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Sat May 8, 2021, 01:19 PM

How Liz Cheney and Her Dad Paved the Way for the Big Lie

How Liz Cheney and Her Dad Paved the Way for the Big Lie
She says Donald Trump crossed a line. But the Bush-Cheney aadministration didn't?


Cheney does these days look like a courageous truth-teller, defying the cultism and alternative-fact addiction that has taken over her Grand Old Party. But, in a way, she is the victim of her own success–that is, the success of her family. In particular, the success her father had in lying to the American public.

In the 21st century, American presidents have at least twice tried to shape the world with a lie of enormous impact. Trump attempted to demolish the nation’s constitutional order and retain power with his false claim that the 2020 election was rigged and Joe Biden did not truly receive more votes. As Cheney points out, this lie delegitimizes the essence of the American political system. And two decades ago, another Big Lie was concocted and pushed by a Republican president that resulted in profound (and lethal) consequences. Her dad was its main architect..


One lesson of the Iraq war is that a big lie can work. Liz Cheney, who was deputy assistant secretary of state for Near Eastern Affairs during this stretch, supported the war—and has defended it ever since. (She co-wrote a 2015 book with her dad on US foreign policy.) She even insisted that one of the main lies of the Bush-Cheney fraudulent case for war—that there had been a significant connection between al-Qaeda and Iraq—was true. (She also hawkishly defended a sordid chapter of that sordid war: torture, saying it was “libelous” to call waterboarding “torture.”)

There was another odious lie that Liz Cheney also defended—or played footsie with: the racist conspiracy theory that President Barack Obama was born in Kenya. Asked about birtherism in 2009, she replied, “I think the Democrats have got more crazies than the Republicans do. But setting that aside, one of the reasons you see people so concerned about this, I think this issue is, people are uncomfortable with having for the first time ever, I think, a president who seems so reluctant to defend the nation overseas.” Without endorsing the conspiratorial and disproven details of this nutty notion, Cheney was providing moral support to its adherents. (Trump’s championship of this lie helped turn him into a right-wing hero and set up the foundation for his 2016 presidential bid.)


Still, Liz Cheney deserves hardly a cheer, for it ought to be remembered that Trump is pushing his Big Lie in the wake of other big lies—and that Cheney, her father, and so many other Republicans not so long ago did much to blaze the path for the dangerous political villainy she now decries

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Reply How Liz Cheney and Her Dad Paved the Way for the Big Lie (Original post)
dajoki May 8 OP
EarlG May 8 #1

Response to dajoki (Original post)

Sat May 8, 2021, 01:29 PM

1. There's no doubt that Liz Cheney is a POS

And standing up in this moment doesn't excuse her for past wrongs.

But... we need more Republicans to take her position on the Big Lie. On this single issue alone, she's telling the truth, and anything that puts the brakes on the Republican Party's decscent into anti-American, anti-democratic authoritarianism is fine by me.

Everything in this article is true. Bush/Cheney told a Big Lie about Iraq, with devastating consequences. It's also true that Cheney is -- in this moment, on this one issue -- doing the right thing. Both things can be true.

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