Cut ... Print ... That’s A Wrap...
With Compromise Scene In The Can, Midterms On The Horizon, It’s On To The Next Fabricated Crisis
About the only thing missing from yesterdays’ “Breaking News” bulletins, and the anxious, breathless stand-ups from reporters in the hallways of the Capital Building was the big Liberty Bell swinging into the screen, and the title “Liberty Film” dissolving into the frame.
A Capraesque moment it wasn’t.
Since late summer, when the White House began its’ determined effort to change the conversation (i.e. headlines) from the fiasco in Iraq to the larger, more uncertain and ambiguous ‘Global War On Terror’, we’ve had a very fast-paced shooting schedule, complete with flashback scenes (Nazis) and other un-Capraesque dialogue from the President, right through his cabinet members, including Vice President Cheney, Secretary of State Rice and Secretary of Defense Rumsfeld (whose acting was on par with yet another movie, ‘The Three Amigos’)
Now we move up in the script, be it straight from Central Casting, whether culled and improvised from Karl Rove’s Playbook, or Tony’s Snow Job, Bush took the lead in this little comedy-drama, titled in the script simply as “Torturer”.
And, as anticipated by the White House, entering on cue were the Dumas’ heroes - Athos, Aramis and Porthos, later aided by the aspiring D'Artagnan in the persons of McCain, Warner, Graham and Powell, swashbuckling through the Senate, on the ready to save the day.
We should note here that there is no doubt to the sincerity of our heroes and their actions, it’s just that they are on a completely different script.
In fact, this movie has played before, most recently, at the very end of 2005.
Close-Up: Calendar - December 30th, 2005
It was on this day that President Bush issued one of his now, infamous, Signing Statements, to a bill authored by Senator John McCain (Amendment on (1) the Army Field Manual and (2) Cruel, Inhumane, Degrading Treatment, amendment #1977 and also known as the McCain Amendment 1977.) that banned torture.
However, a few weeks later (Cue the Vice President: Enter, Stage Right) the games began, as Vice President Cheney led a charge to propose changes in the bill that would exempt CIA employees from it.
And, on that day of December 30, 2005, in his Signing Statement, the President noted;
''The executive branch shall construe [the law] in a manner consistent with the constitutional authority of the President . . . as Commander in Chief," Bush wrote, adding that this approach ''will assist in achieving the shared objective of the Congress and the President . . . of protecting the American people from further terrorist attacks."
Basically, the President improvised his own lines in the script, thumbing his nose at McCain and the Senate, saying, essentially, looking into the camera, “I’ll do what I want, whenever I want”
Hopefully, someone in the media will ask this trio of heroes that, with the experience and evidence of the past five-years, on this President’s invasion and occupation of Iraq, or, more to the point, his mishandling of it - yes, the White House cites “bad intelligence” , while the rest of the world already has read reams of documents that show it to be “bad ideology ” - how they can believe and have faith that the President is going to listen to them, and that he is going to follow their laws? Especially, bringing up the Signing Statement on the McCain Torture Bill.
Now we fast-forward to September, after the string of Presidential speeches leading up to his ”non-political” nationally-aired politics-laced remembrance for the 5th Anniversary of 9-11, aided, conveniently by the ABC network, and their two-day, no-commercial interruptions broadcasting of the ‘The Path To 9-11’, that seemed to be running on the same White House script, leading us to the President’s fierce press conference a week ago, challenging the Congress to “give me my torture bill”.
In fact, we watch this president stumble awkwardly for another “bullhorn moment”, from ”Mission Accomplished””, to ”Purple-Fingered Iraqi Voters”, to “Final Throes”, to, “I’m the Decider”, to what now seems like, the “government-less new Iraqi Government”.
Only trouble is that for every “bullhorn moment” he reaches out for, he comes off more playing like Foghorn Leghorn (to, perhaps Cheney’s Yosemite Sam). Always boasting, and looking for the “gag” or “prank” rather then investing in more noble and substantive actions.
There are still a considerable number of scenes left to shoot in this movie. Now that the “Compromise” situation has been handled, it’s on to the next fabricated crisis.
And look at all the plot lines we have to choose from, be it new terrorism alerts, the immigration crisis, or the fabled “October Surprise” that is waiting in the wings.
Don’t hold your breath, waiting for some “great new day” coming out of this Compromise scene.
"Only trouble is that for every “bullhorn moment” he reaches out for, he comes off more playing like Foghorn Leghorn"