Today’s NYT column by Frank Rich, Iraq Is the Ultimate Aphrodisiac, is a gem of analysis on the multiple fiascos in the history of the Bush administration, beginning and continuing with a scale of cronyism that Boss Tweed and others never dreamed of. Rich leaves almost no scandal unmentioned and brings back the oft forgotten nomination of Bernard Kerik as secretary of homeland security in December 2004.
Many of us have mentioned the overload of scandals to keep track of in the Bush Administration, let alone the GOP. Rich provides a very useful and perceptive examination of them, plus the underlying political and ideological connections. Rich starts with this astute observation:
PRESIDENT BUSH has skipped the funerals of the troops he sent to Iraq. He took his sweet time to get to Katrina-devastated New Orleans. But last week he raced to Virginia Tech with an alacrity not seen since he hustled from Crawford to Washington to sign a bill interfering in Terri Schiavo’s end-of-life medical care. Mr. Bush assumes the role of mourner in chief on a selective basis, and, as usual with the decider, the decisive factor is politics. Let Walter Reed erupt in scandal, and he’ll take six weeks to show his face — and on a Friday at that, to hide the story in the Saturday papers. The heinous slaughter in Blacksburg, Va., by contrast, was a rare opportunity for him to ostentatiously feel the pain of families whose suffering cannot be blamed on the administration.
My writing is not worth more of your time. Go to Iraq Is the Ultimate Aphrodisiac, read it and shudder.