It is rare that I find myself at a loss for words. Anyone who knows me can tell you that. Right now, though, I'm having a very, very hard time coming up with family-friendly language that covers the way I feel about President Bush right now. Why? Because I just saw that half-witted, sneering little lower primate say this:
MR. LEHRER: Let me ask you a bottom-line question, Mr. President. If it is as important as you've just said - and you've said it many times - as all of this is, particularly the struggle in Iraq, if it's that important to all of us and to the future of our country, if not the world, why have you not, as president of the United States, asked more Americans and more American interests to sacrifice something? The people who are now sacrificing are, you know, the volunteer military - the Army and the U.S. Marines and their families. They're the only people who are actually sacrificing anything at this point.
PRESIDENT BUSH: Well, you know, I think a lot of people are in this fight. I mean, they sacrifice peace of mind when they see the terrible images of violence on TV every night. I mean, we've got a fantastic economy here in the United States, but yet, when you think about the psychology of the country, it is somewhat down because of this war.
Yes, they serve too, who watch TV then go get another beer.
To be semi-fair to the twisted little refugee from the shallow end of the gene pool, he did have a reason for comparing the sacrifices of the American Military with the sacrifices of cable subscribers all over the nation: he needed to justify - wait for it - the tax cuts for the rich:
Now, here in Washington when I say, "What do you mean by that?," they say, "Well, why don't you raise their taxes; that'll cause there to be a sacrifice." I strongly oppose that. If that's the kind of sacrifice people are talking about, I'm not for it because raising taxes will hurt this growing economy. And one thing we want during this war on terror is for people to feel like their life's moving on, that they're able to make a living and send their kids to college and put more money on the table. And you know, I am interested and open-minded to the suggestion, but this is going to be -
MR. LEHRER: Well -
PRESIDENT BUSH: -- this is like saying why don't you make sacrifices in the Cold War? I mean, Iraq is only a part of a larger ideological struggle. But it's a totally different kind of war, than ones we're used to.
Before I continue my rant against the moron who, unfortunately, continues to lead the nation, let me explain my anger. My wife missed our son's seventh birthday because she was in Iraq. She missed his sixth birthday because she was away training for the Iraq deployment. She missed his fifth birthday because she was in Afghanistan. She will probably be back in time for his eighth birthday, but that is far from certain. That is part - a small part - of the sacrifice that she has made. It is part - a small part - of the sacrifice that the rest of our family has made. Similar sacrifices have been made by tens of thousands of military families over the last few years, and those sacrifices are nothing, nothing compared to the sacrifices of the families of those who have lost their lives in this conflict.
Comparing sacrifices of that nature with getting a little worried after watching TV is quite simply obscene. It is disgusting. It displays an insensitivity to what military families go through that is absolutely, completely unforgivable, especially coming from the commander-in-chief.
Sadly, though, that's not the worst part of this episode. Earlier in the day - the same day - the White House Press Secretary used "the troops" in an attempt to shield the president's ill-conceived "surge" "strategy" from congressional criticism:
Q: Okay. The sense in the Senate, this non-binding resolution, perhaps, that's going to move forward this week -- can you give a White House take on what that means, if the votes are there, that --
MR. SNOW: Well, look, they're claiming the votes are there. Again, the question you have to ask yourself is, do you understand what possible ramifications are? In an age of instant and global communication, what message does it send to the people who are fighting democracy in Iraq? And, also, what message does it send to the troops?
That's right. It's OK for the president to send the message that the sacrifice that the troops are making can be compared to the sacrifice that the TV-watching public is making, but it is A Bad Thing for the Senate to send, in a non-binding resolution, the message that they think that the president is out of what little there is of his mind to want to send more troops into the hellhole he has created in Iraq.
It is here that words fail me. There is more - much more - that I'd like to say, but I cannot find the words. I thought that I had gotten used to the routine exploitation of the military by the administration, but they have somehow managed to sink to a new depth. They had to dig to get there, but they did manage to go lower. I'd like to think that they've finally hit bedrock, but that's probably unreasonably optimistic.