Skip to comments.Bush Did It!
Posted on 07/12/2002 7:17:59 AM PDT by Stand Watch Listen
In an odd way, I eagerly await the next could-be scandal that the left will attempt to hang around the neck of George W. Bush. It has become a perverse type of spectator sport for me. Granted the current "corporate greed" thing hasn't run its course and it may yet "have legs", irrespective of any truth behind it. No matter, should it die out tomorrow, whatever the next big problem may be, we can all rest assured that it will be Bush's fault.
If we're to accept the rhetoric of the Democrats and the blazingly irresponsible headlines in the press at face value, we must believe that Bush is a political and social black hole of sorts. He is a destructive, negatively charged force of nature, whose mere existence brings forth devastation and human misery. There can be little doubt that this is what we are being sold. In fact, he hadn't succeeded in corrupting the Supreme Court by demanding that the Florida vote count adhere to the Constitution and existing election laws before his ominous presence was taking its toll on America.
According to pundits like Robert Scheer and Maureen Dowd, his birth into a wealthy family was enough to categorize him as having criminal tendencies. It's strange how such privilege is never an issue when the recipient carries the name of Roosevelt or Kennedy. Dowd elaborates her disdain, "Can a Bush born on third base but thinking he hit a triple ever really understand the problems of the guys in the bleachers?" Cute! A better question might be, "Can a columnist from a left-wing rag masquerading as impartial, convince herself of her own superiority while banking on personal venom and class envy?" Apparently she can.
Before the 2000 election we were being led to believe that the connections of Bush and Cheney to "big oil" made them personally responsible for raising energy prices. Moments after assuming office, the economy that had been slowing for a full year was suddenly discovered to be in a "recession", and due to the president's "tax cuts for the rich", which hadn't then gone into effect. The downing of a U.S. surveillance plane by a Chinese fighter jet, over international waters was characterized as his desire to ignite a new Cold War. The view was solidified in the minds of many when he abandoned the antiquated ABM Treaty, signed with a country that no longer existed.
Half way through W's first year in office terrorists attacked this country. They obviously felt free to do so once Clinton and Gore were no longer protecting us. We were later told that "Bush Knew" and that "9-11 might have been prevented" were it not for "intelligence failures at the top". Of course it couldn't have been due to a bureaucratic intelligence nightmare existing for generations, ridiculous leftist restrictions placed on federal law enforcement in the 1970's and a clearly building terrorist threat that had been ignored for almost a decade. In the aftermath of the attacks, perfectly rational precautions to ensure the survivability of our system of government were portrayed as an attempt to lead us into a national gulag by creating a "shadow government".
But out of all these, and a few more sprinkled here and there, the Enron debacle looked to be the most promising to President Bush's opponents, though no more rooted in fact. Based on scarcely more than him being from Texas, accepting campaign contributions from the company (as did most of Washington), and having referred to CEO Kenneth Lay as "Kenny boy", he was made personally responsible for the collapse of the energy giant, and for putting thousands of its employees in the poorhouse. And what a show it was, filled with sanctimonious Democrat posturing, a plethora of congressional hearings, and wall-to-wall media coverage prompted solely by the tantalizing prospect of getting George W. The difficulty was in finding a crime committed by his administration.
Despite all of the charges of "unfair access" and "influence peddling", what never materialized was evidence that Enron bigwigs got anything. More specifically, it became clear that they got absolutely nothing. At this point the accusatory question changed from "What help was Enron given?" to "Why wasn't help given in order to save those poor stockholders?" As demonstrated here, there is an occasional laugh to be had if you're paying attention.
According to standard operating procedure, deference was granted to Bill Clinton, who reeked of guilt by every charge spuriously levied against Bush. It was during that time that access was truly bought and when the Enron house of cards was constructed. It was during his administration that overnight stays at the White House and trade junkets were given to company execs. This was also when overseas deals and huge government loans were negotiated and facilitated with direct administration involvement. The failure of the Democrats and the press to so much as include Clinton's name in the coverage of the Enron saga illustrated beyond all palatable denial that a quest for truth and justice was not the motivation.
Though as means to directly bag President Bush, Enron fell flat, the effort was not wasted. The word "Enron" was gradually transformed into a metaphor for greed that fits nicely into the left's well-polished rhetoric casting Republicans as profiting atop the broken body of "the little guy". As the months have passed and the midterm congressional elections draw near, the corporate scandals have mounted and the glee of the left wing is palpable. As corporate types are hauled before Congress and the media, the construction of a lineage between them and the Republicans is ongoing. While gleefully helping build spurious connections, the press ponders aloud "Might this be a problem for the GOP come November?" By their actions and selective adherence to the truth, they assure an affirmative answer to their own question.
