Editore"s Note
Tilting at Windmills

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April 2, 2007
By: Kevin Drum

"DAN QUAYLE IN COWBOY BOOTS"....There's a new book coming out: "Invasion of the Party Snatchers: How the Holy-Rollers and the Neo-Cons Destroyed the GOP." No, it's not by Michael Moore. It's by Vic Gold, staunch Republican and longtime family friend to George Bush and Dick Cheney:

Under Bush and Cheney, he argues, the GOP has moved away from principles of small government, prudent foreign policy and leaving people alone to live their private lives — all views Gold associates with his hero, Goldwater. "Invasion of the Party Snatchers" makes plain Gold's contempt for the direction of his party and the guidance of its leaders.

"For all the Rove-built facade of his being a 'strong' chief executive, George W. Bush has been, by comparison to even hapless Jimmy Carter, the weakest, most out of touch president in modern times," Gold writes. "Think Dan Quayle in cowboy boots."

Gold is even more withering in his observations of Cheney. "A vice president in control is bad enough. Worse yet is a vice president out of control."

The line of former supporters who now understand that (a) Bush is incompetent and (b) Cheney is a serious loon is getting mighty long. Welcome to the club, Mr. Gold.

Kevin Drum 12:36 PM Permalink | Trackbacks | Comments (70)

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Comments

Just one more shrill partisan suffering from Bush derangement syndrome.

I figure it will take about two, maybe three hours tops before the cretins over at The Corner begin denouncing Gold as a liberal. By tonight's evening news broadcasts, the smear campaign will be in full gear.

Posted by: Derelict on April 2, 2007 at 12:47 PM | PERMALINK

If they want to go back to winning, the GOP needs to become the party of opportunity for all Americans.

Here's how they can do it.

Posted by: you know on April 2, 2007 at 12:47 PM | PERMALINK

It sure takes a lot of bravery to kick the bully when the 98# weakling has already stood up to him and knocked him to the ground doesn't it?

Cranky

Posted by: Cranky Observer on April 2, 2007 at 12:49 PM | PERMALINK

Why has it taken so long for these apostate neocons (Vic Gold, Matthew Dowd) to come forward and tell the public that the Dubya is out to lunch?

They could have saved us a lot of time and money (not to speak of a few hundered thousand dead in Iraq) if they would have come out before November 2000!

Posted by: Ed in Montana on April 2, 2007 at 12:51 PM | PERMALINK

This is an important point. There are plenty of conservatives that I would disagree with, but whom I would accept if they were elected president. The elder Bush was actually a pretty good example of this group.

Bush 43 and Cheney are not, because they take the view that if you disagree with them, then you hate America and you are out to destroy the country. There's no democracy from that position; all you get is what you can take by gaming the congress.

Posted by: mmy on April 2, 2007 at 12:55 PM | PERMALINK

The underlying source of both the religious right and the neocons is corporate feudalism.

With no distinction between corporate feudalism and conservatism, anything that addresses the neocons and the religious maniacs is simply treating the symptoms.

Posted by: cld on April 2, 2007 at 1:00 PM | PERMALINK

"Just one more shrill partisan suffering from Bush derangement syndrome."

Or just other person trying to hawk a book to a group of whiny liberals.

This has been the gold standard busines model in publishing for the past few years. First, get some "insider" cred, write a book about how you were duped by Bushie, get some free advertising on blogs like this and in the NYT, a sure fire way to a quick mint.

Making money of liberals aint easy, but these savvy folks have got it down to a science.

Posted by: BlaBlaBla on April 2, 2007 at 1:00 PM | PERMALINK

Why has it taken so long for these apostate neocons (Vic Gold, Matthew Dowd) to come forward and tell the public that the Dubya is out to lunch?

Unlike Dowd (who really is just an opportunistic rat abandoning a sinking ship) Vic Gold doesn't appear to be a neo-con.... nor does he appear to have played a significant role in Shrub's administration.

Posted by: p.lukasiak on April 2, 2007 at 1:02 PM | PERMALINK

Just another example of the rats jumping off the ship before it sinks. Where was this d!ckhead 2 years ago? The repub brand was never a brand of the principles described by gold. Once they got control of everything this was out there for all to see.

Posted by: bobbyk on April 2, 2007 at 1:07 PM | PERMALINK

"Think Dan Quayle in cowboy boots."

Dan Quayle, reading his Washington Post, looks up and says, "Hey!" Long pause. "I'm not wearing cowboy boots!"

Posted by: Grumpy on April 2, 2007 at 1:08 PM | PERMALINK

shorter blablabla: it ain't easy being nuts.

