August 18, 2003
"I know what you're thinking about,' said Tweedledum: 'but it isn't so, nohow.'
The Tweedle boys are getting nervous. The image of their current point man, George W. Bush, is showing signs of weakening. The "populace," it seems, is beginning to see through the cabal's machinations, distortions and outright lies that supported the war against Iraq. There is even a hint that the president is a clueless legacy who merely repeats what his handlers write for him.
"The Bush folks must figure that as national policy, stupidity works. That includes the man currently serving as President. It's not just that the Emperor Bush has no clothes, he has no clue. . . The Republican monolith, which had seemed invincible, is starting to show some cracks. The Cheney-Halliburton Administration is quietly running scared. This is due to a growing revolt in the single constituency that the Bush folks can't dominate: their own Republican Congress." (1)
Two key Republican Senators, Richard Shelby of Alabama and Richard Lugar, of Indiana, have openly criticized the administration. Shelby faults the administration for hiding parts of the 9/11 investigation. Lugar accuses the administration of having no plan in place to rebuild Iraq and that the cost of doing so will be in excess of $30 billion. (2)
The unexpected difficulty of pacifying Iraq has placed the neo-conservative plan for world domination -- PNAC -- on hold. (3) We simply don't have enough troops left to attack and occupy the next "evil" state, whether it be Iran, Syria, or some other target to be named later.
Meanwhile, the plebs are becoming restless. Folks sense that maybe, just maybe, they have been conned. Perhaps the reasons trotted out for attacking Iraq weren't true. Worse than that, is the thought that the real reasons for the war remain hidden. Could it be that there are other reasons we were not told about?
The drop in faith is beginning to show in the polls and there are suddenly renewed efforts by those who have pretensions of becoming the next puppet. (4)
Not only has George W. Bush jumped the shark, (5) but there's blood in the water and the sharks are circling. (6)
The proposal to send James Baker, a trusted friend of George H. W. Bush, to Iraq to help stabilize the situation is a sign of policy weakness -- an admission by the administration that things are not going right. Thus, the "old guard" is stepping up to replace the neo-cons as the prime movers. Obviously the rule of our current Viceroy in Iraq, Paul Bremer III, is not going well.
On the home front, the president has proposed a new law against gay marriage to counter the recent ruling by the US Supreme Court. (7) This proposal is also a sign of weakness. Were Bush still riding high in the polls, there would be no need to propose such a law. (8) After all, the president can count on the religious right. What votes does he hope to secure? The answer: Middle American voters -- formerly "in the bank" -- who are beginning to waver on the occupation of Iraq.
One can also see evidence of weakness in the sudden rash of articles in publications formerly compliant, where trusted politicians (read "bought") are trotted out as options to Bush. Even Bill Clinton, the Republicans' bête noire, stepped up and supported Bush's misstatements regarding attempts by the Iraqi government to purchase uranium. (9) And have you heard a discouraging word from Senator Hillary Clinton, lately?
Did you expect to?
Have you forgotten that in 1996, Madeleine Albright, the US Secretary of State in the Clinton administration, was asked on national television what she felt about the fact that 500,000 Iraqi children had died as a result of US economic sanctions? She replied: "It's a hard choice, but I think, we think the price is worth it." (10)
Get it? It seems that there are monsters on both sides of the aisle.
As the Bush II presidency shows vulnerability, there will be attempts by the ruling class to dust off and shine up suitable alternative candidates -- the so-called "centrists" -- in order to preserve their hegemony over the American political process. (11) It doesn't matter to the ruling class which of the two major political parties wins the presidency, as long as they control both of them. So-called "conservative lawmakers" are hedging their bets as they crowd the center. Not to be outdone in the spending department, 'conservative' Bush is outspending 'liberals' Clinton and Carter. (12)
For the ruling class it is a win-win situation.
The ruling class wins with Bush, or they win with a "centrist" Democrat. Consequently, there is an ongoing effort to drive all candidates to the center and marginalize those who might threaten their global agenda. Hence, principled candidates, such as Dennis Kucinich, Ralph Nader, or Pat Buchanan, will be labeled "extremists." Yet, whether these men are "extreme" or not is irrelevant. Their crime is that they are off the leash. They have not been compromised enough -- at least not yet -- to be considered "reliable."
The very last thing the ruling class wants is an elected politician that they do not control. The political proscription of former Congresswoman Cynthia McKinney is a case in point. Perhaps Ms. McKinney is lucky. Well intentioned, honest politicians who are off the leash tend to have accidents. Minnesota Senator Paul Wellstone comes to mind.
Senator Wellstone's death was an accident. . . Wasn't it?
Strange how the political winds change. They should never be taken for granted, no matter how strong or weak a politician appears to be at any given time. Even the most obtuse voter can smell a rat if it cannot be buried quickly. One would think that even the most mentally challenged politician would understand this before he (she) opened his (her) mouth.
On the other hand, maybe not.
On July 31, 2003, George W. Bush's re-election chances dropped below 50% in the Gallup/CNN/USA Today poll. (13)
Blood in the water, indeed!
· · · · · ·
References and Resources
1. Rehak, B. "The Kingness of mad George," Column.left.com, July 28, 2003. (back)
2. Ibid. (back)
3. http://www.newamericancentury.org/ - Project for the New American Century (PNAC). The Iraq war cannot be placed in proper context without understanding what PNAC is and who is behind it. (back)
4. Lester, Will. "Lieberman says Bush mishandling of Iraq threatens to give a bad name to a just war," SFGate.com, July 28, 2003. (back)
5. "Jumping the shark," is a slang term that indicates the beginning slide, or decline of a sit-com. It originated with the sit-com, "Happy Days," when the show's writers had the "Fonz" jump a shark while water skiing. It wasn't funny and the show's decline and eventual demise was attributed to it. Jumping the shark is not a good thing. (back)
6. Malone, Gary. "Bush jumps the shark," The Smirking Chimp, July 29, 2003. (back)
7. Sweet, Lynn. "Bush Seeks Law to Keep Gays From Marrying," Chicago Sun Times, July 31, 2003. (back)
8. Ireland, Doug. "Straight Wedge," TomPaine.com, August 4, 2003. (back)
9. "Clinton gives Bush a leg up on Iraqi uranium comment," Yahoo News, US National AFP, July 23, 2003. (back)
10. Albright, Madeleine, "60 Minutes interview," CBS, May 11, 1996. (back)
11. Nagourney, Adam. "Centrist Democrats warn party not to present itself as 'far left'," The New York Times, July 29, 2003. (back)
12. De Rugy, Veronique and DeHaven, Tad. "Conservative Bush spends more than liberal Presidents, Clinton, Carter," CATO Institute, July 31, 2003. (back)
13. Gallup/CNN/USA Today Poll, "Less than half of US voters would vote to return Bush to White House," Yahoo, Politics AFP, July 31, 2003. (back)
America the 'beautiful' on Swans
Richard Macintosh was a Public High School Teacher in California (1956-1989). Ed.D, Educational Leadership, BYU, 1996. MA, Liberal Studies, Wesleyan University, 1982. BA, history, Stanford University, 1956... Macintosh is currently a part-time consultant on Personnel/Team matters in Washington State.
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