In Defense of Lying

Jonah Goldberg gets off to a bold start at the LA Times:

    What if Bush did lie, big time? What, exactly, would that mean? If you listen to Bush’s critics, serious and moonbat alike, the answer is obvious: He’d be a criminal warmonger, a failed president and — most certainly — impeachment fodder. Even Bush’s defenders agree that if Bush lied, it would be a grave sin.

But they’d be wrong, see, because FDR lied a lot, too.

    Even the most cursory reading of any presidential biography will tell you that statesmanship requires occasional duplicity. If great foreign policy could be conducted Boy Scout-style — “I will never tell a lie” — foreign policy would be easy (and Jimmy Carter would be hailed as the American Bismarck). This isn’t to say that the public’s trust should be breached lightly, but there are other competing goods involved in any complex situation. …

    If Bush succeeds — still a big if — the painful irony for Bush’s critics is that he will go down in history as a great president, even if he lied, while they will take their paranoia to their graves.

This last bit doesn’t even make sense, of course, because it ain’t paranoia if it’s true, but Goldberg’s butter-fingered grasp of logic is the least of his problems. Great move, LA Times.