Famous Writers on the Bush and his Administration

E.L. Doctorow

John le Carré

Kurt Vonnegut

Jane Smiley


Stephen King

Garrison Keillor

Harold Pinter

Bruce Springsteen

Frederick Forsyth



The Unfeeling President

By E.L. Doctorow
Author of Book of Daniel (nominated for the National Book Award), Ragtime (winner of
National Book Critics Circle Award), and World's Fair (winner of the National Book Award)

From the East Hampton Star.



Bush “cannot mourn but is a figure of such moral vacancy
as to make us mourn for ourselves.”




I fault this president for not knowing what death is. He does not suffer the death of our 21-year-olds who wanted to be what they could be. On the eve of D-Day in 1944 General Eisenhower prayed to God for the lives of the young soldiers he knew were going to die. He knew what death was. Even in a justifiable war, a war not of choice but of necessity, a war of survival, the cost was almost more than Eisenhower could bear.


But this president does not know what death is. He hasn't the mind for it. You see him joking with the press, peering under the table for the weapons of mass destruction he can't seem to find, you see him at rallies strutting up to the stage in shirt sleeves to the roar of the carefully screened crowd, smiling and waving, triumphal, a he-man.


. . . But you study him, you look into his eyes and know he dissembles an emotion which he does not feel in the depths of his being because he has no capacity for it. He does not feel a personal responsibility for the 1,000 dead young men and women who wanted to be what they could be.


They come to his desk not as youngsters with mothers and fathers or wives and children who will suffer to the end of their days a terribly torn fabric of familial relationships and the inconsolable remembrance of aborted life . . . they come to his desk as a political liability, which is why the press is not permitted to photograph the arrival of their coffins from Iraq.


How then can he mourn? To mourn is to express regret and he regrets nothing. He does not regret that his reason for going to war was, as he knew, unsubstantiated by the facts. He does not regret that his bungled plan for the war's aftermath has made of his mission-accomplished a disaster. He does not regret that, rather than controlling terrorism, his war in Iraq has licensed it. So he never mourns for the dead and crippled youngsters who have fought this war of his choice.


. . . But he will dissemble feeling. He will say in all sincerity he is relieving the wealthiest 1 percent of the population of their tax burden for the sake of the rest of us, and that he is polluting the air we breathe for the sake of our economy, and that he is decreasing the quality of air in coal mines to save the coal miners' jobs, and that he is depriving workers of their time-and-a-half benefits for overtime because this is actually a way to honor them by raising them into the professional class.


And this litany of lies he will versify with reverences for God and the flag and democracy, when just what he and his party are doing to our democracy is choking the life out of it.


. . . But the cry of protest was the appalled understanding of millions of people that America was ceding its role as the last best hope of mankind. It was their perception that the classic archetype of democracy was morphing into a rogue nation. The greatest democratic republic in history was turning its back on the future, using its extraordinary power and standing not to advance the ideal of a concordance of civilizations but to endorse the kind of tribal combat that originated with the Neanderthals, a people, now extinct, who could imagine ensuring their survival by no other means than pre-emptive war.


The president we get is the country we get. With each president the nation is conformed spiritually. He is the artificer of our malleable national soul. He proposes not only the laws but the kinds of lawlessness that govern our lives and invoke our responses. The people he appoints are cast in his image. The trouble they get into and get us into, is his characteristic trouble.


Finally, the media amplify his character into our moral weather report. He becomes the face of our sky, the conditions that prevail. How can we sustain ourselves as the United States of America given the stupid and ineffective warmaking, the constitutionally insensitive lawgiving, and the monarchal economics of this president? He cannot mourn but is a figure of such moral vacancy as to make us mourn for ourselves.



E. L. Doctorow



Doctorow, delivered a commencement address critical of President George W. Bush at Hofstra University on May 23, 2004. He drew a distinction between good stories and bad stories. One story Bush told, Doctorow said to the graduating class, "was that the country of Iraq had nuclear and biological and chemical weapons of mass destruction and was intending shortly to use them on us. . . . That was an exciting story all right. It was designed to send shivers up our spines. But it was not true."


