mercredi, juin 29, 2005

"So Here It Is Again..."

We don't need it do we?
It's fake that's what it be to 'ya, dig me?
Don't believe the hype...

"Don't Believe the Hype" Public Enemy

I did not see the President’s speech last night.

Instead, we walked to the lake, got some ice cream and listened to the St. Anthony Park Community Band play military marches in the pavilion.

I have read a lot about the speech, and here are my uninformed comments:

Bush (a man who needs a lot of inspiration before he will appear before his public and even more before he will appear before the media or answer questions) made the speech because his approval numbers are flagging. His numbers should flag.

Bush made the speech because support for the war at home is flagging (note: support (or lack thereof) for the war is different from support (or lack thereof) for the troops). Support for the war should flag.

Bush did not advance a strong policy during the speech (note: “as Iraq stands up, we will stand down” is not policy – and though his comments directed toward the insurgency were specific, they were not sound).

Bush would do well to discontinue efforts to connect Iraq and the attacks of September 11th. Only the most biased partisan is buying that anymore (and no efforts are needed to maintain their allegiance). The wiser course by far would be justifying the war on its own merits. Bush’s repeated unwillingness or failure to do this speaks volumes. Trying to link Iraq and 9/11 is, at minimum, intellectually dishonest. More likely is it a continuation of the vulgar manipulation that is evident upon reading the Downing Street Memos. But one thing for sure, it absolutely betrays that the man himself has no confidence that he could state the case without resort to intellecutal dishonesty/emotional appeals/September 11th.

Bush’s appeal to patriotism, asking Americans to fly the flag on the Fourth to honor our troops, is worthy of a book of analysis. I hope such a book is written and read by millions. Here, suffice it to say, the appeal is the desperate effort of a desperate man who desperately wants to recapture the fervor we had immediately after the tragedies in NY, DC and PA. Any response will lose significant amounts of impact. Most everyone says "yes, I love you," when you ask them if they do. The more meaningful expressions are spontaneous and heartfelt. As well, the wave-the-flag appeal is another effort at distraction (“don’t look into things too much, just follow along, you’ll feel better about things if you fly the flag”), it favors style over substance, and offers superficial ways to support our troops when clearly they need more than symbolism.

If Bush's ratings go up, we may be doomed, but none more than those who bought his propaganda. They were hoodwinked and led astray. Wave the flag if that's how you roll, but don't do it because the man asked you to. Don’t count yourself among those who will.

Don’t believe the hype.