Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Fingernails on a Chalkboard

Everyone has met someone whose voice just absolutely grates on you, right? Of course you have; in fact, each of us is probably one of those people for somebody else – It’s a prevalent phenomenon… Now, for me, there are certain strategies involved in dealing with such people: If the person in question close to me, say, from church or work, I will make a real effort to curb whatever autonomic function that stirs up such a reaction within me. If, however, the person is somebody with whom my relationship is casual, I’ll just avoid contact with them like I would a plague rat. This latter strategy is effective for people like Rush Limbaugh, Fran Drescher, the guy who sells Oxyclean on TV, or, say, our President and Commander in Chief.

Why, you ask, would I raise a blog with such a topic? Because on the way to work this morning, I was subjected to the President’s press conference, that’s why. At first, I was just gonna put it on ignore, but suddenly recalling James Baker’s adage that it is important to communicate with your adversaries, I decided to listen in. And then I started taking notes based on what I heard…

The first thing that struck me is was the reason that The Shrub’s voice bothers me so much, (Which is probably the reason that John Stewart has such a good time poking fun at it): It is, quite simply, because the voice of our President, the leader of the greatest super power in the world, always sounds strident, pissy, rude, and petulant, although not necessarily in that order. I listened to Dubyah speak to the reporters, wondering if he had any of their names right, or if they just roll their eyes and ask anyway when he appears to be pointing at them. I heard him get a question he didn’t like, to which The Leader of the Free World responded, “Nice try,” and “You think you can just ask whatever you want.” Uhhh, I thought, is this a trick press conference? Is this the U.S. of A.? Do we have a free press? You mean our reporters aren’t allowed to ask whatever they want? Really? Dang, I feel silly now, I mean, heck, I’ve been buying this openness bullshit for some time now!

I listened also to see if he would actually answer any of the questions, and of course, he didn’t – Oh, don’t get me wrong – He spoke after a question was asked, but it was done in latter days Reagan style; “What a beautiful country is this land of ours…” When asked if he was concerned about the fact that public opinion seems squarely against our involvement in Iraq, he worked that into a statement indicating that failure in Iraq will doom future generations of Americans to lives filled with terror… He then added that, regardless of what the poles say, he was only “Interested in the path that leads to victory,” and that “Most Americans believe that we can win in Iraq,” and that said conflict is, “The calling of our generation.” Now, other than from deep up his Presidential ass, I have no idea where he came up with those “facts.” A question about what specifically he intended to do to keep the economy on track in light of the huge costs generated by the Iraq conflict brought a rambling response about how nuclear energy was “Renewable,” and ‘Generates not one greenhouse gas, that commuting Americans “Don’t drive more than 20 or 40 miles,”, and how new battery technology will allow those commuters to travel, “Without using any gas.” What all this illuminates, clearly and brightly, is that our Fearless Leader is dangerously delusional and completely out of touch with reality: There are, of course, other possible analyses, but my supposition seems, sadly, to be the most accurate scenario.

There was more, but it was, for the most part, similar to this… What this tells me is that it is dangerous for us to discount this man, and to not pay attention to what he is saying and doing. Those that made him will not go quietly into the night. They will find another stooge to throw up in ’08, and if we want to get out of this house of horrors, we’d best pay close attention and be ready to act. It may be like listening to fingernails on a chalk board, but nonetheless, we’d better listen.

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