Posted by: cld on April 2, 2007 at 1:08 PM | PERMALINK

Why do so few people recognize the work of Jesus??

Posted by: Gore/Edwards 08 on April 2, 2007 at 1:08 PM | PERMALINK

We should be clear about why these apostasies are occurring: the obvious failure of George Bush. Would Gold or Dowd be writing their regrets otherwise? No.

The problem for the rest of us will be the GOP's convenient memory lapses. The meme will morph over time: George Bush was insufficiently Reaganesque. A few prophets saw this ahead of the curve. Now that we KNOW better, back to tax cuts!

Posted by: walt on April 2, 2007 at 1:09 PM | PERMALINK

Derelict got there first. Still, I have to say, that line about "disgruntled former employee/bushie/republican" is really amazing. I mean, it snapped the credulity limit about 25 disgruntled-formers ago. I keep wondering how the koolaid kids are managing their cognitive dissonance just on the shear number of these cases that they've had to swallow now. It really is like one of those Jim-Jones style cults you read about.

No wonder there's such an affinity between Sun Myung Moon and the GOP. It really takes pretty much the same skill set on the part of the brainwashees to keep themselves in line at this point. "Oh Joe, yes, he Fell From The Path--a lost soul, too bad. But we happy few will soldier on, the more confirmed in our righteousness by the very fact of our dwindling numbers. For surely the Gate Is Narrow and Only the Few Will Be Saved!"

Saw that twerp Eggbert lapse into some version of this a few threads ago. Like getting an unwitting (and unwanted) glimpse into the cramped and shrinking closet he occupies inside his head. Those walls just are going to keep closing in. And I don't think the magic flying saucer is going to appear in time to rescue 'em. Somehow it never does.

Posted by: DrBB on April 2, 2007 at 1:11 PM | PERMALINK
The line of former supporters who now understand that (a) Bush is incompetent and (b) Cheney is a serious loon is getting mighty long.

I think this "misunderestimates" a lot of Republican insiders; for the most part, I think the elites have always recognized Bush's incompetence, and until their face was rubbed in the consequences, largely shared Cheney's lunacy (in a lesser form, though, in many cases, which is why for many it hasn't survived long exposure to the results, whereas for Cheney and the hardcore, the facts are simply dismissed.)

Posted by: cmdicely on April 2, 2007 at 1:11 PM | PERMALINK

And BlaBlaBla provides another variant on how to manage that cognitive dissonance.

Don't worry kid, that flying saucer is out there hiding behind the comet! Just drink the nice drink and soon you will be vindicated.

Posted by: DrBB on April 2, 2007 at 1:13 PM | PERMALINK

All of these former Bush supporters who are now expressing misgivings about his presidency will just as vociferously advocate for a Pearl Harbor style attack on Iran as they did for invading Iraq. Unless they are now supporting a Kucinich candidacy, they have not really changed.

Posted by: Brojo on April 2, 2007 at 1:20 PM | PERMALINK

> "Think Dan Quayle in cowboy boots."
>
> Dan Quayle, reading his Washington Post,
> looks up and says, "Hey!" Long pause. "I'm
> not wearing cowboy boots!"

It is difficult to do an injustice to Dan Quayle, but I think Vic Gold has managed it.

Cranky

Posted by: Cranky Observer on April 2, 2007 at 1:23 PM | PERMALINK

Has Mr. Gold been trapped in a mine for the last four years? What else could have prevented a principled fellow from sharing these insights with us earlier, like 2002? They aren't news out here in the reality-based community.

Isn't it odd that we didn't hear about the publication of this book when these radical Republicans were riding high and ramming their destructive policies through their rubber-stamp Congress? Hunh.

Posted by: biggerbox on April 2, 2007 at 1:26 PM | PERMALINK

Just more BS. No one should fall for the incompetencey dodge. Bush and Cheney have done exactly what "conservatives" and republicans have been clamoring for for years. These asshats are now merely trying to separate Bush and Cheney from them now that the policies that they have all in lockstep pushed for and supported have failed. Bush and Cheney are the GOP. These clowns are merely trying to rehab their own reputations by trying to say that things would have worked if only we had competents leading the White House. Bullshit. Someone needs to call shenanigans on these frauds.

Posted by: bubba on April 2, 2007 at 1:31 PM | PERMALINK

Clinton kind of set the recent tone for Vice Presidents with Gore, who was given real responsibilities when he held the post. This was a change over the previous "seen and not heard" tradition of VPs. Cheney is that policy extrapolated, and I'll be curious to see there is going to be a rebound effect against VPs and their actual role in Government after him.