And he said, "Another story was that the Iraqi dictator, Saddam Hussein, was in league with terrorists of al Qaeda . . . and that turned out to be not true. But anyway we went off to war on the basis of these stories."


He told the students, "Sadly they are not good stories the president tells."



 “The United States of America Has Gone Mad”

by John le Carré
author of the acclaimed neo-Greene spy novels The The Spy Who Came in from the Cold,
Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy, and his latest, dealing with the Iraq war, Our Game

“While Bush was waging his father's war at your expense, he was also ruining your country. He made your rich richer and your poor and unemployed more numerous. He robbed your war veterans of their due and reduced your children's access to education. And he deprived more Americans than ever before of healthcare.”





America has entered one of its periods of historical madness, but this is the worst I can remember: worse than McCarthyism, worse than the Bay of Pigs and in the long term potentially more disastrous than the Vietnam War.


The reaction to 9/11 is beyond anything Osama bin Laden could have hoped for in his nastiest dreams. As in McCarthy times, the freedoms that have made America the envy of the world are being systematically eroded. The combination of compliant US media and vested corporate interests is once more ensuring that a debate that should be ringing out in every town square is confined to the loftier columns of the East Coast press.


The imminent war was planned years before bin Laden struck, but it was he who made it possible. Without bin Laden, the Bush junta would still be trying to explain such tricky matters as how it came to be elected in the first place; Enron; its shameless favouring of the already-too-rich; its reckless disregard for the world’s poor, the ecology and a raft of unilaterally abrogated international treaties. They might also have to be telling us why they support Israel in its continuing disregard for UN resolutions.


. . . But the American public is not merely being misled. It is being browbeaten and kept in a state of ignorance and fear. The carefully orchestrated neurosis should carry Bush and his fellow conspirators nicely into the next election.


Those who are not with Mr Bush are against him. Worse, they are with the enemy. Which is odd, because I’m dead against Bush, but I would love to see Saddam’s downfall—just not on Bush’s terms and not by his methods. And not under the banner of such outrageous hypocrisy.


The religious cant that will send American troops into battle is perhaps the most sickening aspect of this surreal war-to-be.


. . . The most charitable interpretation of Tony Blair’s part in all this is that he believed that, by riding the tiger, he could steer it. He can’t. Instead, he gave it a phoney legitimacy, and a smooth voice. Now I fear, the same tiger has him penned into a corner, and he can’t get out.


It is utterly laughable that, at a time when Blair has talked himself against the ropes, neither of Britain’s opposition leaders can lay a glove on him. But that’s Britain’s tragedy, as it is America’s: as our Governments spin, lie and lose their credibility, the electorate simply shrugs and looks the other way. . . .




If Le Carré Could Vote 

by John le Carré 



Published on Wednesday, October 20, 2004 by the Los Angeles Times 




Maybe there's one good reason—just one—for reelecting George W. Bush, and that's to force him to live with the consequences of his appalling actions and answer for his own lies, rather than wish the job on a Democrat who would then get blamed for his predecessor's follies.

Probably no American president in history has been so universally hated abroad as Bush: for his bullying unilateralism, his dismissal of international treaties, his reckless indifference to the aspirations of other nations and cultures, his contempt for institutions of world government, and above all for misusing the cause of anti-terrorism in order to unleash an illegal war—and now anarchy—upon a country that like too many others around the world was suffering under a hideous dictatorship but had no hand in the events of 9/11, no weapons of mass destruction and no record of terrorism except as an ally of the United States in a dirty war against Iran.


. . . While Bush was waging his father's war at your expense, he was also ruining your country. He made your rich richer and your poor and unemployed more numerous. He robbed your war veterans of their due and reduced your children's access to education. And he deprived more Americans than ever before of healthcare.


Now he's busy cooking the books, burying deficits and calling in contingency funds to fight a war that his advisors promised him he could light and put out like a candle.


