There is something pathetic about Alberto Gonzales in his appearances before Senate committees. He rambles, he is careful about each word spoken and works hard to ensure that not a single word expressed could be construed as constituting anything illegal. He reminds me of a boy caught stealing whose eyes glance carefully at faces of adults questioning him in order to decipher if any of his words could be used against him at some future time. I often get the feeling he is trapped and confused. I suspect he often wonders how he ever got into the current dilemmas of his life.
In a sense, Gonzales is a metaphor for the entire Bush administration. They don’t necessarily commit crimes, but they hover just at the edge of doing something illegal. Some people act immorally without realizing the extent of their failure to adhere to higher ethical standards, but Gonzales and the crew know exactly what they are doing each step along the path of dissembling. I suspect, when alone, they gleefully exchange stories about how they tricked a senator or some prying newspaperman. For them, success is not getting caught rather than avoiding committing illegal or immoral acts.
I have difficulty getting angry at Gonzales. I sometimes wish I could take him aside for a quiet talk and let him know it is OK to admit mistakes and that as a good Christian one must act in accordance to higher laws than those of George Bush. Alberto Gonzales belonged in a small law firm where no one ever assigned him a complex case and simply allowed him to while away the years achieving small successes. I fear he will wind up the scapegoat, and that role eventually will result in him confronting being abandoned by his godfather, George Bush. Gonzales is headed for crucification and one can already hear his plaintive voice on the cross muttering, ‘Oh, George, why have you abandoned me?”