Thursday, May 31, 2007

Enough Is Enough: We Need To Impeach
That Arrogant, Reckless Fool Right Now

I don't know what it was about
this story that just put me over the top with disgust for this ignorant, reckless, clown of a president we've been saddled with for the last seven years. No, I take that back--it was this passage:
Friends of his from Texas were shocked recently to find him nearly wild-eyed, thumping himself on the chest three times while he repeated 'I am the president!" He also made it clear he was setting Iraq up so his successor could not get out of "our country's destiny.'

Never in our history have we had a president who so blatantly thumbed his nose--his whole body, really--at our entire democratic system, our way of doing things, and the sacred understanding between leaders and led. Nixon in all his tortured scheming never came close to this level of blatant disregard for the electorate's wishes. I say run him out of town, kick his sorry ass back to Texas, and let him clear brush for the rest of his days. Send Cheney along to keep him company.


At 5:42 PM, Anonymous Buster said...

I totally agree that Bush/Cheney need to be impeached. But those two are just the most visible extrusion of the modern GOP.

Gore has it right in the title of his new book: "The Assault on Reason".

The inherent illogic in fundamentalist religious belief has been exploited, aligned, and mobilized for the GOP's political gain.

These people would rather vote against their own interests in order to be a member of the more-moral-than-thou club. This club was cynically created and abetted by people like Karl Rove (an atheist), Falwell and Robertson, the latter driven by power not "spirit".

When one of the feel-good issues such as abortion, gayness, or the war in Iraq strikes home, then and only then can "club members" see any gray area.

It feels so good to be on the side of the angels, it atrophies the brain.

At 5:56 PM, Blogger John Ettorre said...

I'm glad that Gore has stepped up and decided to tell it like it really is, especially after Jimmy Carter caved in such a weird manner and apologized for his criticisms of Bush. It comes back to the truism that evil flourishes when good men do nothing. We all need to begin making a hell of a racket in this country.

At 1:22 PM, Blogger Scott said...

Many times since the 2004 election, I've heard people complain that Bush voters "voted against their own interests." But you're assuming that your interests and their interests are the same thing, and they're not.

To many Bush voters -- at least to the ones I know -- social issues trump economic ones. They're not necessarily looking at themselves as "holier than thou" (the ones I know are generally quite humble people), but they simply believe that if a candidates' views match theirs on social/moral issues, that takes precedence over economic and foreign policy. It may be maddening, but it's reality. Lefty bloggers can spew all the venom they want about the Heartland Hicks who voted this guy into office, but it's clear they don't really understand what makes these people tick (present company excepted, of course, John).

You're talking about two almost completely different worldviews here, which is why productive debate is -- or at least seems to be -- virtually impossible.

As for GWB himself, he needs to go. No doubt about that. It's going to take a full generation to get us out of the hole dug by this current administration. And probably even longer for the two ends of the American political spectrum to find some agreement.

At 2:35 PM, Blogger John Ettorre said...

Scott, this is all well said, and I'd have to agree with much of it, except that when it comes to social and moral issues, I would encourage you to think about whether the Bush/Cheney/Rove axis really stand for some of what they purport to. I don't pretend to know the whole answer, but think it's nevertheless an important question. And I'd similarly ask you to examine the possibility that their actions are what really counts, not the words in speeches or during campaigns. To me, voters should regard officeholders the way kids regard their parents: it doesn't really matter what they say, it's only what they do that counts.

Anyway, I'm just happy that you've decided to add to the conversation. We can never have enough insightful input from good John Carroll grads, nor from talented communications pros, and since you're a two-fer, your comments are particularly appreciated.

At 3:19 PM, Blogger Scott said...

John: I agree completely. I haven't seen Bush/Cheney/Rove act in a manner I would dub as particularly "Christian." I think all I was trying to say -- without being condescending to a particularly large proportion of voters in this country -- is that some people tend to ignore shades of gray and instead see everything in stark black and white. Is he anti-abortion? Fine, I'll vote for him! Is she against those darned gays getting married? Well, then she's the choice for me! They seldom do what you recommended, which is to evaluate a candidate based on action, rather than stated platforms. It's sometimes easier said than done, of course, but it's also the responsible thing.

