'Intelligent discontent is the mainspring of civilization.' -- Eugene V. Debs

Saturday, April 10, 2004

The Reagan Defense 

From "Losing touch with reality", The Guardian, 5/9/04:

Predictably, Dr Rice's first objective was to protect the president from criticism. But she failed to satisfy those watching her testimony that the received image of the pre-9/11 White House - that it barely feigned interest in foreign affairs - was inaccurate. Her exchange with commission member Richard Ben-Veniste was particularly revealing, over if she had told President Bush there were al-Qaida cells in the US, after that information had been passed to her by Mr Clarke. To say - as Dr Rice did - "I really don't remember whether I discussed this with the president," should be called the Reagan defence, after the former president repeatedly used the phrase "I don't recall" in an inquiry into the Iran-Contra scandal. What is questionable is whether that is a credible defence from someone reputed to be the smartest person in the White House.

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