George Bush Is Easily Amazed:
So, on Monday, just before announcing that Karl Rove was heading out to befoul the nation at large, George W. Bush visited with the war wounded at the DC Veteran Affairs Medical Center. Dragging Bob Dole and Donna Shalala along with him with the promise of implementing their report that said, more or less, the medical care system for vets is a combination of incompetence, feces-sitting, and cockroaches, Bush also implored Congress to get involved in the action.

In a series of sentences so bizarre that it puts the "taught" in "tautological," Bush said, "When they come back in September, we want to work with Congress to pass that which is necessary to make sure that the Dole-Shalala commission recommendations are fully implemented. In other words, there are some aspects of the commission recommendations that require congressional approval. We believe it's important for Congress to listen to the commission. We believe the recommendations make a lot of sense, and we would ask for the Congress to pass those recommendations as quickly as possible, so I can sign them into law." In other words, ice cream is tasty. And sweet. So let's eat it.

Then Bush expressed amazement at the miracles taking place around him: "There's an amazing -- there's a lot of amazing things taking place here in this facility. For example, we saw information technology, health care records that are being passed seamlessly from the Department of Defense to the VA, to make sure that the care providers here have got up-to-date access for each patient." Imagine - big electronical machines whose vacuum tubery allows them to transfer informationality from one telecyclopedia to the other. And it doesn't even require punch cards. Jesus, the man's never heard of an "attached document."

Another amazing thing is the kayaking. No, seriously, the fuckin' kayaking: "We saw volunteers helping the wounded learn to regain balance and confidence through kayaking programs." Really - kayaking:

And while kayaking may be a fine way to engage in physical therapy, is it truly "amazing"? Cool, perhaps, but "amazing"?

It just doesn't take much to amaze a man who thinks that a couple of less dead Americans is progress and that a bill to give health insurance to poor children is unwarranted government involvement in people's lives. Bush continued his amazinosity at the work of the hospital staff: "I saw physical therapists -- I heard physical therapists talk about their patients with the kind of care and compassion that obviously requires a big heart and strong commitment." What's the alternative? For the therapists to talk about their patients as faceless pieces of meat ready to be patched up to be sent back to be slaughtered again? To promise to neglect them in filthy rooms? "Care and compassion" ought to be among the bare minimum standards, no?

Bush finished his visit with this promise: "If we find problems, we'll solve the problems." But, of course, the most convenient way to avoid solving problems is to avoid looking for them and hoping they don't rear their ugly problematic heads.