|Last Updated: Jun 26th, 2006 - 00:55:24|
| Uncurious George visits Vienna |
By Charles M. Ashley
Online Journal Contributing Writer
Jun 26, 2006, 00:52
| Email this article |
Printer friendly page
Drinking my morning coffee and watching CNN, I caught a live news conference from the European summit in Vienna (transcript). George W. Bush, Chancellor Wolfgang Schüssel of Austria, and European Commission President Jose Manuel Durão Barroso of Portugal stood at lecterns at the Hofburg Palace. Each made a statement about the preceding summit, during which Iran, North Korea, and nuclear weapons were major issues.
Bush looked and sounded silly and uncomfortable next to his more refined counterparts. Of course, he had to include some trademark Bushisms in his statement, for the benefit of his bumpkin base back in Shady Hollow, US of A:
“Mr. Chancellor -- I call him, Wolfgang; he calls me, George W. -- Jose, it's good to see you. Thank you very much for your hospitality. I also want to thank President Fischer for his hospitality, as well. I've really been looking forward to this trip. I have never been to your beautiful country. I need to come back. It is -- and your hospitality has been grand. I really appreciate it a lot,” Bush said.
One must, I suppose, make allowances. Summit diplomacy is, after all, “hard work.” Especially for someone so ill prepared for it as Bush.
After Barroso finished his statement, came a question and answer session. On the fifth question, the Bushit hit the fan.
An Austrian reporter stood up and said, “Chancellor Schüssel, the European public is deeply worried by these secret prisoners that the CIA has been transporting, is transporting through Europe. Did you get assurance today from the president that this is not going to happen anymore, that there won't be anymore in the kidnapping of terror suspects in Europe, that this is a thing of the past?
“And to the president, Mr. President, you said this is ‘absurd,’ but you might be aware that in Europe the image of America is still falling, and dramatically in some areas. Let me give you some numbers. In Austria, in this country only 14 percent of the people believe that the United States, what they are doing is good for peace; 64 percent think that it is bad. In the United Kingdom, your ally, there are more citizens who believe that the United States policy under your leadership is helping to destabilize the world than Iran. So my question to you is, why do you think that you've failed so badly to convince Europeans, to win their heads and hearts and minds?”
The reporter referred to no mere spur of the moment poll, but to the extensive survey recently published by the Pew Research Center, the Pew Global Attitudes Project, based on “more than 90,000 interviews in 50 countries.” The project is introduced on Pew’s webpage with the following paragraph:
“America's global image has again slipped and support for the war on terrorism has declined even among close U.S. allies like Japan. The war in Iraq is a continuing drag on opinions of the United States, not only in predominantly Muslim countries but in Europe and Asia as well. And despite growing concern over Iran's nuclear ambitions, the U.S. presence in Iraq is cited at least as often as Iran -- and in many countries much more often -- as a danger to world peace.”
Bush grew visibly angry at the presumptuousness of the question as the adrenaline pumped through the muscles on his simian face, as the alpha male of all alpha males --or shall we say le chimp des chimps went into red-alert attack mode.
Really, the cheek of this Austrian, who writes for some rag or other in a U.S. client state. Schüssel ought to do a better job of controlling his press. Couldn’t they replace this guy with somebody like Jeff Gannon [*] (aka James Guckert), or maybe Armstrong Williams?
According to Kenneth R. Bazinet of the New York Daily News: “an irked President Bush snapped yesterday at a suggestion U.S. foreign policy has become a threat to global security. 'That's absurd,' Bush barked at an Austrian reporter during a press conference with European Union President and Austrian Chancellor Wolfgang Schuessel. 'We'll defend ourselves, but at the same time, we're actively working with our partners to spread peace and democracy. . . . It's an absurd statement.' " [Emphasis added.]
According to James Gerstenzang and Alissa J. Rubin of the Los Angeles Times: "With surveys showing a growing animosity in Europe toward the United States amid fears that its anti-terrorism policies and the Iraq war are endangering global stability, the president lashed out during a news conference, raising his voice and several times using the word 'absurd' to describe the criticism." [Emphasis added]
Bush’s response was not only angry, but typical boilerplate Bush: “Well, yes, I thought it was absurd for people to think that we're more dangerous than Iran. It's a -- we're a transparent democracy. People know exactly what's on our mind. We debate things in the open. We've got a legislative process that's active.”
Now really, how absurd is it? How many nukes does Iran possess? None. How many does the U.S. possess? Over 10,000. Combine these facts with the fact that Bush and his junta are easily as fanatical as the ayatollahs who run Iran. Not at all absurd.