Meanwhile, your Patriot Act has swept aside constitutional and civil liberties that took brave Americans 200 years to secure and were once the envy of a world that now looks on in horror, not just at Guantanamo and Abu Ghraib but at what you are doing to yourselves.


But please don't feel isolated from the Europe you twice saved. Give us back the America we loved, and your friends will be waiting for you. Here in Britain, for as long as we have Tony Blair singing the same lies as George W. Bush, your nightmares will be ours.



Absolute Friends



'That war on Iraq was illegitimate... it was a criminal and immoral conspiracy. No provocation, no link with al-Qaeda, no weapons of Armageddon. Tales of complicity and Osama were self-serving bullshit. It was an old colonial war dressed up as a crusade for Western life and liberty, and it was launched by a clique of war-hungry Judaeo-Christian geopolitical fantasists who hijacked the media and exploited America's post-Nine Eleven psychopathy.'



Vonnegut's rail to the chief

Interview with Kurt Vonnegut
Author of acclaimed novels Cat’s Cradle, God Bless You Mr. Rosewater,
and Slaughterhouse V, the latter partially based on his experiences as a soldier in World War II. He was awarded a Purple Heart.

May 07, 2004






"They're adroit criminals," the 81-year-old literary lion labeled President Bush and his underlings while riding in a taxi with Lowdown's Hudson Morgan to Wednesday night's 27th anniversary party for In These Times, the paleoliberal magazine.


"They're committing war crimes - attacking a country that hasn't attacked us. Pretending it had. And torturing prisoners and filling countless graves with dead Iraqis. But adroit, sure. Al Capone was adroit."


The pop-culture icon added dismissively: "I don't care how Bush does, because I don't believe him. He believes himself, and that's what is quite terrifying."


As for Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld and his deputy Paul Wolfowitz, they're the ones "who allowed this torture to go on, kept it secret since January. These are war crimes," Vonnegut said. "I dealt with prisoners when I was a soldier. We sure didn't torture them - we were well aware of the Geneva Convention. I myself became a prisoner" of the Germans as an Army corporal in Dresden during World War II.


"It's my country, not theirs," he continued lashing the Bushies. "And they've trashed the reputation of Americans. ... It's possible to destroy a great civilization. Bush and those people have no love for it at all."




Kurt Vonnegut Vs. the !*!@

from alternet


By Joel Bleifuss, In These Times. Posted February 10, 2003.




Q: Based on what you’ve read and seen in the media, what is not being said in the mainstream press about President Bush’s policies and the impending war in Iraq?


That they are nonsense.


Q: My feeling from talking to readers and friends is that many people are beginning to despair. Do you think that we’ve lost reason to hope?


I myself feel that our country, for whose Constitution I fought in a just war, might as well have been invaded by Martians and body snatchers. Sometimes I wish it had been. What has happened, though, is that it has been taken over by means of the sleaziest, low-comedy, Keystone Cops-style coup d’etat imaginable. And those now in charge of the federal government are upper-crust C-students who know no history or geography, plus not-so-closeted white supremacists, aka “Christians,” and plus, most frighteningly, psychopathic personalities, or “PPs.”


To say somebody is a PP is to make a perfectly respectable medical diagnosis, like saying he or she has appendicitis or athlete’s foot. The classic medical text on PPs is "The Mask of Sanity " by Dr. Hervey Cleckley. Read it! PPs are presentable, they know full well the suffering their actions may cause others, but they do not care. They cannot care because they are nuts. They have a screw loose!


And what syndrome better describes so many executives at Enron and WorldCom and on and on, who have enriched themselves while ruining their employees and investors and country, and who still feel as pure as the driven snow, no matter what anybody may say to or about them? And so many of these heartless PPs now hold big jobs in our federal government, as though they were leaders instead of sick.


What has allowed so many PPs to rise so high in corporations, and now in government, is that they are so decisive. Unlike normal people, they are never filled with doubts, for the simple reason that they cannot care what happens next. Simply can’t. Do this! Do that! Mobilize the reserves! Privatize the public schools! Attack Iraq! Cut health care! Tap everybody’s telephone! Cut taxes on the rich! Build a trillion-dollar missile shield! Fuck habeas corpus and the Sierra Club and In These Times, and kiss my ass!



