Saturday, September 30, 2006

A Must Read

Everyone should read the following article from MSNBC:

Interesting details from Woodward's new book, State of Denial,that focuses on unbelieveable, heart-wrenching, gut-churning mismanagement within our current Administration.


Blogger Scantron said...

I'm torn over the Woodward book. On the one hand, I'm all for anything that discredits Bush & co. On the other, do we really need Bob Woodward to tell us how fucked up they are? I guess I understand that people inside the beltway gobble up anything the guy says (see the Wash Post's multi-part series of exerpts). But it's not like Woodward is breaking with the pack and being the first person to tell us about the administration's dirty secrets. In fact, he's rather late in the game, and his last two books were so positive that the White House recommended them. His new turn indicates opportunism more than anything. Like I said, if this helps swing the election, or "rally the elites" or something, go Bob, but anyone with open eyes and ears discerned this stuff long ago.

8:07 PM  
Blogger curry king said...

I think what's interesting about Woodward's book is that its release--from an insider who's buddies with top Defense officials and even wrote 2 laudatory books about the war--reveals that dissent is occuring WITHIN the Republican party and conservative machine on the war in Iraq. Even the most "inside the beltway" of them all know now what a terrible mistake Iraq was. And this is happening to even those (such as Woodward) who initially commended it. You'll notice that most of the tight elections in the nation are characterized by some idiot Republican saying "oh, well I voted for the war then, but now I realize what a major mistake it was and how poorly executed it was." Sounds like Mr. John Kerry to me but from the right-wing.

Fine, I agree that these flip-floppers shouldn't have been such wusses in 2003 and realized the absurdity of occupying Iraq back then, but at least now the support for the war within Bush's Republican party has waned so much that the number of allies he has dwindled to so few that perhaps an Iraq pullout will not only be necessary out of practicality but also politically necessary for the Republican party. Something tells me that Bush only sees thing in the realm of the latter.

1:16 AM  
Blogger Scantron said...

I think there is room for divergence on the opinion that Bush only sees things in terms of party interest. Contrary to the opinion of someone like Frank Rich, who in his new book asserts that Karl Rove cooked up the Iraq War in an election year in order to keep the Republicans in power, I don't think that Bush ultimately cares about the Republican party. Certainly he needs them in the sense that they rubber stamp his legislation, but I'm not sure that any concerted effort by even a majority of Republicans could shake him from his Iraq ambitions. This is because "stay the course" is not just an ideological mantra for Bush & co, it is a necessity, because their ultimate goal is to stabilize Iraq enough to set up permanent military bases there. The stuff about how pulling out now would only "embolden our enemies" I take to be largely rhetorical, although I'm sure its bolstered by the presence of Kissinger, who has a serious case of Vietnam anti-syndrome. The overthrow of Saddam as a pretense for gaining control of Iraq's resources has been a plan long in the making, if you look at the statements of the Project for a New American Century before the war, the letter sent to Clinton, etc. It has nothing to do with getting Republicans votes. (Rather, the inverse--Republicans getting votes based on an atmosphere of fearmongering, culture wars, etc indirectly supports the neocons' war plans.)

Bush's main problem now is two-fold: first, his administration has stupidly mismanaged every aspect of this war, which would be ironically humorous except that it's led to the deaths of thousands of Iraqi civilians (not to mention US troops). Second, the right hand has paid no attention to what the left hand is doing and the White House has let the Republican congress become riddled with corruption. Voters might not care enough about doing away with habeas corpus, but congressmen illiciting sex from pageboys will do the trick. So, he hasn't been able to accomplish what he would have liked to, and now the Democrats have a chance, if they don't fuck up, of winning at least one-half of Congress and throwing a wrench in the gears. The problem is we keep throwing money into Iraq no matter what, Bush won't back down, etc, so I don't see how the war will end before 2008. It's really a lose-lose situation no matter what, because if the Iraqis get it together Bush's aspirations at US dominance in the Middle East can come to fruition, or if we pull out and the country lapses into nastier civil war we'll have completely destroyed a nation of people who have been royally fucked by us and Saddam for decades. It's possible though that our absence in Iraq would stabilize the country, but like I said we won't accept a major troop withdrawal except on the condition of a permanent military presence around stabilized resources. Things are looking mighty bleak from here. I realize there were a lot of boldly asserted claims in this post, but if anyone wants to discuss alternatives I'd be happy to.

2:46 AM  
Blogger Scantron said...

The other thing I forgot to mention is that the administration has been building up the powers of the executive branch so that it is independent of congressional control anyway, whether Democratic or Republican. So, even if Democrats gain control of congress, Bush and his legal sophists--John Yoo, Alberto Gonzalez--will have given him enough power so that he can continue to act through the intelligence agencies and the Pentagon no matter what.

2:51 AM  

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