Imperial Bush and the Democratic Congress

Why is Bush unable to get the Democrats to the negotiating table?  Because there is none (AP, via The Guardian, emphasis mine):

President Bush offered to talk with Democrats about the standoff over war funding, but he made it clear Tuesday he will not embrace any timetable for a U.S. troop withdrawal. Democrats said there was no point in talking if Bush refused to negotiate.

Of course there isn’t. What is Bush accomplishing by inviting the Democrats to just sit and listen? Does the President of the United States have nothing better to do than pretend to be a responsive leader? At least the Democrats finally have the backbone to stand firm under pressure (democrats.senate.gov via mcjoan at DailyKos):

“With his threat to veto such a plan for change in Iraq, President Bush is ignoring the clear message of the American people: We must protect our troops, hold the Iraqi government accountable, rebuild our military, provide for our veterans and bring our troops home.

Bush’s “invitation” amounts to an imperial court. The subjects will listen. The King will be the decider.

Sometimes it is striking how much Bush’s Presidency is like Reagan’s in the very worst of ways. His administration is highly attuned to effective use of media, propaganda and image, but also uses a courtly style at every opportunity.

Crafting actions and messages in a way that reinforces the notion of absolute executive power goes hand in hand with the abuse of that power we’ve seen during the Bush presidency.

There is a sharp contrast between this approach and an inclusive democratic approach to both the style and substance of governance.

The more we draw this distinction the more we can weaken it.

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2 Responses

  1. Fantastic callout of the Bush lie in wanting to negotiate with Dems.
    Reagan was Phase One of the 2001 Neo coup d’etat. His administration built the framework.

  2. And it built the expectations, both in terms of being above the law, and in the rhetorical style employed to place citizens below rulers. The fantastical part of it all is that some philosophical conservatives still seem to look back on his administration with misty eyes. That puzzles me.

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