Friday, October 19, 2012

Stop Bush Redux

Okay, I know. You say the graffiti on the sign seems hopelessly dated. But think for a minute. What does a vote for Romney/Ryan buy you, really? Let's see who he's hired onto his campaign as advisers. If you loved George W. Bush, you are apt to love Willard Mitt Romney.

A brief list of the usual suspects rounded up by Mittens includes such Bushies and other conservative extremists as: Robert Bork, Liz Cheney, Elliot Abrams, John Bolton, Dan Senor, Robert Joseph, Eric Edelman Michael Hayden, Michael Chertoff, Richard Williamson, Glenn Hubbard, N. Gregory Mankiw, Steven Bradbury, Margaret Spellings, Russ Schriefer, Stuart Stevens and Kevin Madden.

A nice assortment. Liars, war criminals and variety of unrepentant scoundrels who learned nothing from their misadventures in Iraq.

Bush lite? Hardly. This is Bush Heavy. Why? Well, consider that if Mitt ascends to the White House, he will be beholden to all the extreme -- sorry, make that severe -- conservatives to whom he'd have sold his soul if he one to sell (he doesn't). What must he have promised them to get the nomination? \

One can only assume that his signing of Grover Norquist's extortionate pledge is only the tip of the iceberg. What about the possibilities of Mitt doing as Grover suggests and being nothing but signature machine for laws passed by a Tea Party-dominated Congress (populated by such deep thinkers as a medical doctor who insists the world is only about 9,000 years old)? Are you looking forward to a great leap backward?
If so, stay home; don't vote. Sit back and relax while these folks try to turn the US into a warmongering theocracy that does everything for the most well-off while everyone else suffers. That will launch willy-nilly into war on any pretense or provocation. That will turn back the clock on the most important social and civil rights strides made in the previous century. That will deny science and logic. That will deny facts. That will deny the rights of women and minorities. That will make the Bush era tax cuts look modest as the Romney era sets in motion that largest set of entitlements in the history of the country by removing as much tax burden as it can from the wealthy. That will criminalize ALL abortions. That will criminalize stem cell research and contraception. That will gut or eliminate that legacy of the Nixon era, the EPA. That will take the country back not just to a pre-Dodd-Franks era, but also to a pre-Glass-Steagal era. That will define freedom in all realms as "you're free to do whatever you want so long as we agree with it; but you'll have hell to pay if we don't agree." Where freedom of religion will mean certain religions, but not others. Where freedom of religion will never allow for anyone to have the choice of freedom from religion. Where there won't be any limits to the number or size of the guns you can carry anywhere you wish. Where there won't be any funding for things the benefit the commonwealth.

Gosh damn. Why does this sound an awful lot to me like the way things are in Afghanistan.

Quoting from the Los Angeles Times:

"Romney doesn't have a single dominating figure who oversees his foreign agenda, relying instead on a group of about 200 outside advisors, campaign staff and other experts. About two-thirds are veterans of the Bush administration.

"Among them are several prominent neoconservatives and defense hawks, including Elliott Abrams, Bush's deputy national security aide; Elizabeth Cheney, a former Bush State Department official and the daughter of former Vice President Dick Cheney; Dan Senor, former spokesman for the U.S. occupation forces in Iraq; John R. Bolton, Bush's ambassador to the United Nations; and Robert Kagan, a Reagan administration aide and conservative intellectual."

(Paul Richter,

Or, quoting from Huffington Post,

"John Bolton, George Bush's Under Secretary of State and ambassador to the United Nations. He is such a neocon war hawk that Mr. Bolton told officials in Israel that America's next targets after attacking Iraq would be Syria, Iran and North Korea.

"Dan Senor, the former Bush spokesman in Iraq during Paul Bremer's disastrous "Provisional Authority" period when the Iraqi Army was disbanded and civil riots exploded. (He also has led foreign policy briefings for Vice Presidential-candidate Paul Ryan.)

"Robert Joseph was the National Security Council official who wrote the notorious "sixteen words" lie in President Bush's 2003 State of the Union speech that falsely claimed Iraq was trying to buy enriched uranium.
"Eric Edelman not only was an important Bush official in the Pentagon, but it was his suggestion to boss Dick Cheney that Scooter Libby "out" CIA covert agent Valerie Plame. He also served in the Defense Department and pressed to attack Iran.
"Other Bush neocon and war hawk advisers on the Romney team include Elliott Abrams, the Bush deputy national security aide; and Elizabeth Cheney, a State Department official and daughter of former Vice President Dick Cheney.

"Sorry, if you're running out of paper for taking notes, but we're only getting started.

"Beyond these experts comprising its foreign policy brain trust, the Romney website lists its "special advisers." These include:

"Michael Hayden, the Bush CIA director.

"Michael Chertoff, homeland security director for Mr. Bush.

"Richard Williamson, ambassador to the U.N. Security Council, and the Bush special envoy to Sudan.

"On Mitt Romney's foreign policy team, "Fifteen of the 22 members were policy advisers under the George W. Bush administration." And further, as Policymic states, "six of them are former members of PNAC," the neocon Project for a New American Century.

"Indeed, when Mitt Romney released his white paper on foreign policy (neocon-named, "An American Century"), the foreword was by Eliot Cohen -- counselor to Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice. And a founder of PNAC. Mr. Cohen has advocated that the U.S. "actively seek the overthrow" Iran. He refers to his policy as "World War IV."

"The importance of all this direct. Bush-neocon, war hawk influence on Mitt Romney has been put into perspective by Ari Berman in The Nation. He quotes Christopher Preble, foreign policy expert of the conservative/libertarian Cato Institute:
"I can't name a single Romney foreign policy adviser who believes the Iraq War was a mistake. Two-thirds of the American people do believe the Iraq War was a mistake. So he has willingly chosen to align himself with that one-third of the population right out of the gate."
"(But there's an even larger perspective. These Bush/Romney neocons are the same crack-experts who advised George Bush to ignore the briefing, "Bin Laden Determined to Strike in U.S." An intelligence failure of ghastly worldwide proportions where 3,000 American lives were directly lost, and 4,488 more killed in Iraq -- and over 100,000 additional war deaths -- as a result of it. It makes their advice to Mitt Romney to create a political issue of the Benghazi consulate attack all the more pathetic and empty.)

"But wait, don't stop taking notes yet. The Romney campaign doesn't just have all these Bush alumni advising on foreign policy... but counseling domestic policy, as well.
After all, Mitt Romney's economic advisers include:

"Glenn Hubbard, chairman of Mr. Bush's Council of Economic Advisers. (How'd that advice work out?) And an architect of the Bush-era tax cuts, which led to the $1.3 trillion budget deficit.
N. Gregory Mankiw was George Bush's main economic adviser from 2003 to 2005.

"Even on judicial issues, the Romney list of Judicial Advisers -- chaired by Robert Bork, the divisive, partisan, failed Supreme Court nominee -- has at least 10 lawyers related to the Bush administration Justice Department.
"These include Steven Bradbury, who as head of the Office of Legal Counsel, infamously signed three memos giving Mr. Bush the opinion that waterboarding torture was legal.

"Mitt Romney's staff of education advisers once included Margaret Spellings, George Bush's secretary of education.

"In fact, two of Mitt Romney's top political strategists, Russ Schriefer and Stuart Stevens, both come from the Bush-Cheney campaigns. As does Romney campaign adviser Kevin Madden, who was also spokesman for the Bush Justice Department."

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