Friday, July 11, 2003

Connecting The Dots

As we all know and endlessly kvetch about, that's what the SCLM failed utterly to do during the 2000 campaign, and thereby deprived voters of any sense of who George W. Bush might be other than a picture based exclusively on his own self-presentation. All of you could answer in your sleep the question of which areas of his life and his record as Governor went "un" to "underinvestigated," from his "military" record, to the quality and quantity of justice meted out to the citizens of Texas.

Let's hope what this writer does here is the start of a trend.

Using that Atlantic article about those Gonzales clemency memos, he relates what they imply about Governor Bush directly to the currently hot topic of Bush's relationship to his own spoken words in something like, say, the SOTU.

AN ARTICLE in the current issue of The Atlantic Monthly should further inform and inflame the debate over the honesty of President Bush.


When Bush ran for president, other states, most notably Illinois, were examining themselves for tragic flaws in the death penalty. Bush remained proud of his system in which he took a mere 15 to 30 minutes to review final pleas. He remained proud even after several newspaper investigations and a Columbia University study found massive evidence of legal, medical, and law enforcement incompetence or lying in Texas death penalty cases as well as racial and class disparities in sentencing.

''I'm absolutely confident that everybody that has been put to death ... are guilty of the crime charged, and, secondly, they had full access to our courts,'' Bush said.

Sound familiar? It does to Derrick Jackson, too. Check it out.

Of course "should" and "will" are not interchangable.

Here's something to think about. In the coming 2004 campaign, since so little of this Texas material was ever looked at closely by the mainstream media, isn't it still fair game (as a better predictor of the long-range impact of Bush policies than his barely four Presidential years are), and if done right, isn't it a damn good way to undercut Rove's genuis for what should rightly be called triangulation, more so, seems to me, than that concept was ever genuinely Clintonian.