Seeing how as tech companies had been unraveling long before the 2000 election and the flood of corporate scandals had begun when Bush had hardly set foot in Washington, any objective person would be forced to ask what this says about the mythical "Clinton economy"? What might also be asked is how in a few short months, according to Democrats, he managed to create an "atmosphere of corporate corruption". Perhaps in the same way that he manufactured the Israeli/Palestinian conflict and the intelligence bureaucracy, before he was elected. Although I wouldn't attempt to lay the blame for the corporate meltdown at Clinton's feet, any further boasting about his fabled economy should now and forever come to an end. But let's not hold our breath on that one.
However it started the reality was that effort was needed to shore up investor confidence and stabilize the economy. Amid this call for action, the president stumbled into a minefield, though not one unfamiliar to him. Building on the momentum of the Enron juggernaut and banking on continued misery, the president's adversaries resuscitated the 12-year-old Harken Energy stock sale. As ever, the accusations are far more abundant than the facts and the contortions being executed to equate Harken to Enron and WorldCom are a miracle to behold.
Far from sneaking under the radar, we are poised to investigate the president's stock trade for the fifth time regarding allegations of insider trading and the tardy filing of required documentation. The first was within the SEC, prompted by Democrat opponents of the president's father. The issue was examined again during George W's campaigns in 1994, 1998, and 2000 by The Washington Post, The New York Times, and countless other media outlets. This while then SEC enforcement chief William McLucas, a Democrat, affirmed, "The facts just didn't support any judgment that this was something that would result in a serious enforcement proceeding." As for the significance of the late submission of Form 4, McLucas added, ''if you went to court against every late filing with us, we would be in court on 2,000 cases.'' Moreover, the responsibility to deliver this particular form usually falls to the company's accountant, and not the seller.
Edward Fleischman, an SEC commissioner between 1986 and 1992 classified Form 4 as unimportant and "totally retrospective...there was precious little attention paid to a timely or tardy filing of Form 4." The significant submission was that of Form 144 (Notice of Proposed Sale of Securities), which was delivered on time. But these facts matter little when there is class warfare to be waged by rancorous liberal warriors like the Boston Globe's Robert Kuttner,
"the career of George Bush himself epitomizes the kind of self-dealing and insider enrichment that men like Ken Lay and Bernie Ebbers raised to new heights... Imagine the Republican indignation if the Whitewater investigation had uncovered anything like this kind of misconduct on the part of Bill Clinton."
I can imagine very little indignation if as thorough an investigation had been launched into Whitewater. That, unfortunately, was impossible with the systematic delaying tactics of the Clinton administration, and the 100+ witnesses to their misdeeds that either pled the Fifth Amendment or fled the country with their approval. What I can easily imagine is how Kuttner and the rest of the media would have dismissed it, if it had come to pass. They would have invoked the same phrases that enabled Clinton to be the "lovable rouge" that he was. They would have said "This is old news", "This is too complicated", "Nobody cares" and "Gee wiz, would ya look at those poll numbers".
In addition to the old Harken standby, the effort to tie the current administration to corporate corruption in anyway possible has been augmented by a lawsuit filed against Vice President Dick Cheney and his former employer, Halliburton that alleges accounting fraud. For their part, Judicial Watch was granted a real live press conference, and loving coverage from the media for the first time. The litany of stories that referenced the suit kindly labeled the organization as "Washington based" or "non-partisan". It was certainly a refreshing departure from being called "Clinton-hating", "Clinton-bashing" and "far right-wing" as it was when 40 or more suits were filed against the Clinton White House. But this was when the press covered it at all which wasn't that often. Judicial Watch's chairman is nothing if not shrewd. When the coffers run dry, just change teams, a classic political free agent.
The ball is truly rolling here, and the goal of Democrats winning back the House of Representatives and retaining control of the Senate may be within reach. How important is the truth when that is at stake? But should this one fizzle out, there's plenty of time to blame George Bush for 4 or 5 more things before Election Day, and plenty of time to divide us further along economic lines, exactly what we need in a time of war.
All this would surely be maddening, until one abandons the notion of media impartiality, and comparable standards of behavior for Democrats and Republicans. They can then see it as the rigged game that it is, but a game nonetheless. With Major League Baseball in the toilet and the hockey season over, any pastime will have to do.
Issues....we NEED some steeekin' issues...is Bush 'an insider' an issue?????.....that's it....
Bush's an insider..... Bush was an insider......Bush was an insider ......
....c'mon people..... we, at
DNCCBS know....Bush was an insider .....
Ain't that the truth. The leftist idiots are so predictable and stupid.
This article nails it!
love the toons!
Ain't that the Truth...Maureen Dowd is such a vindictive BEE-awwch, she makes Molly Ivins look almost human...almost!!
God, I hate the press!
worth repeating..."Can a columnist from a left-wing rag masquerading as impartial, convince herself of her own superiority while banking on personal venom and class envy?"This question could be addressed to so many in the national media.
Couldn't agree more, my FRiend...It's Desperation Time for the Left and they are committing Hari-Kari undermining the noble efforts of a War-Time President during a Time of War!! It's opening a lot of eyes, IMHO.
We need more of that optimism--I assume--on these threads...and I agree with you.