“Cold Turkey”

May 10, 2004




"By saying that our leaders are power-drunk chimpanzees, am I in danger of wrecking the morale of our soldiers fighting and dying in the Middle East?" he wrote. "Their morale, like so many bodies, is already shot to pieces. They are being treated, as I never was, like toys a rich kid got for Christmas."



I Love You, Madame Librarian

by Kurt Vonnegut



from In These Times


August 6, 2004




. . . the America I loved still exists, if not in the White House or the Supreme Court or the Senate or the House of Representatives or the media. The America I love still exists at the front desks of our public libraries.


And still on the subject of books: Our daily sources of news, papers and TV, are now so craven, so unvigilant on behalf of the American people, so uninformative, that only in books can we find out what is really going on. I will cite an example: House of Bush, House of Saud by Craig Unger, published near the start of this humiliating, shameful blood-soaked year.


In case you haven’t noticed, and as a result of a shamelessly rigged election in Florida, in which thousands of African Americans were arbitrarily disenfranchised, we now present ourselves to the rest of the world as proud, grinning, jut-jawed, pitiless war lovers, with appallingly powerful weaponry and unopposed.


In case you haven’t noticed, we are now almost as feared and hated all over the world as the Nazis were.


With good reason.


In case you haven’t noticed, our unelected leaders have dehumanized millions and millions of human beings simply because of their religion and race. We wound and kill ’em and torture ’em and imprison ’em all we want.


Piece of cake.


. . . What can be said to our young people, now that psychopathic personalities, which is to say persons without consciences, without a sense of pity or shame, have taken all the money in the treasuries of our government and corporations and made it all their own?




The Republicans: Winners or Perpetrators?

by Jane Smiley
Winner of the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Critics Circle Award
for A Thousand Acres ; received nominations for the National Book Critics Circle Award
for Moo and Ages of Grief


“It actually doesn't matter what bad legal advice Bush has received from his house lawyers, poodles all, namely Gonzalez, Ashcroft, Miers, and Yoo. Just because they are in a closed power loop, where they tell the boss what he wants to hear, that doesn't mean they are actually correct in their interpretation. If fellow Republicans allow their republic-destroying opinions to go forward as the standard, though, then they are colluding in an egregious crime committed against the nation.”






I was thinking that the spy scandal was being expertly taken care of without my input, what with Martin Garbus, Katrina Vanden Heuvel, and Barron's magazine hot on the "president's" tail. My plan was to continue reading Les Rougons-Macquart in peace, but then I read RJ Eskow's blog about the Democrats, and while I thought it was insightful and well-argued, there was one thing I disagree with, and that is that the point of the whole spy scandal, now that Bush has been caught and has admitted breaking the law, is not whether the Democrats can find a way to be electable, it is whether the Republican Party is a criminal enterprise, and whether average Republicans, both in and out of the government, are going to countenance and support unnecessary and shamelessly unlawful behavior.


Let's not shift the focus to Losers and Victims, but rather, keep it firmly on Winners and Perpetrators.


Let's talk about the "winner" aspect first. I clearly remember back in 2000, when Bush cheated to

"win" the Presidential election with the help of Justices Scalia and Thomas, who dishonored themselves in perpetuity by voting to stop the Florida recount, the Republicans gloated and gloried in the "win". They acted like a nasty Little League team, who wins on a technicality and then goes on to rub the faces of the other team in the dirt, as if winning at the cost of the integrity of the game were actually a thing worth celebrating. . . .


. . . It actually doesn't matter what bad legal advice Bush has received from his house lawyers, poodles all, namely Gonzalez, Ashcroft, Miers, and Yoo. Just because they are in a closed power loop, where they tell the boss what he wants to hear, that doesn't mean they are actually correct in their interpretation. If fellow Republicans allow their republic-destroying opinions to go forward as the standard, though, then they are colluding in an egregious crime committed against the nation. . . . Crimes lead to larger crimes when criminals get away with them. Bush clearly shows no signs of even beginning understand why he might not have the right to be all powerful. There's that Constitution thing again ("God-damned piece of paper"--George W. Bush, December 2005). A crime is being committed. If, because of "winning" or "loyalty", many more or less innocent bystanders do nothing prevent its continuation and do nothing to punish the perpetrator, then they are implicated. It's as black and white as that.



