01 July 2005

Liars, damned liars, politicians, and businessmen


So Blair is "astonished" that people think that the Downing Street Memos say that the US had already decided to go to war against Iraq? Well, Mr Blair, perhaps it's because of, oh, this line:
Military action was now seen as inevitable.
Or this one:
It seemed clear that Bush had made up his mind to take military action, even if the timing was not yet decided.
The same article quotes Blair as saying, "I took the view that if these people ever got hold of nuclear, chemical or biological capability, they would probably use it." As I recall, his actual stated view was that Iraq in fact had WMDs and would use them on 45 minutes' notice.

Is it only me, or does anyone else see the connection between that kind of brazen lying to the public, and things like this:
Merck & Co. researchers privately sought to reformulate Vioxx in 2000 to reduce its cardiovascular side effects, even as the drug maker was publicly playing down a study that highlighted the pain relief medication's potential heart attack risk, an internal company document shows.
I've said it before, but it bears repeating: running a government as if it were a business is not a good idea. Government should not lower itself to what pass for standards in most businesses.