President Happy Talk Still Cruising On Denial
Crooks and Liars has the clip from the Woodward interview on 60 Minutes last night, with Woody pushing his new book "State of Denial." Interesting stuff. For example, this choice excerpt:
Wallace: When you say the Bush administration has not told the truth about iraq, what do you mean?
Woodward: I think probably the prominent… most prominent example is the level of violence.
Reporter: Not just the Sunnis against Shi'as, that gets reported every day, but attacks on U.S. And allied forces. Woodward says that's the most important measure of violence in iraq, and he unearthed this graph– classified secret– that shows those attacks have increased dramatically over the last three years.
Woodward: Getting to the point now where there are 800, 900 attacks a week. That's more than 100 a day. Four attacks an hour, attacking our forces….
Hmmmm…dishonesty from the Bush White House? Say it isn't so, Woody!
But wait, there's more. It seems that Pickles keeps her hand in the policy jar:
Wallace: You write Laura Bush was worried that Rumsfeld was hurting her husband. Andy Card told her the president seemed happy with Rumsfeld. And the first lady replied, "he's happy with this, but I'm not." And later she said, "I don't know why he's not upset."
Woodward: What's interesting, Andy Card, as white house chief of staff, every six weeks set up a one-on-one meeting with laura Bush, set aside an hour and a half to talk about what's going on, what are the president's anxieties? Smart meeting….
Woodward: And in the course of these sessions, the problem with rumsfeld came up and she voiced her concern about the situation.
Wallace: But Dick Cheney wanted Rumsfeld to stay. Why?
Woodward: Well, Rumsfeld's his guy and Cheney confided to an aide that if Rumsfeld goes, next they'll be after Cheney.
Why, Pickles, that's so…so…well, so out of public persona of you. Why, you ask yourself, would Pickles and Andy Card meet to discuss personnel matters in the Bush Administration. The answer may lie at the very end of the Woody interview:
Wallace: And Woodward says that no matter what's occurred in iraq, mr. Bush does not welcome any pessimistic assessments from his aides because he's sure that his war has iraq and america on the right path.
Woodward: Late last year, he had key republicans up to the white house to talk about the war and said, "I will not withdraw even if laura and barney are the only ones supporting me." Barney is his dog. My work on this leads to lots of people who spend hours, days with the president….
Woodward: And in most cases, they are my best sources. And there is a concern that we need to face realism, not being the voice that says, "oh, no, everything's fine," when it's not. (emphasis mine)
Sounds to me as though President Happy Talk is starting to grate on people's nerves at the White House. Anyone else getting that feeling?
Oh, and the WaPo has some excerpts from Woody's book on just how bad the "secret" numbers from Iraq really are. One wonders how long Woodward has been holding on to this information instead of making it public…