Monday, October 15, 2007

Beyond Metaphor

Has Secretary of State Condi Rice come down with a case power-envy?

The Russian government under Vladimir Putin has amassed so much central authority that the power-grab may undermine Moscow's commitment to democracy, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said yesterday.

"In any country, if you don't have countervailing institutions, the power of any one president is problematic for democratic development," she told reporters after meeting with human-rights activists."I think there is too much concentration of power in the Kremlin ... Everybody has doubts about the full independence of the judiciary. There are clearly questions about the independence of the electronic media and there are, I think, questions about the strength of the Duma," she said, referring to the Russian parliament.

Luckily, the Bush administration has never tried to concentrate power in the presidency, so the moral weight of their criticism must really sting those backward Russians. After all, the Bush Administration would never do things like pack the judiciary with partisans, or intimidate the press, or use signing statements to undermine legislation, or invoke executive privilege to hide their tracks, or crassly break the law without fear of reprisal from a toothless congress. Their “commitment to democracy” is absolute, especially the kind where the Supreme Court forbids recounts.

Seriously, are these guys not aware of the delicious ironies they serve up on a regular basis? I remember when Bush was threatening Syria because they were “interfering in the internal workings of another country.” I can’t even come up with a metaphor that gives that justice, because the best description of it is that it is like Bush accusing someone of interfering in the internal affairs of another country. Or Rice accusing another country of increasing the power of the presidency.

At least they’ve finally accomplished something interesting – they’ve now gone beyond irony AND metaphor into a kind of Escher-like, self-referential, folding-in-upon-itself unreality.


Anonymous said...

This must be what happens when an administration completely fails to reflect upon itself and its actions. (Probably yet another behavior that Rice could easily spot in the backward politicos of another country.)


Robert Sievers said...

Agreed. Less government is good. We need to get rid of all kinds of government intrusion, and get back to more of a states rights attitude. Dan, you have consdervative in you just itching to get out.