Do Bush and Cheney Want Republicans to Lose?

David Corn asks whether Bush and Cheney want the Republicans to lose tomorrow, citing Bush's recent endorsement of Rumsfeld, his refusal to acknowledge reality in Iraq, and Cheney's decision to go hunting on Election Day. A more likely explanation for Bush's actions: an arrogant inability to accept the consequences of his inept decision-making. And from Cheney's perspective: hiding from reality in a duck blind is more pleasant than confronting it.

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    do they want to lose? (5.00 / 1) (#1)
    by scribe on Mon Nov 06, 2006 at 01:45:14 PM EST
    Maybe.  If they lose, then they can play the fighting underdog oppressed by the wacko SF Liberals and the liberal media through the next two years, all in anticipation of running a real thug in '08, someone who'll put the Torture Act (it'll still be law then - bank on that) to use to smite the liberals and finish the work of creating the Dominionist theocracy they so lust for.

    "shooting the bird" (4.00 / 1) (#2)
    by Edger on Mon Nov 06, 2006 at 01:56:56 PM EST
    Corn quotes Cheney saying:
    "We've got the basic strategy right." He added, "It may not be popular with the public--it doesn't matter in the sense that we have to continue the mission and do what we think is right. And that's exactly what we're doing. We're not running for office. We're doing what we think is right."

    and asks:

    ...if 71 percent do not have faith in the White House's Iraq policy, why would Cheney make a point of declaring--defiantly--that he and Bush are committed to racing down that unpopular road? It was as if he were shooting the bird at the American public.

    He is "shooting the bird", I think. They've shown, as Corn explained so clearly, that they don't give a damn what anyone thinks. They know it's lost tomorrow. They're basically saying fu*k you to the whole country and the world. They'll fight tooth and nail, and veto everything that comes out of a Democratic controlled House that doesn't go their way, and claim "inherent executive power" for any trouble the Senate gives them.

    And Rumsfeld is a hero to the neocons. Bush is not going to get rid of him. And they are going to continue following their neocon dream and probably try to realize their Iran fantasy sometime in the next two years.

    Operation Comeback, or how the neocons plan to save themselves.

    Prepare to Bomb Iran. Make no mistake, President Bush will need to bomb Iran's nuclear facilities before leaving office.
    The global thunder against Bush when he pulls the trigger will be deafening, and it will have many echoes at home. It will be an injection of steroids for organizations such as MoveOn.org. We need to pave the way intellectually now and be prepared to defend the action when it comes. In particular, we need to help people envision what the world would look like with a nuclear-armed Iran. Apart from the dangers of a direct attack on Israel or a suitcase bomb in Washington, it would mean the end of the global nonproliferation regime and the beginning of Iranian dominance in the Middle East.

    As usual, it's all about them. Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld, and the neocons see all the negative press and opposition as a PR problem for them. Nothing Else. Human lives, including American lives, are incidental numbers. Collateral damage. As is Americas reputation.

    They simply do not care what happens tomorrow.

    Perhaps (none / 0) (#3)
    by Patrick on Mon Nov 06, 2006 at 02:14:21 PM EST
    The American people just need a reminder about every 12 years or so.  

    Re: reminder (none / 0) (#4)
    by Edger on Mon Nov 06, 2006 at 02:15:23 PM EST

    What do you think? (none / 0) (#26)
    by Patrick on Mon Nov 06, 2006 at 11:15:16 PM EST
    Your a smart person...

    They do not care. (none / 0) (#5)
    by Edger on Mon Nov 06, 2006 at 03:22:18 PM EST
    Bush, Cheney and Rumsfeld are going to do things over the next two years that will make eveything they've done in the past six years pale in comparison, and look like completely innocent sweetness and light. Like childs play.

    The little respect America has left in the world will vanish.
    They do not care.

    The American economy will be irreparably damaged.
    They do not care.

    America will become a pariah in the world - a rogue state.
    They do not care.

    Americans will be safe nowhere in the world.
    They do not care.

    Many people will die.
    They do not care.

    Somehow, something needs to be done about the Military Commissions Bill...

