The Placing of Blame

The Placing of Blame
The placing of blame is a difficult matter.
It isn’t just one of your government games.
You may at first think I’m a nabob of natter
When I tell you a wrong must have three different blames.
First of all, there’s the blame that we sell to the papers,
Like “We need more budget,” or “Here are the facts:”
“It was one of the previous president’s capers,”
Or “It will secure us from terrorist acts.”
But I tell you a wrong must have inner defenses
In case of a breach of the Ligne Maginot,
Else how can the bureaucrats keep up pretenses,
Or the leaders tell whether to hunker or go?
Blames of this type must be tightly constructed,
Dense with uncheckable inside details,
Such as “New personnel who were not yet instructed
Bypassed the rules and deleted e-mails.”
But above and beyond there’s still one blame left over,
A blame as well hid as the Fountain of Youth,
A blame that no human research can discover,
Or at least we hope not, because it’s the truth.
June 2005