There’s always an excuse for a politician telling lies, wallowing in platitudes, regurgitating the conventional wisdom, etc. “For Hagel to get the job, he has to act this way. I think he’s caught between the need to toe the line/suck up (as instructed by his future boss) to get in, and his desire and tendency to offer up blunt observations.” How many times have I heard that kind of explanation for a politician behaving in a way that is really inexcusable? (Lying is, or should be, inexcusable for a so-called public servant.)
How about this an an explanation — an explanation that’s really almost too obvious to miss?
He “acts this way” because he’s a gutless coward, a shell of a man with no integrity?
When other people “act this way,” I don’t see everyone engaging in intellectual contortions to find ways to excuse it. So why excuse it when it’s a so-called “public servant” doing it? Why should these people be held to such a shockingly low standard, a standard that would be unacceptable in most areas of professional and personal life?
The fact is, they “act this way” to get the job, then they continue to “act this way” to hold onto the job and that’s why nothing ever changes.
Why is “getting the job” more important than telling the truth, especially when a guy like Hagel has a captive audience of millions who are extraordinarily hungry for just a grain of truth, maybe, improbably, finally, once in a blue moon?