitiFact’s findings rank up there with Walker’s comments a few days ago that any president from either party would have made the decision back in 2002 to invade Iraq. When asked on national TV — like all the GOP candidates were last week — whether he would have invaded Iraq knowing what we know now, he said it’s “safe to say” he would not have invaded.
He also said on “Face the Nation”: “We should be talking about the challenges we face going forward. But I did stand up and defend the president — President Bush, that is. I think any president, regardless of party, probably would have made a similar decision to what President Bush did at the time with the information he had available.”
Either Walker is completely oblivious to recent history or he’s deliberately making stuff up — like he often does.
Maureen Dowd said it succinctly in a recent Sunday New York Times.
“It isn’t about what we know now, it’s about what we knew then,” she wrote. “It is simply not true that any president would have likely taken the same action Bush did.”
That’s because no other president would have had a Dick Cheney as vice president and a horde of Defense Department chickenhawks (Dowd calls them Bush’s “frothing band of Reservoir Dogs”) concocting false intelligence reports and purposely dismissing evidence that Iraq had no weapons of mass destruction in order to willfully start a patently needless war.
Walker and most of his Republican colleagues would like to rewrite history to claim that back then the war was necessary. Why, even Hillary Clinton voted to go to war, they gleefully point out as if that somehow absolves their president. Yes, nearly every member of Congress, presented with ginned-up reports and blatant propaganda, felt it necessary to back what turned out to be George W.’s and his close advisers’ deliberate lies.
To say that any president would have done likewise is pure, unadulterated manure.
That Walker makes such claims underscores just how dangerous a charlatan this professional politician really is. He claims that Barack Obama is responsible for all the turmoil in the Mideast, not recognizing for a minute that the Iraq War and the toppling of Saddam Hussein unleashed the incredible religious and cultural radical forces that have plunged Mideast country after Mideast country into utter chaos.
Poppy Bush’s top security adviser, Brent Scowcroft, and several military leaders warned W. and Cheney that to invade Iraq would cause what has now happened. But no one was going to stop this gang from showing how the U.S. could turn these backward states into examples of modern democracy. How has that turned out?
Scott Walker has enough trouble understanding Wisconsin political history, much less deciphering what has transpired in the Mideast and the lessons it should have taught us all. Yet he talks loosely about boots on the ground in Syria and greater U.S. military involvement in trouble spots like Libya.
He says we shouldn’t dwell on the past, but focus on the future.
If he’s in charge, that’s a frightening thought. ￼
Dave Zweifel is editor emeritus of The Capital Times. firstname.lastname@example.org and on Twitter @DaveZweifel
Share your opinion on this topic by sending a letter to the editor to email@example.com. Include your full name, hometown and phone number. Your name and town will be published. The phone number is for verification purposes only. Please keep your letter to 250 words or less.