No one is listening to Bush or Rumsfeld or taking them seriously any more. But they keep trying the same old snake oil. Hey! It worked before!
David Frum in the National Review, of all places, had this to say about Bush’s speech to the DFW:
Again and again during the Bush presidency – and yesterday most recently – the president will agree to give what is advertised in advance as a major speech. An important venue will be chosen. A crowd of thousands will be gathered. The networks will all be invited. And after these elaborate preparations, the president says … nothing that he has not said a hundred times before.
If a president continues to do that, he is himself teaching the public and the media to ignore him – especially when the words seem (as his speech yesterday to the VFW seemed) utterly to ignore the past three months of real-world events.
I guess what is important in Bush’s mind is that the public should hear from his cherry lips that they should improve their opinions to match those given him by God and his intuition. Who needs new facts? He is making his pronouncements, and he is “President” by God’s appointment!
Then there was the recent statement from Rumsfeld:
He rejected the idea that American troops risk being caught up in a civil war over the constitution. “Just the opposite’s been happening,” he said. “People have been moving together, talking, discussing things.”
“It hasn’t happened yet,” he said of the prospect of civil war. “It is not happening now. And, obviously, it is something that one has to be attentive to and be concerned about. But I haven’t seen anything to indicate that the risk is greater today than it was yesterday or the day before.”
These were both public statements designed to push Bush’s polls back up above 40%. They haven’t been working.
We know why Bush has nothing new to say. He lives in a bubble. He has never had an interest in governing, and doesn’t read himself. With no one on hand who dares tell him what is going on, his ignorance is sad but not a surprise. Even his fervant supporters are catching on. But what’s Rumsfeld’s excuse?
What we get from the entire administration is the “same-old same-old”, and the problems in Iraq don’t get any better. Nor are the Bushites presenting us with any reason to believe they have a strategy that will work.
It’s going to be a long time until November 2008.