    Corn's reasoning is missing something... oh yeah, (none / 0) (#6)
    by Gabriel Malor on Mon Nov 06, 2006 at 03:52:11 PM EST

    Let's look at his evidence for the crazy idea that the White House intends to lose tomorrow:

    First, the President continues to support Secretary Rumsfeld. Whether this is right or wrong, the President's support has been consistent. Moreover, if the President is still optimistic about Iraq, why would turn against Rumsfeld?

    Corn answers that question for us: "Rumsfeld is the poster boy for that debacle." Apparently Corn thinks that it's appropriate for Bush to kick out a Secretary who he still agrees with just so he can get the support of the Military Times. That's the very definition of unprincipled cynicism. Furthermore, I'd be interested to know which voters Corn thinks are basing their vote on Rumsfeld's retention.

    Second, Dick Cheney told reporters that the Administration would "stay the course." Well, that's not new at all. Again, Corn seems to think that the White House should roll over on itself--and those Republican candidates who still support the war--days before the election.

    This comes solidly under the category of "disingenuous advice." The White House still supports the mission in Iraq. Voters who do not agree with that should vote for someone other than Bush or Cheney. Oh, wait...neither are going to be on Tuesday's ballots.

    This is the strongest reason that the Administration has chosen to take actions which just further policies and attitudes already adopted. The president and vice president are not running for office. They've apparently made a concious decision not to tremble the water.

    Which brings me to Corn's third piece of evidence: Cheney as Fudd. Not only is it within character for the Vice President to lay low, but it furthers the "stay the course" idea that the Administration has been following for months. (Incidentally, I wonder what story Corn would have chosen to write if Bush and Cheney had chosen to fly all of the country. Maybe something with "frantic" in the title?)

    Also, I wonder if there's some little bit of interest in reminding a few voters of the gun control issue, one which has been largely ignored this election season (and which not coincidentally has been blamed for recent Democratic defeats).

    All this sums up as: Bush and Cheney are acting like Bush and Cheney. Quelle horreur! Now, it's perfectly all right to believe that the President "refuses to acknowledge reality." But that's a long way from believing the President actually wants to lose tomorrow.

    Un-reasoning (none / 0) (#8)
    by Edger on Mon Nov 06, 2006 at 04:03:57 PM EST
    Nice set of strawmen. Got any more?

    Strawmen? (none / 0) (#11)
    by Gabriel Malor on Mon Nov 06, 2006 at 04:21:45 PM EST
    I addressed exactly those points raised by Corn in his article. How is that "strawmen"? Maybe you could provide a little reasoning of your own. ;)

    BTW, I love it when you talk down to me, Edger.


    Martial Law (none / 0) (#7)
    by Edger on Mon Nov 06, 2006 at 03:53:01 PM EST
    Bush Moves Toward Martial Law
    Public Law 109-364, or the "John Warner Defense Authorization Act of 2007" (H.R.5122) (2), which was signed by the commander in chief on October 17th, 2006, in a private Oval Office ceremony, allows the President to declare a "public emergency" and station troops anywhere in America and take control of state-based National Guard units without the consent of the governor or local authorities, in order to "suppress public disorder."

    President Bush seized this unprecedented power on the very same day that he signed the equally odious Military Commissions Act of 2006. In a sense, the two laws complement one another. One allows for torture and detention abroad, while the other seeks to enforce acquiescence at home, preparing to order the military onto the streets of America. Remember, the term for putting an area under military law enforcement control is precise; the term is "martial law."

    My what a short memory you have, Grandma... (none / 0) (#9)
    by Gabriel Malor on Mon Nov 06, 2006 at 04:18:55 PM EST
    Have you forgotten the outcry following Katrina when Bush didn't immediately federalize the National Guard? Perhaps it would surprise you to know that he couldn't do that under then extant federal law without the consent of the state governors. As Senator Leahy notes, that would be a violation of posse comitatus.

