Thursday, December 29, 2005

Reality Resolution

I came across a Jonathan Chait piece from The New Republic back in '03 that details the ridiculously unreal public image George Bush tries to foist upon us. In closing, Chait describes a state of mind I have repeatedly experienced over the last five years.
...[T]o feel as though you've been transported into some alternative universe in which a transparently mediocre man is revered as a moral and strategic giant. You ask yourself why Bush is considered a great, or even a likeable, man. You wonder what it is you have been missing. Being a liberal, you probably subject yourself to frequent periods of self-doubt. But then you conclude that you're actually not missing anything at all. You decide Bush is a dullard lacking any moral constraints in his pursuit of partisan gain, loyal to no principle save the comfort of the vry rich, unburdened by any thoughtful consideration of the national interest, and a man who, on those occasions when he actually does make a correct decision, does so almost by accident.
I continue to be bombarded with media reports assuming that Bush is something more than my intellect and senses tell me. The mid-term election campaigns will bring smokescreen after smokescreen as Republicans try to deny reality, refuse to accept responsibility for the status quo, or seek to distance themselves from the administration.

I resolve to continue to look through the fog of hardspun rhetoric to the truth. I resolve to trust my senses, my judgment, and my democratic/Democratic values. I resolve to stay real.

Happy New Year

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

The Irony Never Ends

I'm noting a couple of quotes from the Bush presser yesterday out-of-context (provided here) because in real-time they hit me right in the ironic bone.

1) When asked about his seeming excercise of unchecked power;

'To say "unchecked power" basically is ascribing some kind of dictatorial position to the President, which I strongly reject.'

He pointed his finger as he said this with peevish (dictatorial?) authority.

2) When asked about skipping the safequards of the courts when seeking wiretaps;

"I swore to uphold the laws. Do I have the legal authority to do this? And the answer is, absolutely."(emph. added)

A beautifully Freudian choice of word is it not?

This guy could put satire writers out of business. Why make anything up?

Monday, December 19, 2005

Bush is Playing at Candor

The irony was almost overwhelming for me when Bush said in his primetime speech last night:

"To retreat before victory would be an act of recklessness and dishonor and I will not allow it."

Ironic because Bush's reckless invasion has brought dishonor on our country in the eyes many of our allies and most of the world.

Even in his newfound "candor" he hasn't acknowledged that fact. Probably because he is only as candid as opinion polls and political pressure on his agenda force him to be. I just can't give him much credit for offering come-lately crumbs of honesty when so many of us have been aware of the truth in real time.

Now about those illegal wiretaps...

Sunday, December 18, 2005

President's Power from What War Declaration?

Bush continues to claim powers consistent with the commander-in-chief in war time. Now insisting it is both necessary and legal to order eavesdropping on U.S. citizens without involving the courts because "we are at war".
Since he is framing this in a legal context, I would first like to know what Congressional declaration vests him with this power and, second, just whom that declaration was against.

I have not heard that these are Iraqi "terrorists" he is investigating without oversight from either the Judicial or Legislative branches. If he isn't referring to the resolution authorizing him to disarm Saddam Hussein in support of U.N. resolutions, I am unaware of any legally declared war in progress, and I think we need to seriously question the legality of Bush's action.

King George? Indeed.

Friday, December 16, 2005

Hypocrisy's Hero

The Washington Posts reports.

During an interview Wednesday on the Fox News Channel, Bush was asked whether he believes DeLay is innocent of the charges of money laundering and conspiracy that led to his indictment in Texas and resignation from the House Republican leadership in September. "Yes, I do," the president replied.
"The president was asked a question and he responded to that question in the interview yesterday, and made very clear what his views were," McClellan said. "We don't typically tend to get into discussing legal matters of that nature, but in this instance, the president chose to respond to it. Our policy regarding the Fitzgerald investigation and ongoing legal proceeding is well-known and it remains unchanged."

"Call it a presidential prerogative," he added.

I call it self-serving hypocrisy.

Saturday, December 03, 2005

We're Still Giving Al Qaida Gifts

Learning of our scheme to pay for good news stories in Iraqi newspapers makes it seem ever more evident American values end at the waters edge. I know this used to be said of partisan politics, but that is clearly no longer the case.

According the some at the Pentagon and folks like Pat Buchanan, it's okay to lie and cheat if your enemy is doing it too. Or, as Pat said on Hardball, "We're at war, war!" This is yet another reversion of war supporters on the right to schoolyard ethics. Whatever we do is okay 'cause "they started it". Also, I'm a little murky on just what war we've declared against whomdo . What, if any, values we hold as inviolate? Maybe those are separate discussions.

What comes through to me is these people think it's okay to do whatever we want due to the fear and anger lingering from 9/11. We continue to pay tribute directly from the treasury of our collective soul to Bin Laden and his ilk when we compromise our values and lash out in our insecurity. We are still giving the terrorists exactly what I imagine they wanted when they first plotted to strike us.

We tilt forward in our war against a violent tactic afraid to get on with our lives while seeking justice from the individuals that harmed us.

Fools, fools, we are led by cowards and fools.

Thursday, December 01, 2005

Best Press Money Can Buy

This is how we practice our most precious values in Iraq.
Even as the State Department and the United States Agency for International Development pay contractors millions of dollars to help train journalists and promote a professional and independent Iraqi media, the Pentagon is paying millions more to the Lincoln Group for work that appears to violate fundamental principles of Western journalism.
Read the really ugly details in the NYT (reg. req.).

This Mind is Closed

John Warner indicated to Chris Matthew's last night that we are trapped in Iraq. The Senior senator from Virginia refused to hear or say anything other than we have no option besides staying the course in Iraq.

To Matthew's suggestion that Congressman John Murtha had just offered an alternative on the very same show, Warner replied "No, no, no." Chris let it go at that.

I have noted this exact same response from my three-year-old granddaughter anytime anyone suggest something she doesn't want to hear. Then, she is supposed to be selfishly self-centered.