Bush’s Cry-Wolf Strategy Finally Falls on Deaf Ears
I don’t claim to know any more or less than anybody else about the current financial mess, who is to blame or how it gets solved. But at least one reason why lawmakers, most of them Republican, rejected the modified bipartisan proposal to save the economy Monday is because George Bush couldn’t convince the country that action in less than a week would doom us.
Not that the ploy wasn’t painfully obvious. The original document presented to Congress last week — the one that apparently even I read before John McCain – asked for extraordinary executive power to contain the credit crunch and promised complete collapse of the financial markets if not enacted with as little deliberation as humanly possible.
As Jon Stewart reminded us on a Daily Show sketch, the president’s speech mirrored the one he gave to talk Congress into invading Iraq before Saddam took out Denver with weapons of mass destruction. His words were as vacuous as the ones he used to tell us to go shopping in the wake of the 9/11 attacks while he and the boys took care of the terrorists.
Television commentators, each one as clueless as the rest of us, kept reminding us throughout the week of the grim consequences if Congress didn’t pass some version of the Bush plan. But bullshit detectors went off in all corners of the country and even, thankfully, in the halls of Congress.
And guess what? On Monday, Congress blinked. It took almost eight years, but today even Republicans see the Bush administration for what it is, bankrupt, in its death throes, crying wolf again, hopefully for the last time.