Posted by: Ali Blahblah on April 2, 2007 at 1:37 PM | PERMALINK

Seven years ago, I took the measure of George W. Bush and deemed him "Dan Quayle with a better press agent." I feel so vindicated.

Posted by: navamske on April 2, 2007 at 1:42 PM | PERMALINK

You gotta love Gold's quote from Madame de Stael:

"Men do not change, they unmask themselves."

I can't think of a better summary of the entire Republican Party over the last 6+ years.

Posted by: frankly0 on April 2, 2007 at 1:43 PM | PERMALINK

It's always worthwhile to remember nowadays that whenever one hears about still another Bush enabler coming out to denounce him, it's not about principles or the well being of our country, because the time for that was long ago. It's about saving their own hides against the unyielding criticism they will have to endure for the remainder of their lives if they don't get out from under the disgrace of the Bush legacy.

It's all about their selfishness to the bitter end.

Posted by: frankly0 on April 2, 2007 at 1:55 PM | PERMALINK

The come-latelys have little excuse. The very fact that Bush put Rove in charge of actual policy issues showed what Bush really was, back in 2001 (and that Bush used a Machiavillian (sic) like Rove during his campaigns should have tipped people off anyway before that.)

Posted by: Neil B. on April 2, 2007 at 1:58 PM | PERMALINK

If Vic Gold wants to impress me, he can publish in 1997 a book called "Invasion of the Party Snatchers: How the Holy-Rollers and the Neo-Cons Are Destroying the GOP."

2007 is ten years too late.

Posted by: derek on April 2, 2007 at 2:12 PM | PERMALINK

Has Mr. Gold been trapped in a mine for the last four years? What else could have prevented a principled fellow from sharing these insights with us earlier, like 2002? They aren't news out here in the reality-based community.

Isn't it odd that we didn't hear about the publication of this book when these radical Republicans were riding high and ramming their destructive policies through their rubber-stamp Congress? Hunh.
Posted by: biggerbox on April 2, 2007 at 1:26 PM

Gold is more of a fiscal (Western) conservative than a social (Southern) conservative. He just wants the fiscal conservatives to take control back from the Pat Robertson nuts. IOW, he is still a Republican and wants the GOP to win-just the other wing of the GOP that's all.

Posted by: Doc at the Radar Station on April 2, 2007 at 2:15 PM | PERMALINK
...Cheney is that policy extrapolated... Ali Blahblah at 1:37 PM
Running policies out of Cheney's office is a simple way to keep them under the notice of people, not the media which naturally serves to protect Republican administration, but away from the ability of Congress to oversee his acts. It is in no way an extrapolation of Gore's role in government which was completely aboveboard.
...I can't think of a better summary of the entire Republican Party ...frankly0 at 1:43 PM
Absolutely. The presidency is a photo op since the time of Michael Deaver. Everything is scripted and stage managed for the tv audience, but there are always times when the mask slips and people have to be on the alert for those revealing moments. It came early with Bush in his interview with Tucker Carlson during which he mocked Karla Faye Tucker. That was the act of an evil little man. Madame de Stael expressed it perfectly with brilliant French clarity. Posted by: Mike on April 2, 2007 at 2:30 PM | PERMALINK

Sure, there's a dig at Bush and Cheney there, but what do you think he's really saying with a title like, "How the Holy-Rollers and Neo-Cons Destroyed the GOP"?

He's saying that true conservatives would be more isolationist in foreign policy, and more "libertarian" in social policy: i.e., those sneaky neo-cons tricked the true conservatives into invading Muslim countries, and those christianists ramped up govt intrusion into people's lives, well past the point where "true conservatives" should allow.

Obviously he's trying to salvage the GOP brand, much like Reagan crying on the cover of Time recently.

He's saying these neo-cons *aren't* real conservatives. He's talking about former liberals (that's what "neo" about the cons), sneaky New Republic-style (Jews?) who switched over to the GOP cuz that was the party who was most likely to kick ass militarily. First against Communists, then against Muslims, these people with often marginally liberal values wanted hawkery in their foreign policy, so they switched over to the party most likely to bomb someone.

Surely, the author wants to claim that Bush and Cheney aren't neo-cons - they're just straight conservatives. It does seem like he's making a seperate claim that they are incompetent, and weak, and got tricked by those sneaky "neo-cons" into following some non-conservative policies, which might be more isolationist.

