Friday, September 09, 2005

How Weird Hughes

Let's go to the White House and visit with the official transcript (even if it doesn't know the difference between "confident" and "confidant") from the "President Honors Ambassador Karen Hughes at Swearing-In Ceremony" (I guess a "swearing at" ceremony is reserved for Dick Cheney).

First, from Condi Rice's intro to the Prez, we get this line:

And I think with Karen Hughes leading the effort, we will be able to show the world the true heart of America, and people will understand that we mean it when we say that Americans believe that there is no corner of the Earth that should have to live in tyranny, and that every man and woman should bask in freedom.

Of course, all this lofty sentiment might strike some as odd coming the very same morning we learn the following from the BBC, "The US government has the power to detain a man being held as an enemy combatant without charges, a federal appeals court has ruled." So bask in that freedom until we opt to detain you and not charge you with anything.

Then we get to W. himself, in full good versus evil bluster:

In the war on terror, the world's civilized nations face a common enemy, an enemy that hates us, because of the values we hold in common.

Now, exactly which nations are the uncivilized nations? Aren't the terrorists really of no country? And is it the values we claim to hold that they hate, or is it the way we live, of which the SUV is just one ugly image, they find so disturbing?

But then there's this line:

The terrorists have a strategy: They want to force those of us who love freedom to retreat, to pull back so they can topple governments in the Middle East and turn that region into a safe haven for terrorism.

I guess we couldn't expect Bush to say, "After all, we are the only ones who are supposed to topple governments in the Middle East. And besides, we've only turned Iraq into an unsafe haven for terrorism."

He then moves on to several lines that seem more about pleasing Anti-Choicers than anything else, but makes clear the simple-minded Republican way of "us-them," if nothing else:

To achieve these aims, they kill the innocent because they believe that all human life is expendable. And that stands in stark contrast to what we believe. We believe human life is a precious gift from our Creator.

Someone he represses saying that "they" don't even believe in the same creator as "we" do. Nor does he mention that many of those most into the Creator here in the good old U.S. of A. believe human life is expendable since the Rapture will set them free and those bodies only get in the way and make you think about your groins.

Finally, Bush lays this one on Hughes:

Karen will deliver the message of freedom and humility and compassion and determination.

One out of four ain't bad, I guess. A better batting average than we've come to expect from Bush appointees--correct me if I'm wrong, Mr. Brown.

Of course, the entire Karen Hughes post has to be seen as a joke--her title is "Under Secretary for Public Diplomacy and Ambassador for the same." After all, it's the private diplomacy that's the real problem, isn't it?

And to pretend that all the world's complaints with the U.S. is a problem of perceptions is to treat the global stage like one big election campaign (which, as we know too well, Karen Hughes is far too good at). For no matter how much rouge and mascara you slap on the cadaver, the body's still dead dead dead.


Anonymous Tessitura said...

I am sorry but this is pure genius. Damn those bad apples that cause the word verification!

6:44 PM  

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