Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Closing the barn door after the horses have escaped

Donald Rumsfeld's incompetence has been apparent for years. Why get rid of him only now? Why couldn't Bush have kicked this loser to the curb before we lost nearly 3,000 American lives in this foolishness? The timing of this announcement, to say nothing of the decision, is as odd as it is obscenely late.

I genuinely believe that George W. Bush is petty enough to have held back the announcement of Rumsfeld's "resignation" until today so that he could steal the Democrats' thunder for this news cycle. Suddenly, the Big Story of the day is no longer the Republicans' stunning and historic loss of both houses of congress. Well done, for what it's worth. I guess. I mean, if you like playing "gotcha" with public policy, I suppose Bush can chalk this one up as a win.

But, if Rumsfeld was going to "resign," would it not have been better to make the announcement a month ago, when a display of common sense might have helped Bush and the GOP avoid losing both houses of congress? Even the most casual political observer could see that the tide was turning against the Republicans precisely because of the president's intractability and the congress' refusal to hold him to account. The public's disgust over the occupation of Iraq has been apparent for months.

I mean, if anybody really thinks this decision was only arrived at this past Sunday, I have some prime real estate in downtown Baghdad I'm willing to sell.

If Bush had acknowledged this even two weeks ago, and fired Rumsfeld for gross incompetence, the Republican Party might still be in control of the senate, at least.

If he had made the decision to fire Rumsfeld years ago, thousands of Americans and hundreds of thousands of Iraqis would still be alive.

So, yeah, you got the Democrats on this one, President Bush. You have denied them a full news cycle of celebrating over their big win last night. But, they still won. You still have a Democratic house and senate to contend with for the last two years of your presidency. Think of them as an extremely hostile, independent corporate board of directors. Get it now?

Does holding back Rumsfeld's "resignation" still taste as good as it did a minute ago? No, I didn't think so.


betmo said...

about as good as getting the saddam verdict out early as a campaign ploy- or lowering gas prices. he keeps forgetting that people aren't quite as stupid as he thinks they are.