No one has ever confused George Bush with an intelligent man. What he has always been though is charming, folksy, if you believe the corporate press that is paid to make him look good. This charm was enough to fool America for five years now. Every time Bush had to sell us something, he would traipse out before the cameras and use words like "docs " or "folks " and everyone would go "ahhh " and feel better about their lot in life.
Charm only goes so far though and America has caught on to his clever way of mixing lies into what is left of reality in modern war and politics. Faced with a 68% disapproval rate and calls for an end to the Iraq occupation, and let 's be fair that is what this is now, Bush trotted out again before the cameras to bring America his "plan " for victory in Iraq. Not content with the speech, Bush even had propaganda with him as the White House had produced a book called "National Strategy for Victory in Iraq ", designed to repackage the current quagmire in Iraq as success and over-simplifying the entire situation that lies ahead of us. Besides the fact that it should be disheartening that it took three years of war for this administration to actually draft out a plan for victory, the real problem is one of the English language.
When asked for a "plan ", Bush has responded with what we call in the English language, as goals. Saying you have a plan is quite different then actually having one. Bush was high on rhetoric today, trying to buy time for his failed war by stating his plan was to have "complete victory " and to not leave until "Iraq is a democracy. " Memo to the president: those are GOALS, not plans. If you have a goal of complete victory, America needs to know what the PLAN is to achieve that goal. If you have a goal of establishing Iraq as a democracy, then America needs to know your PLAN to achieve that.
The only plan Bush seems to have is to convince us that things are going great in Iraq. You do not dress up a lame public relations stunt, and that is all the speech was today, as a "plan. " Iraq is not going well at all. There are now over 2,100 reported American deaths with over 10,000 permanently wounded. Ninety-four percent of these deaths have occurred AFTER Bush 's "Mission Accomplished " public relations stunt. Sixty percent of these deaths have occurred since Bush 's "Transfer of Sovereignty " public relations stunt. How high a percentage will we accept dying from the point of today 's public relations stunt? Three soldiers die every single day now, the highest casualty rate during this entire war singling the fact that things are getting progressively worse, not better, no matter what the pretty glossy book Bush was peddling today may have said.
The defenders of this war always claim that mistakes are made in every war. We were sold on this war based on WMD which has turned out to be a lie. The defenders say, "Saddam was a bad guy. " We were told the Iraq oil earnings would fund the war but now we are out over 200 billion dollars, most going not to rebuild the infrastructure we have obliterated but just to security to keep us alive over there and to add billions to the coffers of Halliburton. We were told we would be met as liberators and instead 45% of Iraqis think it is justified to kill Americans while 80% want us gone. We were told this would take six months and now today the defenders are saying another 25 years on the day Bush simply looks America in the eye and says: DROP DEAD, we are not going anywhere. The critics are right, mistakes are made in every war but in this war, we are left to the ridiculous notion that EVERYTHING was a mistake. It is not feasible that people can be this wrong by accident.
Iraq is an unmitigated disaster because the people running the war do not understand the difference between the words plan and goal. They have a goal that cannot be measured such as "victory " or "democracy ". The purpose of such non-measurable goals is to allow one simple truth to continue, and that is the war. To convince the Iraqis they publish fake stories in the Iraqi papers and to convince Americans they publish their failed goals dressed up as fake plans in a glossy-covered book.
Three American soldiers died today in a desert half a world away. They died because the man who sent them there sets non-measurable goals and pretends they are plans. The truly frightening prospect of course is that this administration knows full well the difference between a goal and a plan; they just do not think you need to have a plan. Sixty-eight percent of this country has spoken and said they disagree and the message from Bush today could not have been clearer:
"America will not run in the face of car bombers and assassins so long as I am your Commander-in-Chief."
Bush to America: DROP DEAD.