George Bush, the flux capacitor, and the plan to save the Universe

I may have been too hasty in my post about White House Press Secretary Tony Snow's comment last Friday.

Basically, the argument made by George Bush and his administration is that all the evidence that Iraq was never connected to al Qaeda, and wasn't even a threat to the United States, is worthless. In fact, we shouldn't even be talking about it, because all this evidence pertains to something that already happened in the past. Talking about the past cannot effect the present, therefore we're wasting time and putting America in danger now.

I thought this was an obvious, loathsome lapse in logic designed to trick Americans away from wanting to examine the facts and trying to discover the truth. But now I see that I was wrong. President Bush is defending our nation against universe-damaging time paradoxes.

The great film Back to the Future will serve as an illustration. The reason we invaded Iraq in 2003 was that Saddam Hussein was a threat. Similarly, the reason Marty McFly (played by Michael J. Fox) was born was that his parents fell in love in 1955. Discovering now, in 2006, that Saddam was not a threat in 2003 would be like Marty going back in time and breaking up his own parents!

So, for example, if Bush were to listen to all the new reports and say to the American people, “It is now clear that I was wrong, and Saddam Hussein was not a real threat to the United States,� it would cause Americans to fade out of existence like that photo Marty had of his brother and sister. If Bush were to go on national TV and say, “I have made a terrible, hideous mistake, and all the evidence shows that invading Iraq has distracted from pursuing real terrorists,� our hands might start to disappear, making it difficult to play Johnny B. Goode.

Those of you who have seen the sequels know that the consequences do not stop there. If Secretary of Defense Rumsfeld were to say, “invading Iraq turned out to be a gross failure of judgment. People with a history of monumental blunders should not be in charge of running a war, so I am stepping down,� we might wake up tomorrow morning to find our moms have breast implants and Biff Tannen is the richest man in America. If Dick Cheney were to say, “we lead thousands of soldiers to their deaths based on shaky evidence and wishful thinking,� you and I might find ourselves stuck in the old west of 1885.

Actually, that last one might be pretty cool, since we could be like cowboys, but it's not guaranteed and it's a risk we cannot take.

Let me also say that many Democrats in Congress like Senator Hillary Clinton must understand the dangers as well, because they have tiptoed around the issue merely criticizing how the war has been run, not it's now-obviously-unfounded rationale. They voted to give Bush authority to invade, so they have to agree with him from now on, no matter what he does, or it might cause a time paradox.

George W. Bush, unlike Marty McFly, does not have a DeLorean with a flux capacitor, but he is armed with a talent for not listening to dissenting viewpoints. If he can keep his vision clear, we just might make it back home to 1985 again.

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