Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Deepening Crisis During Legacy Spinning

With less than thirty days left, it is likely that the shoe throwing incident in Baghdad will be the bookend to Bush's dismal presidency. It is what people will remember. The outpouring of editorial cartoons from around the world has been staggering. A tiny percentage of the cartoons defend Bush but none are flattering. Even Bush's quick reflexes raise a curious question: has he had practice? Is this a clue to the strange injuries he's received from time to time over the last eight years? Have their been lapses in Bush's ability to duck? Of course Bush lacks the Teflon that protected Ronald Reagan so well. Here's more of the cartoons: here, here and here.

What can one say after eight lawless years? Bush and Cheney are on their legacy tour and the gibberish just gets more ridiculous. Part of the legacy is the illusion that Bush kept America safe. But 9/11 happened on Bush's watch, and he and many top members of his administration ignored the warning signs. Mahablog quotes this CNN report from April 30, 2001:

The State Department officially released its annual terrorism report just a little more than an hour ago, but unlike last year, there’s no extensive mention of alleged terrorist mastermind Osama bin Laden. A senior State Department official tells CNN the U.S. government made a mistake in focusing so much energy on bin Laden and “personalizing terrorism.” …

(sigh) This was weeks after briefings by Clinton staffers about Osama bin Laden. George Tenet and Richard Clarke gave more warnings before 9/11. We're not talking policy differences. We're talking criminal negligience and willful behavior. Chalk it up to the blindness of ideology but Bush did not keep the nation safe. In fact, his actions have repeatedly undermined the security of our nation and damaged our future.

That's enough for now. The holidays are here. Let there be peace on earth. And let's hope next year we return to the community of lawful nations.

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Tuesday, December 02, 2008

Republicans Still Not Ready to Rebuild

The Republicans continue to be in denial as the reality of the economy continues to hit more and more Americans.

In Georgia yesterday, Sarah Palin, a member in good standing of the know nothing wing of the Republican Party spoke in support of Saxby Chambliss, a member in good standing of the do nothing wing of the same party. Republicans may not be able to accept responsibility for the worst economic crisis since World War II but at least Sarah's line of merchandise is doing well:
...Palin's election-eve swing reflected her star status within the party. Several thousand supporters waited in the cold to file into the James Brown Arena in Augusta. Vendors sold bright pink "Palin 2012" T-shirts and "Palin for President: You Go Girl" buttons.

In the meantime, Bush continues to do everything he can to obstruct the incoming president with new regulations and nonsense. Obstruction is a big thing with Republicans these days. But the utter intellectual dishonesty of George W. Bush is still amazing to behold:
He said he had wished the intelligence on Iraq, which incorrectly suggested the country had weapons of mass destruction (WMDs) prior to the US-led invasion in 2003, had been different.

"The biggest regret of all the presidency has to have been the intelligence failure in Iraq," he said.

What he should have said is that he regretted making an assumption of Iraq WMDs and reading far too much into the little evidence that existed—if not entirely true, since many believe the WMDs were merely a fabricated excuse for a war in a country with oil, at least it would have been closer to the truth. Whatever the truth, there is not much to say when the most powerful man in the world is supported by a political party that has let itself be too easily defined by ideology, lies and incompetence. Our country needs two viable parties. At the moment, there appears to be only one.