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December 17, 2005

The Imperfect Spy

By Ezra

This is Bush's "fuck you" moment. He lost on the PATRIOT Act, lost on Social Security, is losing on the war, leaking popularity, lacking political capital, and finding his second term to be a series of very hard punches to the face. The mounting failures and multiplying blows finally became too much for him and so, finally, he's dispensed with political strategy and high-polling pretense and finally said what he'd been wanting to say all along.

Fuck you.

It's been the message rumbling beneath his administration for months now. The belligerence on torture, the hysteria on the PATRIOT Act, the McCarthyism against the war critics. But each time, at that last crucial moment, Bush backed down. Right when he seemed ready to let loose a flurry of invective, his handlers would coax him off the roof. He backed down before McCain's anti-torture legislation, started appending disclaimers affirming the patriotism of his critics too his speeches. He didn't crack. He kept following the strategists, calling for tactical retreats. Till now.

As Hilzoy explains, Bush's domestic espionage is illegal. Not quasi-legal or trapped in the thickets of some technical dispute over constitutional arcana. Illegal. And even Bush, when confronted with law-breaking within his administration, has recoiled from the prospect, promising firings and investigations. But not this time. Don't like his spying?

Fuck you.

Yeah he spies. And he'll do it some more.

And fuck the New York Times.

Media outlets who report the program are traitors to their country and enemies of the war effort. They're the ones betraying the country, not the guy in the corner shredding the Constitution.

And fuck the Senate.

If Arlen Specter thinks he's getting hearings on this, he's got another think coming. This is Bush's war and Bush's decision. Yes he's breaking the law. Yes he's spying with no judicial oversight. Yes, he is. He's the President, goddamn it, and if you don't like it, well fuck. you. This is Bush's country, everyone else is just living in it.

December 17, 2005 | Permalink

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» The Constitution Is "Just a Goddamned Piece of Paper" from Slant Truth
It goes without saying that the recent news of Bush's authorization of spying without warrants on US citizens is fucked up. That he so brazenly defends his actions makes this all the more troubling. There is little to be said... [Read More]

Tracked on Dec 17, 2005 5:32:26 PM

» The Constitution Is "Just a Goddamned Piece of Paper" from Slant Truth
It goes without saying that the recent news of Bush's authorization of spying without warrants on US citizens is fucked up. That he so brazenly defends his actions makes this all the more troubling. There is little to be said... [Read More]

Tracked on Dec 17, 2005 5:41:54 PM

» The Constitution Is "Just a Goddamned Piece of Paper" from Slant Truth
It goes without saying that the recent news of Bush's authorization of spying without warrants on US citizens is fucked up. That he so brazenly defends his actions makes this all the more troubling. There is little to be said... [Read More]

Tracked on Dec 17, 2005 5:43:23 PM

» Competing theories from Pandagon
Susie and Ezra have competing theories as to exact what stripe of asshole Bush is after this speech of his defending his right to piss all over your rights. Susie thinks this is just more of Bush saying "Father knows... [Read More]

Tracked on Dec 17, 2005 10:11:01 PM

» The Constitution Is "Just a Goddamned Piece of Paper" from Slant Truth
Correction: the quotes I originally attributed to Steve Gillard weren't written by him. The quotes are from an essay by Glenn Greenwald that Steve Gilliard posted (and attributed to Glenn) on his blog. My apologies for the false information and... [Read More]

Tracked on Dec 18, 2005 1:02:01 PM

» The Constitution Is "Just a Goddamned Piece of Paper" from Slant Truth
Correction: the quotes I originally attributed to Steve Gillard weren't written by him. The quotes are from an essay by Glenn Greenwald that Steve Gilliard posted (and attributed to Glenn) on his blog. My apologies for the false information and... [Read More]

Tracked on Dec 18, 2005 7:20:21 PM

» The Constitution Is "Just a Goddamned Piece of Paper" from Slant Truth
Correction: the quotes I originally attributed to Steve Gillard weren't written by him. The quotes are from an essay by Glenn Greenwald that Steve Gilliard posted (and attributed to Glenn) on his blog. My apologies for the false information and... [Read More]

Tracked on Dec 18, 2005 9:17:22 PM

Comments

I, for one, simply cannot wait until Bush gets around to using his pardon powers. Ugh...

Posted by: FMgurur | Dec 17, 2005 3:59:32 PM

Spying on me? Ohhh man... that's a BAD idea... (spots hidden camera) (unzips)(turns and backs up to it)(screen goes brown)

The Power of Brown - and I ain't talkin UPS baby.
It's called 'fight back with their own tactics'.

ahh. So satisfying.

They'll just get clumsier and clumsier till someone gets caught red-handed, then the lid comes flyin off - hopefully RIGHT before the elections in '06

The hip-action will be movin furniture around.

Posted by: M. Douglas Wray | Dec 17, 2005 4:26:52 PM

Absolutely right, Ezra. Spot on.

Posted by: Shakespeare's Sister | Dec 17, 2005 4:29:24 PM

My take is a bit different but I see where you're coming from, Ezra.

Posted by: fiat lux | Dec 17, 2005 5:11:22 PM

Interesting how Bush's sentiment toward all of us is my sentiment toward anyone stupid enough, cynical enough, amoral enough, hypocritical enough, anti-freedom enought to support him after these allegations:

Fuck you.

Posted by: Stephen | Dec 17, 2005 7:01:28 PM

I remember when the free speach zones were causing all the uproar a few years back.
Then the rumor mill started spreading around leaks from secret service reps claiming that the free speach zones weren't to protect the president from those suspected of being terrorist supporting protestors.
This they found this laughable.
No. This was to protect the president from his own ego. It was meant to protect him from himself.
This is a guy whose spoiled brat arrogance and delusions of gandeur are so immense that it has it's own zip code.
The word that was coming from SS agents was that Bush's temper over protestors went back all the way to Vietnam and his hatred for them and the gall these peons displayed by protesting a war that was benefiting the likes of him and his family wealth.
Had Bush seen those protestors outside one of the places he was speaking that day there was no guarantee that he woldn't have said something. And we all know what would have happened if he had.
He'd of blown the election cause chances are he would have yelled some frat boy styled profanities and given them the bird.
The boy king loves the middle finger and it should be taken as a sign that the man has the attitude of a 15 year old. There are plenty of video clips out there including the one where he's flipping the camera the bird in the oval office as they were preparing for him to address the nation. He wasn't angry, he was just a spoiled brat who never had to show an ounce of responsibility in his life. Get drunk and drive your car into someone and you get bailed out by your handlers and the record cleared. Not want to go to Vietnam? Well, we know that story. Start your own oil business and drive it into the ground with your incompetence? Watch while rich arabs wanting to suck up to your father come and buy your stake in the failed company at a profit to you so that you don't have to bear the brunt of being a complete failure. Do it a second time? Watch as rich white guys do the same.
The cycle goes on and on. Even as Governor, the education bill that passed over the threat of his veto ? He ended up using it to his favor in the 2000' elections. What a lying SOB.
So yes, he's saying a big f*ck you to all of us cause it's in his nature. This is the kind of thing he does. He's always been this kind of person and will never change. George W. Bush is a christian? If he's a christian then I'd rather be jewish!

MYOB'
.

Posted by: MYOB | Dec 17, 2005 10:44:17 PM

It's as good of a theory as I can think of. Excellent post.

Posted by: djw | Dec 17, 2005 11:39:53 PM

It's a pretty good explanation for taking a flyer on something that there is just no defense for. Nobody's buying the security thing because it's so half-baked sounding. His defiant little attitude may just be the thing that brings him down. Otherwise, we're toast.

Posted by: thorny1 | Dec 18, 2005 12:53:07 AM

Steve Clemons thinks the situation is becoming "dangerous" and he is in a position to know. The Bush/Cheney administration does not have the resources (a desperate and impoverished populace, for instance) that Hitler had, but they can do severe damage to individuals and the nation on their way down. On the other hand, pray for a decent economy. They have a lot of tools (Bernanke) available.

This may be the beginning of the end, but we are still at the beginning. It has not yet started to get really bad. Prepare yourselves.
...
As far as Bush's "Fuck You" moment, it is their common tactic. Impeach or shut your face, nothing in between, only something worse than impeachment. All of us should fear the confrontation, they are not bullies who will back down like cowards. They, if they can, will take us all down with them. That is the source of their power. "Rule or ruin" works.

Posted by: bob mcmanus | Dec 18, 2005 2:17:26 AM

I disagree that Bush's response to these revelations represents a line being drawn in the sand - at least a line that wasn't drawn previously. Ever since this putz got his second wind after 9/11, he's been marketing this theme of defiance. Remember this, from last year's second debate:

Mr. President, my mother and sister traveled abroad this summer, and when they got back they talked to us about how shocked they were at the intensity of aggravation that other countries had with how we handled the Iraq situation.

Diplomacy is obviously something that we really have to really work on.

What is your plan to repair relations with other countries given the current situation?

BUSH: No, I appreciate that. I -- listen, I -- we've got a great country. I love our values. And I recognize I've made some decisions that have caused people to not understand the great values of our country.[fuck them]
I remember when Ronald Reagan was the president; he stood on principle. Somebody called that stubborn. He stood on principle standing up to the Soviet Union, and we won that conflict. Yet at the same time, he was very -- we were very unpopular in Europe [fuck europe] because of the decisions he made.
I recognize that taking Saddam Hussein out was unpopular. But I made the decision because I thought it was in the right interests of our security.[fu]
You know, I've made some decisions on Israel that's unpopular. I wouldn't deal with Arafat, because I felt like he had let the former president down, and I don't think he's the kind of person that can lead toward a Palestinian state.[fuck him]
And people in Europe didn't like that decision.[f. them] And that was unpopular, but it was the right thing to do.
I believe Palestinians ought to have a state, but I know they need leadership that's committed to a democracy and freedom, leadership that would be willing to reject terrorism.
I made a decision not to join the International Criminal Court in The Hague, which is where our troops could be brought to -- brought in front of a judge, an unaccounted judge.[f. that]
I don't think we ought to join that. That was unpopular.
And so, what I'm telling you is, is that sometimes in this world you make unpopular decisions because you think they're right.
We'll continue to reach out.[sic]
Listen, there is 30 nations involved in Iraq, some 40 nations involved in Afghanistan.
People love America. Sometimes they don't like the decisions made by America [fuck them], but I don't think you want a president who tries to become popular and does the wrong thing.
You don't want to join the International Criminal Court [f that] just because it's popular in certain capitals in Europe.[f. europe]

Just a soft-pedaled version of FuckYou™. Sometimes he plays Good Cop, sometimes Bad. I see no evidence of any overarching strategy here, just more Mayberry Machiavelli day-to-day posturing, running it up the flagpole, seeing if anyone salutes.

Posted by: adios | Dec 18, 2005 6:33:12 AM

To be honest, I thought some of the recent public comments by Bush up until this latest fiasco showed a President a bit more humble and a bit more willing to listen than we've previously known. (I have yet to make an opinion on last night's speech.)

I'm just not sure if this situation screams f you or not though. It seems like they really believe in their own bullshit. The notion that its ok to break the rules because America represents good and its our job to stomp out evil. However, it does seem like 'process be damned' is kind of 'f you' though, in a way.

Posted by: Adrock | Dec 19, 2005 2:54:18 PM

I recall a ew years ago I thought I heard brown shrit music. Well I see that the brown shirts are now changed to black. Sig Heil!

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