Why We Can’t Win in Iraq

We have a President who has lost touch with not only the American electorate, but also with reality.  He listens to what he wants to hear and is unable to honestly evaluate what is really happening in Iraq and the rest of the world.

I understand why Bush won the first election. He presented himself well, said what people wanted to hear and the “liberal media” did NOT do a good job at digging out all the truth on him, like that any company he ran usually went bankrupt or worse under his watch, that 6 months before the election he had no clue about who the leaders of many important countries were (many of whom, at the time, I knew and would expect any governor to know), that he started in Texas with a budget surplus and drove it into a deep deficit and, when asked what to do, said it wasn’t his problem, it was the next governor’s problem. I think if all this had been brought out from the beginning and people knew about it, it would have made a huge difference in the 2000 election.

He won the 2004 election with fear. After 9/11, whenever he started sagging in the poles, the terror warning level went up. Before the election, they raised it again. It’s the same kind of tactics Hitler used. (Actually, the way his administration has used fear to control people is right along the lines of Hitler, including using “them” as an excuse to undermine the Constitution to protect our rights.)

The mid term elections showed the public isn’t buying the fear anymore. They’ve seen Iraq drag on and too many people die. Usually when he gives a speech, there’s a bounce in the polls and people swing to his side. In this speech, just after the mid-term Congress convenes, he had no bounce. None. Nada. And people are actually turning against him. Unless the Democrats in Congress screw up, he is in very serious trouble from now on out. He can no longer get what he wants from Congress and the public no longer trusts him.

When he stands up and speaks and tells everyone that something has to be done and gives his reasons, people don’t listen anymore. If they do, they hear his reasons as sound and fury (Remember? “A tale told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing.”) From a rhetoric point of view, he has lost. He cannot stand up and state his reasons and have more than a small part of the country believe him any more.

I went on longer on this than I might have, but I’m tracing a history. He started by saying what he believes in himself when he talked about compassionate conservatism. It was quite believable. It made sense, but then it became irrelevant after 9/11 and he switched to speeches to keep us in fear and to present us with threatening evildoers. He got so wrapped up in Iraq that he lost track of bin Laden and he just doesn’t have the strength of character or rhetorical abilities to convince us of anything unless he can tell us what we want to hear or scare us.

Now when he talks, without the threats or misrepresentations (which I think he genuinely believes), it’s become easy for everyone to see he is out of touch with reality. He does not see the world the rest of us see. He is proud to ignore the news and hears only what his people want him to hear. He is going to lose more and more power. Republicans are already siding with Democrats in Congress and more and more are scared to be associated with him. Even our staunch Senator, John Warner (former Chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee until the Democrats came in) has said there are serious problems in Iraq and we have to rethink things there.

It is true that if we fail, there will be a terrible cost, but we’ve already failed. There is no way we can stop the insurgents. The only way we ever could have won is to never have gone in. Bush doesn’t realize that and is incapable of accepting that he was wrong and is not able to see that we have already lost. Like Joshua said in War Games, “Strange game Dr. Falken. The only way to win is not to play.”

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