Rep. Steny Hoyer will allow investigations of “torture” to proceed with he inclusion of investigations of Pelosi’s knowledge. Oh, there are the usual bromides about how the GOP diverting attention from the “truth” to a witch hunt about what the Democrats knew and when.
The real truth is that Hoyer knows that everyone knew, the practice of water-boarding was very circumscribed and used with specific intent on specific suspects. And, that specific intent was the fact that there was information, life saving information, that had to be extracted. Hoyer also knows that this use of so-called torture was not used gratuitously to extract a confession for some Stalin-purge show trial.
In sum, this subject as a useful weapon against the GOP is kaput. And, Hoyer knows that too. So, Hoyer is now going to use this weapon against an equally inviting target–Pelosi. He’s got a payback to deliver. Force her out and he’s the speaker. Hoyer also knows that the minute Pelosi gets sworn in, these hearing are going to turn into the when-did-Pelosi-know hearings. At this point, it won’t matter if former vice-President Cheney gets arrested with thumbscrews in his back pocket.
And, then the law of unintended consequences kicks in. First, you can bet that if Pelosi gets called on the rug, she’s going to be sure she’s got as many fellow democrats who “knew” up there with her. Further, with the long knives out, there’s a very good chance that just about every other agenda on the Hill is going to be dropped. Especially, if there’s any chance that there’s going to be a shake up in the House leadership. And, Obama might as well as take his teleprompter to Death Valley to yammer on about having his program priorities delivered to his desk by thus and such a date.
All of which points to the lack of leadership and executive experience of either Pelosi or Obama. Obama farmed out his agenda to rich dilettante, by virtue of marrying well, whose first act was to come up with a “stimulus” bill that beyond caricatured the “tax and spend” liberal. Then Obama came up with these torture memo releases with the full knowledge, despite his protestations to the contrary, that his fellow travelers would immediately use them in an anti-Bush show trial vendetta.
All of which, increasingly, will distract from issues that will really make or break Obama’s presidency–putting the country back on track to prosperity. Executive experience would inform Obama that you need to focus your agenda, sort through all the chaff and distractions to find the real issues that need to be addressed and to pick your lieutenants very carefully. Of which, Pelosi turned out to be a very poor choice. Not that I’m complaining that hard. There’s a very good chance that Obama’s agenda is going down in flames all over informed executive experience that would have told our President that there are somethings you just leave alone.