Help wanted: be the fall guy for Iraq

April 11, 2007 | By | 5 Replies More

I laughed out loud when I read this story.  Yes, after five years of Bush’s swaggering incompetence, his Administration now wants to hire a scapegoat — er, “war overseer” — to take the fall for the mess in Iraq, and at least three retired generals have already turned down the offer.  Unlike Bush, they’re obviously not stupid enough to get sucked into the Iraq mess — which, by the way, is continuing to worsen despite Bush’s ridiculous troop surge plan.  If Bush appoints someone to take his place, I can hadly wait to see who he picks.  Given that most of Bush’s appointees have been selected for loyalty rather than competence, there is no telling how far down into the barrel he will need to dig to fill this slot. 

Then again, perhaps I shouldn’t be so cynical.  After all, it’s hard to imagine anyone doing a worse job than Bush when it comes to being a “war overseer.”

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About the Author ()

Grumpypilgrim is a writer and management consultant living in Madison, WI. He has several scientific degrees, including a recent master’s degree from MIT. He has also held several professional career positions, none of which has been in a field in which he ever took a university course. Grumps is an avid cyclist and, for many years now, has traveled more annual miles by bicycle than by car…and he wishes more people (for the health of both themselves and our planet) would do the same. Grumps is an enthusiastic advocate of life-long learning, healthy living and political awareness. He is single, and provides a loving home for abused and abandoned bicycles. Grumpy’s email: grumpypilgrim(AT)@gmail(DOT).com [Erich’s note: Grumpy asked that his email be encrypted this way to deter spam. If you want to write to him, drop out the parentheticals in the above address].

Comments (5)

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  1. Tim Hogan says:

    I want the job.

    I couldn't possibly muck things up more than the Bushies and their right wing neocon Brown Shirt weblog echochambering yobbo yappers.

    I want at least what stock options Cheney has in Halliburton, Bush has in the Carlyle Group and my own jet. The salary is payable in an up-front signing bonus of $5 million, tax free. I'll get another $5 million every six months I have and/or survive in the job.

    I'm also a Democrat, and if I really muck up, Bush can blame it on the Democrats! I am not loyal to President Bush but, to our country, our soldiers and a belief that America still may stand again in the world community as compassionate, concerned and committed to peace.

  2. Ebonmuse says:

    This reminds me of The Onion's parody, "Bush To Appoint Someone To Be In Charge Of Country". Reality overtakes fiction yet again…

  3. Erich Vieth says:

    Ebonmuse: The Onion hits a home run again!

  4. grumpypilgrim says:

    I wonder if this explains why Bush never seems to think about the long-term consequences of his actions, and why he never takes responsibility for any of his mistakes. Perhaps he has never had to. If things turn out well, he takes the credit; if things turn out badly, he simply hires someone else to take the blame.

    I've seen this behavior before: many corporate CEOs do this exact same thing. They take credit for successes and find a scapegoat for failures, even if it means hiring one. Often, the scapegoat they hire is a consulting firm, hired by the CEO to find a justification for what the CEO already intends to do. The firm is only hired at the planning stage. That way, by the time the project outcome is known, the consultanting firm will be long gone, leaving the CEO free to claim credit if the project succeeds, or to blame the consultanting firm (or the "project manager") if the project fails. Either way, the CEO keeps his job.

    With Republican prospects in 2008 looking very dim, it is no surprise they now want to find a "war overseer" to deflect attention from their incompetent "commander"-in-chief. Does anyone think they'd do this if the Iraq invasion were going well? Indeed, as Tim observes, hiring a Democrat would be icing on the cake: the Karl Rove propaganda machine would try to "Swift Boat" the Democrats the way it did to Kerry. The Iraq mess would be turned into a Democrat failure.

    In fact, Republicans appear to be already gearing up to do this. By forcing the Democrats to put a rudder on Bush's directionless policies in Iraq, and to rein in Bush's idiotic spending, Democrats can now be at least partly blamed for the outcome. If Iraq continues to deteriorate, Republicans can blame Democrat meddling; if things turn around, Republicans can say it happened because of their "long term vision" and despite Democrat interference. Either way, they have at least some hope of getting the Iraq monkey off their back when the 2008 election comes around.

    Yes, hiring a "war overseer" would be a great idea for the Bush Administration. Unfortunately, it won't improve the situation in Iraq, but it would give Republicans a scapegoat to blame when things worsen. Since Iraq was originally nothing but a political tool to help Republicans win elections, we should not be surprised if they continue to use it that way.

  5. grumpypilgrim says:

    Speaking of the mess in Iraq, insurgents today penetrated the Iraqi parliament in the U.S.-defended "Green Zone:"
    http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20070412/ap_on_re_mi_e….

    Not to fear. White House spokesman Scott Stanzel said the multinational forces will be taking steps to strengthen security and make sure that such an attack doesn't happen again.

    So here's my question: if the Bush Administration can't even protect Baghdad from terrorist attacks, despite the heavy concentration of U.S. military troops deployed there, then exactly what reason do we have for believing America is any safer?

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