Evolution may favor religious diversity, but the tail does not wag the fish.

Thursday, December 29, 2005

No "Mission Accomplished"

Bush Team Rethinks Its Plan for Recovery [Washington Post]

"The Iraq push culminated the rockiest political year of this presidency, which included the demise of signature domestic priorities, the indictment of the vice president's top aide, the collapse of a Supreme Court nomination, a fumbled response to a natural disaster and a rising death toll in an increasingly unpopular war. It was not until Bush opened a fresh campaign to reassure the public on Iraq that he regained some traction."
Would you be surprised to learn that it took more than half the year for the Bush administration to pare down its State of the Union goals and accept the war in Iraq as its lasting legacy?

Iraq as albatross or standard bearer for G.W. Bush, we will enter into 2006 with much changed in an embattled presidency. It seems a new language and vision is in order. We have moved from foreign policy (jingoist and jihadists) to deficit domestic policy. For a time, we waltzed with executive powers over how best to "keep us safe" (cf. enemy combatants, wiretaps), but one way or another, we have returned to three branches of government in defiance of a "mad King George" monarchy.

Will anyone remember the name "Harriet Miers?" mused Trent Lott. Will anyone remember Mr. Bush's domestic agenda, which included a State of the Union message of "No Doping"?

I look toward the new year and the State of the Union 2006 with that same sort of dismal fascination that we greeted Y2K. There we were, gathered under the voices of Peter Jennings and others for views around the world and of Times Square.

And we watched the ball fall, not quite sure what we expected to happen next. Did it go dark? Did civilization end?

Quoting a Millennium character, Jose Chung:

Well, all's well that ends well. Though that's easy for Shakespeare to say -- he'll be around for another millennium. But what of our own millennium? Will it all end well? No one can know, but that of course doesn't stop anyone from guessing. And the nature of those predictions always revolve around the usual suspects: salvation and/or self-satisfaction. With that in mind, I humbly add my own prophecy of what the dawn of the new millennium shall bring forth: one thousand more years of the same, old crap.
--Jose Chung's Doomsday Defense

How unimpressive and yet dismally fascinating the first half decade of this millennium has been.


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