Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Quote of the day, 3/21

Via NeedleNose

From Busy, Busy, Busy, on Dubya's remark yesterday that "I was very careful never to say that Saddam Hussein ordered the attacks on America":
Which brings to mind other typical uses of this particular semantic construct...

* ... I was very careful never to say you couldn't lose money.

* ... I was very careful never to say I love you.

* ... I was very careful never to say I was still on the pill.

* ... I was very careful never to say I've been tested recently.

... all of which share the characteristic of being an after-the-fact technical exculpation of a conscious attempt to mislead. You only have to be very careful to avoid making a provably false statement when you are knowingly trying to disseminate the corresponding false impression while retaining plausible deniability.
The entirely unfunny punch line, as a commenter reminded me a while back, came in a Zogby poll of 944 soldiers in Iraq, reported at the end of February:
. . . 85% said the U.S. mission is mainly “to retaliate for Saddam’s role in the 9-11 attacks."
Sorry 'bout that, guys. But Dubya was careful never to say your mission was accomplished....

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