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Thread: Without a Doubt

  1. #1
    ruthie's Avatar Poster
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    This is an extremely long article, but well worth the read. It discusses Bush's faith, and how that has shaped his dealings with the world, in a way that is, I feel dangerous. When he doesn't know policy, confuses Sweden with Switzerland, makes decisions with his "gut and instinct", ignoring reports and advice...what are we left with? It also tells about people he's got worried in his own party, people he dismisses because he doesn't like what they are telling him. He is a danger to this country, and people really ought to take a look. ...ruthie


    Bruce Bartlett, a domestic policy adviser to Ronald Reagan and a treasury official for the first President Bush, told me recently that ''if Bush wins, there will be a civil war in the Republican Party starting on Nov. 3.'' The nature of that conflict, as Bartlett sees it? Essentially, the same as the one raging across much of the world: a battle between modernists and fundamentalists, pragmatists and true believers, reason and religion.

    ''Just in the past few months,'' Bartlett said, ''I think a light has gone off for people who've spent time up close to Bush: that this instinct he's always talking about is this sort of weird, Messianic idea of what he thinks God has told him to do.'' Bartlett, a 53-year-old columnist and self-described libertarian Republican who has lately been a champion for traditional Republicans concerned about Bush's governance, went on to say: ''This is why George W. Bush is so clear-eyed about Al Qaeda and the Islamic fundamentalist enemy. He believes you have to kill them all. They can't be persuaded, that they're extremists, driven by a dark vision. He understands them, because he's just like them. . . .

    ''This is why he dispenses with people who confront him with inconvenient facts,'' Bartlett went on to say. ''He truly believes he's on a mission from God. Absolute faith like that overwhelms a need for analysis. The whole thing about faith is to believe things for which there is no empirical evidence.'' Bartlett paused, then said, ''But you can't run the world on faith.''


    Forty democratic senators were gathered for a lunch in March just off the Senate floor. I was there as a guest speaker. Joe Biden was telling a story, a story about the president. ''I was in the Oval Office a few months after we swept into Baghdad,'' he began, ''and I was telling the president of my many concerns'' -- concerns about growing problems winning the peace, the explosive mix of Shiite and Sunni, the disbanding of the Iraqi Army and problems securing the oil fields. Bush, Biden recalled, just looked at him, unflappably sure that the United States was on the right course and that all was well. '''Mr. President,' I finally said, 'How can you be so sure when you know you don't know the facts?'''

    Biden said that Bush stood up and put his hand on the senator's shoulder. ''My instincts,'' he said. ''My instincts.''

    Biden paused and shook his head, recalling it all as the room grew quiet. ''I said, 'Mr. President, your instincts aren't good enough!'''


    The democrat Biden and the Republican Bartlett are trying to make sense of the same thing -- a president who has been an extraordinary blend of forcefulness and inscrutability, opacity and action.

    But lately, words and deeds are beginning to connect.

    The Delaware senator was, in fact, hearing what Bush's top deputies -- from cabinet members like Paul O'Neill, Christine Todd Whitman and Colin Powell to generals fighting in Iraq -- have been told for years when they requested explanations for many of the president's decisions, policies that often seemed to collide with accepted facts. The president would say that he relied on his ''gut'' or his ''instinct'' to guide the ship of state, and then he ''prayed over it.'' The old pro Bartlett, a deliberative, fact-based wonk, is finally hearing a tune that has been hummed quietly by evangelicals (so as not to trouble the secular) for years as they gazed upon President George W. Bush. This evangelical group -- the core of the energetic ''base'' that may well usher Bush to victory -- believes that their leader is a messenger from God. And in the first presidential debate, many Americans heard the discursive John Kerry succinctly raise, for the first time, the issue of Bush's certainty -- the issue being, as Kerry put it, that ''you can be certain and be wrong.''
    if you would like to see the entire article, here's the link
    Don't read what isn't there.

    anywhichway

  2. The Drawing Room   -   #2
    "people he dismisses because he doesn't like what they are telling him"

    Hey, I know people like that!
    Aren't we in the trust tree, thingey?

  3. The Drawing Room   -   #3
    Biggles's Avatar Looking for loopholes
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    If such is the case then perhaps we should be grateful he has expended so much energy and time chasing shadows in the mountains. If he, as he may well, obtains a further four years he might gainfully whittle these away too with more of the same.
    Cogito cogito ergo cogito sum


  4. The Drawing Room   -   #4
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    One thing to agree to disagree...another thing when you are head honcho and you can't hear or see shit...of course, except for God speaking directly to you and thru you, and your (plural) own interpretation of the bible
    Ancient Bush family proverb; Give a man a fish and he'll eat for a day... drown him in the lake and he'll never be hungry again.

    Any Which Way.... because there's more to it than Fox tells you.

  5. The Drawing Room   -   #5
    ruthie's Avatar Poster
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    the above comment is mine. forgot to log honey out
    Don't read what isn't there.

    anywhichway

  6. The Drawing Room   -   #6
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    In my business people who talk to god are usually considered for medication...

    Miss ya, doll...
    Ancient Bush family proverb; Give a man a fish and he'll eat for a day... drown him in the lake and he'll never be hungry again.

    Any Which Way.... because there's more to it than Fox tells you.

  7. The Drawing Room   -   #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by scroff
    In my business people who talk to god are usually considered for medication...

    Miss ya, doll...

    A lot of people talk to God, Scroff. And some claim he talks back to them, which if it helps them get though this life is fine.

    I think you are talking about the morally self righteous that can be very hypocritical, using God to suit their needs, all the while their own deeds are just the opposite. This scares me, too.

    I don't think it has gotten quite to that extreme yet with Bush, but to me, it is one issue I am watching, because as I said, it scares me. And I guess it scares me because I have a healthy fear of the damage morally self righteous hypocrites can do.


    I will have to say that it seems to me that it is often having to live with or deal with the morally righteous that lead people to your business. And of course, that is only my sincere opinion.

  8. The Drawing Room   -   #8
    Rat Faced's Avatar Broken
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    People that talk to god are usually Hospitalised, never mind put on medication..

    The voices sometimes tell them to kill people...

    Or maybe invade a country...

    An It Harm None, Do What You Will

  9. The Drawing Room   -   #9
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    Yea, what RF said...


    A lot of people talk to God, Scroff. And some claim he talks back to them, which if it helps them get though this life is fine.
    That would be called prayer and meditation. While helpful to many, as you say, it is also a bit delusional in a way... a very close cousin to magical thinking. Young children write letters to Santa Clause... nevertheless it is generally more helpful than harmful. I do it myself, all the while wondering what the hell I'm doing.

    In Bush's case I'm talking about psychosis.
    Ancient Bush family proverb; Give a man a fish and he'll eat for a day... drown him in the lake and he'll never be hungry again.

    Any Which Way.... because there's more to it than Fox tells you.

  10. The Drawing Room   -   #10
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    As I have said, I am concerned about this issue. And it is a controversial one, and always will be..

    I will give you mania, and maybe a little delusional. Psychosis, I would have to doubt. My opinion only, but then, as any reports I have seen about Bush's mental health have been taken from afar and not by any one on one analysis.

    I don't think Bushs looking for guidance from his God is any different than the Pope looking for guidance from his.

    America is a very religious country.

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