George W. Bush’s Agenda

Aquarian Weekly 12/15/04 REALITY CHECK


Kofi AnnanThe following is a continuation of a discussion taped in the last days of November with Republican insider and eight-year contributor to Reality Check, Georgetown.

james campion: How is this administration going to conduct foreign policy with damaged credibility at home and fence-mending abroad to be done? I ask specifically about the proposed handling of Iran and Korea, more legitimate threats to the US than Iraq, and the president’s interminable piss-fight with the UN.

Georgetown: The president has already begun mending fences with Canada, using it as a springboard for France and Germany. And it seems that now, more than ever in the past four years, France has become a major voice in foreign intelligence. Several aborted embassy attacks on American concerns due to the intel diligence of French interception have been reported. These things are normally fuzzy, but I think, this time, accurate.

The credibility issue is a fair one, and I know of your beef with re-electing a president with international egg on his face, but if the Iranians and the Koreans continue to threaten the world economy with strident war stances, it will backfire on them. I don’t think the US has to lead the charge to quell these regimes. Threat to businesses will do it for them.

jc: Are you saying this time this government errs on the side of caution?

GT: I think the rogue element inside the Pentagon to invade Iraq has been silenced for now. Many of us in the party believe, and I think the election bares this out, that the majority of the American people blame the military and the CIA for the ambiguous motivation to go to the war, and, right or wrong, see the president as making the choices they would have made based on that intelligence and fervor manifested by their over zealousness.

jc: Once again, giving the commander in chief a pass, but okay.

GT: Again, this is a fair argument, but it was not the first time, nor will it be the last that the executive branch of this republic is mislead in a crisis by its subordinates.

jc: What about this UN stuff? Specifically the Kofi Annan brother’s malfeasance in the Food for Oil mess and the usual stalling on critical issues concerning terrorism. Bush has to make a stand one way or the other, despite the hypocrisy of say, Rumsfeld who kept the mess of the Iraqi prison scandal off him, but wants to pin guilt by association on Annan.

GT: The UN stuff is too hot to handle politically. Bush cannot seem like he is pushing an opponent under the train, and the perception of someone in charge taking the fall for his people screwing up hits too close to home. I think the UN needs to clean itself up. Not that we’re blameless, because we belong to the United Nations, and rightfully so. We’re its muscle. In the end, the UN covers the right of free trade, which keeps the world together. There are still problems in the Sudan and elsewhere. The UN needs us, and we need them to help clean up after the Iraq election or to pick up the slack in securing a country headed for anarchy.

The UN needs us, and we need them to help clean up after the Iraq election or to pick up the slack in securing a country headed for anarchy.

jc: Speaking of which, is there still optimism, however guarded, that this experiment in Iraq will see the light of day before the end of the Bush administration?

GT: No. Those days are over. Now that Bush has been elected you will here a great deal more brutal and realistic language concerning Iraq. It is plain fantasy now to believe that any of us will live to see a true, steady, and solvent democracy in the Middle East. That is for the next generation to continue or abandon, maybe even as soon as the next administration.

jc: Before we touch upon domestic concerns, what the hell is Bush doing with his buddy Putin, for whom he “looked deeply into his soul”? The word we’re getting is Putin is slowly developing the blue print for a second Soviet Union and doing so by poking into the Ukraine’s political structure? Where do we stand on this for the foreseeable future?

GT: There is no way the United States can do anything but comment and smile about that. Move on.

jc: A few quick ones. Social Security reform. How hard will congress jostle this around, and how much is Bush really dedicated to this?

GT: This will not be a top priority until after the 2006 elections. Those members of congress hoping to be elected need to tread with caution over this, not to mention it really won’t begin to strain the system until the first Baby Boom retirement glut in 2010 or so. Makes no political sense to run hard at it right away.

jc: Are there people under the age of 55 that still think they’re getting anything out of the government?

GT: Apparently.

jc: How about making the tax cut permanent?

GT: Top of the list. The Republicans will muscle this through during the first session after the new year.

jc: Supreme Court judge appointees?

GT: Honestly? Only Bush knows how far right he will go and how hard he’ll fight for the choices. This is a wild card worth watching for both sides and could also effect the 2006 elections.

jc: Why, because the perception will be that Bush has slid about as far right as someone in his position can? Why keep up the centrist veil when most of the actions of this president, except for his Big Government penchant, have been socially conservative?

GT: IF you are pressing about the overturning of Roe vs. Wade, forget it. Partial birth abortion is on the docket. That’s a different animal politically. It’s the automatic weapon caveat to any legal movement on that amendment. He wants to, deep down, make a stance, but as much as I admire what he has done since 9/11, I don’t Bush has the balls.


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