Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Bush at Walter Reed:
Between Chicken and Egg, I’ll Go with Chicken

Yesterday’s headline news, in all its various establishment media permutations, was full of stories about Still-President George W. Bush paying a visit to wounded soldiers at Walter Reed Army Medical Center this morning. A couple added that this was the site of one of his administration’s most serious scandals.

Those reports were talking about the appalling conditions at Walter Reed given broad attention after Dana Priest and Anne Hull published a front-page exposé last year in the Washington Post—they were not talking about the scandal that is the cause of so many of those wounds. That would be the invasion and occupation of Iraq.

When I heard the story, I smirked and shook my head in disgust, figuring it was just another lame, lame duck attempt at legacy burnishing.

Well, it was that, but it was so much more. . . or less.

It turns out, as was later reported, that Bush had an MRI on Monday morning at Walter Reed for a chronic pain in his left shoulder. Yes, that’s right. Bush went to WRAMC because he wasn’t feeling well.

I suppose it’s a chicken and egg thing. . . kind of. It certainly would have looked bad if word had gotten out that Bush was at the medical center and didn’t stop in to look after the men and women who owe their disability checks to his vainglorious boondoggle. But would George W. have gone out there at all if he hadn’t had his own needs to look after?

My guess is a certain “no.”

Bush, even at his most “engaged” was never big on confronting his mistakes—especially ones made so (pardon this) flesh. The man was, is, and will forever be a reality chicken.

Now, as anyone looking at an unemployment check will confirm, the decider has decided he’s decided enough. He’s over it, done his bit, given what he can give. You don’t like him being president any more? Fine, he just won’t be.

So, while it’s just me s’posin’, I’m going to say that if Bush hadn’t felt the need, there’s no way he goes to Reed.

Which might have been just fine with the brave men and women confronting reality every day. . . whether they choose to or not.

(cross-posted on Firedoglake, The Seminal, and guy2k)

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