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December 09, 2006


There is something borderline psychotic in Bush's response to this whole situation.

And he is almost exclusively using the term commander-in-chief to describe himself of late. He seldom uses the word President.

That in and of itself is very telling.

Bush's delusional state is your friend. Sure Iraq is a catastrophe happening in mere months, but that's unavoidable now. If Bush realizes how much sh*t he's in, I have full confidence he could find a way to make it worse.

This period in his presidency reminds me of the process of "intervention" used to try to help addicts recognize their problem. A gathering of all of those close to the addict confronting him at the same time. Success usually depends upon all of one's loved ones telling the addict the same thing over and over. The reason this won't work for our current president is that 10 -20% of us ( wing nuts) are still telling him what he wants to hear. His addiction to having to be right will continue, I suspect.

you go to war with the president you have...

Oddly enough, I'm construing (I am the Construer) the fact that Bush still refers to himself in the first person as a positive sign. Were he referring to himself in the third person (The Construer does not surmise, he construes, and all surmising and construing by others shall now cease) like Nixon did for a scary little while, I might be afraid.*

Nixon would answer questions by saying "The President decides..." or "The Commander-in-Chief commands.." His 1972 campaign bumper stickers said "Reelect the President". One had the feeling that if George McGovern had been elected, HE would have had to come up with some new titles because "President" was already taken.

Nixon was like a method actor playing a Shakespearean King who, in a bat---- sort of way, stayed in role at all times so as not to break concentration. Then he started sending the rest of the cast and the assistant directors to the tower, and you knew the guy had become dangerously whacked.

It would have been funny, at least, if a reporter had asked him "Does the President believe we should ..? and Nixon had replied, like the man behind the curtain, "I'm not sure. Next time I see him, I'll ask him."

Bush is more like Barney Fife. Andy has headed up to Raleigh for a Sheriff's convention and Barney is now acting Sheriff. He walks the beat, breaking up the lady's social for too much tippling, proclaiming "I am the Sheriff of Mayberry, and I play the deadly game. I'm in it for keeps."

Our job is to humor him, even from the jail cell, because after all Otis, now deputized, will tell us that the key is hanging right there, within reach from inside the cell.

Andy will be back soon.

Has anyone seen the bullet? I hope Andy took it with him and it's not still in Barney's shirt pocket.**

*Hilzoy, like Aunt Bea, will be the one to tell Barney that he's full of crap and slap some sense into him. Of course, if she then starts writing posts that begin "The Hilzoy would like to bring something to your attention...", we, the city fathers and mothers, will know that Mayberry needs a S.W.A.T. team, if we can find the funding without offsets. ;)

**O. K., he's got all the bullets. Scratch all theories and run for the hills.

"To manage that, you need to be able to pretend the doubts aren't there: to pull off some psychological equivalent of putting your fingers in your ears and screaming 'I CAN'T HEAR YOU!!' Because the moment you let those doubts really sink in, the abyss opens."

About 35 years ago I saw that this delusional irrresponsibility was even more characteristic of the 20-30 percent that was the core base than of the President they elected. Nixon resigned over the protests of his supporters. That two generations later there is a new batch of crazies that approach 1/3 of the electorate should be terrifying. What can be done?

We have to impeach him. And then impeach Cheney. If Bush resigns, impeach Bush anyway, take away his pension, privileges, Secret Service protection, immunities. Then send him to the Hague. A French commenter at Kos said the Europe demands it. America must repent, expiate, and suffer penance and consequences. Our crimes may not be shrugged off.

The whole world is watching.

Andy has apparently died in a Raleigh hospital from a mysterious radioactive poison.

Otis looks nervous. Gomer is fashioning torture devices from the tools at the gas station. Helen Crump has the third graders outfitted in Barney Youth uniforms. The party-line telephone is tapped. Opie can be faintly heard gagging and screaming from the depths of City Hall.

Barney has declared: "Barney Fife is Don Knotts and Don Knotts is your worst nightmare!"


Gilliard has been saying for a long time that Bush will not serve out his term. The boy can pout after Baker and Poppy slapped him down, but they will get him out before he starts costing real money.

"Bush is scaring people who don't scare easily. Like Jim Baker"
I could link to Glenn Greenwald, but he has multiple excellent posts today. All very cynical. The Beltway is moving into self-preservation, and will sacrifice Bush if necessary, as they sacrificed Nixon. If we care about the country, we have to make it very expensive for them. Cheney, Rumsfeld, Poppy Bush, Greenspan all survived and prospered after Watergate.

This is not about Bush, but about his enablers.

Truman was unpopular too
They all laughed at the Wright brothers, so I'm not worried that they're laughing at my perpetual motion machine.

You know, when Bush said he wouldn't withdraw, even if Laura and Barney were the only ones supporting him, I thought he was talking about the dog.

Yikes. Yet another thing that I really hope is a parody but probably isn't, and certainly isn't for a large segment of the audience. Much like this.

And this is who a majority of Americans voted for in 2004.

