Monday, August 21, 2006

Bush Offers No Answers, Just More PR

Bush took some time from his usual August vacation to try and improve his poll numbers with more talking. Here's an AP article Terence Hunt on the US News site; let's start with this:
President Bush said Monday the Iraq war is "straining the psyche of our country" but leaving now would be a disaster.

It's not Iraq so much that is 'straining the psyche of our nation,' it's an incompetent president surrounded by yes men and women who do the same thing over and over without making any attempt to clarify what it is we're doing in Iraq in the first place. It's frustration with a president who cannot admit his failures, who wishes to dawdle for the next two years so he can pass his Iraq problem on to the next guy and it's the general feeling of a president who puts his party first rather than our soldiers or our nation.

Here's more from Terence Hunt:
Bush served notice at a news conference that he would not change course or flinch from debate about the unpopular war as he campaigns for Republicans in the fall congressional elections. In fact, he suggested that national security and the economy should be the top political issues, and criticized the Democrats' approach on both.

He will not change course. What does one say about an incompetent that is unable to learn from his mistakes and a Congress that lets an idiot go his merry way? Debate? Bush and his hardcore media supporters killed debate four years ago before he dragged us all into his Iraq fiasco. Debate? Which failed goal in Iraq would Bush like to debate? Isn't there growing consensus that all we're doing in Iraq is cleaning up his mess? And can there be debate with a man who isn't particularly good at listening and who puts words into other people mouths that they never said in the first place? Bush lost the debate the moment it became obvious Iraq had no WMDs worthy of the name; but already Iraq has become one of the most expensive wars in our nations history with nothing to show for it.

There's more in Terence Hunt's article but I'll end with this one:
- He talked Monday with Chinese President Hu Jintao about trying to revive six-party negotiations aimed getting North Korea to give up its nuclear ambitions. The White House said the two leaders, in a 21-minute call, also discussed economic issues that have caused friction.

I'm glad Bush could take 21 minutes from his vacation to talk with the Chinese President, but should he even be on vacation at a time of crisis? Shouldn't he be talking to other leaders? Shouldn't he be working harder to make sure the Middle East doesn't spin out of control? And how did North Korea get on the back burner again? Shouldn't our MBA president be engaging in some cost-effective diplomacy? Roosevelt and Churchill would talk for hours when they met, and they exchanged a large number of letters, but Bush puts in 21 minutes to the head of an important nation and we're supposed to be impressed? Then again, if those 21 minutes were of the quality we overheard at the G8 summit, one can hardly imagine our incompetent president actually getting anything useful done.

At the very least, we need to wake up the president and urge him to spend less time on PR and more time doing his job. At least one Democratic house in Congress might do the trick. What we cannot afford is letting our foreign policy drift for another two years.


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