Monday, August 21, 2006

Georgie speaks.

I can't help it, it's force of habit; I always turn on the TV news first thing in the a.m. as I stumble semi-consciously from bedroom to bathroom. I have this demented need to know what really happened while I was dreaming about petunias and puppy-dogs and world peace.

This morning I was greeted by dubya in all his glory, holding forth at a white house press conference. Cursing and eye-rolling commenced even before I got out of the bathroom. Some highlights:

The conference was ostensibly about the middle east, and started with announcements about aid for Lebanon. Something had to be done to counter the reports of Hezbollah running around handing out cash to all the victims of the war. Bush referred several times to Hezbollah as a "state within a state" and pointed to UN resolution 1559 which called for their disarmament. (He didn't mention that the ceasefire resolution has already been broken by Israel.) I gather the new buzz-phrase for the Lebanon situation is "state within a state".

The discussion turned to Iraq. A reporter asked Bush what he thought about the reports that he was "frustrated" with the situation in Iraq, and "surprised at the lack of gratitude(!) of the Iraqi people". George replied "sometimes I'm frustrated, rarely surprised, sometimes I'm happy..." Sing it Georgie, "Maybe I'm right, maybe I'm wrong..." He spoke about al qaeda's (gasp!) involvement in Iraq, and their deployment of "suiciders" to ignite civil war between Shia and Sunni Iraqis. (This from someone who until just before the war didn't even know that Shi'ites and Sunnis were Muslims.) Bottom line: "We're not leaving so long as I'm president" because "it would say that we've abandoned our desire to change the conditions that create terror." Nothing new here: freedom on the march, Sept. 11, terrorist suiciders want to kill your family.

And then the bullshit really got thick. Inexplicably, a reporter asked Bush to comment on the fact that he's granted fewer presidential pardons than any other president except George Senior. (Here come the Enron pardons.) Then there were questions about Hurricane Katrina aid (Spike Lee's HBO documentary starts today) and the price of gas. Just a few totally-unrelated-to-the-subject "let's cover our asses and end this on a high note" talking points. George as usual was giggling and guffawing and being the goofy little frat boy all the way through the conference. Egads. Look at him, then consider the powerful oratory skills Bill Clinton displayed at the AIDS conference last week, and you have to wonder... how did this happen? How, in 6 short years, did America go from point A to point B(ush)? It boggles.