‘They Have Learned Nothing and Forgotten Nothing’

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When I read that three clueless GOP senators were slated to reintroduce legislation permanently restoring the USA PATRIOT Act, I was reminded of this famous quip by Charles Talleyrand, the notable (and agile) diplomat who survived the gyrations of French political life from the Ancien Régime of Louis XVI, the French Revolution, Napoleon I, through the Restoration of the Bourbon monarchs. Of the Bourbons Talleyrand is reputed to have remarked: “They have learned nothing and forgotten nothing.” And neither have these Republican enablers of domestic tyranny. We won’t be forgetting this also.

1:19 pm on February 5, 2011