Stephen King

Author of The Stand, The Shining, Bag of Bones, The Shawshank Redemption

Commencement Address

University of Maine

May 7, 2005


at http://www.stephenking.com/com_address/




Give away a dime for every dollar you make. Why not? If you don't give it, the government's just going to take it. You think you can't afford it, one lousy thin dime out of every dollar? If you think you can't, just look at the taxes you pay on every gallon of gas you buy. If you think you can't, look at all the sick, hungry, unhappy, uneducated people standing outside the fence America has constructed around herself, people who only want a little something for themselves and their families. For their children. Very few of them are suicide bombers. Very few of them are Mr. Bush's "enemies of freedom," whether he believes that or not. They might become enemies of freedom, but right now all they want is a little something to get by on. A little chance at the kind of joy most of us are feeling today. A dime out of every dollar. And here's a secret I learned six summers ago, lying in a ditch beside the road, covered in my own blood and thinking I was going to die: you go out broke. Everything's on loan, anyway. You're not an owner, you're only a steward. So pass some of it on. You may not have much now, but you're going to have a lot. And when you do, remember the ones that don't have anything. A dime out of every dollar. If everyone did it, maybe we could make Mr. Bush let go of the weapons he loves so well and give some of the money he spends on them back to the farmers, the unwed mothers, and the working poor.



Garrison Keillor

Author of Lake Wobegon Days, WLT: A Radio Romance, and Homegrown Democrat
host of the popular radio program, A Prairie Home Companion


An interview from truthout, concerning Keillor’s book, Homegrown Democrat: A Few Plain Thoughts From the Heart of America (2004)






The latest to add his wry and humorous voice to the anti-Bush chorus is Garrison Keillor, bard of America's sensible flatland, who has just published "Homegrown Democrat: A Few Plain Thoughts From the Heart of America," an entertaining encomium to the progressive values he holds dear. In it Keillor, the host of public radio's "Prairie Home Companion," writes warmly of the homespun Scandinavian wisdom that informed his childhood -- "Don't Think You're Special Because You're Not," which is just the local way, he notes, of reminding people to take care of their neighbors. It's a basic human value, Keillor observes, that the party of George W. Bush, Dick Cheney, John Ashcroft and Tom DeLay gleefully abandoned years ago. "They are a party," writes Keillor, "that is all about perceptions, the Christian party that conceals enormous glittering malice and is led by brilliant bandits who are dividing and conquering the sweet land I grew up in. I don't accept this."


Q. You write that "this is the year for passion." But that's not a word widely associated with John Kerry. This week, for instance, Kerry repudiated MoveOn.org's passionate TV ad against George Bush's cushy and spotty military service. And it took him weeks to fire back at his Republican swift boat critics. Do Democratic presidential candidates tend to be too reasonable and too reluctant to get down in the muck of electoral politics like the win-at-any-cost Republicans?


            You're thinking about Gov. Dukakis [in 1988] and maybe President Carter in 1980. John Kerry has plenty of passion, but there's no need to spend it on trivia like Mr. Bush's military record, which is only important to Michael Moore and the carpet chewers. (And someday to the historians.) No need to expend passion on the Republicans' attempt to trash Mr. Kerry's military record either -- that speaks for itself. What is worth being passionate about is the tide of inequity in America, the ritual bleeding of the middle class, our national insecurity, and the administration's bullheaded ignorance in foreign policy that has gotten us -- not irredeemably, I hope -- into a religious war against Islam that could easily occupy us for the next 20 years and change our lives in a hundred ways, including the reintroduction of the military draft.


