Skip to comments.(Vanity) What Hath Bush Wrought, or, Through a Glass Darkly
Posted on 10/15/2006 5:22:36 PM PDT by grey_whiskers
Over the past couple of months, but especially since the Mark Foley scandal broke, there has been a relentless undercurrent of fear that the Republicans will lose control of the United States House and (somewhat less likely) the Senate. The political fallout from this would be bad enoughJohn Conyers (Dork-MI) has already called legal experts together to draft Articles of Impeachment against Bush. The President would be completely distracted from fighting the War on Terror as Clinton claims he was during the Monica Lewinsky scandal. (You know, actually receiving a Lewinsky while on the phone with other officials didnt distract Bill; but fighting off those nosy members of the press did. ) And worse than that, there are the policy changes which would likely take place: Cut and run from Iraq. Massive investigations of our armed services. Further evisceration of our national security. A sudden large tax increase. Gay marriage. And of course, no chance to take back the Supreme Court.
OK, Ill be the first to admit it. Im really disappointed in Bush, and by extension, the party elites within the Republican ranks. Lets go through a list of just some of their failures. Not handling the Valerie Plame affair when it must have been known all along that Valerie and her attention-whore husband were lying. Letting the Democrats control the spin on the whole Iraq War. The multiple slaps in the face to the conservative baseHarriet Miers nomination to the Supreme Court, the absolute *refusal* to secure our Southern Borders, and having the nerve to pretend that the amnesty bill floated in the Senate was anything at all like the voters wanted (remember Michelle Malkins piece on the Gold Card?) Or the continued Most Favored Nation trade status with China? Or moving to domestic policy, the Medicare Prescription Benefit, or the Education Bill co-authored by Teddy Kennedy (Splash-MA)? Or the Feed the Hand That Bites You support for Arlen Specter (Kilt-wearer, PA)? Now here is my dilemma. I understand that a lot of the madness has been due to the Big Tent strategy to suck the air out of the Democratic Party (yes, an ironic verb given Foleys Follies). But that strategy seems like it is backfiringat least many commentators such as Michael Barone and John Hinderaker seem to think the Republicans are going to lose control. BUT I certainly dont want to enable the RINOs by becoming part of the echo chamber of dont let the Democrats gain controlvoting against the other guy does NOT win elections. Instead, I am going to play Roves advocate for a moment, and throw out some ideas as to the motivations behind some of the more unpopular policy decisions of the current administration. Maybe hes trying to do the right thing, but telling everyone *why* would give the whole game away. Im not saying that I definitely am convinced of any of these ideas, by the way. I just want to throw them out for discussion.
Valerie Plame affairif the Administration *knew* that Karl Rove was not really in danger of indictment (since the leak of Plames identity was not a crime, since she wasnt covered by the law, and since Richard Armitage was the leaker). This was just a Rope-A-Dope. And Jason Leopold (and many other left-wing bloggers) will never be the same again.
Spin on the Iraq warthis is not as political a consideration, but it would fit in well with the Presidents Texas persona. He is just doing the right thing (in his mind), draining the swamps which breed Islamic terrorism, and the states which support them. And as always, its better to let the terrorists attack professionally trained and armed troops over there, than to encourage them by inaction, to attack civilians here.
Harriet Miersstrong Bush family loyalty? Or else a spectacularly poor olive branch to the religious right, no doubt encouraged by a political strategist who has oatmeal for brains.
Refusal to secure the Southern borderswould have multiple levels of reasons. The most obvious would be the lobbying by agribusiness. The tin-hat folks (and maybe becoming more mainstream since this) would be the Trilateral Commission angle. And then there is the attempted pandering to the growing Hispanic community. This last one actually brings up a couple of other points which I havent seen talked about too much. One is the whole red state, blue state demographic decline. The United States isnt as far gone as Europe or Japan, but our population is aging, and the non-Hispanic community, by and large, is not replacing its numbers. And speaking of the aging population, the new blood might help stave off the Social Security collapse.
