Monday, December 27, 2004

Another Bush concession
Josh Marshall warns us that, by their own words, we can expect the administration's war on Social Security to follow the same course as their war on Terrorism (Iraq digression phase).
The president and the White House have now compared their build-up to the Iraq war with their push to phase out Social Security enough times that it seems worth creating a detailed taxonomy of the Bush White House approach to major policy initiatives in order to predict their efforts over the next two years.

The [Wall Street] Journal said last week ...
The president has yet to lay out specific ideas for changing the entitlement program; he and his aides are focused first on selling the idea of change. "For a while, I think it's important for me to continue to work with members of both parties to explain the problem," he said in a Monday news conference.

This would suggest that we're now in the lying and fear-mongering phase of the campaign, which would be followed of course by a later phase in which a specific policy remedy is brought forward, nominally meant to address the fake problem.

I'd like to tie this in to my previous post on the pathology of George W. Bush. I think the WSJ quote is a perfect example of his belief that teamwork means letting you join his team and follow his leadership. Teamwork does not mean listening to you or meeting you halfway. "I think it's important for me to continue to work with members of both parties to explain the problem." Again and again, during the build-up to the Iraq invasion, he would answer charges of unilateralism by saying he had explained his decisions to our European allies. The testiness that often showed through when he made that answer was, I think, a clear indication that he really does not understand the concept of collegiality. The source might be a rich kid sense of entitlement, or something else, but in any case, I really believe that's how his mind works.

The bottom line is, Bush gets an F in "plays well with others."

PS - Mustang Bobby has also been on to the frat boy/bully theme (for example, here and here). As they say, great minds think in the same gutter. At least, I think that's what they say.

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