Today’s opining on the public discourse.
Sometime in the next few weeks, a special envoy of President Bush plans to meet with Sudanese President Omar Hassan al-Bashir, whose government sheltered Osama bin Laden and pursued a scorched-earth policy in southern Sudan that resulted in more than 2 million deaths.
Bashir’s government has been accused by Bush of participating in a “genocide” in Darfur, the only U.S. government use of such a strong accusation. Yet Richard S. Williamson’s visit to Khartoum follows a series of direct contacts by senior Bush administration officials with the Sudanese president, including Secretaries of State Colin L. Powell and Condoleezza Rice,
Rice’s deputies, and several special presidential envoys.
Bush has spoken to or exchanged letters with Bashir on numerous occasions, underscoring how White House policy has departed from his pointed public call to shun talks with radical tyrants and dictators. His appointees have also pursued aggressive diplomacy with North
Korea and Libya and have even conducted limited business with Cuba, Syria and Iran.
Can you say “hypocrisy,” boys and girls? These fuckers infuriate me with their “Do as we say, not as we do” bullshit.
Carpetbagger observes, “No word yet on whether the president is prepared to denounce himself.” I somehow doubt he will.
In other stupid news, McCain’s finally putting some distance between himself and Bush – by embracing a policy Bush abandoned as an abject failure:
One of the more glaring and obvious flaws in John McCain’s pitch to voters is that he’s fundamentally running on a more-of-the-same platform when voters are desperate for a change. It appears that McCain has realized it’s to his advantage to break with the president more than he has been. Unfortunately, in this case, McCain is abandoning one of the few issues Bush got right (eventually).
McCain and (who else?) Joe Lieberman teamed up this morning for an op-ed in the Wall Street Journal on U.S. policy towards Asia, and specifically presented McCain’s preferred approach towards North Korea.
American leadership is also needed on North Korea. We must use the leverage available from the U.N. Security Council resolution passed after Pyongyang’s 2006 nuclear test to ensure the full and complete declaration, disablement and irreversible dismantlement of its nuclear facilities, in a verifiable manner, which we agreed to with the other members of the six-party talks.
This, in addition to McCain’s remarks in Denver this afternoon, led to headlines like this one: “McCain Breaks with Bush Over North Korea.” One might be tempted to think, “Great! Bush has been incoherent on North Korea, seemingly going years without any policy at all, and McCain has decided to ‘break’ with this. Maybe McCain’s learning after all.”
But this would have the situation backwards. The approach McCain described today is the same policy Bush embraced for the better part of six years. It failed miserably, undermined global security, and led to an expansion of North Korea’s nuclear arsenal. Bush eventually reversed course, did a complete 180, and decided the Clinton administration’s policy was the
right one after all.
McCain is “breaking” with Bush, inasmuch as he wants to take the U.S. back to the policy that was a dangerous and humiliating failure. In other words, he thinks Bush is too liberal on North Korea, and we need to go back to Bush’s first-term failures.
Great idea! According to McCain, the problem isn’t that America’s fucked up, it’s that it’s not fucked up enough. We now have the opportunity, if we vote for McCain, to destroy America right. None of these half-measures, oh, no. If you’re gonna ruin, ruin utterly.
And, maxing out the stupidity meter for the day, we now have a “clarification” on Liz Trotta’s “Osama/Obama – hell, assassinate ‘em both!” quip:
On Monday, Ms. Trotta went back on Fox News Channel to apologize. “I am so sorry about what happened yesterday in that lame attempt at humor,” she said. “I sincerely regret it and apologize to anybody I’ve offended. It’s a very colorful political season, and many of us are making mistakes and saying things that we wish that we hadn’t said.”
“Clarification noted,” said her interviewer, the Fox News anchor Bill Hemmer.
Thanks so much for that “clarification.” I’m happy to hear that such an appalling faux pas was the result not of deep-seated animosity toward America’s black Democratic candidate, not a horribly revealing Freudian slip, but just one of those incidental slip-ups you get in a “colorful political season.” I feel ever so much better. In fact, I feel so much better, I’m willing to sell you that beachfront condo o’ mine in Yuma, AZ at a very nice price.
Buying it? Neither am I.