I’ve written on the importance of listening to George Bush carefully in the past and have been attacked for doubting his “veracity”, “truthfulness”, and “his way of speaking”.
Let’s try an experiment. Yesterday, February 21, 2005, he had this to say about the port deal with the United Arab Emirates (or- if one prefers, DP World, a state – owned company):
“I can understand why some in Congress have raised questions about whether or not our country will be less secure as a result of this transaction. But they need to know that our government has looked at this issue and looked at it carefully… Again, I repeat, it’s – if there is any question as to whether or not this country would be less safe as a result of the transaction, it wouldn’t go forward.”
Reading that should make clear why he referred to his 2004 “victory” as a “mandate” and his reference to millions of protesters against the Iraq war as “some people” and “focus groups”.
First, he refers to “some in Congress”.
Question, is he:
1) blissfully unaware of the Congressional (and State) reactions;
2) delusional; or is he
3) intentionally “misleading” that portion of the public that doesn’t follow the news but for the times when he speaks (a surprisingly large group for a people supposedly in love with independence).
Second, he refers to the “some” as “raising questions”. The line formed to squash this deal on both sides of the aisle is puzzlingly unnerving even to those whose deepest desire is to see bipartisanship return to Washington.
Third, when he says, “… they need to know that our government has looked at this issue and looked at it carefully.”
How, pray tell, would he know that at the time of making that statement. According to today’s press reports, he didn’t know about it until he heard it from the press. To further cast doubt on “our government” looking at this carefully consider the following response by Scott McClellan:
“He became aware of it over the last several days,” McClellan said. Asked if Bush did not know about it until it was a done deal, McClellan said, “That’s correct.”
So what part of the “government” is George Bush talking about?
He does say, “our government” and, the last time I checked, we still had 3 branches although two have been trimmed to the point of being nubs that may never sprout leaves or bear fruit again.
We know that Congress wasn’t informed and that his spokespeople claim he didn’t know about it until after the “filter” of the press informed him. Maybe Justices Scalia, Thomas, Roberts, and Alito were informed.
To his credit, he did clarify his statement:
“The more people learn about the transaction that has been scrutinized and approved by my government, the more they’ll be comforted…”
As Marty Kaplan points out on the Huffington Post, “The founding documents of our nation talk about the government, our government, a government, any government. If my,is used, it’s said on behalf of the citizens, not their rulers. ”
P.S. the Katrina Review made by the Administration came out. It calls for direct military control in the event of a “natural disaster”. Homeland security adviser, Frances Fragos Townsend, when asked if this would violate the Posse Comitatus law and if it would require new legislation responded that George Bush had been advised by his (presumably) legal staff that he already had the power to do what was recommended in the report.
So, in conclusion, FISA doesn’t apply to this White House, those pesky quaint Geneva Conventions (or just basic prohibitions against torture) didn’t, and don’t, apply to this White House, the recently overwhelmingly passed anti- torture legislation doesn’t apply to this White House, informing Congress that we’re giving the contracts for running our thus- far- still- unsecured ports to a foreign government with a questionable recent history of transferring money to terrorist groups and being the conduit for nuclear information and/or material to members of the “axis of evil” (and others) doesn’t apply to this White House, and the general rule on submitting to a police interview after shooting a guy in the face don’t apply to this White House, etc., ad infinitum, ad nauseam…
It must be nice to have one of ‘em “my guv’munt” things.