There’s a saying out there known as the Napoleon-Clarke Law which states, in a twist on Arthur C. Clarke’s comment on technology, that “any sufficiently advanced incompetence is indistinguishable from malice.” Bush’s administration has been practicing advanced incompetence for a while, of course, and while I’ve been of the opinion that Bush has been satisfied with being incompetent while it’s been other Republican leaders who have gone straight over into malice, if the President did indeed authorize the leaks of classified information, we can pretty much say that incompetence not the least of his sins.
I wrote this administration off as a total loss years ago, so I can just about honestly say there’s no incident of power-mongering maliciousness from it that would totally surprise me. I do feel some measure of sympathy for the conservatives and Republicans who are finally having to recognize that this administration is neither particularly conservative nor Republican in its methods or practices, but is rather merely interested in a constitutionally-adverse interpretation of power, and passing on indebtedness to future generations for tax cuts today. What one wonders is whether these regretful conservative and Republicans will do the morally correct thing in November, 2006, which is to hand at least one branch of the Congress to the Democrats so that they may act as a check on Bush for the remainder of his term, either by voting Democrat (which may be too much to ask, frankly), or simply by withholding their vote from Republican candidates.
But that would require Republican voters to grow spines, and let’s just say I’m not optimistic about that. If the modern Republican party has succeeded in anything, it has been in transforming its members into the human equivalent of rats at the feeder bar, jamming their buttons down with the unthinking mantras of “Democrats Don’t Have Values” or “The Other Guys Would Be Worse,” as if much of anything could be worse than the “values” that this administration has displayed. The fact that the modern GOP can get so many of its voters to elect people whose politics are so manifestly divergent from their party’s traditional positions shows where its focus truly lies, and how indoctrinated and/or uncritical modern Republican voters are. The Democrats also prize feeder-bar voters, of course. But they’re not currently wrecking the joint.
Anyway, I don’t want a clean sweep of Democrats; one house of Congress will be fine to take the edge off this administration. God knows it needs it. God knows we need it.