The Rittenhouse Review

A Philadelphia Journal of Politics, Finance, Ethics, and Culture

Tuesday, May 31, 2005  

Business as Usual in the Age of Unseriousness

Strange the relative silence surrounding the Bush administration’s cover-up of the details, the truth even, of the death of Army ranger Pat Tillman, all the more surprising given the outrage of Tillman’s parents, Patrick and Mary Tillman, reported last week in the Washington Post (see “Tillman’s Parents are Critical of Army,” by Josh White, May 23).

A handful of pundits are breaking the eerie hush, including Miami Herald columnist Leonard Pitts Jr., who took to Friday’s paper with “Bush Team Blurs Fact and Fiction” (published in today’s Philadelphia Inquirer under the catchier headline, “Next on the Hit List: Tillman Family?”):

[I]t made for a good story, didn’t it? And in the current scheme of things, one never lets facts get in the way of a good story. More to the point, one never questions the great and powerful Bush.

Still, there’s a difference between the Tillman tall tale and many of the others we’ve been told over the years. In this one, somebody died. And that ought to mean something. Something more than a recruiting opportunity, I mean.

So what will be said of Patrick and Mary Tillman after their outburst this week? Will they be called “unpatriotic,” too? Or will that slur, finally and at long last, shame even the most ardent defenders of the misinformation age?

Surely, even they must realize that you shouldn’t spin death. Indeed, you shouldn’t even try.

And Robert Scheer asks in today’s Los Angeles Times (“A Cover-Up as Shameful as Tillman’s Death”): “[W]hy has nobody high in the Army chain of command . . . been held accountable for this cover-up?”

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