By Andrew Sullivan
Andrew Sullivan shows us that Bush simply cannot be a naïve utopian. The proof: Bush really is a sophisticated, nuanced hypocrite. In Sullivan's mind, the two conditions are mutually exclusive, and the president can be only one or the other. And to Sullivan, sophisticated, nuanced hypocrite is the more accurate label. Who am I to argue? But what about that inaugural speech -- all that stomping of tyranny, marching of democracy, and spreading of freedom?
Critics of the president's inaugural speech are, I think, misunderstanding it. It's not a program; it's not a New Year's Resolution that will revolutionize America's relationship with every major country. It was a thematic speech. That's all.
A theme! The clouds lifted.... Rarely had the words poured from [him] with such feverish fluidity. Here was a theme on a subject that needed talking about if ever one did...[filled with]
winged phrases and concise imagery....[Ralphie Parker's "Red Ryder B-B Gun" theme paper, A Christmas Story]
A brief look at the Bush administration's first four years does not reveal naive utopianism with regard to unfree countries.
Sullivan then succinctly identifies the miscellaneous dictators, tyrants, and oppressive regimes with whom Bush has consorted in recent years. I'm convinced. For added measure, Sullivan points out that it's not Bush's ideals but his inability to put them into practice that is the real stumbling block. Something about nuts and bolts and screw-ups. Go read it here.