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I Hate Baby Bush
But, I didn't hate his daddy. FYI, I'm not a Republican, but I'm not a Democrat, either. I vote for the least idiotic sellout running, basically. Here's an interesting article from The New York Times, unfortunately, from their dumb for-pay Times Select (ie, select certain writers who won't be read or blogged about), by Helene Cooper and David E. Sanger, about confidential Bush admin memos that don't trumpet the Bush "Yay! War is beautiful, wish you were here!" party line:

For the last 18 months, Philip D. Zelikow has churned out confidential memorandums and proposals for his boss and close friend, Condoleezza Rice, that often depart sharply from the Bush administration's current line.

One described the potential for Iraq to become a "catastrophic failure." Another, among several that have come to light in recent weeks, was an early call for changes in a detention policy that many in the State Department believed was doing tremendous harm to the United States.

Others have proposed new diplomatic initiatives toward North Korea and the Middle East, and one went as far as to call for a reconsideration of the phrase "war on terror" because it alienated many Muslims - an idea that quickly fizzled after opposition from the White House.

Such ideas would have found a more natural home under President George H. W. Bush, for whom Zelikow and Rice worked on the staff of the National Security Council. They reflect a sense that American influence is perishable, and can be damaged by overreaching, as allies and other partners react against decisions made in Washington. They form a kind of foreign policy realism that was eclipsed in Bush's first term, in favor of a more ideological, unilateral ethos, but that has made something of a comeback in his second term.

...Rice herself has said that she went through something of a transformation after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, in which she moved away from the classical realism of her own roots and Zelikow's, and closer to the neoconservatives who dominated policy discussions in the first term.

Rice has told friends that President Bush has had a major impact on her thinking in terms of reintroducing values-based politics and ideology.

"Values-based politics and ideology"; ie, pandering to the Bush Baby base.

Posted by aalkon at October 29, 2006 11:39 AM

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Comments

Interesting (if long, nearly 10 minutes) video about how the elections supposedly got stolen.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OmdSpl5mLLE

Posted by: Patrick at October 29, 2006 3:05 AM

Grumble.

Posted by: Crid at October 29, 2006 3:30 AM

Are you grumble-ing at me or at Patrick...or both?

Posted by: Amy Alkon at October 29, 2006 3:41 AM

Yes! After starting off the day with your blog, I went to visit the other usual suspects. This morning, Steyn puts it like this in the Chicago Trib:

"[S]uppose [Dubya] and Cheney and Rummy and all the minor supporting warmongers down to yours truly were suddenly vaporized in 20 seconds' time. What then?

"Nothing, that's what. The jihad's still there. Kim Jong Il's still there. The Iranian nukes are still there. The slyer Islamist subversion from south-east Asia to the Balkans to northern England goes on, day after day after day."

Amu, did you actually ever receieve any ameliatory feeling for having GHWB in the White House? Or is it just that you enjoyed, as all of us did in those years, a hope that maybe history had turned a corner, and that capitalist democracy had won a decisive, global, practical victory as well as a personal and sentimental one? We spent the 90's chasing tail and playing with computers and scuba diving. Then it turned out the rest of time wasn't going to be like that.

No one was more surprised than Dubya. But who was less surprised? It's not that I admire him too deeply. I threw out my TV in 1992. Any temptation to buy another one is tempered by the knowledge that watching TV means you have to listen to the 43rd president speak publicly, and I'm just not up to it. In Paglia's piece in Salon last week she described exactly what had been happening to my heart when listening to this president talk: His voice conveys 'Nixonian tension'.

Maybe we should have elected Kerry [I'm unable to end this sentence right here... Trying... Trying... Can't... It's probably good that we didn't elect Kerry.] But people who think there's some filthy conspiracy in this invasion, and look to secret documents and dastardly political machinations for explanations are too clever by half. Again again again again: What did you want for Iraq? What was the Middle East going to look like without the invasion?

All I'm saying is, don't let your loathing of Bush, no matter how grounded and righteous, convince you that he started these problems. Or you'll be really disappointed when he's gone.

Sheez it's still early here. Did we Fall Back last night? Either that or this blog is the fountain of youth, and any heatbeats spent here are free.

Posted by: Crid at October 29, 2006 4:24 AM

No one's saying he caused all of the problems in the Middle East, Crid. It's how he's chosen to deal with those problems that I have a major problem with. This administration sat around with their thumbs up their butts while warnings about 9/11 circulcated (as we now know). If we had focused on Afghanistan and spent a few of the gazillions of dollars we've farted away in Iraq rebuilding (or in some cases, building) infrastructure, rooting out the Taliban and helping the government there get on its feet, you'd have no argument from me. Sure, Saddam was a really rotten guy who needed to go, though he was not an immediate threat, but a lot of knowledgeable people who were against the Iraq war predicted exactly what has come to pass because of the Bush administrations "clap harder if you believe in fairies" war plan that failed to plan beyond the march to Baghdad.

Posted by: deja pseu at October 29, 2006 6:33 AM

> sat around with their thumbs
> up their butts while warnings
> about 9/11 circulcated

Silliness. Are you really trying to suggest that the intelligence agencies did everything necessary to protect us, but some horny, aftershave-stinking young Republican haircut, working in the lower echelons of our national security apparatus on a Tuesday morning, just happened to decide to go for an extra bagel that day instead of reading his email like a good little camper, so that thousands of Americans died?

It's not just that these scenarios defy credulity: It's that they do so in admiration for some of the most *reprehensible*, Kissingerian stereotypes of public service and secret agency.

> If we had focused on
> Afghanistan...

Oh Puhleeze. Puh-fucking-leeze. The city of Kabul is as probably as populous as Chicago. It's probably as big an area, though no one on the net will say so, because the stats are so sketchy. The important thing is, they've got no sewer system. If you're going to "rebuild" Afghanistan, you're going to do it without [1.] skilled American laborers and [2.] unskilled but well-fed Mexicans to back them up. In your whole life, Deja, did you ever tell another human being that we weren't spending enough money in Afghanistan?

> Saddam was a really rotten
> guy who needed to go

Grotesque understatement.

> though he was not an
> immediate threat

Maybe not to *you*....

> knowledgeable people who
> were against the Iraq war
> predicted exactly what
> has come to pass

But they never offered a better plan, other than continuing the Oil-for-food debacle, did they?

You're right in the essentials of the argument! I don't doubt that Bush is full of shit and has sent us down a bad path. But *all* the paths were bad. Nobody has ever shown how it could have been better. If Kerry had done so, he'd have been president for a year and a half now.

Posted by: Crid at October 29, 2006 3:51 PM

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