July 19, 2006

Utilizing Presidential Powers - Or Not

It seems that commentary on the current administration will nearly write itself - for the truth is even more bizarre than fiction. Even the most new presidential observers recall how President Clinton was charged with mirroring "Wag the Dog" when he ordered airstrikes in the wake of the Monica Lewinsky scandal. Suggestions were made that as in the movie, a war was manufactured to boost ratings - effectively implementing a Hollywood presidency, and not a DC presidency.

Turning the page forward a few years, we've seen much worse, more tragic, realities. A state of constant war, and wave after wave of misinformation and redirection. Scandals much darker than anything that ever engulfed Clinton have come and gone with regularity - as our civil liberties are increasingly being threatened, and nothing seems outside the grasp of the political elite. But while Bush and Cheney have demanded ever-greater powers for the executive branch, and unprecedented secrecy, George has neglected those things that traditionally define the presidency, choosing to spend months out of each year on vacation in Crawford rather than in Washington, and never even once exercising the power to veto bills from Congress. Representing what historically had been recognized as the fiscally conservative party, George has never even once vetoed any portion of any spending bills - as the country as been racking up hundreds of billions in dollars of deficits, just one administration after the surpluses of Clinton/Gore, which had turned back the clock on decades of deficits from Reagan and Bush Sr.

But now it looks like at least one of those things will change - as Bush is poised to issue his first veto after more than five and a half years in office - not to pronounce any dramatic point of order in business or domestic policy, but instead, to block science, stopping the research into stem cells that could lead to dramatic findings in the research community for decades to come. Instead of really trying to find Osama Bin Laden, or really trying to restore order in Iraq through establishing a stable government and police force, or even offering armor to our troops so that they are protected, Bush is instead once again stopping science - just as the administration continues to deny the reality of issues like global warming and evolution. One has to wonder what their elementary school teachers did that was so horrible to turn them away from the subject forever...

As Americans, we have to recognize that this isn't just an average presidency going through a mediocre spell. This is record-breakingly bad. George W. Bush, who ascended to the presidential throne through trickery and legalese, including a 5-4 majority Supreme Court appointment, is etching his name in stone as the very worst presidency this once-proud country has ever had. It's just head-shakingly ugly.

Listening to ''Prosac'', by DJ Tomcraft (Play Count: 8)

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