Is It Possible to Shame George W. Bush? (Part of the Positive Politics of Shame Series):
Whenever the Rude Pundit is out at his favorite Hell's Kitchen bar, canoodling with the out-with-the-office-gang Midtowners, he eavesdrops on conversations, hearing every kind of come-on line the horny desk jockeys and salesmen can bring to the gettin' laid game. He's heard the compliment: "Anyone ever tell you your eyes are like (fill in metaphors from stars to some Renaissance painting depending on your education and/or pretentiousness)." He's heard the white-guy-pretending-to-be-ghetto: "Damn, baby, you are smokin'." He's heard the pathetic whine in the night: "Why don't we just talk?" And the heroic shot in the dark: "You wanna go fuck?" Nine times out of ten, most women generally not being idiots, it fails. But ten percent is enough for these corporate tools. Shit, a ten percent return on your investment, that's damn good, they think.
But the Rude Pundit's got the come-on that works a good forty or fifty percent of the time. It's simple and it's gotta be saved until you've gotten a sense of the room, checking out the bar, knowing your crowd, maybe not even using it. It works at gay bars and straight bars, 'cause it's got universal appeal. Marketers with guts would bottle it and sell it to sad bastards who've gone dry for months on end. The line is this: "I've got tequila and ecstasy at my place."
It's direct, honest, and open-ended, leaving the decision to the person it's directed to, allowing them to wonder, "Hmm, am I in the mood for ecstasy, tequila, and all that may follow?" Men and women ultimately respond to honesty and the offer of possible outcomes.
When George W. Bush spoke on Tuesday about the war in Iraq, he was like every asshole in a suit that ever exclaimed, "If I said you had a beautiful body, would you hold it against me?" to the last drunk woman talking to the bartender at 3 a.m. It was the same come-on we've heard time and time again, all about the threat of al-Qaeda and a strangely strong Osama bin Laden, justifying himself again and again, but it's just pathetic now, like getting turned down by that 3 a.m. woman. Of course, George W. Bush is such a wad of fuck that he'd be droppin' roofies in her drink, ready to brag to his friends the next day about the hot ass he tapped.
Faced with such shamelessness, we must wonder how George W. Bush can be shamed. The Rude Pundit's been contemplating the idea of shame this week, in the belief that not only does the nation demand George W. Bush's political evisceration, it demands he be brought to his knees and made to kiss the dirt before crying, "Uncle." But what can shame him? Here's a man who looked at Bob Dole, Donna Shalala, and Bob Woodruff with a straight face yesterday, while they were delivering a report ripping the treatment of the fucked-up soldiers coming back every day, and declared, "We owe a wounded solider the very best care and the very best benefits and the very easiest to understand system."
With the Congress about to cite Harriet Miers and Josh Bolten for contempt, with the Senate about to investigate Alberto Gonzales for perjury, with the dessicated corpse of Tony Snow calling Congress "pathetic," what could possibly shame Bush? The answer is to hit him where he is most psychologically weak, with what might possibly rattle that emotionless demeanor. And, as ever, that is for Congress, in its hearings and discussions, to invoke Bush's father as often as possible. Yeah, yeah, George H.W. Bush was a motherfucker in his own right, but Daddy Bush is W's Achilles' heel. We just have to figure out how to fire the arrow.
The opening gambit would be to point to how Daddy backed down from his own executive privilege battle with Congress involving the Attorney General, a subpoena, and possible contempt citations. This was a dispute over documents and the Office of Legal Counsel. Yes, the 1991 dispute was part of a 2003 Congressional research document, but it's time to be more public about it. John Conyers should call Bush I's AG, Dick Thornburgh (another motherfucker for America), and get him to explain why they backed down in the face of a threat of contempt.
More on this tomorrow.