When It is Okay and Not Okay to Lie to Congress

Houston Astros shortstop Miguel Tejada was charged Tuesday with lying to the US Congress about taking a performance-enhancing substance. Tajeda is expected to plead guilty to lying to a Congressional investigation about taking steroids and about knowledge of other players taking steroids.

Tajeda’s alleged lies about the steroid usage did not result in one person, and certainly not 1.3+ million people, being killed.

Tajeda’s alleged lie was not a pretext to enable launching an assault on human beings. Moreover, his alleged steroid usage did not result in widespread destruction of another country’s economic infrastructure, hospitals, centers of worship, schools, the ransacking of a country’s historical artifacts, the littering of a country with depleted uranium. It did not result in war crimes being committed with glaring impunity. It did not result in the erasure of habeas corpus, the humiliation and torture of captives, and setting up of gulags around the world. Tajeda did not occupy another person’s land.

Apparently, nowadays when the president and vice-president and their coterie lie to Congress, then everything is kosher.

Unsportsmanlike and deceitful though it is, there is something perverse in considering a lie about seeking an unfair advantage over opponents in a game that causes no direct harm to anyone else a greater crime than the willful destruction of a nation state and its people. That is the logical conclusion flowing from the action against Tajeda and the inaction against George W. Bush and his neocon and Zionist collaborators.

The lies of George W. Bush, a former substance abuser himself, have been exposed. The Downing Street Memos provide sterling evidence that the intelligence and facts were fixed around the administration’s desire to invade Iraq. The alleged existence of weapons-of-mass destruction was just a pretext. Bush’s lies resulted in the excess mortality of over 1.3 million Iraqis, yet he managed to serve out two terms without being brought up for impeachment.

Congress’s double standards in the seeking of justice are manifest. The outstanding crimes of George Bush and his administration stand as a test of Congress and now for president Barack Obama.

What are Obama’s principles? Is justice worth seeking? Does justice apply to everyone?

For justice applied unequally is a denial of justice.

Kim Petersen is a former co-editor of the Dissident Voice newsletter. He can be reached at: kimohp@gmail.com. Twitter: @kimpetersen. Read other articles by Kim.

4 comments on this article so far ...

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  1. bozh said on February 11th, 2009 at 10:43am #

    clero-political gang had always been for morality/justice on interpersonal level. however, over millennia, not much concern had been shown for most virtues on interclass level.
    or to be more exact and clear, one cld say there always had been one morality for slaves, serfs, tillers of land, hunters; i.e., for the classless layer of society and entirely diff’nt one for classes.

    when tajeda lies, he broke the moral law. when, as petersen says, several classes {clergy, politicians, media people, plutos, et al} murder mns it is benevolence. thnx

  2. Angie Tibbs said on February 11th, 2009 at 4:51pm #

    Excellent article, Kim.

    The concerns of Congress have nothing to do with the blatant and oft-repeated lies by its outgoing President, lies that, as you point out, caused so much death and destruction to a nation and its people, which, five years later, still continues.

    But let an athlete deny (gasp) substance abuse, and he’s news. He’s an undesirable. He must be punished. Think about it for a moment!

    There is something horribly wrong with this picture. Lying about performance ehnacing drugs warrants a congressional hearing and appropriate action; war crimes of a monumental nature merit — what?

    Does Obama care to answer this question?

  3. Jeff said on February 12th, 2009 at 9:09am #

    Is this not what we serfs have asked for? Please Mr.. Government, controlled by money elite, please save us from ourselves. No problem my poor little serf, whose wretched soul I own and will do whatever we please with. Care not if you wither and die. Power is the name of the game, and you cannot play because we grant you no privileges. You gave up your rights long ago. You serfs will never laugh, let alone laugh last.

  4. Michael Hureaux said on February 12th, 2009 at 11:59am #

    The Situationists used to say that a culture in which Mick Jagger’s underwear has the same cultural relevance as Mao Tse-Tung’s cap is a culture bound for barbarity as its population lacks the ability to seperate bread and circuses from political discourse. The ongoing harassment of athletes whose crimes are largely pretense and self-immolation is about what we should expect from a political culture that is so feeble it couldn’t rid itself of the most corrupt faction to hold national power since the days of Ulysses Grant. As for the loyal opposition, so dazed are the “democrats” and their supporters by their
    eight years in exile that a minimum of a minimum program is great enlightenment and liberation, so far as they are concerned. If anyone still entertains the idea that the professional classes can manage the rigor or forward thrust of a political opposition, they’re living in la la
    land, Obama and all.

    The Oba Man’s Lincoln Bday comments are rich with the sort of mediocrity some of us have come to expect from him. Oba extolls Lincoln’s tendency to “forgiveness”, rather then recognizing the man’s worth as an outspoken critic of the war of aggression on Mexico in the 1840s, a position which cost him his stature in the Illinois Whig heirarchy. That’s a risk Obama is himself incapable of taking, focused as he is on his own political cult.

    Nowhere is Mr. Obama’s basic nastiness so clear as in the way he opened the door to the media spectacle around that kid in Florida who was almost jumping out of his skin during the q and a session. This episode is bound to become the subject of late night comedy, and who knows, maybe young Emilio will end up laughing all the way to the bank behind it, and maybe that’s good, because given his communication skills, he’s going to need all the breaks he can get. But all I saw was another example of how this culture blows people up, just to toss them in the garbage when the laughs are over with. Obama can accomplish nothing beyond expansion of the hype, because he leads a political culture so lost and mean-spirited it can barely wipe its own nose.