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Serving at the Decider’s Pleasure


“He knows that I serve at his pleasure, and that’s that.”

These are the words of Donald Rumsfeld, revealing his job security. So, let’ see. Is Rummy King George’s court jester? How about torture designer at Abu Ghraib? Or is he the president’s concubine? All these services would provide pleasure to Bush. But it’s more than a little perverse that a war planner serves at the president’s “pleasure.”

So we have the perverse and the embarrassing-the Misleader-in-Chief’s latest Bushism. When asked about Rumsfeld’s future, George hurled an angry outburst to convince us that he wears the pants-“I’m the decider,” not the decision maker, but, alas, the “decider.” If the times were not so tragic, and if our image all over the world’s map weren’t in the toilet, the president’s language barrier would have us belly laughing.

Instead, we cringe.

Because, these truly are perilous times.

Here are some servings of evidence:

George Bush and Osama bin Laden have a symbiotic relationship, one in which the president is the 9/11 mastermind’s greatest recruitment tool for suicide bombers and bin Laden is George’s greatest boogeyman to scare the American public into believing whatever the president needs us to believe at the time. Really though, the relationship is counter productive because every time Bush stomps his aggressive foot, he makes the world safer for terrorists. Their numbers grow in strength and solidarity all over the globe because our foreign policy and the belligerent presidency of George are invasive and exploitive.

And now George has another ogre in his arsenal-Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. Our unstable leader and Iran’s unstable leader are upping the ante almost daily with threats. Imagine the reaction in the Muslim world if we used a tactical nuclear weapon, killing millions of people. One hundred percent of the survivors would strap on explosives.

These are grave times with the “decider” Bush and his other “pleasure” provider Karl Rove who obviously is confounding the civil war in Iraq with diversions that have landed smack dab in front of our faces-immigration and what to do about Rummy. Of course, Donald’s consolation prize would be the Medal of Freedom (never has it been so generously bestowed), presented by Bush to anyone who hits the curb. That’s a given. Unfortunately, Donald will stay despite demands for him to step down. The “decider” has made this clear. Just ask Karl.

Now, back to Rummy’s serving at Bush’s pleasure. I don’t know about you, but I’m battered by some disgusting images here-in fact, some downright revolting ones that make me want to soak in a cleansing tub. I do understand why George is resolute in his support of the beleaguered defense secretary. It matters little that a handful of generals are denouncing Rummy, because what we must remember is that Donald was among People Magazine’s sexiest men in 2002. Sexy eye candy and serving at the president’s pleasure-this makes for an unforgettable combination-one too great for Bush to sacrifice.

Missy Beattie lives in New York City. She’s written for National Public Radio and Nashville Life Magazine. An outspoken critic of the Bush Administration and the war in Iraq, she’s a member of Gold Star Families for Peace. She completed a novel last year, but since the death of her nephew, Marine Lance Cpl. Chase J. Comley, in Iraq on August 6,’05, she has been writing political articles. She can be reached at:



Missy Beattie has written for National Public Radio and Nashville Life Magazine. She was an instructor of memoirs writing at Johns Hopkins’ Osher Lifelong Learning Institute in BaltimoreEmail:

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