It’s good to check up on the code words now and again.
And when the president is desperately flailing around, he’s at his rhetorical best.
In perhaps his most aggressive speech since winning reelection, President Bush yesterday attacked Democrats for suggesting that he misled the nation on intelligence used to justify the war in Iraq, saying that such criticism sends the ”wrong signal” to American forces, emboldens the nation’s enemies, and tries to ”rewrite the history of how that war began.” […]”While it’s perfectly legitimate to criticize my decision or the conduct of the war, it is deeply irresponsible to rewrite the history of how that war began,”
The gall used to claim his detractors are “rewriting history” is amazing, if typical. Bush’s approval rating is not down below 39% because people are rewriting history. It’s in the gutter because of the way he has conducted his administration, including the shifting justifications for the war. We were there — we don’t need John Kerry or the Democrats to give us a history, rewritten or otherwise. We were there. And that’s why Bush’s approval is in the toilet.
Republican strategerists tell us it shows real strength to take on the guy you beat in an election? Here’s a suggestion, if you want to improve your approval rating: do something to improve the country. It’s another indication of why this administration is struggling lately to see how they react to dissatisfaction. It can’t possibly be anything Bush has done, so attack other people.
From anywhere else you might imagine that dropping approval ratings would be met with a new vision for the country — something to bring this divided nation back together again. No such luck. He needs to find a scapegoat to satisfy his warped perception of reality.
I was wondering where I heard this phrase “deeply irresponsible” before. I was pretty sure he had used it, and I wanted to know the context so that i could gage just how bad things are when GWB uses “deeply irresponsible” to describe something. I googled it and found this from the presidential campaign:
The Bush campaign accused Kerry of “a pattern” of trying to cut intelligence funding. Bush personally accused Kerry of attempting to “gut the intelligence services” with a “deeply irresponsible” 1995 proposal.
As FactCheck.or summarizes it, “Bush Strains Facts Re: Kerry’s Plan To Cut Intelligence Funding in ‘90’s President claims 1995 Kerry plan would “gut” the intelligence services. It was a 1% cut, and key Republicans approved something similar.”
And, of course, when you look at the context of Kerry’s proposal:
Kerry’s proposal came five days after the Washington Post had reported that one intelligence agency, the super-secret National Reconnaissance Office, had quietly hoarded between $1 billion and $1.7 billion in unspent funds without informing the Central Intelligence Agency or the Pentagon.
Bush called Kerry’s support of the miniscule, bipartisan-approved cut “deeply irresponsible.” So, now we have a yardstick for the seriousness of his use of the phrase. The man is ridiculous.
You can’t trust a word that comes out of the president’s mouth. Not even the ones which are halfway coherent.
As for the rest of his “firing back” at his critics, there is only one way to interpret this:
These baseless attacks send the wrong signal to our troops and to an enemy that is questioning America’s will.”
When Bush is under fire, he doesn’t wrap himself in the flag. He scurries to shield himself behind our servicemen and women. The troops didn’t misinterpret intelligence. The troops didn’t pressure our intelligence services. People aren’t disappointed in our troops. We are deeply disappointed in you, Mr. President. We are deeply troubled. Deeply dissatisfied. And we feel that it is your own deeply irresponsible conduct which has brought your approval rating so low.
Deflecting the blame is just par for the course.
[UPDATE: OK - I take it back. He wraps himself in the flag, too]Posted by James at November 12, 2005 12:45 PM