            What a disaster this shallow and deceitful president has been! But Mr. Kerry is wise enough to know that reasonableness and high principle must anchor his campaign. Anger doesn't play so well as a theme in presidential politics. And much depends on fate. He is jousting, showing the colors, rallying the faithful, and biding his time.


Q.   You write eloquently about the importance of public institutions -- like schools, libraries and transportation -- and how in the age of Republican privatization they have become an endangered species. Why is it so essential for Americans to fight to preserve them?


            Without them, we begin to slide backwards down the slippery slope toward a country of walled compounds like in the Middle Ages, in which the nobles and gentry live in fear of bloodthirsty peasants with their big cudgels and roving brigands and the hated infidels. I'd rather live in St. Paul.


  You suggest that all social progress in the past century -- civil rights, women's rights, clean air -- is the work of Democrats. Can you think of one important contribution made by the Republicans?


            Many. Richard Nixon was a good deal responsible for the Environmental Protection Agency and the push to clean up the Great Lakes. The conservation movement that paved the way, so to speak, for the whole Green agenda was very much a Republican thing. The Americans With Disabilities Act, which gave us Handi-vans and wheelchair-accessible facilities and those little ramps carved into the curbs, was brought about by Republicans (and Democrats). Republicans have been good critics of government, and good satirists at times. Republican libertarianism is a useful antidote to our Democratic/neurotic tendency to want to put up a warning sign on uneven terrain and make cowboys do their whooping in designated whooping areas. Republicans used to contribute a lot, back before they let the fanatics and teeth grinders take over and turn their party into the Leave Me Alone party, intent on proving that government is inherently inept, and they've done such damage to America in the past decade that will take a century of saints to fix.


Q.  You write that Richard Nixon was "the last Republican leader to feel a Christian obligation toward the poor." What in God's name happened to the Grand Old Party?


            At the moment, they are drenched in hubris and self-regard, incapable of telling their own history. It takes defeat and regret to give a person a little perspective and self-knowledge, and once the Republicans have gained that, one of them will tell us what happened to the GOP. Like this old Nebraska Republican who, now that he's retiring from Congress, comes out with a closely reasoned attack on the administration's Middle East policy. George W. Bush will retire to his Crawford plantation in January and begin work on his Georgic lament, in which he meditates on the dangers of success. Political skill in the absence of statesmanship is the first act of a tragedy.



Harold Pinter

Playwright, author of The Room, The Homecoming, Betrayal.
Awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature in 2005.

Noble Prize Lecture “Art, Truth & Politics,” December 7, 2005.






Political language, as used by politicians, does not venture into any of this territory since the majority of politicians, on the evidence available to us, are interested not in truth but in power and in the maintenance of that power. To maintain that power it is essential that people remain in ignorance, that they live in ignorance of the truth, even the truth of their own lives. What surrounds us therefore is a vast tapestry of lies, upon which we feed.


As every single person here knows, the justification for the invasion of Iraq was that Saddam Hussein possessed a highly dangerous body of weapons of mass destruction, some of which could be fired in 45 minutes, bringing about appalling devastation. We were assured that was true. It was not true. We were told that Iraq had a relationship with Al Quaeda and shared responsibility for the atrocity in New York of September 11th 2001. We were assured that this was true. It was not true. We were told that Iraq threatened the security of the world. We were assured it was true. It was not true.


The truth is something entirely different. The truth is to do with how the United States understands its role in the world and how it chooses to embody it.


. . .


We have brought torture, cluster bombs, depleted uranium, innumerable acts of random murder, misery, degradation and death to the Iraqi people and call it 'bringing freedom and democracy to the Middle East'.


How many people do you have to kill before you qualify to be described as a mass murderer and a war criminal? One hundred thousand? More than enough, I would have thought. Therefore it is just that Bush and Blair be arraigned before the International Criminal Court of Justice. But Bush has been clever. He has not ratified the International Criminal Court of Justice. Therefore if any American soldier or for that matter politician finds himself in the dock Bush has warned that he will send in the marines. But Tony Blair has ratified the Court and is therefore available for prosecution. We can let the Court have his address if they're interested. It is Number 10, Downing Street, London.