Posted by: luci on April 2, 2007 at 2:32 PM | PERMALINK

Here's the basic problem that Gold's criticism fails to address:

What's left of the GOP once you remove the Holy Rollers and the extreme foreign policy hawks?

Why, just about nothing, is the only correct answer. For decades now, GOP branding and talking points and think tanks and talk shows and bumper stickers and tee-shirts have been built around a coalition that embraces these very concepts.

The point is, GOP has nowhere to go. It's painted itself into a corner, and it's going to take decades for it to dry.

It leaves me so very sad that I can only cope by laughing.

Posted by: frankly0 on April 2, 2007 at 2:46 PM | PERMALINK

Completely agree with many of the other posters here- where were all of these guys in 2002?

Fact of the matter is, Bush and Co were the Republican party's Dream Team. Every last one of them gushed over the "CEO presidency", the "gravitas" of his neo-con stacked administration, and the way that the "adults" were now back in charge.

This was their guy, and they got everything they wished for. Now that we see the results of that guy, that team, that philosophy, forgive me for being cynical about these defections now.

They made their bed. Unfortunately, we all have to lie in the same sh*tted sheets.

From now til forever: remember, folks...remember, America, what happened the last time we let this crew take control.

Posted by: pdq on April 2, 2007 at 2:50 PM | PERMALINK

I am reminded of two old books: The True Believer by Eric Hoffer and The Peter Principle by Laurence Peter. Taken in the context of a likeable, personable,recovering alcoholic, how could Bush not lie or rationalize any action? And 59-million Americans voted for him knowing this. JW

Posted by: Jim Walker on April 2, 2007 at 2:54 PM | PERMALINK

Where were these guys in 2002 indeed. (. . . and 2004; answer: scared shitless) Still, this is a good thing happening, and long overdue. It's the most effective way to contain the damage. Now if (1) more sane moderate Republicans speak out (at least some will); (2) the Democratic party gets rid of their pollsters and consultants (join Bob Shrum on some desert island, please), we might better contain the damage. I love the "Dan Quale in boots"; leave it to a former loyalist to come up with the most soundbite-friendly, scathing and pithy summation.

Posted by: MaxGowan on April 2, 2007 at 2:57 PM | PERMALINK

mhr,

Thank you so much for sticking up for Bush even when his poll numbers dip into the twenties!

It's great guys like you who make it a certainty that from now until the end of time, the Republican Party will be the party of Bush!

I really admire the way you stick with your principles and your man in the face of overwhelming popular rejection! Such courage! Such loyalty!

Love and Kisses,
A Gleeful Democrat

Posted by: frankly0 on April 2, 2007 at 2:58 PM | PERMALINK

BlaBlaBla: Or just other person trying to hawk a book to a group of whiny liberals.

Why sell books by pandering to liberals instead of publishing books pointing out the goodness of Bush, neoconservatism, Dominionism, and the current Republican party? Is it because few members of the president's base can read books, or because few of them have the money to buy books? Or is it because the president's real base of corporations and the wealthiest one percent are a very, very small market, numbers-wise?

Posted by: cowalker on April 2, 2007 at 3:01 PM | PERMALINK

Why has it taken some people six+ years to recognize George Bush's lack of qualifications as a national leader?

I guess the good news is that Republicans one-by-one are admitting those people they called "knee jerk liberals" back in 2000 were actually thoughtful, clear-sighted patriots. And smarter than their GOP counterparts at that, having recognized early on the train wreck George Bush's term in office would become.

Repent now, for the end approacheth!

Posted by: pj in jesusland on April 2, 2007 at 3:23 PM | PERMALINK

The Neo-Cons and religious types haven't 'destroyed' the GOP. They were brought in to help it gain power: and that tactic succeeded. The GOP has failed this time, just like all the other times because -- it's the party of crooks, cranks and malcontents.

If someone has an ideology vaguely resembling the 'small government, big military, pride in America' rhetoric that's often used, and they are concerned about 'their party', then maybe they ought to look to how their candidates for president are selected. I think they'll discover it's always decided before the campaign season begins who will be their candidate and all the rest is a tap-dance. It's always been the big money people who choose and they do it early. This year there are a lot of Repubs on the 'trail', but you can bet this year they know they're gonna lose, so there isn't much effort being put into selecting a 'winner'. It's like the choice of Dole to face Clinton in 1996. Who cared? Nobody. Clinton was gonna win and that's that. The only question this year is which Dem the moneyed-class will choose to back. They want a winner, so they'll pick the Dem most like them: Hillary! Guess which Dem has the most campaign funds at this time: Hillary! Who does Rupert Murdoch support: Hillary!