“Transparent” -- who’s he kidding? The jig’s up on that one, Chimpster. Downing Street memos. Secret energy meetings, chaired by Cheney. According to Paul O’Neill, plans to attack Iraq long before 9-11. The list goes on and on and drearily on. “Transparent” -- now that’s absurd!
Bush: “Look, people didn't agree with my decision on Iraq, and I understand that. For Europe, September the 11th was a moment; for us, it was a change of thinking. I vowed to the American people I would do everything to defend our people, and will.”
Ah yes, 9-11 changed everything. And, as we have sadly learned, Bush will “do everything (and anything) to defend (and spy on and rip off) our people.” Furthermore, he will use the once in a lifetime opportunity to stuff his cronies’ pockets with war profits. And heck, why not use it as camouflage to spy on political opponents?
Bush: “I fully understood that the longer we got away from September the 11th, more people would forget the lessons of September the 11th. But I'm not going to forget them. And, therefore, I will be steadfast and diligent and strong in defending our country.”
Now just which lessons does our erstwhile alpha male mean. He means, I think, we gotta be the schoolyard bully and kick the ass of anybody who looks at us funny. And Bush is great at looking into people’s eyes and seeing their souls and true intentions. He read Saddam perfectly, didn’t he? But he missed the lesson about “what goes around comes around.” The Yale history major missed the classes on the history of exploitive U.S. foreign policy, especially in the Middle East since the end of World War Two and the inception of the CIA as global enforcer of U.S. big business interests.
Bush: “I don't govern by polls, you know. I just do what I think is right.”
Really, Mr. President, that one is getting tired. Even more tired than the rest of this crap. Please consider retiring it.
Bush: “And I understand some of the decisions I made are controversial. But I made them in the best interest of our country, and I think in the best interest of the world.”
Oh my God! Don’t remind me. This moron, this Lord of Misrule, is the misleader of the world -- the entire topsy-turvy globe! And don’t you cross him! No, no! Or you’ll get your ass kicked but good.
Bush: “I believe when you look back at this moment, people will say, it was right to encourage democracy in the Middle East. I understand some people think that it can't work. I believe in the universality of freedom; some don't.”
“Freedom” -- yeah, freedom for corporations to do whatever they damned well please. Freedom for you to take our money to buy your cronies’ military junk.
“Democracy” -- that form of government bought by those with the most money. As Greg Palast puts it, “The best democracy money can buy.”
Bush: “I'm going to act on my beliefs so long as I'm the President of the United States. Some people say, it's okay to condemn people for -- to tyranny. I don't believe it's okay to condemn people to tyranny, particularly those of us who live in the free societies.”
What is he talking about? Is there anyone out there who can translate Bushese?
Bush: “And so I understand, and I'll try to do my best to explain to the Europeans that, on the one hand, we're tough when it comes to the war on terror; on the other hand, we're providing more money than ever before in the world's history for HIV/AIDS on the continent of Africa. I'll say, on the one hand, we're going to be tough when it comes to terrorist regimes who harbor weapons. On the other hand, we'll help feed the hungry. I declared Darfur to be a genocide because I care deeply about those who have been afflicted by these renegade bands of people who are raping and murdering.”
Bomb em, feed em, and medicate em. Why not just feed em and medicate em? It might take some retooling, but couldn’t the corporatists make just as much money feeding and medicating as they do killing? And why not bribe (negotiate with) the Sudanese “renegades?” It would be a lot cheaper than fighting them -- that is if you actually ever truly considered doing anything about them. The taxpayers still foot the bill. But then, fear is a much better motivator than love or compassion, isn’t it? Might be hard to convince the base to pay up.
Bush: “And so I will do my best to explain our foreign policy. On the one hand, it's tough when it needs to be; on the other hand, it's compassionate. And we'll let the polls figure out -- people can say what they want to say. But leadership requires making hard choices based upon principle and standing -- (president's microphone goes out) -- and that's how I'm going to continue to lead my country.
Keep working on it, Mr. President. Do your best. Keep Bushitting. These client state guys might kiss your ass, but they understand “our foreign policy” better than you realize.
What an appropriate setting -- the Hofburg Palace -- for this press conference with Bush among the “leaders” of the European client states -- and all the trappings of Empire.Email Charles M. Ashley at Scriblerus@psnw.com. Visit Charles’s blog.
Copyright © 1998-2006 Online Journal
Email Online Journal Editor