The President's newly found candor regarding his administration's missteps might have been refreshing two years ago when he stood mute in response to a reporter's question trying to think of any mistakes he had made in his first term. Now it is abundantly clear that Bush will say whatever he needs to say to gloss over the grotesqueries committed by his government and pacify the electorate. Now, every response he gives can be contradicted by a speech he made previously. He insists his illegal wiretapping is a mandate from Congress, then a speech is discovered where he vows to get a court order before such measures are taken. Bush is the undisputed king of the flip-flop. And he is a born again prevaricator.
Just recall the hoopla accompanying his call for a Constitutional amendment banning same sex marriage. Since his reelection, has anyone heard another word about it? Then there was the scene with Bush sitting with his cabinet promising to ferret out and fire anyone who leaked information outing a CIA agent. We all know who leaked, but no one has been fired. After Hurricane Katrina, Bush made quite a show of promising to personally lead the investigation about what went wrong. He should be on the golf course in Florida with OJ looking for the real killer. No such personal investigation was ever commenced, despite his eerie "blue light special" speech in Jackson Square promising New Orleans the moon. He has not been back since and I am regularly informed that four months after the storm, much of New Orleans resembles Baghdad. In poorer residential areas, heavy equipment hasn't even been moved in to begin to clear the rubble while victims of the storms still suffer the results of Bush's raw cronyism at FEMA and the Small Business Administration. The president of the Red Cross resigned under fire last week because of the mismanagement of that once stellar organization.
And the Bush cabinet was supposed to be so tough, all of Congress was cowed into submission. That is until one former marine Vietnam vet called for the withdrawal of our troops from Iraq and suddenly talk of a troop drawdown begins. Secretary Rice had to deflect criticism of the government's torture policy all over the world until Bush called in Senator McCain, adopted his policy regarding torture, and claimed it as his own. Now we see that when you push back, there are no dire consequences in spite of the bellicose posturing of the Bush team. Instead, they cave in. That's what happened with the Social Security privatization plan, the establishment of a cabinet level Homeland Security Department, and the 9/11 Commision which Bush resisted until it became an inevitability. In recent days, the Alaska/Ted Stevens/Halliburton drilling project was drop-kicked along with permanent reinstatement of the Patriot Act. Bush's defense of his unsupervised surveillance of Americans took care of that.
In his speeches about Iraq, it was either "victory or defeat." Exactly like "you're either with us or you're with the terrorists." And no one in the press seemed to make much of a fuss about the one horrendous revelation Bush let fly in his new statement of contrition; 30,000 Iraqi civilian casualties. If Bush gives that as the number, you can safely double it and be closer to accurate. Is there any wonder the insurgency is so vicious? Would anyone not take up arms against an invader that murders 30,000 innocent people and occupies a nation in the name of preventing the use of weapons of mass destruction? Our government is the weapon of mass destruction in this world.
And all of this; the war, 9/11, Intelligent design, the pandering to the religious right, is a smokescreen to divert attention away from the fact that this government is systematically stripping away regulations from commerce and industry in order to reward their friends and punish their enemies. Rather than decrease their pet tax cuts, this government cuts social programs to the poor while bragging of a robust economy. No government has ever cut taxes in a time of war and they will not acknowledge the looming financial crisis facing this country. With the Bush team, it's "stay the course," while the President flounders, the Vice President hides on Army bases making speeches to pre-screened audiences, and the "Architect" of it all, Karl Rove, who never received a single vote from anyone, stares into the abyss.
When the book "Bush's Brain" by Wayne Slater and James Moore was released, it was an eye opener. It tells of the Machiavellian schemes Karl Rove concocts to achieve his political goals. The amendment about gay marriage was such a scheme. On this Christmas Eve, while Bush was taking the offensive about his Iraqi policy and his public approval ratings were at an all time low, a mysterious "War Against Christmas" broke out on Fox News, lead by Bill O'Reilly and highly placed members of the Christian right, including James Dobson, Tim Wildmon of Tupelo, and Jerry Falwell. The dispute wasn't about the commercialization of Christmas, but about boycotting retailers who said "Happy Holidays" instead of "Merry Christmas" in their advertising. Sure enough, it was a wedge issue that caused much discussion and division in this country, and Bush's ratings went up four points. This disgusting operation has all the earmarks of a Karl Rove operation, only no one has said so.
But with the coming indictments of the grand jury investigating the CIA leak, the Jack Abramoff and Tom Delay scandals, the surly ineptitude of Bill Frist, and the pending trial of Enron's Ken Lay, there is not much more the government can do to distract us. Instead, they have caused us to begin paying close attention to their crimes. And a mid-term election that returns one of the Houses of Congress to the Democrats will create the ability to begin investigations into the Bush clan and their operatives that will make Watergate look like a misdemeanor. Ironically, it was former Nixon council John Dean who said earlier this week that this President was the first to admit to impeachable offenses in advance. This government's future looks as bleak as "Kenny Boy's." They should start getting used to seeing daylight filtered through iron bars.
I write this with the full knowledge that what I say is monitored by the National Security Agency. I am used to it. I lived through the Vietnam era of CIA excess. So, hello fellows. Hope you all have a "Happy Holidays." See you on the flip flop.