Sunday, May 21, 2006

Surrealism, updated

Hermes@ My Left Wing noticed something I missed in the exchange between Dubya and David Gregory a few days ago in the interview that went with the Dukakis Moment photo op on the Mexican border:
MSNBC: Let me ask you about your leadership. In the most recent survey, your disapproval rating is now one point lower than Richard Nixon’s before he resigned the presidency. [BUSH laughs] You’re laughing...

BUSH: I’m not laughing.

MSNBC: Why do you think that is?

BUSH: Because we’re at war. And war unsettles people. Listen, we’ve got a great economy. We’ve added 5.2 million jobs in the last two-and-a-half years, but people are unsettled. They don’t look at the economy and say, 'life is good.' They know we’re at war. And I’m not surprised that people are unsettled because of war. The enemy’s got a powerful tool — that is to get on your TV screen by killing innocent people. And my job is to continue to remind the people it’s worth it. We’re not going to retreat hastily. We’re not going to pull out of there before the job’s done and we’ve got a plan for victory.

As Hermes pointed out, "Bush started laughing and then denied he was laughing."

Think about how perfectly that denial of reality -- a reality captured on video only seconds before -- encapsulates this man:

I did not go AWOL from the Guard.

We are not spying on domestic calls.

We are saving Social Security.

Our tax cuts benefit ordinary Americans.

You can probably supply a hundred better examples of the way Bush tells us we don't see what we see, that he didn't do what he did, that reality is his to ignore or contradict. This is not a pipe; I am not laughing.

Every time I think I have found the perfect nutshell moment, they hand me a better one.


Blogger Eric Soderstrom said...

That's one of my favorite prints of all time. And I've seen the original in Chicago. I've never thought of it in terms of politics and policy, only in terms of keeping things loose with a sense of and apreciation for absurdism. You have forever changed how I will think of this painting.

8:25 PM  
Blogger bluememe said...

Sorry, man. I know what you mean. I've always loved the Barber Adagio, and for a long time I couldn't listen to it without seeing "Platoon" in my head.

11:05 PM  

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