Why Oh Why Can't We Have a Better Press Corps? (Yet Another Washington Post/Richard Cohen Edition)
Why Oh Why Can't We Have a Better Press Corps? (Slate Edition)

George W. Bush: Radical Feminist or Liberal Republican?

The Poor Man wakes, rises from his bed in Drowned R'lyeh, and notices something:

The Poor Man: Phyllis Schlafly... George W. Bush is, in fact, a mere sockpuppet for radical feminists!

Is President George W. Bush a feminist, or is he just a typical gentleman who is intimidated by feminist...?

[Jonah Goldberg of National Review] does her one better... after six years of worship at the altar of Bush, he suddenly notices this totally amazing thing that no one has ever noticed before:

But there is one area where we can make somewhat useful comparisons between Nixon and Bush: their status as liberal Republicans.

And thus the Poor Man reclaims his rightful place as the Grand Heresiarch of the Order of the Shrill:

There is only perception, and perception is only belief. You make yourself believe Bush is a liberal, and you get your friends to agree with you that Bush is a liberal, and, presto-chango, Bush is a big liberal. Everybody even says! I’ve always said! They even say I’ve always said!

But see, there’s a problem. He’s your boy. You loved him and lied for him and slimed every decent person - including no small number of proper conservatives - who tried to point out what you and he were up to. Seven years and counting, you and him against the world. So you can call him a “feminist” or you can call him a “liberal” or you can call him “dreadlock’d vegan anarchist”, but that just means you’re a liberal feminist vegan anarchist with dreadlocks, too.

It’s too late.

You can point out all those times when you only shook your Team Bush pom-poms with 108% enthusiasm, but, outside of Wingnuttia, no one is listening. Call him what you want, believe whatever you have to believe, but he was your boy when it was popular, and he’s your boy now, and forever.

Over at Angry Bear, the Progressive Liberal opens his eye, waves his tentacles, and freaks out as well:

Angry Bear: Michael Darda [of National Review] dips into the Kudlow file of nonsensical concepts... nominal "core GDP."... [W]hy would he and Kudlow want to exclude net exports from their calculations?

Because they have no idea what "nominal core GDP" would mean. What they have calculated is nominal private absorption--not nominal core GDP.

PGL goes on:

The suggestion from Darda and Kudlow that private spending growth exceeded overall growth is both false, and also contradictory to the claim of certain small government conservatives that Bush has somehow been a liberal. The decline in the private spending/GDP ratio... is simply the flip side of the increase in government purchases....

As Kudlow once tried to argue -- Bush has not cut government spending "Reagan style". Then again -- neither did President Reagan.

And then he reaches four octaves of shrillness above high C:

[I]n the 1980's... conservatives blamed the Reagan deficits on exploding government spending... conservatives today claim Reagan succeeded in small government conservatism. Of course... government spending as a share of GDP neither rose nor fell appreciably in the 1980's.

A good try, PGL, but to no avail: the Poor Man remains the Grand Heresiarch of the Ancient, Occult, and Hermetic Order of the Shrill: those who have been driven into shrill unholy madness by the mendacity, incompetence, malevolence, and disconnection from reality of George W. Bush and his administration.