Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Money Trumps Peace

Of all the theater of the Bush years, I have always drawn a perverse pleasure from watching Junior at a press conference. Easily the dumbest president in history – making even the greatly-challenged Ronald Reagan look like a Rhodes scholar – Bush doesn’t participate in a press conference, he survives it. The look of relief on the faces of Bush’s handlers when he heads back to the shadowy safety of the inner sanctum after another embarrassing performance speaks volumes about the minor talents of their barely-passable puppet.

The attitude that Junior wants to project during a press conference is that of an impatient parent talking to annoying children. This is the tone taken by all senior Bushies, exemplified primarily these days by hired wing-nut Tony Snow. Each question is treated in a “how can you ask that?” manner, followed explanations that rarely go beyond “because we said so”. While Snow is snotty, glib and dismissive, Bush is simply ham-fisted, wrestling with words and phrases that keep bumping into each other in his empty head. All the while, he pretends to be chummy with a press corps he hardly knows.

The moments I savor in Bush pressers is when the light goes on in his head and he remembers what he is supposed to say about a given subject. At first, he puts on his “thoughtful” face. But, by the end of the sentence, he always winds up chuckling. Remembering and repeating the script they’ve given him (when he can) is a joy to Junior. He speaks as if, if he can understand things that are explained this way, what’s wrong with you? “Don’t you get it?” he wonders. “Christ, even I can figure this one out.”

You can imagine the brain-feed sessions in the Oval Office. “Mr. President, remember that big wall in Texas Stadium? What happened when balls went over the wall?” "Home run!” shouts the president. “OK, now, this escalation, uh, surge is like that big wall that we just need to get over so we can score some runs.” “Yeah, runs!” And so forth.

But, with Junior, as with all dim bulbs, a little knowledge and a clever phrase can be a dangerous thing. At his press conference on Wednesday, Bush was asked what we should say to countries that trade with Iran and that would lose an important market if that country were to be economically isolated. His off-the-cuff response was a moment of clarity rare in the carefully constructed fog of Bush Inc. No doubt it sent his handlers scurrying off to the back rooms to make sure the elite media either didn’t notice or ignored the gaffe of truth. (no need -- they ignored it)

“Sometimes, money trumps peace,” declared the president.

What a remarkable statement. Who, other than these greedheads that have run our government into the ground, talks like that? But it says a lot, opening a window into their dark souls. It explains what we are doing in Iraq.

In Iraq, money is oil. Money is contracts for Halliburton and other political contributors to provide services for our troops, security for our politicians and rebuilding the infrastructure we have destroyed. Money is the military industrial complex, that have tried to keep us stocked with bombs, tanks, guns and ammunition. Forget the maimed and dead soldiers and Iraqis, the shattered buildings and lives. The invasion and occupation of Iraq has done very well for Money in all its forms.

Money trumps peace. Of course, its so simple. If there is money to be made, then the peace be damned. And so it has been.

Thanks, Junior, for that brief, shining moment of truth.


RoseCovered Glasses said...

Politicians make no difference.

We have bought into the Military Industrial Complex (MIC) ever since we took on Russia in the Cold WAR.

Through a combination of public apathy and threats by the MIC we have let the SYSTEM get too large. It is now a SYSTEMIC problem and the SYSTEM is out of control.

I am a 2 tour Vietnam Veteran who recently retired after 36 years of working in the Defense Industrial Complex on many of the weapons systems being used by our forces as we speak.

There is no conspiracy. The SYSTEM has gotten so big that those who make it up and run it day to day in industry and government simply are perpetuating their existance.

The politicians rely on them for details and recommendations because they cannot possibly grasp the nuances of the environment and the BIG SYSTEM.

So, the system has to go bust and then be re-scaled, fixed and re-designed to run efficiently and prudently, just like any other big machine that runs poorly or becomes obsolete or dangerous.

This situation will right itself through trauma. I see a government ENRON on the horizon, with an associated house cleaning.

The next president will come and go along with his appointees and politicos. The event to watch is the collapse of the MIC.

For more details see:

Anonymous said...

Surprise to know that this comment has been on the right wing radio shows all day. Not as a stupid guffaw, but as a horrible truth. Uttered by a president, makes it even more so. He needs to be taken to task by his own party as he seems to be. This can not stand. Money never trumps peace. If it does, we need to examine ourselves as a people. I have found the republicans to be more willing to string up their elected officials by the heels when they feel those people have gone awry. The democrats score a big fat zero in this house cleaning methodology. When I first heard this, I wondered if it would be able to be kept quiet as when Hillary said she would confiscate the profits of oil companies and other privately owned companies. Did you know you couldn't even find it in the paper? Anyway, long story short, the democratic policy people agreed to push very hard with all their press and media to make George Bush appear to be a fool, a dummy, handicapped 8 years ago. They admit that freely. And so, you all underestimated him, and he won the brass ring. If you were in the ring with Mike Tyson, I could tell you, he's a sissy-boy. Ding! Ding! Goodnight. Doesn't really work, does it? Actually in tracking George Bush's record,you would find he was a B+ in school, high IQ, and his service record in tactics training and technical aptitudes for fighter school..., scores were in the top 5. Not 5%, but top 5 recorded in the twelve years the commander of that school taught. Surprised? Don't be. Just keep listening to the pundents that are agenda driven. You will never get the correct info to make correct choices. You will never know what you're up against. You will never have respect for anything let alone the office of the president of United States because the media may choose for their own reasons to make them look the town fool. But if it makes you feel better, call everybody junior. It's insulting and it brings you down. Read between the lines. Don't believe everything they tell you.
Being a person who tracks the lies in media and the reasons for those lies, I can only say I will give this president time to explain himself as I would give anyone who makes such a "cold" statement.

