I had planned on sitting in front of the television last night and writing a bit of a minute-by-minute diary of President Bush’s address to the nation, and I’m glad something else came up. A kid from work, the JB, invited me to play basketball with a few of his friends. After the weekend, it was much needed.
Reading the papers this morning it sounded like the same ole’ shit. I don’t know how much of a President and leader Bush is, but up till recently he’s proved himself one hell of a Publicist in Chief. Has any US leader ever stayed on message so stubbornly, facts and reality be damned? When he was elected near 4 years ago I was pretty apathetic to his win. Upset slightly, but I didn’t vote (never have), so I didn’t have much of a right to complain. Besides, how bad could he be? That’s turned out to be a rhetorical question. Last night, he pressed play on his looping argument for steadfast perseverance in Iraq, reminding us dimwitted Americans that, in his view, Iraq remained “the central front in the war on terror.” I think the connection between “Iraq” and “terrorism” was a rubber band argument frayed and stretched to the extreme of its elasticity. Perhaps the only people it hasn’t snapped for are our President and anyone who takes this man at face value. Iraq probably wasn’t a theater for the war on terrorism before we invaded (evidence? Please?), but it certainly is now, and we made it that way.
Last March when I renewed my driver’s license (New York, what?!), I registered to vote for the first time. I don’t think I’m unique in my generation in this regard, I can’t imagine a large portion of us vote regularly, and I’ve never voted for a damn thing. Perhaps we were spoiled by Clinton. Perhaps we’re just lazy bastards. (We’re not, though I’ve heard that said about my generation before. We’re just getting our voices now, I think, and I hope we use them.) At the time I registered as a Democrat, and wish I had registered Independent. It’s semantic, but I think politicians, American politicians, on the whole, have very, very little in common with me. Who they represent, in reality, are people that look like them, think like them, grew up with them, and live around them. I have met or heard very few that I think genuinely “get it.” There are good ones out there, but I think the institution of politics is fundamentally corrupt, not conspiratorially so, it’s just mangled, and I’ve never been very inspired by these people to take part. Welcome to my nïeve mind. I will vote this time, though, mainly because I just have this suspicion that Bush just isn’t up to the job. I’m tired of watching someone lead my country (and he is my leader, that’s how our political system works) who I know I’m smarter than. Give me Tricky Willy any day.
One thing I will give the President props for is his consistency. He’s said he’s running as a war President, and damned if he isn’t. Let’s see, there’s the war on gays, the war on terrorism, the war on the poor, the war on the Constitution, the war on the environment, the war in Afghanistan, the war in Iraq, the war on… am I forgetting anything?
There's a great, hilarious analysis of Bush's speech here. And, yes, I'm linking to someone I basically agree with. What would be the point of linking to a counter argument? This is a vacuum in here, we only have room for my opinion. Disagree? Post below.
(I had actually meant to make this little ditty on politics a mere intro to two phone calls I had yesterday, but it kind of got away from me. I’ll write about the phone calls tonight. In a future post, I will analyze my need to end these posts in parentheticals through both a Freudian and Jungian lens. Hope everyone is smiling and well. Peace.)