Anyway, I think we're probably on the same page here. I just read a lot of left-leaning blogs and sometimes cringe when I see non-Blue voters painted with a very large brush as stupid religious zealots worthy of little more than scorn. Do I agree with their choice of candidate(s)? Nope. But I think they're a little more human than we sometimes portray them....well, most of them, anyway ;)

At 5:03 PM, Anonymous Buster said...

I might mention that I am a native and current resident of one of the reddest of red states, so I have some personal basis for what I said earlier.

I would also take issue with the statement that "the ones (Bush voters) I know are generally quite humble people."

There is little less humble than believing that you personally have an "in" with the creator of the universe, and that therefore, you possess the correct answers to the big questions. That's also how the radical Islamists think. The world would be better off without that kind of "thinking".

At 6:15 PM, Anonymous Buster said...

I would love to know the calculations going on behind the scenes with Bush's belated recognition of global warming.

It's one of those issues that has been packaged with the usual right-wing shibboleths.

What will happen? Will the "base" rebel at this violation of their faith? Or will they go along, and simply forget that they ever opposed it?

At 6:39 PM, Blogger John Ettorre said...

I say never start an argument with a man who uses words like "shibboleths." You're bound to lose. As for Bush's pass at dealing with global warming, I think his fans, a winnowing cohort if ever there was one, will recognize it for what it is: talk unburdened by subsequent action.

Remember his grand oratory in front of the New Orleans cathedral, bathed in klieg lights for the TV cameras, before a national audience, about how the country would make sure it works to restore New Orleans? Wonderful theatre. But in the end, only theatre.

At 7:50 AM, Anonymous Buster said...

I'd like to respond to Scott's comment, "I...sometimes cringe when I see non-Blue voters painted with a very large brush as stupid religious zealots worthy of little more than scorn."

There is a right-wing blogger here in town who is a very intelligent fellow. You don't get into MIT, or graduate from it without some IQ on you.

However, I have seen him referred to as a "tool" in a local forum. That is pretty accurate. He jumped on the Schiavo bandwagon. He recently argued that our city must not collectively believe in global warming, since "we" reelect Sen. Inhofe. (I eagerly await his next communique in the wake of Bush's recent comments.)

Like most of the right-wing bloggers, he seems to quickly divine the latest marching orders. He is something of a religious zealot.

He and his compadres are very organized and cohesive, but at the expense of internal debate over anything but strategy. That is made "unnecessary" by their conviction that God is firmly on their side. God's directives are conveyed by Republican and religious leaders, of course.

I don't regard him as stupid, but yes, I think he deserves some good old-fashioned scorn.

At 7:56 AM, Blogger John Ettorre said...

Interesting, Buster. Of course, I've observed plenty of those types as well. And they do present something of a riddle.

At 12:16 PM, Blogger Scott said...

Buster: I'm not sure what to tell you. I stand behind the statement that many Bush voters with whom I'm acquainted are in fact very humble people. They don't necessarily believe they have all of the answers. They don't think they have an "in" with the Creator. But they do have certain beliefs, and they vote according to those beliefs, with the understanding that they could be entirely wrong.

Unless I misread your comments -- entirely possible, given my firm belief that my children each strip me of a good 50-100 brain cells each day -- it seems you're making a fairly sweeping generalization. There are indeed many right wingers who have the attitude you describe...far too many, really. But in in my experience, that doesn't even describe half of the people who cast their votes for GWB in 2000 and 2004. Many, many of them are rational people who made a choice based on a different set of criteria than, say, you or me.

And let me say that for every right-wing tool on the 'Net, there is an equivalent on the other side of the aisle. Arrogance and close-mindedness aren't limited to the neocons. Again, that's my experience. And in the end, as I say more and more often the older I get, what do I know?

At 1:22 PM, Anonymous Buster said...

You allude to:

"The first and wisest of them all professed
To know this only, that he nothing knew." - Milton

and possibly:

"The best lack all conviction, while the worst
Are full of passionate intensity." - Yeats


Those quotes sound pretty good. But if we non-neocons make a feel-good virtue of lacking passion and knowledge, we are going to continue right down the neocon road until we drop off the cliff.

