Tuesday, September 13, 2005

"Full" responsibility

Bush's half-assed "taking responsibility" statement is pure publicity stunt. There has to be an independent commission to investigate and make public the causes of the governmental failures that took place around Hurricane Katrina, and that is that. Bush's phony, weaselly statement today is not nearly good enough. And it won't be good enough politically, either: it just looks desperate.

Boy that Roberts is a slippery one isn't he? He's all "I might have to rule on this" and "the court recently granted cert. to that," and then he makes you feel bad for asking and even cites the damn paragraph number in the Judicial Code of Ethics that says you're an asshole.

Even so, right out of the gate this morning Roberts confirmed that he believed in the right to privacy and called Roe "settled precedent." Not bad, grist for the mill. The hearings were definitely boring, but Democrats did hit a sizable number of right notes, forcing Roberts to confront the lousy Reagan policies he was a part of. And then tonight I heard Susan Estrich on Fox News saying she doesn't understand why Bush nominated such a pantywaist. That's a good sign. Maybe Limbaugh won't like him! What does Ann Coulter think? Nothing will speed the implosion of the Bush administration better than a divided right!

So I'd say things are going pretty much according to plan...


Macky Olé said...

But if Bush had made a *full-assed* statement (that is, good enough for the left) that obviously wouldn't serve him well either, politically speaking. He had no choice. This statement had to be made and he took the path of least resistance by being half-assed about it. Any politician in his position would have done the same thing, I think.

I agree with you though, it's going to bury him more anyway. It would be different if the man had taken responsibility for some of the other blunders during his administration, but this is too little too late.

Rob said...

Just so. But he could have taken responsibility *sooner*, or *better*. Bush said what he had to say to get headlines, but because he waited until the damage (actual and political) was done, he looks weak, defensive.

A better politician would've gotten in front of the story. A better *president* would have ensured that FEMA was prepared for the disaster in the first place.

Kell said...

Too little, too late. Agreed. However, I must admit that there's still an ounce of surprise in me that he "took responsiblity" for *something.* I mean, this is Bush we're talking about--the guy who thinks he's a prophet to god and therefore infallible.

If nothing else I was delighted to see him squirm. Doesn't sound like he'll be too active about getting some answers on why rescue efforts were jacked up--he just wants someone to tell him. Then he'll create some bullshit called the "No Person Left Behind Natural Disaster Bill" which he'll abstractly describe as ensuring man, woman, and child, young and old, a speedy and safe recovery in the face of Mother Nature. Then the Republicans will clap their hands on Fox news and all will hail it as a historically important moment that puts our fears to rest about natural disasters. Until California has another major earthquake and breaks off the mainland.

Rob said...

Isn't it funny how Bush finally "took responsibility" at a moment when his poll numbers are sliding into the 30s? It's weakness. The key is to get an independent commission to investigate, and then come election time ('06, '08) blanket the airwaves with ads of Bush telling ol' Brownie that he's doing a heckuva job. Message: Republicans are incompetent and corrupt and they are weakening the nation.

Anonymous said...

I was watching the hearings today (it is strangely hypnotic) and Schumer (D-N.Y.) comically addressed the very "slippery" topic you mentioned:

"It's as if we ask you what movies you like, and you say, 'I like movies with good acting.' And if I ask you if you like 'Casablanca' and you tell me, 'Lots of people like 'Casablanca.''"

To which Roberts cleverly replied:

'Doctor Zhivago' and 'North by Northwest,'"


Rob said...

Damn, he's good. Even a liberal like me likes North by Northwest!

Politically, Dems can either try to paint him as a.) too extremely right-wing to belong on the court, or b.) as an uncharacteristically moderate and conciliatory choice by the president. I guess it's been obvious which approach I think will be more beneficial.

Voting to confirm Roberts will also pay big dividends for Dems should Bush nominate a more confrontational pick to fill the second vacancy. Look at how reasonable we are! We supported Roberts, but the president has left us no choice but to filibuster [Edith Clement/William Pryor/etc.]!