Belaboring the Obvious

Monday, May 01, 2006

Get Some Mojo back...

... for the bozo and the hacks? Doubtful. Josh Bolten sounds more like one of the true believers than one of the realists. Once Toto has pulled the curtain back and revealed Karl Rove pulling the levers and twiddling the dials, well, it's just not possible to go on being the mighty and omnipotent Wizard of Oz.

Between a war gone sour virtually from the start, a city under water, a national budget under a sea of red ink, a campaign to ruin Social Security by enriching Wall Street fund managers and enough habitual lying to make Diogenes drop to his knees and commit hari-kari, there was never much mojo there to begin with. Oh, yeah, there were the photo ops, there was the perception of power--especially by the tv networks (which are always more enthralled by the pictures than the reality)--but, in the world based in reality, the public always saw through Bush as an empty suit.

The public didn't mind that, though, because they thought he was an okay guy, someone "you could have a beer with," as the meme went. His frat boy image worked, for a little while. No one really minded that he had a costume closet bigger than Liberace's, that could outfit a Riverdance of Village People. Everyone knew that whatever he was wearing, he was still an empty suit. The networks and the cable news ate it up--they broadcast every phony sideshow carny act with shills in the front row asking their pre-screened questions, every flight suit moment, every "now watch this drive" off-the-cuff remark. Chris Matthews saw Bush on tape and invariably acted and talked like a fourteen-year-old trying to hide a spontaneous erection.

It was all carefully-crafted sideshow, not mojo. In fact, there's never been any "there" there. It's all been shopworn right-wing ideology dressed up in terribly expensive set design--paid for by the taxpayers--and lines scripted by Jesus freaks for Jesus freaks, delivered badly by an amateur who burned away most of his essential brain cells before he was forty.

And now, it shows, in all its tawdriness and damp sawdust. The camp meeting is over, the tent is in flames and the faithful are running for their lives. It's even possible that someone has called the reporters, and they might even report, if there are flames and destruction and screams to record, if there's an Elmer Gantry Bush to film as he stumbles around in the wreckage of the country, mumbling to himself about God speaking through him, and his snake-handler, Josh Bolten, on his hands and knees, searching for some missing "mojo."


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