Confidence schemes only work if the victims are properly distracted and properly misled. Con men steal people's money by simultaneously appealing to their self interest, while secretly working to undermine it.
George C. Scott’s famous quote from the movie, The Flimflam Man; “you can't cheat an honest man”, is unfortunately untrue. Con-men can, and often do cheat honest men.
The Republican Party of George Bush and Dick Cheney is nothing like the Republican Party of days gone by. They have rapidly and recklessly morphed the Republican Party into a gang of modern day con men.
The Walter Reed, VA Hospital scandal clearly makes this point. The Republicans continually bash Democrats for not supporting our troops because the Democrats want to bring the troops home. The whole time the neo-cons are yelling and screaming about the Democrats wanting to cut and run, they are actually cutting veterans benefits and letting wounded soldiers languish in appalling conditions without proper care. For the neo-cons, our troops are pawns in their political games, acting as both cannon fodder for their elective war, and a bludgeon to attack Democrats with.
Other examples of their con man methods abound. Everything from their Clear Skies Initiative to their Healthy Forests Initiative to the Patriot Act to the no Child left Behind Act does exactly the opposite of what the name implies. The clear skies initiative permits more pollution by industry, the healthy forests initiative permits more logging, and the patriot act would never have been signed by true patriots. The no Child left behind act leaves many children far behind.
It has gotten to the point where you can literally assume that the administration will be feverishly working to do the exact opposite of what they say in public. When President Bush insists in a speech that domestic spying requires a warrant, you can be darn sure they are bypassing the FISA court. When the president declares that he values the Constitution, you know that he actually thinks it's a quaint old document that does not apply to him. When Bush said in public that they are not planning for attacks on Iran, you can be sure that carrier battle groups have already been dispatched and that the planning is well underway.
The neo-cons chose an oddly appropriate name for their movement. Based on their MO, you would have thought they would have called themselves the “Honest Party”. At least that way they would have been consistent.