Wednesday, May 14, 2008

The Chutzpah Award

When the Oscars are handed out, next year, there needs to be a new category: "The Chutzpah Award," and the first recipient, that great friend to Hollywood, George W. Bush. Yes, in the category of most chutzpah, the Oscar goes to the president who, in an interview yesterday, had the temerity to declare his disappointment with what he called the "flawed intelligence" in the lead-up to the occupation of Iraq.

Hopefully, Mr. Bush isn't the only one with short term memory loss. Either that, or the notion of short term memory has been radically altered. After all, it was six years ago, this July, that President Bush met with then British Prime Minister, Tony Blair, to ensure that the intelligence, facts, and rationale for unseating Hussein were being fixed around policy.

And, as if it weren't enough to discuss his disappointment in intelligence that he himself cooked up, the commander-in-chief goes so far as to say he gave up golf as a symbolic gesture of respect to mothers who have lost their sons to the war. Mighty decent of the president to acknowledge that for him to play golf during a war "just sends the wrong signal."

But, does it send the right signal to order reservist troops to endure repeated tours of duty, with no clue as to when their service will end? Or, better still, what signal does it send to the thousands of those who have joined the unemployment lines, in the past seven years, and/or lost their homes due to foreclosure, to outfit the first daughter in an Oscar de la Renta gown?

Add to the mix the audacious White House insinuation that if voters opt for a Democrat in the Oval Office, another attack on the homeland is all but inevitable. This coming from the guy whose policies drove more families to bankruptcy, credit card debt, and foreclosure, and who now blames the Democrat-led Congress for dragging its feet on the housing crisis. This from a "Christian" administration, on whose watch forgiveness of debt joins the ranks of cardinal sins; one who has done little more than ensure a socioeconomic caste system, and whose idea of financial security means being able to invest in your boss's future. If this isn't the apotheosis of arrogance, then what is?

Let's not overlook how everybody's favorite unitary executive is quick to tell Politico and Yahoo News how much he misses his buddy list, can't wait to get his clearance, so he can go back to "firing off e-mails at all times" to his pals, some of whom, dare we say it, may still be hiding in caves in Pakistan. Maybe he hopes we'll forget the millions of presidential e-mails that now join the ranks of disappeared, all conveniently dated around the time of the invasion, many dealing, no doubt, with legally dubious programs like governmental spying, and waterboarding.

So, before he prepares to ride off into the sunset with his other cowboy friends, close your eyes and imagine Charlton Heston descending upon a red carpet, in 2009,, to hand the Oscar to one who discovered a spiritual use for Viagra, one who professes to have seen his faith grow exponentially, during his tenure, indeed, and to become a veritable Cyrano of faith, one so close to his creator, they may even share an air mattress. Sit back, and enjoy, this Oscar isn't just for Mr. Bush; this one is for you.

If, as they say, there are no atheists in foxholes, there isn't a foxhole large, or grand, enough to host this kind of chutzpah.