Spoiled a good post by a bad closing comment, Hilzoy. It is really not too early to begin reminding people that the election in 2004 were rigged, even more comprehensively than the election in 2000, and there's no doubt that the election in 2008 will be rigged unless significant steps are taken now towards honest elections in the US. Granted 2006 showed that current Republican methods of election rigging can't overcome a Democratic landslide - but I have no confidence that new methods that can won't be in place by 2008, so long as a majority of Americans calmly continue to ignore the plain facts.

Other than that, great post.

Jes, there are certainly significant numbers of people who believe that Kerry won the election in 2004, but I don't think there are many who believe he got a majority of the popular vote. If the Republicans were able to rig 3 million votes, then it seems they wouldn't have left it so close in Ohio, and surely they'd have been able to fix 2006 as well.

"then it seems they wouldn't have left it so close in Ohio, and surely they'd have been able to fix 2006 as well."

Let us say they could just manage to flip 100 votes in every district in America. Or a few more in Texas, and less in Massachusetts. But they could not flip a million in Ohio, or 50 thousand in a Congressional race, without getting attention.

The small flips nationwide, giving Bush a popular vote majority, would enable them to steal one state and quash "pointless" investigations.

Bush is always trying to upstage the other guy. Big weapons == big you-know-what. Why is Bush talking about Truman? Bush wants to upstage Ol' Harry, kiloton-wise...

Another Westerner with so much power over “dark” bodies, sad and chilling.

I’d hate to see the Developing World’s reaction to another 9-11.


Sorry, but no.



Sorry, but no.

So, like, what? No rapture? Dude, that sucks.

The following is quoted from the comments in the Gilliard thread Bob linked to

"...He woke up on 9/12 completely unstoppable, and forget drinking, friends--that was a high that he won't ever forget. In fact there's no way in hell that he will ever have anything even remotely like it again. There is no universe where a man even as powerful as he is, or was, will find the same high of realizing you control the most powerful arsenal on earth and having a polarizing event take place that gives you a free hand to redress grievances (as it were) ...

...From this absolute power came an absolute corruption and it's conflicting with Bush's self-image in a very deep and personal way, and I have to resist the urge to organize an effort to send him a red, white, and blue coffin-shaped bottle of whiskey for every American soldier he casually tossed into the meatgrinder in Mesopotamia, to be sacrificed on the grand altar of his mushrooming ego. Congrats, Bush. Now do us all a favor and drink yourself to death.

-- nota bene

Particles of Impeachment

poputonian of Hullabaloo has been running a series on impeachment as has Next Hurrah, Newberry (who is now at Agonist) and others. The point is made that justified impeachments are most often grass-roots driven.

Junior is rapidly descending into the Captain Queeg mode, and who is going to take the role of "Lt. Steve Maryk" and force a court-martial - i.e., impeachment hearings - directed toward this psychopathic clot? All that is missing is the rolling of ball-bearings in Junior's hand when under stress, which has to be continuously these days. Junior is on the edge, he needs outside intervention.

I keep on thinking, "And this is the best guy the Republicans could find?" I think your analysis is right on. I've worked with guys like Bush before, sadly. What really strikes me about him is how proud he is of his ignorance and willful lack of curiosity. It's not just a lack of wisdom or intelligence, though, it's also, as you say, a lack of self-reflection. "He hath but ever slenderly known himself."

Random thoughts.

Many more than Bush are in a hunkered down state of denial -- its just matters of degree. Since all policy options are bad, doing nothing seems the least troublesome short term policy. Plus, wishing for a magical solution to appear (such as the ISG) -- hence a rash of "six more months" moments to forestall uglier choices.

The Republicans cannot sacrafice Bush without also finding a way to avoid sinking with him, and they have not found it yet. And this is also true of a large chunk of DC who supported this war. A symptom of this muddle -- they will say "we are not winning" while they are loathe to say "we are losing." Its as if the one that first faces and deals with reality will be the one blamed for that reality.

McCain has already beaten them to the lunatic "stab in the back" posture (the war was never lost -- we just had our will undercut and did not implement his "Hail Mary" plan for 20,000 troops to save the day). To his horror, his delusion is catching, as so many advocate this nonsensical band-aide solution without any clear idea of exactly how 20,000 more troops makes any difference (or where they will come from).

Expect many more months of flopping around. Even worse, imagine another big terrorism incident (blamed on Iran a la Al Queda and Saddam logic) that reinforces the nutball's craziness, and restore Bush's false swagger.

Just as things can get much worse in Iraq, they can here too.


The problem with relying on history to vindicate you is that in the meantime, even though no one suports your policy now, you can reject all opinions in favor of your inner snycophant that is promising you history's eventual blessing.

At least Ahab had a goal.

"At least Ahab had a goal."

A header?

Nah, he'd use opposing goalie as a bat.

JM, that sadly went over my, uhh, head.

Incidentally, I just ran into the "posting too often" algorithm which asked me to prove I'm human, not a spammer, implying spammers aren't human. Which, weighing the social harm, I tend to agree with.

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