It’s done. In spite of my optimism and an excellent voter turnout (particularly compared to last election), President George W. Bush has maintained his seat at the head of our country. Bush’s strategies of fear, deception, and ‘it’s better to be simple’ have won the hearts of more voters and, more importantly, more votes in the electoral college. Apparently, according to both the popular vote and the breakdowns by affiliation that I’ve seen, this country is going conservative.
On top of that, roughly 51% of this country is loudly and proudly proclaiming, “We prefer action movies to intelligent discourse,” when it comes to the world and politics. This group of Americans wants bullying, simplistic fear-mongering. And they will get it in spades.
Don’t get me started on the Legislative Branch.
Get ready for a holy war and more dead bodies of soldiers and civilians in countries all over the world. Get ready for lines to be drawn and rights to be stripped one by one. It’s time for religion in the White House, and anyone who isn’t a Conservative Christian is going to feel the squeeze. George Bush will run this country into a wall, and we are all going to be along for the ride, whether we like it or not. Apparently, the party of small government wants it to be just the right size to fit in our bedrooms, to paraphrase The West Wing. And to fit in our computers, library records, telephones, and medical records. Any fool that believes the Bush administration is out to protect their freedom and rights has not been paying attention to reality, but only to propaganda. The Bush administration is out to protect themselves and those like them. Everyone else will be steamrolled.
In the summer of 2002, after I had written an article in Esquire that the White House didn’t like about Bush’s former communications director, Karen Hughes, I had a meeting with a senior adviser to Bush. He expressed the White House’s displeasure, and then he told me something that at the time I didn’t fully comprehend — but which I now believe gets to the very heart of the Bush presidency.
The aide said that guys like me were “in what we call the reality-based community,” which he defined as people who “believe that solutions emerge from your judicious study of discernible reality.” I nodded and murmured something about enlightenment principles and empiricism. He cut me off. “That’s not the way the world really works anymore,” he continued. “We’re an empire now, and when we act, we create our own reality. And while you’re studying that reality — judiciously, as you will — we’ll act again, creating other new realities, which you can study too, and that’s how things will sort out. We’re history’s actors .