Bush TV Speech Analysis <-- Hi-Class Political Blog!
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Last night The President of the United States gave a live television address to the nation about Iraq. For the next several hours, all the major American television news channels broadcast detailed analyses of the speech, with guest commentators, journalists, retired senior military officers, members of Congress of both major parties, professional national security consultants -- The Usual Suspects, as long as they weren't Iraqi or Muslims or Foreigners. And of course it's still going on on C-Span and Fox. (Novak just got booted from CNN and is headed for Fox.)
President Bush succeeded in one major goal of the speech -- his first prime-time television address to the nation in three years. He didn't want to talk about the revelation that he ordered the National Security Agency (NSA) to eavesdrop on the electronic communications (phone, e-mail) of American citizens and others originating within the United States without first seeking a warrant from a federal judge as required by the U.S. Constitution (the Fourth Amendment, see below), so he didn't.
He just wanted to talk about the Happy News from Iraq (the parliamentary election), so he did. It wasn't a press conference or an interview with a real journalist, so he didn't have to talk about anything he didn't want to talk about.
The great triumph of his speech is that in the spew of network analyses that followed (not just Fox), adults who are allowed to roam around outside unsupervised spoke as if the President had actually made some sense and said some important foreign policy things worthy of serious consideration.
And now the Analysis from Vleeptron, NGO Vleeptron, and Agence Vleeptron-Presse. [ADVISORY: All News Agencies and Heavy-Duty Political Blogs may quote, with appropriate Credit.]
1. President Bush said absolutely nothing new.
2. American foreign and military policy in the region is a car sliding out of control on sheet ice at 70 miles per hour, and the driver is smiling and telling the passengers that wonderful things are momentarily about to happen to America and the region.
3. He warned against Defeatist Talk. So did Hitler after the Allies invaded continental Europe and started marching east while the Russian Army was marching west in 1944.
4. He said things would get worse if the US withdrew its troops from Iraq. Hahahahahahahaha.
5. He acknowledged that the US intelligence (weapons of mass destruction, Iraqi nuclear weapons, Iraqi assistance to al-Qaeda, etc.) that formed his decision to invade Iraq was completely wrong and erroneous, but said the invasion was a fine decision anyway.
An important dimension of the warrantless domestic wiretaps which Bush ordered is that, for the first time, he's been caught doing something which rises to the level of an impeachable high crime in the on-the-record opinions of a very substantial number of U.S. Senators of Both Major Parties. Immediately following the revelation of the warrantless wiretaps, the U.S. Senate refused to re-authorize the Patriot Act (after the House of Representatives had passed it).
This is a pre-impeachment Test Vote. To be impeached, the House will have to pass articles of impeachment -- and the House is far from politically ready to do this.
But if they do and there's a trial in the Senate, the Senate is clearly bubbling up sufficient bipartisan votes to convict and remove the guy. The principle that is attracting Republicans -- on paper, Bush's loyal supporters in Congress -- to start thinking that's it's time to show this guy the EXIT sign is that No President Is Above The Law. The last guy who thought he was Above The Law had to leave. (Nixon, not Clinton. Clinton didn't have to leave.)
But of course Bush didn't talk about the warrantless domestic wiretaps. He just wanted to share all the wonderful Happy News happening in Iraq with the American people.
Well, it's the classic American political dilemma: Is the guy crazy, is the guy lying, or is the guy incredibly stupid? If you have a fourth possibility, please Leave A Comment.
In previewing the wonderful things soon to flower and blossom in Iraq, Bush painted a portrait of a pro-American Western-style secular parliamentary democracy right there in the middle of Muslim Asia. The fundamentalist America-hating Caliphate would be thwarted, and from the democratic secular seed the US had established with its military Shock and Awe for the overhwelmingly grateful Iraqi people, a movement to demand similar secular democracies will arise and spread through the Muslim world.
Vleeptron would describe this as The Flying Pigs Scenario.
Or maybe The Identical Twin Redheaded Freckled Cheerleaders in Bob's Hot Tub Scenario.
Coming soon, Bush said, to an Asia near you. Watch for it momentarily. Don't do any foolish political thing to thwart this inevitability, like demanding that American troops be brought home quick.
As he grappled with Vietnam, President Lyndon B. Johnson (not known for taking LSD, which was becoming popular at the time) was convinced that if he could just invite Ho Chi Minh to his ranch for a week of down-home Texas-style barbecue and diplomacy, he could offer Ho Chi Minh a huge package of American economic generosity which the President of North Vietnam would immediately accept, the war would end immediately, and an era of friendship, understanding and cooperation between Hanoi and Washington would immediately commence.
There's something about sitting in the Oval Office -- possibly in the air or the water -- that produces bizzare hallucinations about the objective world beyond America's borders. Not to mention a culture of profound presidential isolation. Increasingly, serious analysts are noting that Bush detests hearing Bad News from any of his subordinates. If you want to stay on The Bush White House Team, don't ever upset him with any Bad News. If you know any Bad News, or read any Bad News in the paper that morning, keep your mouth shut about it, let somebody else (who doesn't mind being fired) break it to the Commander-in-Chief.
Basically, it's a rather simple piece of shit. He screwed up by invading Iraq, 2000-plus American soldiers are dead -- most after active military combat ended and victory was declared -- Iraq is erupting into a violent religious/ethnic civil war (which the new US-trained Iraqi military and police are a partisan death squad party to) -- and now the Commander-in-Chief who said Let's Do It! is stuck with the piece of shit, and can't turn it off or shove it back into the toothpaste tube.
Although he can't run for president again, if he tells the American people he screwed up, and accepts an end to the American military presence, no Republican candidate will stand a chance in 2008. (Democrats, who enabled and cooperated with his war decision, won't smell like roses either, but voters will have violently angry thoughts of revenge primarily against the Bush-loving Republicans who rubber-stamped and praised his catastrophe.)
It's the Nixon White House all over again, isolated, out of touch with Reality, paranoid, circling the wagons, breaking serious criminal laws (not just lying about a seedy little blow job), Above The Law, a scandal-linked grand jury subpoena in every morning's mail, angry investigations in the Senate over a broad spectrum of issues which, until Bush, have been universally regared by the body politic as Beyond The Pale, Verboten, Interdit, Not Kosher.
Next Stop: Impeachment.
Also our combat military resources, regular and Reserve/National Guard, are exhausted and overextended, so maybe, just before the Impeachment, Bush and Rumsfeld will bring the draft back, and Rove will call it The Power Freedom Volunteer Patriot Corps.
As you search the Blogosphere for Political Analysis you can Trust, Remember: Of all bloggers, only Vleeptron is old enough to remember any of this crap. The iPod bloggers are much spiffier dressers, and they know who Jessica Simpson is, but they're sooooooooo clueless about history and politics. The iPod People think all this weird crap is Something New. Hahahahaha.
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