I generalize, but really claim no more than you do: "There are indeed many right wingers who have the attitude you describe...far too many, really."

At 1:49 PM, Blogger John Ettorre said...

I agree that sweeping generalizations always paint a distorted picture, and that there's plenty of idiocy on the left as well. The difference right now, of course, is that the left's idiocy isn't in a position to make a mess of the country, as the neocon White House is now doing.

At 2:08 PM, Anonymous Buster said...

Re other motivations for voting Bush:

Rove's strategy has been to keep the base strong, excited and voting with periodic red-meat feedings, then doing enough fear-mongering to bring enough of the middle group of voters in line.

Whatever thought processes the rest go through...who needs ALL the votes, anyway? Not Rove.

At 2:33 PM, Blogger Christine said...

Forgive me if this has been discussed here already (the heat strips *me* of brain cells), but I want to respond to something that Scott said way up there:

"To many Bush voters -- at least to the ones I know -- social issues trump economic ones."

I've been wondering lately how many Republicans feel the flip side of that - that economic issues trump social issues - and are starting to get disenchanted with the Party's obsession with "moral values."

This was the reason why my boyfriend's dad, a longtime Republican, voted for Kerry in 2004, and if Watergate hadn't already done it, I think this would've given my dad the impetus to leave the party as well.

It feels especially important to me to get a handle on this, because "they" (the media, I guess) always talk about how the Christian Right is hijacking the Republican Party. But sometimes I wonder if "they" aren't just trying to scare liberals into some kind of action.

I've been thinking more about this since I read American Fascists, because Chris Hedges goes on at length about how a small number of radical Christians is trying to wield power over our society by instilling fear (of gays, moral decay, etc) in people. But I kept wondering if he wasn't just using the same tactic, especially by constantly comparing them to Nazis.... I mean, should I really be afraid of these people taking over the country?

At 4:00 PM, Blogger John Ettorre said...

Christine, I'm glad you mentioned that Chris Hedges book, because I've been wanting to read that, based on his earlier work, which is brilliant. And Buster, per your mention of Rove ignoring large parts of the electorate, even Newt Gingrich now excoriates him for that. In last week's New Yorker, he says "you can’t be a governing national party and write off entire regions," a reference to the Northeast.

At 4:31 PM, Anonymous Buster said...

I think Gingrich is trying to get some personal mileage out of explicitly acknowledging that Rove's strategy isn't going to work in perpetuity. The last election showed that. But both Rove and Gingrich would be glad to keep ignoring vast chunks of the country if it would work again.

At 4:47 PM, Blogger John Ettorre said...

I suppose you're right about that, unfortunately. But more importantly, the pivotal sixth game of the Cavs-Pistons series begins in just about three and a half hours. Any hoops fans in this conversation? If not, please accept my apologies for changing the subject. I just can't help myself at the moment.

At 7:13 PM, Anonymous Buster said...

On further thought, Gingrich is probably also setting the scene to point at the "divisive" Democrats. You gotta hand it to these Republicans; they are audacious. They can assume the electorate has the memory of a goldfish and get away with it.

At 2:53 PM, Anonymous Buster said...

I'm sorry to have slandered goldfish in my previous note:

"Goldfish memory (is) "selective" -- they have a general idea of what happened on a previous occasion, they're just not sure what."

(from Ask Yahoo!)

At 6:33 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

What? Don't send him here to Texas. Unless maybe to some jail. Hmm. Maybe in a cell next to one of those children caught in a legal limbo with Homeland Security.

At 7:13 PM, Blogger John Ettorre said...

So we have both Texas and Oklahoma perspectives covered in this thread. Any other states? And sorry, anonymous from Texas. I was of course referring to Bush's Crawford ranch. Glad to hear that not everyone from that state has taken leave of their senses.

At 8:39 AM, Blogger managementprof said...

Chiming in late here to say, somewhat tangentially...

"Shibboleth" is one of my favorite episodes of The West Wing. Ever. And I would never pick and argument with Jed Bartlett.

At 9:09 AM, Blogger John Ettorre said...

No, it's not tangential, Sandy. But man are we going to miss you around here, lady. Looking forward to seeing you and the family before the great migration westward...


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