Saturday, April 10, 2004
Canary in the MineI would only add that a) Johnson was capable of saying something like that--and feeling its implications--because he was a human being, whereas Bush is a shit-filled puppet; and b) Fineman is mainly like a "canary" in that he flits from thing to thing, airy and without substance, occasionally eating insects and dropping globs of shit onto the citizenry below.
Howard Fineman wasn't too impressed with Condi Rice's testimony yesterday, and he sounds dangerously close to turning on flight suit boy himself:Remember the picture of the president in the classroom being told by Andy Card of the attack? The American people thought they were seeing a man suddenly thrust into a grave challenge no one could have anticipated. That won him enormous sympathy and patience from the voters. But what if he was literally on vacation — at the ranch in Crawford — when he should have been making sure that someone was ringing alarm bells throughout the bureaucracy?When Walter Cronkite made his famous post-Tet declaration that the Vietnam War couldn't be won, LBJ supposedly was heard to mutter, "if I've lost Cronkite I've lost the country." I certainly wouldn't go that far here -- it's just Howard Fineman, after all.
Already on the defensive for his leadership in the post 9/11 world — the war in Iraq grows less popular by the day — Bush now finds himself with questions to answer about his pre-9/11 leadership. He says he's running for re-election as a "war president." But by Rice's own standards, the war was well under way by the time he took office. He was a "war president" the moment he took the oath. But did he act like one? The election may hinge on the answer.
But Fineman really is the proverbial canary in the mine. If he's turning, then Bush has probably lost the media whores. And if he's loses the media whores, then he will have finally burned through the toughest part of his teflon coating.