Friday, November 10, 2006

The Lameduck Prince: In Tone Alone?

The post-election mantra of the week is "a more conciliatory tone."

Conciliatory is the word of the week.

True conciliation takes quite a politician, quite a PERSON, someone who carefully considers complex options, someone who truly likes and trusts the goodness in others, someone soulfully high minded.

But Mr. Bush never riseth so high. He certainly, with the cameras running and the "opponents" in the room, speaketh with a forked tongue. Who does he fool with his gloves ON tone? Certainly, he fooled a lot of Americans and millions of voters for years, in four campaigns, two for governor of Texas, two for president.

And yes, Mr. Bush IS more of a campaigner than he is a legislator or administrator. He would rather give a hoo-hah stump speech to a cheering crowd than meet with his own Cabinet, much less the divided aisles of Congress and the contentious alleyways of America beyond the beltway.

But certainly many of us can see what he is doing. He's caught his breath since his deer in the headlights press conference the day after the election, and he's offering finger sandwiches to the Dems, but his mind is made up. If he can't win Iraq his way (the Rumsfeld/Cheney way), then he'll retreat to other pet battles, none of them in the best interests of the country or the world.

It is what you can see when the president smiles. His smile seems nervous, and as he smiles, his eyes never lose their fight or flight ferocity. And so it is with his tone. He knows it's the sort of time a lot of people (and many in his own party) would like to see him being a good diplomat, a genuine diplomat, with the warmth of a Bill Clinton or the convictions of a John McCain, but Mr. Bush is not only out of his league, he is simply not a diplomat. And if he ever comes close to sounding like one, it is in tone alone.


At 11/12/2006 7:22 AM, Blogger Minor Ripper said...

The only way the Democrats lose in 2008 is IF they nominate Hillary. Let's face it folds, she is simply toxic, right or wrong, to a large percentage of the electorate. I am continually surprised by the ignoring and omission of the one person who could certainly derail the Hillary Express: Al Gore. He was shafted in 2000, was right on the war, and has been a true visionary on the environment. He sits on the board of Apple, are we in store for an Ipod like product introduction?

At 11/12/2006 9:59 AM, Blogger Lawrence said...

I agree almost entirely. I do think there are other Democratic candidates who would not appear "strong" enough in a presidential campaign, Tom Vilsak and Bill Richardson to name two. And I suppose Mark Warner learned his lesson early on as well, regarding '08. I think Al Gore is a toss up, now, as is Hillary, because both have baggage and represent 'going backwards,' as constant reminders of the past would abound. My angle right now is that a fresh, vigorous younger upstart is the answer, this generation's John Kennedy, and I think Barack Obama comes closest to filling that bill. He's got the aura already, and his momemtum could make John Edwards' freshman attempt seem like child's play. I hope.


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