    This law--according to globalresearch.ca--remedies that problem. It's a little hypocritical to demand action and then cry foul when you get what you want:

    the President may employ the armed forces, including the National Guard in Federal service, to restore public order and enforce the laws of the United States when, as a result of a natural disaster, epidemic, or other serious public health emergency, terrorist attack or incident, or other condition in any State or possession of the United States, the President determines that domestic violence has occurred to such an extent that the constituted authorities of the State or possession are incapable of ("refuse" or "fail" in) maintaining public order, "in order to suppress, in any State, any insurrection, domestic violence, unlawful combination, or conspiracy.

    However, the text of the law is currently unavailable. Nor could I find a discussion of the questioned provisions in either the Senate report on the bill, the House report on the bill, or the conference report. I would be interested to know how often this provision was linked to Katrina and New Orleans.


    I knew you had more... (none / 0) (#10)
    by Edger on Mon Nov 06, 2006 at 04:21:25 PM EST
    ...strawmen. :-)

    But then, your job is to justify these guys no matter what light is shone on them, isn't it?


    Oh. I get it. (none / 0) (#12)
    by Gabriel Malor on Mon Nov 06, 2006 at 04:22:36 PM EST
    This is a new strategy. Very nice, edger. I almost thought you'd want to reason about this in good faith.

    GOOD FAITH (none / 0) (#15)
    by Edger on Mon Nov 06, 2006 at 04:59:43 PM EST
    ...nice to see the Nobel committee is finally honoring a retard.

    Actually, Ace, some Americans still "give a rat's ass" what the Europeans think.

    We call them "liberals". See also, "slow learners".

    Posted by: Gabriel Malor on October 12, 2006 06:44 PM

    Not a good gotcha moment. (none / 0) (#18)
    by Gabriel Malor on Mon Nov 06, 2006 at 06:44:18 PM EST
    Edger, I appreciate you quoting me (repeatedly) from when I sarcastically called liberals "slow learners" while I was yuk, yuk, yukking it up at Ace's.

    I was not at that time engaged in a reasoned discussion with someone of a different political persuasion--Ace's comments don't roll that way. For that reason it's not a good "gotcha moment." All you've really discovered is that I have on at least one occasion laughed off a liberal talking point and that I was (not suprisingly--I mean, Hello, don't you know me by now after all that Googling?) less than impressed at the ability of liberals to observe the world around them and learn from it, at least on that particular point.

    The observation in question on that particular day in October was that, despite the liberal talking point that the US reputation among the world has been ruined or at least near-irreparably harmed, China still works with us on North Korea, Japan and South Korea still work with us on the trade deal, Germany and France still works with us on Iran, and Great Britain still works with us on the Middle East.

    So I laughed it off with the slow learner comment. (And I must say, having to explain it to you is not helping your case.) Come to think of it, I'm not finding so much reasoned discussion in these comments either, y'know?


    Strawman? (none / 0) (#19)
    by Repack Rider on Mon Nov 06, 2006 at 07:17:08 PM EST
    despite the liberal talking point that the US reputation among the world has been ruined or at least near-irreparably harmed,

    Just so we can be sure that this is not just another GOP strawman argument, can you quote a liberal on this and show evidence that other liberals agree with your source?

    Oh.  I see.  It IS a strawman.

    Thanks for clearing that up.  I figured that if you really had a point, you would have made it, and apparently I figured right.


    Tsk tsk tsk, too easy. (none / 0) (#20)
    by Gabriel Malor on Mon Nov 06, 2006 at 07:53:51 PM EST
    I will do just as you ask and provide examples liberals saying that the US reputation has "been ruined or at least near-irreparably harmed." But first I want indicate my dismay and irritation that you're accusing me of presenting strawmen.

    I started commenting in this particular thread when Edger (off topic, I might add) posted his link and excerpt to the article about the expanded Presidential power to federalize the National Guard.  I wrote that Bush was criticized for failing to do just that during the Katrina disaster and that it's hardly fair to complain about getting exactly what was asked for.

    At that point, Edger posted--without any reasoning whatsover--that my comment was a strawman. I'm sure you can read the rest. Needless to say, I wasn't the one driving this particular train off the rails. I've responded each time with patience and good nature and each time have been labeled unfairly for it.