Guess which Republican the Rich want to win? Hillary, the Goldwater girl!

It looks like the Dem primaries are going to be the whole ball of wax this time. So, choose carefully.

And, for the upset Republicans...look at ways to challenge Congressional reps in the primaries. That's what Progressives (on the left of most Dems) are doing to get a Congress more to their liking. It might not win the presidency, but it's something.

Posted by: MarkH on April 2, 2007 at 3:34 PM | PERMALINK

Fox News poll question: Who do you trust more to decide when U.S. troops should leave Iraq — U.S. military commanders or Members of Congress?

Fox manages to lie in asking a question.

Amazing.

What the conservative media will do to help out Princess Bush is unlimited by any sense of journalistic integrity.

Posted by: anonymous on April 2, 2007 at 3:42 PM | PERMALINK

Fox News poll question: Who do you trust more to decide when U.S. troops should leave Iraq — U.S. military commanders or Members of Congress?

That is an amazing question, isn't it, in its casual assumption that the civilian leadership elected by the American people should defer to an unelected military dictatorship. Astonishing how in just a few short years the GOP and their enablers at Fox have managed to rip off the facade uncovering their contempt for every single American value.

Posted by: Stefan on April 2, 2007 at 3:47 PM | PERMALINK

George Bush was insufficiently Reaganesque.

Why is that? Because Cheney is no Nancy Reagan.

(don't even say the name Laura)

Posted by: Zit on April 2, 2007 at 3:49 PM | PERMALINK

I'm with frankly0 at 1:55.

All this crying in public is an attempt to regain some sympathy/support from moderate independents for the ReThuglican Party.

"Remember Ronnie? Remember how much you liked him?
We're STILL the party of Ronnie. Forget about the guy in office now. Forget about the guy behind the curtain pulling the levers. Remember Ronnie!"

That's why they put him on the cover of Time.

It's an attempt one year ahead of time to distance themselves from the Disaster that Is W.

Posted by: Cal Gal on April 2, 2007 at 3:51 PM | PERMALINK

"How the Holy-Rollers and the Neo-Cons Destroyed the GOP"

To me, this is just so much crap.

As near as I can tell, from paying attention to these creeps for more than 45 years, that's just the way the GOP IS ... it hasn't been hijacked, it's been run by these people in this way for years and years and years.

If I hear one more of these conservatives pine for the days of Reagan (sniff-sniff), I swear I'll loose mu lunch.

Look at how these people have bought and sold this country for decades, fomented war and terror to benefit their own pocketbooks and to benefit their friends.

Screw this cop-out BS from slack-jawed troglodytes like Vic Gold et al.

As far as I'm concerned, these pigs finally seized power, and had six years of nearly un-checked rule, and they ran things right into the side of a mountain at high speed.

Screw them.

They screwed up, and as far as I'm concerned, the democrats need to hang that around their necks any time they try to raise their small misshapen heads out from under the rocks beneath which they cower.

Screw the GOP ... they must never darken the public discourse again.

Posted by: TB on April 2, 2007 at 3:55 PM | PERMALINK

Dan Quayle went to the same National Guard Unit as George W Bush; if that's any indicator of their comparative gravitas.

I think that maybe there must have been a jet-fuel-huffing-ring in that unit.

Of course, Quayle rates higher than Bush, because Quayle didn't desert, and actually completed their service.

Posted by: Extradite Rumsfeld on April 2, 2007 at 4:00 PM | PERMALINK

Back in the late 1920s and early 1930s, a fair number of German conservatives began voting for a "conservative" party with a strong leader, voting him into office in January 1933.

Once in office, none of his policies turned out to be "conservative."

There is a huge difference between a "conservative" like Gold and a "far right radical revolutionary," like the folks he terms "Party Snatchers." The German conservatives learned that at a pretty high cost.

Posted by: TCinLA on April 2, 2007 at 4:01 PM | PERMALINK

What set Goldwater apart was his extreme hawkishness. He was no more "sensible" than the current crop of neocons.

He never rose to power, so the full force of his foreign policy was never tested. Instead, generations have deified him in the "if only he was president he would have fixed everything" school of thought.

Goldwater would have been on board with the neo-cons, and at last we see the result of extreme, hawkish imperialism - it doesn't work.

Posted by: ESaund on April 2, 2007 at 4:01 PM | PERMALINK

Bush once said "We'll all be dead" before history will judge him. Doesn't look like it's taking that long.

Posted by: JJF on April 2, 2007 at 4:18 PM | PERMALINK

Disgusting what shakes out of the GOP tree when the incumbent isn't up for reelection.

