I scanned the headlines the other day, perhaps a little too fast, to discover that a vicious, though prominent, person had methodically participated in the torture and destruction of many once gentle souls after they were captured, confined and forced to fight, sometimes to the death. That maniacal, unrepentant pile of pulchritude to which I refer is none other than Alberto Gonzales, to which the NFL's Michael Vick seems as innocent as a circus clown sputtering sawdust.




Once a mere sycophant to the "Decider Guy," Gonzales, like many of those sucked from that once great state of Texas into the nation's capitol by a clever brew cooked up by Rove, Cheney, Rumsfeld and handful of other budding NeoCons, had developed a suspiciously virulent form of selective amnesia, making it increasingly difficult for him to remember anything of import while testifying before the Senate Judiciary Committee.




For those of you who get up early, shine your shoes and whistle while your coffee brews, America was invaded over six years ago by a band of rabid Texan oil tycoons bent on securing a legacy of oil for our petroleum multinationals. Their philosophy was codified by the Project for a New American Century. "The Project for the New American Century is a non-profit educational organization dedicated to a few fundamental propositions: that American leadership is good both for America and for the world; and that such leadership requires military strength, diplomatic energy and commitment to moral principle" (). Other members of this organization were: Jeb Bush, Paul Wolfowitz, Donald Rumsfeld, Dan Quale, "Scooter" Libby and the main man himself, the real president of the United States, Dick Cheney. William Kristol, the editor of the Weekly Standard and chief drummer for attacking Iran, serves as PNAC's chairman.




This "moral principle" went south within the walls of Abu Ghraib and dozens of other less photographed detention centers. Our military was aghast that the images were leaked to the press and supposedly a slew of other incriminating videos and photos have been held back, so as to not aid the enemy. "Ol' Al" was actually at the center of all this by penning a document that redefined torture as a swell way to entertain both the innocent and guilty.




Gonzales caught the eye of Bush while he was working at Vinson and Elkins, a law firm in Houston that signed off on Enron's accounting practices. Enron was the law firm's largest client. The CEO of Enron, Ken Lay, was Bush's first guest to the Oval Office. "Kenny Boy" spent a night at the White House, though after the fall of Enron Bush suffered a convenient senior moment and had a difficult time remembering "Ken who?"




Tumbling in time back to Bush's governorship of Texas, we see that during Bush's six years as governor 150 men and two women were executed in Texas""a record unmatched by any other governor in modern American history. Every time a person was sentenced to death, Bush received from his legal counsel a document summarizing the facts of the case, usually on the morning of the day scheduled for the execution, and was then briefed on those facts by his counsel; based on this information Bush allowed the execution to proceed in all cases but one. The first fifty-seven of these summaries were prepared by Gonzales, a Harvard-educated lawyer who went on to become the Texas secretary of state and a justice on the Texas Supreme Court. He became the White House counsel, then the Attorney General, all this based on his friendship with the President.




So we have a carte blanch on Texas executions, torture in Iraq and Afghanistan, many hundreds of thousands of civilian dead with little Al looking over the Bush's shoulder as well as our thousands of dead and many tens of thousands wounded.




The best thing that can be said about Gonzales is that he apparently had nothing to do with Bush's fascination with blowing up live frogs with firecrackers which, I predict, will result in a karmic pollywog of pondish proportions.




Lance was last seen working on his next book seated under the walnut tree while wearing a hard hat. If you are feeling a little nuts and want to hound him, drop a line to lance@journalist.com.