If there has been one consistent theme in American politics for the past few years, it’s that the stories we hear about the conservative White House and their apologists get progressively worse. I guess that explains how this president went from a 92 percent approval rating (yes, it actually was once that high) to a 29 percent rating.
With that said though, I am going to call a bottom and say that last week will go down as the worst week ever in the modern conservative era; but be glad, conservatives – this means things can only get better from here on out.
To be fair though, this bad news isn’t directed towards traditional conservatives like the followers of Ronald Reagan, Barry Goldwater and Pat Buchanan. Last week’s news rests solely with the neo-conservatives – the nebulous political-mutation that has masqueraded itself as true conservatism recently in Washington, D.C. Personally, I wish I could better define neo-conservatism, but the sad truth is that neo-cons can’t even define it. That’s why their policymaking skills suck so much.
With that distinction made clear, it’s time to look at what hit the fan this week to make it so awful. Let’s begin with the worst news of all: the scandal at Walter Reed Medical Center.
For the past several years, neo-conservatives in the White House and in the media (i.e. Fox News) have proclaimed that they are the only ones who truly “support the troops,” since they believe anyone who criticize this administration is somehow undermining our army.
However, the Walter Reed scandal has profoundly exposed the shallowness of this ridiculous argument. Not only was this “troop supporting” administration completely unaware of the hundreds of wounded soldiers living in deplorable conditions at Walter Reed, which is only a few blocks from the White House, but this administration is also partly to blame for causing the problem.
According to CNN, in January 2006 the Pentagon administration, who were under Donald Rumsfeld, gave $120 million of privatization contracts to run Walter Reed to a company named IAP. For those unaware, IAP is the same company that couldn’t even get ice down to New Orleans to aid Hurricane Katrina victims.
Why the hell this administration thought that IAP could run a military hospital given the Katrina incident is beyond me. Maybe it’s because IAP is run by Al Neffgen, a former senior Halliburton official. Hmmm.
As bad as Walter Reed was for the neo-con movement (not to mention the whole country), other awful events for conservatives transpired, including Ann Coulter’s tactless comments at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC).
Anyone familiar with Coulter should not be surprised by her comments, considering her polemic style and complete disregard for standards; remember this is the same woman who once said that “(The USA) would be a much better country if women did not vote.” I mean, how F’d up do you need to be to say something like that?
Nevertheless, Coulter’s statements were shocking for many others and turned what should have been a positive political rally into another political casualty for conservatives since it further alienated them from the moderates.
If those events weren’t bad enough for neo-conservatives, there was also the highly publicized trial against Scooter Libby, Dick Cheney’s former chief of staff. Although I was right in my Jan. 29 column when I said that Libby was “Sooooo Going to Jail,” many neo-con apologists revel in the fact that Libby will probably be pardoned. Yet even with the pardon Libby is now a convicted felon and is the highest White House official to be convicted since Iran-Contra.
The burning symbolism of this fact cannot be extinguished by a simple pardon. People will point to this trail is just another example of how this neo-con administration overstepped the law, and attempted to conceal information from the public. How ironic considering that during the 2000 elections then presidential-hopeful George W. Bush said: “America is looking for someone to restore honor and dignity to the White House. That’s what America is looking for.”