SPADES | politicians

BILL FRIST: 8 of spades
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Bill Frist is Republican Senate Majority Leader. If he doesn't have the basic viciousness of a Tom DeLay or Newt Gingrich, he certainly equals them in hypocrisy, dishonesty, and lack of concern for the well-being of our country. Consider these two events side by side.

A hypocrite's hypocrite
As this is written Sen. Frist is appalled, truly appalled, that Senate democrats think the Senate select Committee on Intelligence might be able to extend their investigation of intelligence failures to the White House. The Washington Post quotes him as saying the democrat who wrote a leaked memo on the topic should "identify himself or herself . . . disavow this partisan attack in its entirety" and deliver "a personal apology" to Sen. Pat Roberts (R-Kan.), chairman of the Select Committee on Intelligence.

Only then, according to Frist, "will it be possible for the committee to resume its work in an effective and bipartisan manner a manner deserving of the confidence of other members of the Senate and the executive branch."


We are left breathless at the senator's exquisite sensitivity to partisanship, the deep psychic pain he must feel in contemplating that political opponents might want to take advantage of epochal incompetence on the part of his party.

But consider the following:

In Lies and the Lying Liars Who Tell Them, Al Franken writes that during the 2002 Senatorial campaign Paul Wellstone was running against Norm Coleman. The Republican NRSC ran an ad called 'Pork' that attacked Wellstone

for voting 'to spend thousands of dollars to control seaweed in Maui,' claiming that he prioritized seaweed control over national defense. In fact, Wellstone did vote for S.1216, as did Strom Thurmond, Trent Lott and 84 other senators. That bill did appropriate the seaweed control spending but it also provided $21 billion for veterans' health care, $27 billion for veterans' compensation and pensions, and block grants to assist New York City's recovery from 9/11. The NRSC was chaired that year by Bill Frist, who later replaced Lott as Senate majority leader. Before the memorial, Frist spoke with the Wellstones' older son, David, who later recounted the conversation to me.

"'I'm sorry about your parents and your sister,' Frist told David.
"'Did you authorize the seaweed ad against my dad?' David asked.
"'Yes,' said Frist.
"'And did you vote for the seaweed bill?'
"There was a pause. They both knew that the answer was yes. Finally, Frist said, 'It wasn't personal.'
(pp. 179-180)

Frist lies about Iraq
Frist is equally without integrity involving the Iraq War. On June 26, 2003, on the Today Show, Frist told the American people regarding the issue of Iraq and weapons of mass destruction: "I'm not sure that's the major reason we went to war."

BUT consider his earlier words to us, before the falsehoods of the WMD claims became obvious to all reasonable intelligent people:

"We simply cannot live in fear of a ruthless dictator, aggressor and terrorist such as Saddam Hussein, who possesses the world's most deadly weapons.
(March 31, 2003)

"Let there be no mistake about our Nation's purpose in confronting Iraq -- Saddam Hussein's regime poses a clear threat to the people of United States, its friends and its allies, and it is a threat that we must address now. "
(March 7, 2003)

"Getting rid of Saddam Hussein's regime is our best inoculation. Destroying once and for all his weapons of disease and death is a vaccination for the world."
(March 16, 2003)

"The United States . . . is now at war "so we will not ever see" what terrorists could do "if supplied with weapons of mass destruction by Saddam Hussein."
(March 20, 2003)


The man without qualities
It takes a special kind of person to lie to animal shelters, where people take their pets they can no longer keep, in the hope that they will find a good home. To tell them he will adopt them as pets, and then take them to his labs to be operated on, where all died.


Bill Frist, the man who lied to fraudulently get cats who then all died under his knife has not improved his ethics or his compassion since. He uses his background as a physician to urge people to trust him, while even lying about his medical experience


But this time he is using his dishonesty and hypocrisy not to feather his nest as a well paid doctor of dubious morality, not to further his political career as a sleazy manipulator, but to put our national security at risk by placing partisanship ahead of truth, prohibiting investigations the American people are owed to protect his allies in the White House and then accusing others of being partisan.

Bill Frist gives partisanship a bad name.

  American shadow

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