The Home of Steven Barnes
Author, Teacher, Screenwriter

Monday, July 24, 2006

It's Kinda Warm...

Hot here—108 degrees Saturday, considerably cooler Sunday because of overcast. But that worried me too…an extremely hot day seems to draw mist off the ocean, leading to a cooler day…but there are blistering times ahead. 

No, I don’t blame George Bush for the temperatures.  Only a fool would do that.  But you know what?  Ten years from now, if the Global Warming model is correct, and anthrogenic (is that the right word?) we may be cursing each and every politician who didn’t sound the emergency claxon.  And Bush would certainly be among them.

Geeze, I war with bitterness about that guy.  I’ve never hated him.  I’ve never thought he was stupid.  But there seems to be a uniquely ugly list of problems in the world right now.  If the President of the United States is the powerful, influential figure he has always been stated to be, then surely he has some connection.  I’d be contemptuous of a Left-Winger who suggests Bush is responsible for all of it.  But equally contemptuous  of a Right-wing partisan who suggests that Bush had nothing to do with ANY of it, or worse, tries to blame a President out of office for six years.    Shall we take a look at a partial list?

1)     Katrina.  Even if you say that the fault was New Orleans’, and that the people screwed themselves over with lack of foresight, wouldn’t this have been a wonderful opportunity to demonstrate our national readiness for an emergency?  Instead, we watched the government flounder on every level.  Worst natural disaster in American history?  Maybe.

2)     Iran.  Seeking Nukes!  Somebody took their eye off the ball here.

3)     Korea.  Testing missiles!  Again, eyes off the ball.

4)     Iraq.  Arguably the worst foreign policy decision in our nation’s history.  Oops!  No weapons of mass destruction here…

5)     Israel-Lebanon.  Arrgh.  I was in a restaurant in DC, and saw a CNN bullitin: “WW2: Yea or Nay?”  What the hell? 

6)     Worst deficit in American history.

7)     Worst indebtedness in American history

8)     Most indicted members of a sitting administration in history.  (I might be wrong about this—I’m sure I’ll have this pointed out to me if I am.)

9)     President taking the most vacation days in history.  Something is very, very wrong with this, considering the number of problems we have.

10)     Highest gas prices in history.  People wondered what the impact would be of having so many energy-related folks working in the White House.  You know: the secret energy meetings and so forth.  Now we know!  (I know, I know.  Temporal sequence does not imply causality.  But man, it’s tempting…)

11)      9/11 itself.  The worst attack on American soil in history.

I could go on, but don’t have the heart.  Absolutely, it would be ridiculous to blame Bush for all of this.  But…isn’t it reasonable to think that the man at the helm of the ship has responsibility for something?  If he isn’t responsible for ANYTHING aren’t you saying that he is not “Response-Able”: that he is, in essence, unable to respond effectively.

The same side of the political spectrum is in charge of both Houses, the White House, and the Supreme Court.  If Liberal Democrats were in charge of all these things, and the country was in the shape it’s in, I would be SCREAMING to get them out.  But then, I’m not a partisan hack.

We have had great conservative, Republican presidents.  Bush is not one of them.  The health of this country is, I think, determined by the BALANCE between the Right and the Left.  And right now, we are more imbalanced than I’ve ever seen, and seem to be careening toward an ice berg. 

I hope, I really, really hope, that I’m wrong. 

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