    And now, to answer your question:

    Here's Jeralyn before Election 2004 with a post entitled: "Polls: America's Reputation is Suffering World-Wide." She goes on to note that can be fixed on Election Day.

    Here's the transcript (hosted here at TalkLeft, no less) of remarks from the senate floor in May of 2004. In it, Senator Durbin notes that "When our Government engages in these kinds of abuses, we project a negative image abroad, creating anti-American sentiment around the world that is virtually impossible for us to deal with."

    Here's a post from May of this year, which TChris entitles: "Credibility Squandered." In it, Edger himself writes "The squandering started in November 2000. It was complete by November 2004. Credibility Squandered or The Adventures of Shrub Baby."

    Another poster, whose identity is lost to us after the site move wrote "It will probably take a minimum of 50 years to rectify the damage to our reputation and image this illegitimate trash administration has inflicted on us and the World. Assuming, of course, we're all still around to get that chance."

    On this post, created by TChris just last month, another anonymous poster writes "It is no wonder america is the most hated country in the world; that reputation is very well-deserved. Frankly, america makes me physically sick and i am moving overseas as soon as i possibly can."

    Many more examples exist on this very site and can be found right here.


    Giggling & Obsessive Self Justification (none / 0) (#21)
    by Edger on Mon Nov 06, 2006 at 08:01:10 PM EST
    Repack, what do you think? I'm really getting concerned for Gabriel here. Will this will help him deal with his giggling and his compulsion to explain away his comments, do you think?

    The Guardian, Friday November 3, 2006
    British believe Bush is more dangerous than Kim Jong-il
    · US allies think Washington threat to world peace
    · Only Bin Laden feared more in United Kingdom

    America is now seen as a threat to world peace by its closest neighbours and allies, according to an international survey of public opinion published today that reveals just how far the country's reputation has fallen among former supporters since the invasion of Iraq.

    Carried out as US voters prepare to go to the polls next week in an election dominated by the war, the research also shows that British voters see George Bush as a greater danger to world peace than either the North Korean leader, Kim Jong-il, or the Iranian president, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. Both countries were once cited by the US president as part of an "axis of evil", but it is Mr Bush who now alarms voters in countries with traditionally strong links to the US.

    Yuk, yuk, yuk, indeed.


    They do not care. (none / 0) (#13)
    by Edger on Mon Nov 06, 2006 at 04:40:43 PM EST
    Operation Comeback, or how the neocons plan to save themselves:

    • Prepare to Bomb Iran.

    Currently in the Persian Gulf-Arabian Sea, Indian Ocean:

    USS Enterprise (CVN 65) - Persian Gulf

    Iwo Jima Expeditionary Strike Group (ESG):

    • USS Iwo Jima (LHD 7) - Persian Gulf
      USS Nashville (LPD 13) - Persian Gulf
      USS Whidbey Island (LSD 41) - Persian Gulf

    Boxer Expeditionary Strike Group (ESG):

    • USS Boxer (LHD 4) - Indian Ocean
      USS Dubuque (LPD 8) - Indian Ocean
      USS Comstock (LSD 45) - Indian Ocean

    Republicans to Lose? (none / 0) (#14)
    by HeadScratcher on Mon Nov 06, 2006 at 04:53:41 PM EST
    Come on. Let's say that Ford and Webb win their respective races then that is 2 very conservative, blue dog type dems in the house. Lieberman is making toast of Lamont. Now, they may be better than the Republican alternative, but it isn't a total repudiation of conservative thought. In fact, it can actually be spun that the only thing making people in Virginia and Tennessee vote Democratic is Bush's utter failure. Add Tester in Montana against a corrupt, scandal plagued Republican and you don't really have much. Just a normal move back to the center. At best your looking at 52-48 Dem Majority (with Lieberman) which isn't earth shattering.

    As for the house, now this is where things get interesting...25 house pick up will sure get things riled up but I bet once Pelosi is chosen as Speaker then Bush's numbers will go up and not down.

