I'm listening to President Bush's press conference right now. Yikes, the stakes certainly are high, as Dear Leader likes to say. We have an incompetent buffoon in the White House who looks like he's about to go into psychological meltdown.
This is not firm, steady leadership on display. It's the opposite. Bush reminds me of a criminal suspect in a cheesy film noir drama, squirming under a bright light while smug detectives ask tough questions. So he lies. He tells us the Democrats don't want to interrogate terrorists. He says he doesn't question his critics' patriotism. He says his critics will wait until another 9/11 to take action.
He said that if we don't succeed in Iraq, then the enemy is coming after us. He delivered the news like a bad punchline, with his trademark sweep of the hands. We have nothing to fear of absence of fear itself.
It's easy for a glibster like myself to say the real enemy was standing in the rose garden, but that misses the point of the danger our country, and the world, currently faces. No, Bush is not the enemy. But he is a huge part of the problem. There has always been war, always been bad guys who want to hurt us. We've dealt with external threats through a combination of diplomacy, hard and soft power, and foreign policy realism that tells us that we have to deal with the world as we find it. Bush has abandoned what has worked, imperfect as the old framework was, and replaced it with something far more distressing - an illusion of certainty. He tells us that American style Democracy can be planted in a Middle East country, like our flag on the Moon, and create a bulwark against terrorism. There is no good reason to believe this, and after 3 1/2 years of trying, it doesn't seem to be working.
The money quote “I am amazed that this is a society which so wants to be free that they’re willing to — you know, that there’s a level of violence that they tolerate.” President Clueless at today's press conference. You can see the video at Think Progress.