Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Bush press conference, wherein is revealed the most disappointing thing in Washington

Not the most entertaining of these things. Bush was kind of subdued and careful. And he used the word “codicil” in a sentence. Correctly, even. These quotes are my transcription. (Official transcript).

“Americans could be forgiven for thinking that Santa will have slipped down their chimney on Christmas Eve before Congress has finished their work. Let’s hope they’re wrong.” Silly Americans, there’s no such thing as Congress finishing their work.

He kept talking about the danger that Iran will some day “show up with a weapon”. Makes it sound like Aunt Martha showing up for Christmas with her godawful fruitcake again.

“I’m sayin’ that, uh, I believed before the NIE that Iran is dangerous, and I believe after the NIE that Iran is dangerous”.

Says he was told in August that there was new intelligence on Iran, but Mike McConnell “didn’t tell me what the information was,” and indeed they only told him last week what it was, and didn’t try to stop him making threats against Iran.

He must have used the phrase “there’s a better way forward” about Iran twenty times.

Asked what went through his mind when he heard about the gang-raped Saudi woman sentenced to 200 lashes, he said he thought, what if it had been my daughter (he didn’t say which daughter), adding that he’d have been very emotional. For example, he’d have been “angry at those who committed the crime” and at the state. However, he can’t even remember if he brought it up when he talked to King Abdullah. But “he knows our position loud and clear.” And he knows that you don’t care enough about that position to actually, you know, mention it, or, in the unlikely case that you did in fact mention it, remember that you’d mentioned it.

Bush’s sophisticated analysis of the Venezuelan referendum: “The Venezuelan people rejected one-man rule. They voted for democracy. ... a very strong vote for democracy”. 51%, anyway. Says Congress must pass the free-trade agreement with Colombia or it will be “a destabilizing moment.”

Asked about the Republican candidates, he said he will resist efforts to make him be “pundit-in-chief.” I’m pretty sure you only get to be pundit-in-chief if you’ve defeated Paul Krugman in hand-to-hand combat. Two pundits enter, one pundit leaves.

The putz said, “The most disappointing thing about Washington has been the name-calling”.

“And, uh, it seems like to me that this Congress oughta be congratulating our military commanders and our troops, and one way to send a congratulatory message is to give ‘em the funds they need”. Or a card. A card is always nice.

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