Sunday, February 08, 2004

Kinda Starts as an Analysis, but then Becomes a Flow of Consciousness Rant, then Kinda Becomes Analysis Again 

Well, I originally planned on writing my analysis of Bush's Meet the Press appearance today, but as luck would have it, I slept until noon. Luckily, MSNBC has the transcript of the interview on their web page, so I can get a pretty good look at how it played out.

First of all, I admire that Bush actually has the guts to do these interviews. Now, Diane Sawyer and Tony Snow were both obviously softball interviews, and though he went head-to-head with Bill O'Reilly for his first presidential campaign, most of O'Reilly's audience was probably already in the Bush camp. In contrast, by allowing Tim Russert to interview him, he shows he really has confidence in what he has to say. After all, Russert is probably the most thorough and objective interviewer in the business, and the interview will be watched and scrutinized by people on all ends of the political spectrum.

Like I said, I slept through the interview, so I don't know how well he delivered the message, but the message itself was one that needs to be heard. He pointed out that Iraq may not have had stockpiles of weapons, but they had the infrastructure to build chemical and biological weapons. Thanks to his connections with terror organizations, stockpiles of weapons are not needed. Saddam could have created a small amount of Ricin (the stuff they found in Senator Frisk's office), transferred it to his allies at Ansar al-Islam (an Al-Qaeda subgroup based in Iraq), and wait for his agents to spread chaos to his enemies.

What bothers me the most about this entire Iraq mess is that those most critical of the Iraqi operation are the people who yell the loudest that Bush should have prevented 9/11 from occuring. Now, the only way we could have prevented 9/11 is if we invaded Afghanistan and arrested the Al Qaeda leadership before 9/11 occured (and by the time Bush took office, it may have already been too late for that to have made a difference). Now, nobody would have supported an invasion of Afghanistan before 9/11. Its a little pissant country that could not possibly be a threat to the United States in any meaningful way. And yet, they were able to hit us in a way that the British, Spanish, French, Germans, and Soviets were unable to at the heights of their respective empires.

Saddam's weapons were not an imminent threat, but Saddam's attitude was. He was a hero to the America-haters worldwide. Therefore, his pathetic capture was a symbol to all who dare think they can annoy us and get away with it. The world may hate us for what we did in Iraq, but as Machiavelli said, it is better to be feared than loved.

The most important question Russert asked was whether it was worth all the loss of American lives to rid the world of Saddam Hussein. Bush actually gives a pretty stark answer to this. He says it was worth it, because by spreading freedom to the Middle East, we wil eliminate the hatred that breeds in the hearts of the terrorist.

After legitimate Iraq questions, Russert gives Bush a chance to repudiate some of the garbage his opponents threw his way. Bush simply brushed off allegations that he went AWOL from the National Guard, and volunteered to open his military records. He also pointed out that the National Guard is a legitimate part of the military, and that he would have gone to Vietnam had his unit been called up.

On questions about the sour economy, Bush simply seemed to fillibuster.

When confronted with Conservatives' allegations that he overspends, he more or less told them to suck it. I, for one, agree with him on that one.

Then, it got into political stuff that you can read yourself at http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/4179618/ . Anyway, I am bored of writing this stuff, and I seriously doubt anyone read this far down. Ta-Ta.

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