Ordinarily I would jump right in and take the opportunity to criticize The W, but when I read this article in today’s Lexington Herald Leader entitled “How they keep Bush from seeing protests” I had to come to The W’s defense. Lawsuits about first amendment free speech rights aside, this is really just a story about a man and his denial. The W’s folks have a comprehensive written plan to keep him from ever having to see protesters. So what! Let’s face it, we all partake of denial. To a large extent, denial is a proud principle which keeps our country going; keeps us strong! Who among us would want tangible reminders of our most stupid blunders? Leave The W alone!
Skyrocketing deficits, global warming, dependence on oil, health care and insurance, the increasing gap between the ultra-rich and the dirt poor, gays in the military, drilling in the artic, social security, the death penalty as practiced in Texas, torturing enemy combatants, and Lindsay Lohan all speak of our capacity at denial. My own denial involves weighing about 1/8th of a ton (short ton rather than the English tonne) but still indulging in ice cream as if an artery won’t clog off any second now. Our culture’s love-hate relationship with all things addictive is perpetuated by denial and advertising agencies are plenty grateful for that fact. We love denial.
So, why would we deny denial to The W? It is simply un-American; a tactic worthy of the Taliban. We had enough respect for The R (Ronald Reagan) to allow him denial about the whole trickle down economics thing. Heck, I knew that the only thing that ever really trickles down from the rich fella at the top of the hill is his pee, but I sure did not try to rub The R’s face in his miscalculation. Look further back and past President’s were given wide latitude in denying doings of badness. It used to be that the media looked the other way on such foibles as infidelity or well-intentioned misleadings – especially during times of war.
I guess the tide on presidential denial really turned with The Bill (Clinton that is)(Actually it began with The D___ (Richard Nixon), but some of my readers may not have been alive back then and would miss the reference – so I will practice a bit of denial and say it started with The Bill). Why wouldn’t we allow him the simple self-delusion of fellatio not being “sexual intercourse”? After all, on a purely technical level he was accurate. It has just gone down hill from there. Now we seem set on making The W look at all sorts of blunders. All I read about are subpoenas, threatened investigations and critical reports. Even the hand picked conservative Supreme Court is telling The W to back off with his terrorist tribunals. How in the world is The W supposed to get his denial on with this cacophony of critiques?
Now, in today’s confrontational culture, even when The W tries to do something good, like save millions of Medicare dollars, he still gets flack. Don’t believe me? Just take a gander at this scathing critique of the new Medicare directive by LawReader. Sure, LawReader is right that the most likely result is that poor patients will get stuck with the bill that Medicare refuses to pay. Sure, in this anti-litigation culture it would be hard for those poor people to successfully sue to make the negligent party compensate them for their damages. Sure, medical providers are so necessary they can dictate the terms of any consent so that the patient has to agree to pay for any charges not covered by Medicare. SO WHAT! The W does not need to be plagued by these petty concerns. He has a country to run and denial about such details allows him to stay efficient and focused on winning this war on terror before the next election. That is the important thing here and those pesky protesters would just get in the way.