E.J. Dionne’s turn at MiniTrue: apparently old W. was/is compassionately conservative, multicultural, diverse, tolerant, and a bunch of other nice things that E.J. Dionne doesn’t think that those mean icky nasty Tea Partiers are. Big change from 2005, when Bush apparently habitually “sought to divide the country;” or when Dionne wrote about the Bush administration that “None has looked so principled, even when it said one thing while doing another.” Or how about 2003? – That’s when Dionne accused Bush of hypocrisy on compassionate conservatism itself, saying “The dissonance between the president’s moderate, compassionate words and his spending priorities is jarring.”
And then there’s this post-Katrina gem:
…His policies are failing, his approach to leadership is detached and self-indulgent, his way of politics has produced a divided, angry and dysfunctional public square. We dare not go on like this… Instead, Bush put patriotism to the service of narrowly ideological policies and an extreme partisanship… Careful policymaking and thinking through potential flaws in your approach are not his administration’s strong suits… The source of Bush’s political success was his claim that he could protect Americans. Leadership, strength and security were Bush’s calling cards. Over the past two weeks, they were lost in the surging waters of New Orleans… his best hope lies in recognizing that the Bush Era, as he and we have known it, really is gone. He can decide to help us in the transition to what comes next. Or he can cling stubbornly to his past and thereby doom himself to frustrating irrelevance.
But that was then, when EJ Dionne needed George W. Bush to be a devil that could put Democrats in power. This is now, when E.J. Dionne needs George W. Bush to be an angel with which to compare to all those awful Tea Party devils that are busy throwing Democrats out of power. Nothing personal on Dionne’s part, you understand. It’s just business. A couple years down the road, he’ll be theatrically lamenting the loss of the Tea Party’s original ideals. It pays the bills.
And, really, it’s not Dionne’s fault that liberal rubes eat this stuff up with a spoon.
Moe Lane (crosspost)