So....jumping in with the rebels when the bully is laying on the ground makes Mr. Gold a hero of some kind?

It certainly doesn't put him in the same league as Democrats. The Bush years were tough going for liberals, black days that only the strong slogged through. I have seen some heros these past 7 years, those that stuck by their principles even in the worst times, many blogging out frustration and horror right here.

So how has Mr. Gold paid any dues? He was at the trough for the 6 years Bush and Co ran the show. Now he gets to stone the President after the opinion has shifted? Pretty crude. Call me non-plussed.

Where is any benefit derived from last second turn-coats like this? Democrats have known all along this was a bad president and a bad administration. What is the angle he's going for? Change needs to come from within the monster that the GOP has become. Will Gold help that? Most Republicans are still sucking hard and firm on their Political Domination lollipops. Bush or not, those sentiments won't change with the opinion tides. I almost agree with BlaBlaBla up there. Who will he make his money off of?

Liberals might not want to be too willing to embrace everyone who agrees with them about Bush. I for one distrust GOP last-minute turn-coats as well should their own party. Turn and turn again. I say revoke his voting card and send him over to the Leiberman camp.

Posted by: Zit on April 2, 2007 at 4:27 PM | PERMALINK

anonymous wrote: "Fox News poll question: Who do you trust more to decide when U.S. troops should leave Iraq — U.S. military commanders or Members of Congress?"

Hey, wait a minute, Fox -- I'm the decider! Why didn't you ask people whether they trust me more?

Posted by: George W. Bush on April 2, 2007 at 4:29 PM | PERMALINK

What a lot of commentators above are missing is the very real but silent disgust of traditional conservatives. I was at a party at Christmas here in Texas packed with conservatives, all of whom could barely say Bush's name without spitting. As Democrats, we must stay vigilant that the Republicans don't suddenly shift from publicly protecting Bush to embracing someone else that is fiscally conservative. Our recent gains could vanish quickly, if voters believe that Bush was an aberration.

Posted by: yocoolz on April 2, 2007 at 4:33 PM | PERMALINK

"If I hear one more of these conservatives pine for the days of Reagan (sniff-sniff), I swear I'll loose mu lunch."

Sing it, brother!!! But for the record, just substitute Nancy for Ronald. We had a woman ruling the country from behind a president for those 8 long lovely years and it was great, wasn't it? Just give her dresses and fancy china, and all the world prospered.

If Cheney has only been more in touch with his dress and china side, these past 8 years wouldn't have been so bad. But instead he ruled the country from behind Bush as a tyrannical megalomaniac and all the world suffered.

Posted by: Zit on April 2, 2007 at 4:39 PM | PERMALINK

"...the very real but silent disgust of traditional conservatives."

"...the very real but silent disgust of traditional conservatives."

"...the very real but silent disgust of traditional conservatives."

"...the very real but silent disgust of traditional conservatives."

"...the very real but silent disgust of traditional conservatives."

"...the very real but silent disgust of traditional conservatives."

...

Posted by: Silence on April 2, 2007 at 4:42 PM | PERMALINK

Makes you wonder what the learning curve is in rightwingland. Incompetent-out of touch Bush and Out of Control Cheney were obvious in 2003 when the US attacked Iraq because Saddam Husseins BFF Mohamed Atta flew planes into the WTC.

Posted by: bcinaz on April 2, 2007 at 4:50 PM | PERMALINK

I agree with many others here: Bush isn't an aberration. He's the apotheosis.

(I'll wait, mhr, while you go look that word up. When you reply - not that you ever do - be sure to say something about Cuba or Castro.)

It makes me laugh (with sour irony, that is) to hear some "conservatives" pining for the days of Reagan, or some glorious imagined past when True Conservatives were in charge. You mean the Ronald Reagan who pandered to the holy rollers and the reactionary hawks while enlarging the government and its debt? Yeah, those were the days - if only Bush hadn't strayed so far from that reservation!

Bush is Reagan - ignorant and ideological, but without the affable after-dinner-speaker charm. So it's easier to turn on him.

Posted by: Alek Hidell on April 2, 2007 at 4:51 PM | PERMALINK

"...the very real but silent disgust of traditional conservatives."

That disgust was not expressed in the voting booth in November of 2000. Nor was it expressed in 2004. I wouldn't call that "real". "Real weak" is more like it.

