October 6, 2006

Do we care at all that over 24, 000 U.S. military men and women have been killed or wounded in Iraq while Rumsfeld has been in charge? Do we care that single-handedly, this guy has taken a great victory — given to him by our great soldiers in Iraq — and mismanaged that victory into an insurgency (which he denied for months)? Not to mention sectarian violence — whatever the hell that is — which will eventually lead into a full scale Civil War, at least in the Sunni Triangle?

Do we care that this guy did not care enough to sign hundreds of letters to survivors of lost soldiers, that he allowed a machine to be used instead?

Do we care that in the time since we conquered the Taliban in Afghanistan, the raw opium produced in Afghanistan has increased over 100 percent? I do not blame this guy for the fact that we are largest users of heroin on the planet, but I do lay at his feet this massive uncontrolled increase in the production of heroin. Maybe we do not care about that either.

In my adult life, I have witnessed the absolute loss of any accountability or responsibility by public figures, for any mistake, no matter how heinous. No wonder the same clowns who never saw 9/11 coming were still in charge when WMD was not found in Iraq.

By not firing this guy, we send a message: It's okay to ignore every bit of professional advice, and it's okay to refuse to see the truth, even when it is shown to us every day. We're saying that it's okay to fire generals for daring to disagree with you, and it's okay to mismanage a war and cost soldiers their lives.

By not firing this guy, by keeping him in his job for six years, his boss now owns his mistakes. At some point, as boss, you have to take responsibility for what you don't do as well as what you do. If you keep the guy on, then you own him and all that he has done and failed to do. In the military — and now, I am learning, in business as well — that's how it works. So it seems to me that the president now owns all of Rumsfeld's mistakes (Politically speaking, that is, if I was going to speak politically, which we all know I do not).

Yes, we should fire Donald Rumsfeld; we should have fired him three years ago — unless, of course, none of this matters to Americans. Wait, I know! Rather than fire him, why not give him — wait for it — The Medal of Freedom?