President Bush claimed on Tuesday he has not one, but four constituencies he listens to.
One of them is us, the People. The ones who, kinda-sorta, voted him into office. The ones he kinda-sorta represents as the President of the United States of America.
His second constituency, he tells us, is the Enemy. The terrists. The ones who didn’t vote him into office, but sure are glad we kinda-sorta did. What a windfall that was!
The third constituency, Bush says, is the democratically elected (under duress, and with their country occupied by a Western nation run by a lunatic) Iraqi Government.
Yes, that would be the same Iraqi government that today helplessly observes (and, if the rumors are right about the Interior Minister and President Malaki’s association with the militias) observes and assists Iraq’s bloody sectarian civil war from the comfort of the heavily fortified U.S. Green Zone in Baghdad. The sectarian civil war which wouldn’t exist in Iraq, except for Bush’s vainglorious ego.
The fourth constituency to whom Bush claims he lends his ear is the Military.
For the record: A constituency is a body of voters or residents of a district represented by an elected legislator or official. It can be a group of patrons or supporters, too, or to a clientele, a group served by an organization or institution.
Bush can certainly claim the American people and the American military as constituencies. Since he forced it into halting, reluctant existence, I can almost go with the Iraqi government as a Bush constituency.
But the enemy? Bush represents America’s enemies?
On November 7, Bush’s primary and very real constituency, the American people, told him clearly that we were very, very unhappy with him and the Republican Party operatives that enable him. After four years, 2,950 American soldiers, and hundreds of thousands of Iraqis slaughtered, We the People finally comprehended what a tragic, preposterous mess he’s made of his baseless war in Iraq. With stunning finality, we tossed many of the enablers out of office. If we’d been able, we’d have tossed Bush out, too.
But we’re stuck with him.
In reality, there’s just one constituency that George W. Bush listens to: the one that exists only between his own ears. When he refers to the American people as wanting to win in Iraq, he’s actually referring to his personal, inner constituency, a dark, roiling, fantasy mix of God, “gut” and oh, yes, guilt.
The only one who can hear that particular constituency is George, though there are monsters working for him who claim they can hear it too, and add to it their low whispers. Bush’s inner constituency drowns out all the others except the amorphous but hydra-headed enemy, which serves as a convenient reason d’etre and will be around in one form or another forever. Perfect.
He listens to his inner constituency to the exclusion of all the others.
The most recent polls tell us that 71 percent of Americans want American soldiers out of Iraq. Some want an immediate withdrawal, others are willing to wait up to a year. Poppi Bush’s rescue team, sent in to find a way to get Junior out of his latest, horrific screw-up, said that the war is “grave and deteriorating.” They counseled him to redeploy American forces in the region while concentrating on getting the Iraqi military up to speed so that U.S. soldiers could be brought home. Predictably, there was no timeline. Equally predictably, Bush shrugged their suggestions off, evidently preferring to consult his inner constituency.
The military – the ones that Bush says he listens to so carefully – are saying that they don’t want more forces in Iraq. Gen. John Abazaid, who’s been in charge of things over there for the last three years, and who knows intimately what’s going on, told Congress last month that increasing the size of U.S. forces in Iraq would be a mistake. Presumably he told George, too.
But his voice was drowned out by Bush’s inner constituency – God, gut and guilt. Instead of drawing down forces in Iraq until they’re all home, admitting his terrible mistake and leaving his country and people to deal with his stinking legacy of death and destruction, Bush has set his sites on creating even more of it.
He’s talking about increasing forces in Iraq, from 15,000 to 60,000 more, depending on which day it is. He claims he hasn’t made a decision yet, but his friend Gen. Casey, one of those who can “hear” Bush’s inner constituency, appears to think this might work. And we all know what George really means when he says he hasn’t made up his mind or that he’s still open to discussion.
It means his mind is made up and there will be no more talk.
As it was in March, 2003, when he started the war in Iraq, this is sheer folly. There are no more forces to send. The all-volunteer U.S. military is stretched to its breaking point. Recruitment is understandably down, even as the military relaxes its standards and recruits petty criminals and white supremists into its ranks. Equipment and materiel is in short supply.
Increasing the boots on the ground in Iraq will have to happen by pulling in even more hapless reservists, increasing tour lengths for the soldiers who’re there now or sending those who’ve already pulled one or more tours in Iraq – and survived the experience — back to serve another. It’s called a surge.
The money cost of this war is astronomical, and it’s on borrowed cash and borrowed time. Yet once again, Bush tells us to be happy, go shopping.
At no time in America’s history have we ever been led by a madman, until now. And at no other time in America’s history would the American people have allowed a madman to stay in power for so long. When the Democratic Congress takes power after the New Year, they must put everything else aside and do what the Constitution demands of them as elected representatives of the People of the United States of America. They must immediately start impeachment proceedings against the madman George W. Bush and his cabinet. They must work fast to reverse the insults to the Constitution that he and his cronies have put into place and stop his delusional, headlong rush to Armageddon.