Today, General David Petraeus went before various Senate committees to give testimony as to the status of the War in Iraq. I guess the "supposed" purpose of his testimony is to provide "information" to the Senate so they could, in theory only, make up their minds about the war. Sadly, their minds are already made up. They aren't listening to anything General Petraeus might have to say. There is no amount of words and charts that General Petraeus could provide that would change that.
Each of the Senators opens their time for questioning with their "own" prepared statement before they ask even a single question of General Petraeus. If that Senator is a Democrat and, most certainly against the war, they will outline all the negatives about the war. Similarly, if the Senator is a Republican and believes that the War should proceed, then their prepared statement will indicate how well things are going. In either case, their eventual line of questioning will be such that it either attacks Petraeus (for those Democrats against the War) or seeks to get answer that support the effort (as in the case of most Republicans).
Make no mistake. These are not hearings. These are not fact finding sessions. These are political soap boxes where the game of "gotcha" is paramount. I guess that's why the American public has so much disrespect for our elected officials in this country.