The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

SMU students gather around a bucket of markers to write an encouraging note to put in “Welcome to the Shelter” kits at event in mid-April on SMU’s campus.
Dallas homeless recovery center, The Bridge, is a home
Morgan Shiver, Contributor • June 20, 2024
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Is Bush already a lame duck?

 Is Bush already a lame duck?
Is Bush already a lame duck?

Is Bush already a lame duck?

Three months into his second term and Bush’s approval rating is the lowest of any second-term president in history.

Although it’s still too early to say, “I told you so,” the temptation is there.

Recent polls show that clearly half of Americans believe that Bush lied about weapons of mass destruction in Iraq.

A newly released report suggests that the administration rewrote terrorism estimates prior to the election to support the false claim that the world was safer thanks to Bush’s decision to take out Saddam Hussein. In reality, terrorism attacks around the world have tripled since then.

Call it the White House equivalent to Enron’s cooking the books.

Seventy percent of Americans believe that Congress and the president had no business interfering in the Terry Schiavo matter.

Evangelical leaders have publicly accused Bush of using them to get reelected and of then abandoning their issues, namely same-sex marriage.

In all fairness, Bush isn’t the first politician to pander to a special-interest group, only to treat them like red-headed stepchildren later.

President Clinton did the same thing to gays. Clinton — whose record on gay rights still eclipses anything Bush has done — courted the gay vote, then caved to Conservatives by creating “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell.”

Consider it the equivalent to Bush’s “No Child Left Behind.” They are both equally myopic failures.

The irony, of course, is that DADT was designed to give gay service members a way to serve quietly without fear of retaliation, while the reality is that more gays have been discharged under the policy than before its implementation.

Many of them were specialists in their fields — such as Arabic translators — whose service could have been invaluable in Iraq.

Of course, the number of DADT discharges has declined in the last two years. Rumsfeld may be a lot of things — arrogant, abrasive, dishonorable, petulant — but he’s not stupid. He’s not going to get rid of anyone during this war. Every body counts, literally. When — some people are beginning to wonder if — we withdraw from Iraq, the number of DADT discharges will skyrocket.

Who knows where Bush stands on gays in the military. The truth is most people don’t know where Bush stands on most topics — except Social Security. He supports a SS overhaul, yet he’s never put forth a plan. But whatever the plan is, it must include private accounts.

We know he supports the death penalty. He did execute, after all, over 150 people as governor of Texas.

Although, he claims to believe in the former Pope’s “culture of life.”

John Paul II, however, opposed capital punishment. He also opposed what he considered to be the unjust war in Iraq. But let’s not get bogged down in facts.

It sounds good to say you support a culture of life. Even though that culture of life doesn’t extend to the state-sponsored genocide being waged in Darfur. Nor does it include paying for condoms to stop the spread of HIV/AIDS.

Thou shalt abstain or die! I wonder if the first twins keep that commandment. If Jenna’s behavior recently during a bachelorette party is any indication, I’d say no. In fact, I’d be having a come-to-Jesus meeting with her if I were George.

While daddy was kneeling before the papal bier in Rome, Jenna was doing the butt dance and flashing her thong to a raucous crowd egging her on.

Someone who videotaped the girl-gone-wild behavior was offering the video to the highest bidder. I wonder how much George had to shell out.

Not that I believe that parents should pay for the sins of the children, or that children should live by the morals of their parents. But if you’re the leader of the free world, and you pretend to be a man of faith, tell your daughters to keep their panties on in public — especially while you’re at a papal funeral.

Meanwhile, back at the ranch, Bush just met with Crown Prince Abdullah, hoping Saudi Arabia will increase production of crude to stave off record-high gas prices.

Never mind that Bush’s energy bill gives Big Oil — who is already swimming in record profits — billions of dollars in tax cuts and corporate handouts.

It wouldn’t make sense to expect the fellas you grew up with — and have done business with your entire life — to absorb any of the cost.

Nor does it help that he supported an attempted coup against the democratically elected president of the country — Venezuela — that was our number 3 supplier of foreign oil.

Unfortunately, when the Bush-Cheney Oil Company rolled the dice and invaded Iraq, they expected it would be pumping billions of dollars of oil into the American market by now. At least that’s the logic Paul Wolfowitz used to justify the war.

And for that gross financial miscalculation, Bush rewarded him with the cushy president of the World Bank gig.

Maybe Bush just wanted to get rid of him. If there’s one thing you can say about George, he’s loyal to his friends, no matter how incompetent they are.

Consider his nomination of John Bolton as ambassador to the United Nations. With each passing day, new revelations of bullying, browbeating, intimidation, intelligence manipulation, disinformation and misinformation come out of his office, and Bush insists he’s the best man to represent the US at the UN.

No one, it turns out, is more interested in seeing Bolton confirmed than Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice. Bolton’s promotion means she gets rid of an insubordinate subordinate whom the British insisted be taken off a diplomatic assignment because his comments threatened to undermine sensitive nuclear talks.

So in typical White House fashion, when someone can’t do a job, he gets a promotion. After all, isn’t that what happened when most of you re-elected W?

Epilogue: This may be the last time you have the fortune or misfortune — whichever the case may be — of reading my column. If you don’t see me here next fall, I challenge you to be the one who picks up the torch and illuminates what’s happening in the world beyond the bubble.

¡Feliz verano!

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