FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail

Evaluating Bush with the Bhutto Corruption Standard

by MISSY BEATTIE

Ms. Bhutto and her father and political mentor, Zulfikar Ali Bhutto, were democratic, but imperfect political leaders – imperious, indifferent to human rights and, in her case, tainted by serious charges of corruption. (New York Times Editorial, December 28, 2007)

Imperious, indifferent to human rights, tainted by serious charges of corruption-this description of Ms. Bhutto is also a perfect portrayal of George W. Bush and his administration.

We’ve heard and seen Bush proclaim that he’s the “decider.” We’ve watched as he ignores advice from world leaders, including the Pope, and those who know the culture of the Middle East. He doesn’t conceal his scorn. We’ve witnessed the stubbornness his dwindling supporters call resolve. His critics, who are legion, wince when he speaks, embarrassed that he holds the highest office in the land. He is the butt of jokes on the Internet, of syndicated cartoonists, of singers, comedians, columnists, late-night television hosts, playwrights, movie producers, and of authors who have made a bundle off his Bushisms. Many of us have called him stupid and inept.

But he is not.

Instead, Bush knows exactly what he’s doing. He knew less than two months after the invasion of Iraq when he landed on an aircraft carrier under a “Mission Accomplished” banner that he’d achieved his goal of endless war.

He uses words like “sacrifice” and “freedom” to inspire our young to join the military while talking “terror,” “mushroom clouds,” and “Islamofascism” to color code our fear. He is a master manipulater.

By loading the Supreme Court with ultraconservative Justices, he advances his political-Christian agenda.

Furthermore, Bush has without precedent used signing statements to disregard more than 750 laws, including a ban on torture. This systematic action allows Bush to ignore legislation passed by Congress. According to this president, the Constitution gives him the right to take power from the legislative branch. Back to the court-Justice Sam Alito is a huge fan of signing statements and unchecked executive power.

Perhaps Bush’s greatest coup has been as a “uniter, not a divider,” one of his campaign promises. Certainly, he has united Congress so tightly that we no longer have a two-party system. George W. Bush has neutered the Democrats with surgical accuracy. No matter how loudly they bellow that they will challenge him, that he will receive no more blank checks for war, they capitulate. They pose no threat to his unquenchable thirst for unitary power regardless of the electorate’s demand for change and a certainty that this country is on a perilous path.

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: Missybeat@aol.com

 

 

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: missybeat@gmail.com

More articles by:

CounterPunch Magazine

minimag-edit

August 24, 2016
John Pilger
Provoking Nuclear War by Media
Jonathan Cook
The Birth of Agro-Resistance in Palestine
Eric Draitser
Ajamu Baraka, “Uncle Tom,” and the Pathology of White Liberal Racism
Jack Rasmus
Greek Debt and the New Financial Imperialism
Robert Fisk
The Sultan’s Hit List Grows, as Turkey Prepares to Enter Syria
Abubakar N. Kasim
What Did the Olympics Really Do for Humanity?
Renee Parsons
Obamacare Supporters Oppose ColoradoCare
Alycee Lane
The Trump Campaign: a White Revolt Against ‘Neoliberal Multiculturalism’
Edward Hunt
Maintaining U.S. Dominance in the Pacific
George Wuerthner
The Big Fish Kill on the Yellowstone
Jesse Jackson
Democrats Shouldn’t Get a Blank Check From Black Voters
Kent Paterson
Saving Southern New Mexico from the Next Big Flood
Arnold August
RIP Jean-Guy Allard: A Model for Progressive Journalists Working in the Capitalist System
August 23, 2016
Diana Johnstone
Hillary and the Glass Ceilings Illusion
Bill Quigley
Race and Class Gap Widening: Katrina Pain Index 2016 by the Numbers
Ted Rall
Trump vs. Clinton: It’s All About the Debates
Eoin Higgins
Will Progressive Democrats Ever Support a Third Party Candidate?
Kenneth J. Saltman
Wall Street’s Latest Public Sector Rip-Off: Five Myths About Pay for Success
Binoy Kampmark
Labouring Hours: Sweden’s Six-Hour Working Day
John Feffer
The Globalization of Trump
Gwendolyn Mink – Felicia Kornbluh
Time to End “Welfare as We Know It”
Medea Benjamin
Congress Must Take Action to Block Weapon Sales to Saudi Arabia
Halyna Mokrushyna
Political Writer, Daughter of Ukrainian Dissident, Detained and Charged in Ukraine
Manuel E. Yepe
Tourism and Religion Go Hand-in-Hand in the Caribbean
ED ADELMAN
Belted by Trump
Thomas Knapp
War: The Islamic State and Western Politicians Against the Rest of Us
Nauman Sadiq
Shifting Alliances: Turkey, Russia and the Kurds
Rivera Sun
Active Peace: Restoring Relationships While Making Change
August 22, 2016
Eric Draitser
Hillary Clinton: The Anti-Woman ‘Feminist’
Robert Hunziker
Arctic Death Rattle
Norman Solomon
Clinton’s Transition Team: a Corporate Presidency Foretold
Ralph Nader
Hillary’s Hubris: Only Tell the Rich for $5000 a Minute!
Russell Mokhiber
Save the Patients, Cut Off the Dick!
Steven M. Druker
The Deceptions of the GE Food Venture
Elliot Sperber
Clean, Green, Class War: Bill McKibben’s Shortsighted ‘War on Climate Change’
Binoy Kampmark
Claims of Exoneration: The Case of Slobodan Milošević
Walter Brasch
The Contradictions of Donald Trump
Michael Donnelly
Body Shaming Trump: Statue of Limitations
Weekend Edition
August 19, 2016
Friday - Sunday
Carl Boggs
Hillary and the War Party
Jeffrey St. Clair
Roaming Charges: Prime Time Green
Andrew Levine
Hillary Goes With the Flow
Dave Lindorff
New York Times Shames Itself by Attacking Wikileaks’ Assange
Gary Leupp
Could a Russian-Led Coalition Defeat Hillary’s War Plans?
Conn Hallinan
Dangerous Seas: China and the USA
Joshua Frank
Richard Holbrooke and the Obama Doctrine
FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail