Monday, October 03, 2005

Where Is The Howard Baker Of 2005?

Steve Gilliard, when staying clear of subjects involving the US military and 1960s radicals, is worth reading:

Here's a question: what if Patrick Fitzgerald really does indicts people on a conspiracy charge?

Judy Miller wasn't cooling her heels just over sourcing. She was the link to something larger.

Now the WaPo is running a story implying that the scandal runs into a White House conspiracy.

Once you get over the idea of chortling about Rove, Libby and maybe Cheney in the dock, think about this: the leadership of this country could be facing criminal charges. With all the talk of conspiracy charges, it doesn't seem like a report is all we get here.

What bother me is this: I mean, Rove and Libby would have to resign, Cheney wouldn't last much longer. So what does Bush do? DeLay and Frist are also under a cloud.

This should be really scary to anyone who's sentient. Bush, isolated and under pressure? Not a scene I want to imagine. Not for a second.

People like to beat up on the Dems for lacking courage, but compared to the GOP, they're freaking Audie Murphy. Who in either GOP caucus is going to step up to do what has to be done. Which is gently shove Bush aside. Come on, a government ripped apart with indictments is one which cannot function. New leadership would be needed.

It comes down to this: when will the GOP stand up for the country? Because they run the show. They have to decide whether they will stand up for the party or the country.

If they do not stand up for the country, they will turn into a rump party.

You know getting rid of Bush seems like a great idea, but then you're left with the reality of President Hastert. Which is like Pinnochio without Geppetto. And God knows who his VP would be, Roy Blunt?

There are things worse than Bush's presidency. Like Hastert's.

Aside the ridiculousness of the last sentence, this is good stuff.

New Abu Ghraib pictures (far worse than before, allegedly; these are from the batch that made even Lindsay Graham say he was nauseated) come out soon. Bush's response to Katrina was an exercise in political lemmingry. Iraq goes as badly as ever. Now here come the indictments. The line from mere unpopularity to total pariah is thin, as Richard Nixon could attest, but once crossed...

Bush is crossing it right now. Fortunately for the health of the country, several of his fellow rats on this political Titanic also find themselves without a lifeboat. DeLay is toast. Frist is fucked.

The question then is not so much who's next, but who's going to turn on the rats.

Politicians, though bloodless and soulless, are like other life forms: the first instinct is self-preservation. At least that is normally the case.

Thus the mystery here. The Rethugs seem to be so conditioned to stay "on-message", to be so loyal to Dear Leader, that there has been no one yet to step forward.

In contrast, remember Watergate. That took awhile to get traction, too, but once it did, and people recognised that Nixon was political poison, an orderly progression started. Republicans in Congress like Howard Baker and John Anderson came out against Nixon. No one wanted to appear openly obstructionist.

Of course, these circumstances are rather different in that there is no viable opposition in Congress from the other party. Republicans during Watergate had to come out against Nixon because they were in the minority in Congress. No such luck this time.

Gilliard's "for the good of the country" is laughable; since Disraeli, Anglosphere politics have been about the good of the party first, after the individual politician's own self-interest, of course. Be more cynical, Steve. Remember the natures of whom you write.

And as I mentioned, a Hastert presidency being worse than Bush's is preposterous. Here's what will happen. Bush will be crippled by scandal for the remainder of his presidency. Like Clinton was, except without the approval of the populace. Each day that goes by that the Republicans don't come out against Bush is a day that wingnuttery itself becomes more permanently discredited to the public. Nothing but good can come of this. Don't worry: government will function, checks will go out, offices will be open, and we'll be as safe as we ever were (hahaha!).

It's just that the wingnut initiatives won't come, thank god. Now aren't you Dems sad that you didn't hold up the Roberts confirmation? Thanks, dolts, you confirmed a Rehnquist clone who'll menace the court for the next 30 years when, if you'd waited a few days, you'd have had all the political capital in the world to send wingnuttery the way of the dodo.

We're about to witness the felo-de-se of the wingnut elite. Don't be sad, and don't worry. Reach for the popcorn. It couldn't happen to more deserving people. The decent wingnuts -- Chaffee & McCain, say -- aren't going to be hurt. They'll stick around. There'll be a Republican Party after this. This is a purge of the kleptocrats and Nixon clones. How could that be a bad thing?