The amnesty billbeing rolled by the RINOs, or a price they exacted for supporting him on constitutionalist judges.
Most Favored Nation trade with China, outsourcing of manufacturing, etc.this one is interesting. If you poke around on Google (or read my earlier vanity), you can see that China is rapidly becoming a cesspool of unbelievable pollution. Worse than pre-EPA era Lake Erie, worse than much of the old Eastern Europe. And in return, we are getting many consumer goods very cheap. The tradeoff is the loss of low-skill jobs (and those that are left are often being filled by incoming Mexicans), and the risk of making China a manufacturing and economic superpower. But that itself is hedging another bet. I remember reading that China has to create 25 million new jobs a year just to keep up with population growth. Perhaps the Administration is trying to prevent China from becoming a (much larger) North Korea, by encouraging policies which keep their masses from rebelling. This I think is an intriguing goal, but at the rate China is arming itself, and stealing our technology, the policy risks the United States committing national suicide.
The Medicare Prescription Benefitas far as it goes, it is working. The TV campaign advertising season is heating up, and I dont recall seeing a single commercial about how EEeeevil RepublicansTM are going to personally rip the Social Security Checks out of senior citizens hands. Oh, wait, Ive seen one. Jim Pederson (wannabe poseur-AZ) is trying to run against John Kyl (all-American Good Guy-AZ) and accusing Kyl of voting for tax breaks for big pharmaceutical companies). And the accompanying video is an old woman (who looks like Mama Ragetti in Grumpier Old Men) counting out bills like a game show host, into the hand of a pharmacist. Well, some things never change.
The Education Billthis I dont even have a bad excuse for. Maybe President Bush 41 told him to.
Support for Arlen Specterthis might just have been a dont rock the boat for the Senate elite moment. It made no long term sense for pleasing the base, nor short term for securing constructionists on the Supreme Court.
Well, Ive had my say. The problem seems to be that if the Republicans bite, the Democrats positively gnaw. There dont seem to be any choices Im eager to vote for at all. And that brings up one last point. Why in #$@*!! didnt Bush veto McCain-Feingold when he had the chance?
Any other Freepers' guesses are welcome.
i think bush is fantastic and has done a fantastic job.
I wish there were more members of congress who actually supported him,
I also wish there were more people on Free Republic who supported him.
I am less and less surprised that conservatives are so willing to turn on their own for the slightest slights. I guess that probably contributes to a long term strength of the party but I do think there are numerous short term disasters as a result.
To pretend that these incessant observations less than 30 days before an election are not misguided would be a mistake in my estimation.
He's kicked ass in Afghanistan, done really well in Iraq, waffled on Iran, and fumbled on NK.
He sucks on border enforcement and appears to be a globalist.
He did great on Bolton to the UN, but I really don't understand what happened to Condi Rice.
The tax cuts were A+++, as (it appears so far) his two Supreme Court Nominees. If he can manage to appoint one or two more of their type, they will help shape his true legacy.
(Always provided there are no suitcase nukes and no overt war with China...)
The things he's good on, he's great on. But there are other things where it looks like he is taking conservatives for granted; or even using them cynically.
I agree with most of what you say here. I cannot say I'm sure we are doing "really well" in Iraq though.
I know the intentions were good, we started out well, but haven't followed through and it seems that it's not improving much in the past 6-8 months or so.
I wish he would communicate more of his plan and stop with tthe "Stay the course" phrase that many Americans are tired of. I fear that they are contiually bombarded with all the deaths on the news every day and then you see President Bush not conceeding to any missteps and just appearing stubborn.
Don't get me wrong, I am a strong supporter of Bush and the RNC, yet I see and hear what people are saying about Iraq and sometimes I can't disagree.
Are you going to vote for the Republican candidates? That is what matters at the end.
But if the RINOs take control (as for example ex.-Senator Danforth, apparent Rino and heir to the Ralston Purina fortune, has been trashing "the religious right"), or an illegal immigrant amnesty bill gets passed, then I will probably sit out the next election.
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