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Jan 04, 2005

"Family Matters In A Lot Of Places"


send this cartoon to a fellow skeptic!

Before concluding the White House has completely succumbed to altruism, consider all the fabulous new material Rove now has to work with.  It looks like one part of the agenda might involve the advance of the Bush dynasty.  Although Governor Bush has said he wasn't considering the top job, the Asian crisis provides the perfect backdrop to showcase the non-candidate.  Certainly, Tuesday's front page story in the NYTimes provided ample assistance. 

More than halfway through the article, you come upon this:

For Jeb Bush, 51, who is a possible contender for the presidency in 2008 or later, the trip is a first major turn on the international stage. The governor, who oversaw Florida's response to four hurricanes in August and September, suggested that his presence on the trip, as not only an American official but also as the president's brother, would send a powerful message of sympathy.

"I think family matters in a lot of places, just as it does in the United States," the governor said. He recalled in 1988 being asked by his father, then the president-elect, to travel to Armenia after an earthquake there cost more than 25,000 lives.

"We went, and it made a big difference that a family member would go - this was on Christmas Eve - go to a far-off place," Mr. Bush said.

(...Somehow, I only counted three references to the word "president.")


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See, this is the end result of the manufactured flap you contributed to a few days ago. I don't have any objections to this trip in particular. I think that the general concept of this kind of photo-op trip is bogus, but this one isn't any more bogus than normal. But now people on the ground will waste their time catering to these politicians, all in order to show the "compassion" or "caring" or whatever the chorus has been demanding. I hope you're happy to have done your share to make this happen, as it enables you to complain about President Bush for both staging and not staging PR events around the crisis.

On the other hand, the original flap sets up the Rove spin machine perfectly to execute the political maneuver you detail in this post. Is it another rope-a-dope success for Rove, skillfully playing the knee-jerk criticism of Bush's political opponents? If so, it's well deserved.

AOG, respectfully, do you really believe the criticisms of the President's silence were due to the desire to see him institute some form of PR event? If so, you have misunderstood the nature of the critique; in my opinion, I feel as though people expected to see SOME form of response by the leader of the US, hopefully a sincere one. You can't really believe that we were looking for some kind of lip service do you?

Hey AOG,

I love you, man. I see what you're doing. Things were dying on the "It's Not '01 Anymore" post, so you decided to get the party started over here working the Jeb Bush angle. We just need JR, then we've got a food fight.

Unfortunately, I mostly agree with your critique. If I could move to the right of you for a moment, however, I'm not convinced the trip had to be so transparent. Of course, that seems irrelevant now, given Powell's gross patronizing, and his insistance on taking the opportunity, whenever he opens his mouth, to broadcast the fact we are pandering to the Islamic street.

The one consolation I do have, watching this "lame duck" tour, is the relief that (the robotic) Condi is not out there -- yet.

DBox gave me some grief the other day about my absence from the Comments, so I'm going to try and show up a little more. On the other hand, there's that small matter of the pictures piling up....

I don't doubt that "Presidential Preen 08" has begun with the focus on Jeb. But, in my opinion anyway, Karl won't be able to pass on becoming Condi's "man behind the curtain." He can sell her to the current fundie base as Condi Bush, he can try to convince the black population that they're finally getting their chance, he can try to convince women they're finally getting what *they* she's got experience AND a great Republican fund raising machine that's still in high gear. I think if she were already confirmed at State, she'd be going alone, sans Jeb, accompanied by much greater fanfare than Powell. Think about it.



No, I don't think that was the goal. I think it was as I described it in my original comment – knee-jerk anti-Bush criticism with no purpose other than the immediate gratification of kicking President Bush in the shins politically. As even you admitted, Bush was in fact acting so the only real lack on his part was PR. I.e., lip service.

Given that situation, what could possibly be expected other than Bush's political strategy team playing it for all it's worth? And they can really run with it now, giving Bush's opponents what they asked for good and hard. I, frankly, would find that an enjoyable sight except that the tsunami victims will be paying a price as well.


Glad to be of service, dude.


That's interesting. Even if Rice plays well on paper, however, where do you see actual evidence that Rove (or anyone) is looking to get behind her? Also, what gives you the sense she would actually be interested? My take is that Condi doesn't have the temperment for all the glad-handing -- and she knows it. In fact, the indications were that she was looking for an exit before Bush twisted her arm to take Powell's spot. That said, I think she has great trepidation about stepping into Colin's shoes, and was just as happy not to do the tsunami road trip.

If I had to speculate right now, I would say Rove is going to take a pretty strong look at Frist if the Jeb scenario doesn't materialize.


Well...the Condi-Rove thing is pure speculation on my part. Just seems like there's a lot there to attract a man like Rove who loves pulling strings. Hard evidence on how 08 will shape up is hard to come by on all fronts, I think...even the Jeb one. And, he has after all explictly said he's not interested. In any case, lots can happen between now and next week when the campaigning kicks off. :-) And (again pure speculation) a person with the kind of achievement drive she obviously has would, it seems to me, be awfully attracted to the possibility of becoming President. I'm not counting her out.

Just my opinion, understand.

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