Thursday, October 26, 2006
A Strategy By Any Other Name
In a long awaited shift in White House strategy, Tony Snow announced Monday that POTUS will no longer use the rallying cry "Stay the Course". Tony (snow boy), recently recruited from Fox News to give the press secretary spin a new center of gravity, is beginning to take hold. The situation in Iraq clearly requires a change in slogan, since continuing to say "stay the course" gave the impression that the administration was not aware that many of its backers had tired of it. As Foxy put it "It left the wrong impression of what was going on and allowed critics to say 'Well, here's an administration that's just embarked upon a policy and not looking at what the situation is,' when, in fact, it's just the opposite."
The change in the slogan demonstrates that the president is not inflexible as he continues to pursue mission accomplished in Iraq. There was no announcement regarding "cut and run", which will continue to apply to the Democrats, as well as "homosexual agenda". Still, such a major marketing change this close to the election required a lot of cojones, particularly without a suitable replacement strong and virile description of our strong and virile Iraq policy. Generally you don't like to change horses’ names in the middle of the stream.
Friday, October 20, 2006
Change in Consulting Arrangements on Iraq
Breaking news today. Bush says he will now consult with his generals about tactics for the war in Iraq. While it was not announced who or what he was consulting with before, based upon results it was apparently not God.
Friday, October 06, 2006
Annual Mission Accomplished Celebration Postponed
The $20 million set aside in the military spending bill for a celebration of the success in Iraq and Afghanistan will be carried over until next year. As an efficiency measure, the celebration was to take place this year in the nation's capital instead of the more expensive venue of an aircraft carrier. Diverting those babies from docking pending the top gun fly in is not cheap. The Republican bill also authorized the president to proclaim the day a national holiday, but did not specify whether it had to be on a Monday.
Democrats are calling attention to the carryover, saying they were against it, and the Republicans are saying that is just an attempt to embarrass them right before the election. In truth, though, the Democrats clearly voted for it before they voted against it, as the measure passed the Senate by unanimous consent and the House by overwhelming majority. This was, however, before the Nancy Pelosi rule that requires voting against all Republican proposals, so it would have required some backbone to vote against honoring our troops with a trip to Washington.
At this point, it is not clear whether the national holiday, or the rollover, for that matter, will be permanent.
Sunday, October 01, 2006
A Real Page Turner
Wouldn’t you know it? Now it comes out, with just 5 weeks before the election. Representative Mark Foley, co-chairman of the House caucus on Missing and Exploited Children, has been sending sexually explicit emails to teenage boys who worked as House Pages. The Republican leadership of the House was tipped off last year about at least one “over friendly” email but kept it confidential. That included Rodney Alexander, R. Louisiana, John Boehner, majority leader, Thomas Reynolds, chairman of the National Republican Congressional Committee, and Speaker J. Dennis Hastert. Their investigation failed to turn up any really nasty stuff, but ABC News did better and Friday confronted Mr. Foley, who promptly resigned. That left the House leaders to circle most of Saturday with staff and legal advisors to get the story straight and to contain any possible adverse political complications.
A statement released late Saturday made it clear that Speaker Hastert has no recollection of ever being told, but also that “he has no reason to dispute Congressman Reynolds’ recollection that he reported to him on the problem….” A joint statement by Mr. Hastert, Mr. Boehner, and the majority whip Roy Blunt called for specific rules about contacts between pages and lawmakers, and the creation of a toll-free number so pages and their parents could report untoward attentions. Other Representatives that serve on the board overseeing the page program were aware of the email problem, but refused comment because the matter had been referred to the ethics committee by a vote of the House.
Thus handled, the Republican leadership faces an even bigger challenge. The resignation of Mr. Foley leaves a Democrat challenger unopposed in the south Florida district previously considered “safe”. Who can they find pure enough to face the intense scrutiny that will obviously result? A priest maybe?
Hastert et al will get no help on this outing. ABC has posted the explicit IM messages on its own web site. Parental Discretion Advised. More keeps coming out. Stay tuned.