Bush is Reagan - ignorant and ideological, but without the affable after-dinner-speaker charm. So it's easier to turn on him.
Posted by: Alek Hidell on April 2, 2007 at 4:51 PM | PERMALINK

Yes. In fact, I think that Bush Jr. is closer to Reagan than to Bush Sr. (at least Bush Sr. had the good sense to call Gulf War I over, when it was obvious there was nothing substantial to be gained by going on to Baghdad.

Posted by: Extradite Rumsfeld on April 2, 2007 at 5:13 PM | PERMALINK
What a lot of commentators above are missing is the very real but silent disgust of traditional conservatives.

Well, yeah, his ego and lack of understanding of the need to at least pretend to care about anything besides a narrow elite has discredited traditional, aristocratic conservatism pretty badly, so I can see why it would piss off those interested in pimping that ideology.

OTOH, I fail to see why I should care.

Posted by: cmdicely on April 2, 2007 at 5:25 PM | PERMALINK

That's real great of Mr. Gold, but you broke the political system, you own it. Republicans would love to disown the obvious train wreck that is the Bush presidency. But those assholes LOVED them some W. They were wild about W. It was as if George Bush was their dream politician. They cannot be allowed to avoid accountability for their golden boy.

Posted by: The Fool on April 2, 2007 at 5:48 PM | PERMALINK

Never thought I'd be definding Reagan, but he was a centrist in comparison to this group. He raised taxes. Remember when he started negotiating with the Gorbachev, Reagan was attacked by Dick Cheney, Richard Perle, all the neo-cons. (When the Berlin Wall fell, Cheney famously said, "This is no time to let our guard down.") In no way to defend Reagan, but we need to keep noting how radical a departure this crowd really is.

Posted by: MaxGowan on April 2, 2007 at 5:58 PM | PERMALINK

Ali Blahblah >"Clinton kind of set the recent tone for Vice Presidents...a rebound effect against VPs and their actual role in Government after him."

You are kidding aren`t you ?

The idea of a functional VPOTUS goes back to at least Richard Nixon if not earlier. Can you say Bay of Pigs ? Nixon was up to his receding hairline in that mess and he never looked back. Then there was LBJ (Gulf of Tonkin anyone ?), GHWBush (Iran-Contra etc) & Shotgun Dick (you do remember all of the 6 years don`t you ?).

Notice the theme there ?

Cut the crap and admit how things work.

And this guy Gold is just as guilty as the rest of the enablers & string pullers.

No forgiveness & no permission whatsoever.

"First get your facts, then you can distort them at your leisure" - Mark Twain

Posted by: daCascadian on April 2, 2007 at 6:18 PM | PERMALINK

For over thirty years of adulthood my default position on Republican candidates, in absence of any overwhelming contradictory evidence, has been that at best they will screw all but the very wealthy if they succeed in an election, and more likely than not they will prove to be corrupt and immoral and generally rotten to the core of their being.

This position has served me very well, especially during the last six years.

Posted by: gregor on April 2, 2007 at 7:20 PM | PERMALINK

"Gold says he felt compelled to write his book because what he considers the depredations of the Bush administration -- the war, violations of civil liberties, expansion in government, the politicization of the Justice Department, to name just a few..."

I love the word depredations--plundering, robbing , laying waste. Great term. Let's welcome those abandoning support of this administration and finally speaking the truth.
CNN was discussing the recent desertion of former insider and mover/shaker Matthew Dowd--CNN was not buying the apologists' statements (Dan Bartlett and Dana Perino)that Dowd's criticism simply reflected his personal hardship/turmoil.

Nick Kristof once said "After you've seen how quickly national leaders can bungle national economies, and how difficult it is to put Humpty Dumpty together again, you have less patience for high-risk intellectual dishonesty like Bush's fiscal policy."
The Iraq war is deficit-financed--a costly cakewalk, for sure. And unconscionable.

As for Iraq, let's not forget that family friend--and journalist--Mickey Herskowitz documented Bush told him he was considering invading Iraq in 1999--with Bush telling him, "one of the keys to being seen as a great leader is to be seen as a commander-in-chief. If I have a chance to invade...if I had that much capital (that his father had after Kuwait), I'm not going to waste it. I'm going to get everything passed that I want to get passed..."
Patriot Act? Prosecutors doing his bidding all over the country with loyalty pledges? Prosecutors who had interviews asking what have you done to support the president? No-bid contracts for buddies and supporters?
You could fill the page all night with examples.



