Wednesday, February 15, 2006

Pressing Priorities

Well, Bush, your Scott McClellan had a rough time of it yesterday, fending off reporters' questions about your Cheney and his hunting "accident". He looked to me a bit like a man trying to ward off a swarm of pesky, poisonous mosquitoes--without a great deal of success. Tough job. I only wish those same reporters had been equally persistent with questions about... well, say, the lead-up to your invasion of Iraq. Your energy "policy". Hurricane Katrina. Or any one of a number of other notable events.

McClellan's mantra was "let's get back to the pressing priorities of the American people." Well and good. But it seems to me, Bush, that the most pressing of our priorities today is the not-small matter of trust. The American people needs to be able to trust its government and its leaders, but they--the government and the leadership, including your good self--have breached this trust with an unprecedented and continuing pattern of secrecy, lies, and cover-up.

The reason that the current kerfuffle is important is not what would otherwise have been a minor shooting accident. Had the trust been there, had the response from your people been honest, forthright, timely, I believe that the whole matter would have been rapidly been put behind us. But no. Your people reverted to pattern: secrecy, prevarication, lies, and cover-up, proving once again that you are not to be trusted.

Are we now being told the truth about the victim's condition? Who knows? But yesterday's "minor heart attack," in view of what we had been led to believe, came as a major shock. Suddenly the questions--What if this man had died? What if this man could die?--reveal the enormity of the possible consequences of your Cheney's momentary inattention.

So this IS a pressing priority for the American people. The first priority, to my mind. Trust. Without it, nothing else counts. But the breach you've made may just be irreparable, Bush. It would be a start if you could just take charge, right now, and instruct your Cheney to level with the press and the American people. If you could get him to show just a little contrition, just a little humility... That might help.

By the way, our American readers might not be aware of this, but try googling "Dick" and "Whittington" together. If you do, you'll find that Google leads you not to your Dick, or his unfortunate victim, Harry Whittington, but rather to that wonderful old story, known to every English child, of Dick Whittington and His Cat. It's quite short, and I think you'll find it a cheerful little distraction from all this trauma in your White House.

1 comment:

PK said...

Peter, what a wonderful little story!! It gave me a smile for the day and something to pass on to my friends. I thank you for that:). "Kerfuffle":), haha, well, I would say it was only something to mask something else that is going on they want no one to know about. These are thrown out every once in awhile to keep us off balance you know.