I was all set to call this post something stupid, like “Raw and Uncensured” or some nonsense like that, but I think we all know that we’re past that bullshit.
I’m glad Russ Feingold is at least making some kind of noise about holding Bush and Cheney accountable for their breathtaking catalogue of malfeasance, but I don’t think anyone here thinks that censure goes nearly far enough. Censure wasn’t even considered sufficiently potent discipline for Bill Clinton – you may remember that MoveOn.org started as a drive to censure (rather than impeach) Clinton and "move on." Censure is the kind of nice, bi-partisan nod towards oversight that everyone in Washington can get behind - and move on. But let’s face it: the only real course of action left is impeachment, and not for the Bush administration’s past crimes, but rather to prevent their future crimes.
Until recently, I didn’t take speculation about Bush taking a swipe at Iran too seriously. We don't have the troops, we don't have the money, there's no public support for it, it would be suicidal and stupid and insane, et cetera, et cetera, et cetera. People smarter and more level headed than me are starting to become legitimately concerned, though, so now I am too. This is why we can’t waste any time with censure and must proceed to impeachment: censure will not sufficiently gum up the works to prevent any future bloodbaths the Bush administration may want to foist on us. Impeachment might.
There’s no shortage of reasons to impeach and the political will appears to be coalescing. There may be some concern among our elected leaders that impeachment proceedings might cause the mechanisms of government to grind to a halt – but hell, that’s exactly what I’m counting on. The Republican dominated Congress did nothing to slow Bush’s rush into the Iraq War, and while the Democrats now control both houses their majority in the Senate is not large enough to stop a march towards military conflict with Iran dead in its tracks. The only sensible alternative – if Congressional Democrats are serious about steering America off the disastrous course we're currently navigating - is impeachment. And if we’re serious about peace then we must be impelled to push the Democratic leadership to impeach Bush and Cheney.
It's easy and tempting to imagine impeachment will be a first step towards righting the wrongs we have committed in Iraq, as the first step towards sending Bush and Cheney to The Hague. But really, there’s no righting the wrongs we have done to Iraq and no one from this administration is ever going to stand trial for war crimes. We can, however, still take action to preserve the future. NTodd’s Nancygram campaign is a great start. We’re all clever people, I’m sure we can come up with more ideas. Whatever you’re going to do, now is the time to do it.