Our long national comeuppance
Gail Collins is both wittier and more substantive than her fellow Times Op-Ed columnist Maureen Dowd and she's particularly good today on Pres. Bush's speech before the NY financial community on Friday. She writes:
The country that elected George Bush — sort of — because he seemed like he’d be more fun to have a beer with than Al Gore or John Kerry is really getting its comeuppance. Our credit markets are foundering, and all we’ve got is a guy who looks like he’s ready to kick back and start the weekend.
That's pretty much it, isn't it? As long as we were sending other people's kids to die over there (so we wouldn't have to worry about dying over here), we were fine with it. Now it's hitting us where it matters. The volatility of the current market is truly scary and the only solution this guy has is to send out more checks so people can buy more stuff. Except everyone's so worried they‘re not buying more stuff; they’re holding onto their money.
Are his numbers still at 30 percent? Who are these idiots? The atom bomb is old news but at this point you want to quote Alan Ginsberg. I'll finish with more Collins on Bush:
This economic crisis has been going on for months, and all the president could come up with sounded as if it had been composed for a Rotary Club and then delivered by a guy who had never read it before. “One thing is certain that Congress will do is waste some of your money,” he said. “So I’ve challenged members of Congress to cut the number of cost of earmarks in half.”
Besides being incoherent, this is a perfect sign of an utterly phony speech. Earmarks are one of those easy-to-attack Congressional weaknesses, and in a perfect world, they would not exist. But they cost approximately two cents in the grand budgetary scheme of things. Saying you’re going to fix the economy or balance the budget by cutting out earmarks is like saying you’re going to end global warming by banning bathroom nightlights.