Posted by: consider wisely on April 2, 2007 at 7:38 PM | PERMALINK

a little more spice for the mix:

IRBIL, Iraq -- Two U.S. senators met Kurdish politicians and victims of Saddam Hussein's regime in Kurdish-controlled northern Iraq on Saturday, in the highest-level American visit to the autonomous area since it was set up after the 1991 Gulf War. Sens. Chuck Hagel, R-Neb., and Joseph Biden, D-Del., assured the Kurds that the United States, which patrols the skies above the Kurdish areas, would not forget them in planning for a government after Saddam. "We will stand with you in your effort to build a united Iraq, " Biden told a hastily called session ...

No, not recently. that was in 2002.

Posted by: MatthewRMarler on April 2, 2007 at 8:57 PM | PERMALINK

Matthew--the good thing is that people come to more reasonable conclusions after new facts are evident. Many people were blinded by the dazzling deceit of the administration. Fear--the promotion of fear--was used to displace logical thinking skills. The administration banked on that.
It was actually very Orwellian. And it has been life-altering.

Posted by: consider wisely on April 2, 2007 at 9:05 PM | PERMALINK

Bush and Cheney have done exactly what "conservatives" and republicans have been clamoring for for years. These asshats are now merely trying to separate Bush and Cheney from them now that the policies that they have all in lockstep pushed for and supported have failed.

The policies haven't failed. They were extremely successful to the interests of people like Vic Gold. It is just now that the costs of these policies are appearing to even the deaf dumb and blind in the electorate, that rats like Vic Gold are trying to rebrand the GOP.

Posted by: Disputo on April 2, 2007 at 9:17 PM | PERMALINK

So another "friend of the family" writes a book about the prodigal son.....just how does daddy Bush feel about his friends? And I bet Babs is sharpening her knives.....Is this just the actions of a few REpubs trying to save some fragment of their party? What do they gain by this (besides book fees)? I thought loyalty was the Bush family creed....

Posted by: Diane on April 2, 2007 at 11:17 PM | PERMALINK

It's even more troubling for Daddy Bush when you realize that he probably agrees with most of this stuff but can't say a word about it. What must it be like to be publicly trounced by your own son, only to see him go down (and down) in history as the worst American (not just president) ever.

Posted by: Kenji on April 3, 2007 at 12:58 AM | PERMALINK

It's even more troubling for Daddy Bush when you realize that he probably agrees with most of this stuff but can't say a word about it. What must it be like to be publicly trounced by your own son, only to see him go down (and down) in history as the worst American (not just president) ever.

My guess is that Pappa will have Sonny assassinated in his last year in order to try to jerk the knee of sympathy for his legacy.

I don't think it will work.

Posted by: Disputo on April 3, 2007 at 1:39 AM | PERMALINK

Never thought I'd be definding Reagan, but he was a centrist in comparison to this group.
Posted by: MaxGowan

Actually, I'm sure Ronnie's proud of his Praetorian Guard. This is exactly what he set in motion, after all. Voodoo economics and all.

'Ronald Reagan’s destruction of our political system is now complete. Never mind the staggering national debt, the rise of the Christian Right, the gap between rich and poor, environmental chaos, the spread of AIDS or world Imperialism – “looking like a president” is the real legacy of Reagan. Reagan was the first president who, as a former actor, perfected the art of performing presidential, qualifications be damned, resembling a cross between John Wayne and Bob Barker. Reagan was a ruinous president, but he was a very good Host.' - America's Top Presidential Model/ Jim David

Posted by: MsNThrope on April 3, 2007 at 11:02 AM | PERMALINK

"Men do not change, they unmask themselves."

I can't think of a better summary of the entire Republican Party over the last 6+ years.
Posted by: frankly0

We seem to have the real, rather than hijacked franklyO back. What a relief.

Posted by: MsNThrope on April 3, 2007 at 11:04 AM | PERMALINK

Liberal Democrats have engaged throwing mud at Republican presidents since at least the era of Eisenhower

Yeah and we haven't brought up anything he ever said, like his warning about the "military industrial complex", as apt, prescient, and admirable. For shame, us, for shame!

Posted by: ThresherK on April 3, 2007 at 6:22 PM | PERMALINK
"Vic Gold has been a dear friend and the President certainly respects his dissenting views," declared White House spokesman Dana Perdido.

"George Bush has stood by Mr. Gold through his many recent, sparsely-reported personal hardships--his divorce, his unmasking as a crossdressing pedophile, even the emergency operation to extract a rectally impacted hamster. The president recognizes that even people that supported him aren’t immune from having their own feelings and emotions. He respects this, absolutely."

How long before we hear something like it?

Posted by: Lionel Hutz, attorney-at-law on April 3, 2007 at 11:01 PM | PERMALINK




 

 

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