Mike Plaisted said...

Wow. This Anony's statement takes several twists and turns before landing...where? Could have used some paragraph breaks, if only for clarity sake.

The reason I call Bush "Junior" is because that was his nickname before the GOP machine revved him up for his presidential run by propping him up as Texas governor. The "GW" vs. "GHW" distiction was only invented then.

In addition, I don't need MSM columnists or Dem operatives to tell me Bush is dim -- I figured that out myself just by watching him in action all these years. I have always thought that you didn't need to be there live in-person to interpret a presidentinal speech or debate or press conference -- the magic of instant video means you can watch, ignore the commentary and draw your own conclusions, which is what I do. The gears grinding in his head as he searches for the right cue card to read is almost audible.

You can defensively cite his grades (not sure you have those all quite right, but, whatever) and try to argue, against all evidence that he is not as dumb as he looks, but, smart or not, Bush is an empty suit. He has about as much to do with what's going on in his own government as I do. Like Reagan before him, others are pulling the strings. What is surprising is that they have chosen to pull off this stunt this time with such an unatractive, graceless pud.

Yes, I respect the office of the presidency. This only adds to my outrage that it has been soiled all these years by Junior Bush and his power-grabbing cabal. We'll somehow recover from all this, but January 2009 will come none too soon.

William Tyroler said...


As I read your post, you see Bush as endorsing the sentiment that money may have more value than peace. However, viewed in context, his remark makes just the opposite point. The transcript of the press conference is posted here, with the relevant exchange being as follows:

Q A lot of our allies in Europe do a lot of business with Iran, so I wonder what your thoughts are about how you further tighten the financial pressure on Iran, in particular, if it also means economic pain for a lot of our allies?

THE PRESIDENT: It's an interesting question. One of the problems -- not specifically on this issue, just in general -- let's put it this way, money trumps peace, sometimes. In other words, commercial interests are very powerful interests throughout the world. And part of the issue in convincing people to put sanctions on a specific country is to convince them that it's in the world's interest that they forgo their own financial interest.

And John, that's why sometimes it's tough to get tough economic sanctions on countries. And I'm not making any comment about any particular country, but you touched on a very interesting point.

And so, therefore, we're constantly working with nations to convince them that what really matters in the long run is to have the environment so peace can flourish. In the Iranian case, I firmly believe that if they were to have a weapon, it would make it difficult for peace to flourish. And, therefore, I'm working with people to make sure that that concern trumps whatever commercial interests may be preventing governments from acting. I make no specific accusation with that statement. It's a broad statement. But it's an accurate assessment of what sometimes can halt multilateral diplomacy from working.

Seems more than clear to me that Bush was bemoaning the European tendency to sacrifice prevention of a nuclearized Iran for some European trade with Iran. I certainly agree with him on that point.

In any event event, thanks for taking the time to post your commentary on a variety of subjects, and for enabling responsive remarks. I look forward to reading your various views.

Bill Tyroler

Anonymous said...

Thanks for giving me the ability to actually watch a Junior press conference without my head exploding. I can look at that awful thoughtful look on his face and know that others are chuckling that he has once again remembered what Rove has told him to say.

I feel a little guilty that I can keep a sense of humor about this since my life is not on the line every day in Iraq. I can only imagine that there is a contingency of people there that would laugh at the absurdity of their situation as I would likely do if I were there. The absurd part being that the while they are honoring their commitment to the United States government their commander in chief assumes so little of the responsibilty to his job.

Anonymous said...

Dont take my thoughts to mean I like Bush,anymore than the rest.He simply believes.The Dems have no beliefs what-so-ever.
Expediency."Pole-watchers" say anything to get elected...that is their game." To each according to his need. From each, "according to his ability" is their mantra(marx).Socialism.Invested in defeat.I've worked with "Green...Rep,and Dems." Democratic leaders today are...well a lot like Clinton(I worked on his campaign, and yes I did believe, for a time).He wouldn't know the truth if it hit him in the head.But he could spot an advantage a mile off!
A recent pole asked Dems if they want to win in Iraq. 82% said no!!!Does it make you want to vomit? All I ask of either side is the truth ,as they see it.I expect, and demand, that the Dems immediately pull all funding for the troops.End this sherade.Stop farting around behind the scenes.Political brinksmanship.Positioning.Be who they are.BELIEVE!!!Let yourself be seen by the AMERICAN people for what you are i say.I am just so sick of them skulking in the shadows.Then,even if the president(who does believe)orders our soldiers to beat these terrorists with sticks, and stones if need be-we will have the truth.One side striving for victory.The other inexorably locked in their own souls,and minds.Wishing,and praying for defeat and all that shall follow.So that they may advance.
The coming campain i predict,will be one where they will run against Bush.Being careful to put forward little in the way of ideas.Their real agenda,carefully hidden ,till victory is achieved.Then we will see how socialism works for us all.Bush looks you in the eye ,and says- albiet it badly...what he means to do.You will never,never have that luxury,with the snake oil salesmen,coming around the bend.