Frank Rich is back and he gleefully reports that Karl Rove's favorite campaign theme has finally died a well deserved death.
The results are in for the White House's latest effort to exploit terrorism for political gain: the era of Americans' fearing fear itself is over.
t's not as if the White House didn't pull out all the stops to milk the terror plot to further its politics of fear. One self-congratulatory presidential photo op was held at the National Counterterrorism Center, a dead ringer for the set in '24.' But Mr. Bush's Jack Bauer is no more persuasive than his Tom Cruise of 'Top Gun.' By crying wolf about terrorism way too often, usually when a distraction is needed from bad news in Iraq, he and his administration have long since become comedy fodder, and not just on The Daily Show. June's scenario was particularly choice: as Baghdad imploded, Alberto Gonzales breathlessly unmasked a Miami terror cell plotting a 'full ground war' and the destruction of the Sears Tower, even though the alleged cell had no concrete plans, no contacts with terrorist networks and no equipment, including boots.
As the election campaign quickens, genuine nightmares may well usurp the last gasps of Rovian fear-based politics. It's hard to ignore the tragic reality that American troops are caught in the cross-fire of a sectarian bloodbath escalating daily, that botched American policy has strengthened Iran and Hezbollah and undermined Israel, and that our Department of Homeland Security is as ill-equipped now to prevent explosives (liquid or otherwise) in cargo as it was on 9/11. For those who've presided over this debacle and must face the voters in November, this is far scarier stuff than a foiled terrorist cell, nasty bloggers and Ned Lamont combined (my em).
Daddy-o has a few words about Cheney, Chertoff, the gasbags, and Lamont's victory as well. Enjoy. That's our Pop!