Thursday, November 27, 2008

things to be thankful for on this thanksgiving day

I'm not going to do a schmaltzy list of things about how I still have my hair or a great family or just won the lottery.

I'm thankful for one thing: this is the LAST Thanksgiving that we will have with George W. Bush as our de facto President.

That just about covers it. As of January 20, Bush is gone. ANYBODY would be a big improvement (well, anybody this side of Dick Cheney or David Addington or Don Rumsfeld or somebody like that). But a smart guy like Barack Obama will be a particularly big improvement.

David Broder writes that this is a good time to have a smart person as President. I only disagree to the extent that I think ANY time, ALL times are good times to have a smart President. Yeah, I agree that quantifying intelligence is hard. Being an intellectual for example clearly does not automatically equate to intelligence. We only have to look at Georgetown professor Douglas Feith, the "dumbest fucking guy on the planet" (thank you, Tommy Franks) as a recent example from this de facto Administration.

There is such a thing as political intelligence. Once upon a time, I thought Bush might have that. But the ham-fisted way in which he handled his attempt to privatize Social Security more than anything made me reconsider that. He has a certain low cunning, and a willingness to commit any foul necessary to win. But political intelligence extends to an ability to govern, to forge alliances in power to get your way.

Let's face it, if September 11 hadn't unfurled the way it did, Bush would have not accomplished one thing. Only 9/11 gave him the ability to cow Democrats (and some Republicans) into supporting his unitary executive and police-state-in-waiting, not to mention his absurdly naive project to remake the Middle East by invading Iraq.

So no, Bush didn't even bring political intelligence into the White House.

And now, as Barack Obama prepares to clean up after Bush (who is clearly just phoning it in right now, an abject abdication of responsibility in the midst of a major financial/economic crisis is the final proof of his selfishness and inadequacy; Poppy cannot be proud), we can give thanks that at least Bush will be gone, and we can hope that Obama is up to the task.



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