Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Bush: the important question

From the New Yorker - Hendrik Hertzberg
Abstract: (...) In Hanoi, which under its nominally Communist rulers is more vibrantly capitalist than Ho Chi Minh City ever was when it was called Saigon, Bush was asked if the American experience in Vietnam offered any guidance about Iraq. “One lesson is that we tend to want there to be instant success in the world, and the task in Iraq is going to take a while,” he replied, and added, “We’ll succeed unless we quit.” What did he mean? That the peaceable, bustling, unthreatening (if unfree) Vietnam of today represents an American success, made possible by the fact that we didn’t quit until fifty-eight thousand Americans and three million Vietnamese were dead? Or that it represents an American failure, which would have been averted by another decade of war, another fifty-eight thousand, another three million? Who knows? And who knows, really, what this President has been taught by this month’s election? The present President Bush, after all, is a decider of decisions, not a learner of lessons. And he likes to decide that he was right all along. READ IT ALL
David Seaton's News Links
History gives innumerable examples of fools and knaves, physical and mental degenerates who find themselves ruling hereditary monarchies or inheriting a dictatorship from a murderous and suddenly deceased parent. This is not supposed to happen in a democracy or at least not happen twice: as the saying goes, "Fool me once, shame on -- shame on you. Fool me -- you can't get fooled again." What is truly terrible and simply shameful and hopefully inexplicable is how a nation of 300M people, with strong democratic traditions, filled with universities and libraries, of legendary wealth and possibilities, could freely choose from among their enormous number a sinister, mean spirited fool and then seeing how he led them from disaster to disaster, then choose him again. The problem isn't Bush. The world is filled with knaves and fools. The question is how Bush got where he is and how got there again. This is just as interesting a question as how an Austrian clochard and failed watercolorist once became the leader of Europe's most powerful country, the home of philosophers, poets, musicians and scientists. It is a question that must be answered. So let's stop blaming Bush for being Bush and begin to blame the real culprits. DS

1 comment:

wobbly said...

Why focus so much on Bush? Is he your goddamn King? He is your servant, and he can be fired/impeached...

Focus on the people who voted for him once and again???

Our people.

Back in the day, when the Tet Offensive supposedly "turned public opinion against the Vietnam War", the end result in this great democracy was the election of Nixon.

And when he invaded Cambodia, and campuses all over the country "exploded", and some very nice American college kids got shot down at Kent State, the end result was that Nixon got re-elected.

Thousands of people, over here and over there, were slaughtered as the result of the democratic electoral process in the United States.

We picked Nixon, once and twice.
Why? Why does the narrative of his eventual downfall-over, basically, some cheap dirty tricks-ok, he broke the law, and the law won.

Not international law, not Nuremberg War Crimes Law...if our people can let that pass, make movies about it...

I envy your apartment in Spain and your informed there from Juan Cole...You want to understand Bush...I'd like to fire him. The levers of power are in our hands...

We did not pick Bush the first time. Nevertheless, I saw no one, left or right,with hair on fire, after 2000, clamoring to abolish the Electoral one at all! What the hell???

There is a huge slaughter going on and the question of the day is Bush?