    But it makes for good entertainment...

    Really? (5.00 / 1) (#16)
    by Repack Rider on Mon Nov 06, 2006 at 05:19:23 PM EST
    I bet once Pelosi is chosen as Speaker then Bush's numbers will go up and not down.

    For the last two years the Republicans have said that everything the Democrats do raises Bush's popularity, which SOMEHOW manages to keep plummeting despite all the laws of physics.

    At some point, after being wrong a few dozen times, you would think they would stop saying that and wait to see what the voters do.

    What is it about the "San Francisco values" of accountability, fiscal responsibility, the rule of law, not torturing prisoners, equal rights, habeas corpus, the Fourth Amendment, and the constitutional assignment of oversight to Congress that you believe Americans do not agree with?

    What is it about Mr. Bush lying his ass off and displaying the most stunning corruption and incompetence the White House has ever seen that you believe resonates more with the American people than the rule of law?


    Two things (none / 0) (#17)
    by LonewackoDotCom on Mon Nov 06, 2006 at 05:55:24 PM EST
    Bush is passionate about two things: Iraq and massive immigration. The Dems might help him with the former: he could take their advice and them blame them for the final result ("if I hadn't taken their advice it would have worked out.")

    And, the Dems would certainly help him and his corporate backers with the latter, enabling him to flood the U.S. with millions of low-wage workers, busting unions and driving down wages for our own low-wage workers.

    -- President Pelosi?

    Off topic but fascinating (none / 0) (#22)
    by Dadler on Mon Nov 06, 2006 at 08:21:20 PM EST
    Harpers Monthly's website has posted a profile of Pastor Ted Haggard and his church/movement that appeared in the magazine last year.  It is enlightening and frightening.  All the more so in retrospect.      

    Baghdad is Surrounded" (none / 0) (#24)
    by Edger on Mon Nov 06, 2006 at 10:15:03 PM EST
    It could be that as Sec of Defense is the safest place for Bush to have him.

    Baghdad is Surrounded: "The American Era in the Middle East has ended"
    Mike Whitney

    11/03/06 "Information Clearing House" -- -- Don Rumsfeld is not a good leader. In fact, he is a very bad leader. Leadership is predicated on three basic factors: Strong moral character, sound judgment, and the ability to learn from one's mistakes. None of these apply to Rumsfeld. As a result, every major decision that has been made in Iraq has been wrong and has cost the lives of countless Iraqis and American servicemen. This pattern will undoubtedly continue as long as Rumsfeld is the Secretary of Defense.

    Here's a simple test: Name one part of the occupation of Iraq which has succeeded?

    Security? Reconstruction? De-Ba'athification? Dismantling the Iraqi military? Protecting Saddam's ammo-dumps? Stopping the looting? Body armor? Coalition government? Abu Ghraib? Falluja? Even oil production has been slashed in half.

    Every facet of the occupation has been an unmitigated disaster. Nothing has succeeded. Everything has failed.

    Apart from the immense damage to Iraqi society, the enormous human suffering, and the massive loss of life; there is also the astronomical cost of the war which has been purposely concealed by the Defense Dept. Originally, the war was supposed to "pay for itself in oil revenues". (according to neocon Paul Wolfowitz) That, of course, never happened but, the real costs appeared in this week's Washington Post in an article by Jim Wolf called "Pentagon Expands War-funding Push". The article states:

    "With the passage of the fiscal 2006 supplemental spending bill, war-related appropriations would total about $436.8 billion for Iraq, Afghanistan and enhanced security at military bases, the non-partisan Congressional Research Service said in a Sept 22 report....this is in addition to the more than $500 billion sought by President Bush in his baseline fiscal 2007 national defense request."

    That's right; we're spending a whopping $1 trillion a year for a war that we're losing.

    But don't forget to vote for a republican tomorrow. They're strong on national security. At least that what they keep saying...


    Want a sleepless night? (none / 0) (#25)
    by Edger on Mon Nov 06, 2006 at 10:30:02 PM EST
    Bush, Cheney, and Rumsfelds "Middle East"