Death in this context is irrelevant. Both Bush and Blair place death well away on the back burner. At least 100,000 Iraqis were killed by American bombs and missiles before the Iraq insurgency began. These people are of no moment. Their deaths don't exist. They are blank. They are not even recorded as being dead. 'We don't do body counts,' said the American general Tommy Franks.


from “While we have your attention, Mr President...”, an article that ran in The Guardian, Tuesday November 18, 2003




“It's not often that we get the chance to speak directly to the most powerful man in the world. So as George Bush lands in Britain for his first state visit, we asked 60 Brits and Americans to make the most of it”



Dear President Bush,


I'm sure you'll be having a nice little tea party with your fellow war criminal, Tony Blair. Please wash the cucumber sandwiches down with a glass of blood, with my compliments.

Harold Pinter




Bruce Springsteen

“Chords for Change,” an op-ed, the New York Times, August 5, 2004








Personally, for the last 25 years I have always stayed one step away from partisan politics. Instead, I have been partisan about a set of ideals: economic justice, civil rights, a humane foreign policy, freedom and a decent life for all of our citizens. This year, however, for many of us the stakes have risen too high to sit this election out.


Through my work, I've always tried to ask hard questions. Why is it that the wealthiest nation in the world finds it so hard to keep its promise and faith with its weakest citizens? Why do we continue to find it so difficult to see beyond the veil of race? How do we conduct ourselves during difficult times without killing the things we hold dear? Why does the fulfillment of our promise as a people always seem to be just within grasp yet forever out of reach?


I don't think John Kerry and John Edwards have all the answers. I do believe they are sincerely interested in asking the right questions and working their way toward honest solutions. They understand that we need an administration that places a priority on fairness, curiosity, openness, humility, concern for all America's citizens, courage and faith. . . .


Like many others, in the aftermath of 9/11, I felt the country's unity. I don't remember anything quite like it. I supported the decision to enter Afghanistan and I hoped that the seriousness of the times would bring forth strength, humility and wisdom in our leaders. Instead, we dived headlong into an unnecessary war in Iraq, offering up the lives of our young men and women under circumstances that are now discredited. We ran record deficits, while simultaneously cutting and squeezing services like afterschool programs. We granted tax cuts to the richest 1 percent (corporate bigwigs, well-to-do guitar players), increasing the division of wealth that threatens to destroy our social contract with one another and render mute the promise of "one nation indivisible."



Frederick Forsyth

Author of The Day of the Jackal, The Odessa File and The Dogs of War


from “While we have your attention, Mr President...”, an article that ran in The Guardian, Tuesday November 18, 2003




“It's not often that we get the chance to speak directly to the most powerful man in the world. So as George Bush lands in Britain for his first state visit, we asked 60 Brits and Americans to make the most of it”


Dear Mr President,


Today you arrive in my country for the first state visit by an American president for many decades, and I bid you welcome.


You will find yourself assailed on every hand by some pretty pretentious characters collectively known as the British left. They traditionally believe they have a monopoly on morality and that your recent actions preclude you from the club. You opposed and destroyed the world's most blood-encrusted dictator. This is quite unforgivable.


I beg you to take no notice. The British left intermittently erupts like a pustule upon the buttock of a rather good country. Seventy years ago it opposed mobilisation against Adolf Hitler and worshipped the other genocide, Josef Stalin.


It has marched for Mao, Ho Chi Minh, Khrushchev, Brezhnev and Andropov. It has slobbered over Ceausescu and Mugabe. It has demonstrated against everything and everyone American for a century. Broadly speaking, it hates your country first, mine second.


Eleven years ago something dreadful happened. Maggie was ousted, Ronald retired, the Berlin wall fell and Gorby abolished communism. All the left's idols fell and its demons retired. For a decade there was nothing really to hate. But thank the Lord for his limitless mercy. Now they can applaud Saddam, Bin Laden, Kim Jong-Il... and hate a God-fearing Texan. So hallelujah and have a good time.

Frederick Forsyth