This has been a week in which Washington and the political world has been turned upside down by the US government's revelation that Iran is not now making nuclear weapons, and had abandoned that program years ago. This contradicted all that our President has been saying these past weeks, as he kept beating the drum for war with Iran. Now comes the old question, "What did the President know and when did he know it?" It looks like 1970s show time in America. But is it really? We so want to believe that George W. Bush was lying to us, that he is Richard Nixon Redux; it would make us feel so comfortable, fill our heads with dreams of impeachment and a shining new government as the helicopter takes him back to Crawford, Texas, while Cheney eternally defibrillates in the lobby of Walter Reed Hospital, and the ever startled but resolute Nancy Pelosi is our first woman president.
Unfortunately, Bush's lying won't accomplish this. Look at this man in his press conferences. Listen to him carefully. Every word he says rings with conviction. This is no actor delivering Cheney's lines; this is a truth teller, a fellow who speaks from his own heavy heart, a man who follows his own script, a guy who says what he means and means what he says. The fact that he speaks his fantasies and believes all of them is what makes him so dangerous. He is clearly insane and that's something few wish to face, because insanity is harder to deal with than the worst kind of prevarication. Liars get exposed, madmen get re-elected.
I am no psychologist, but it is clear to me that Bush lives in a world of alternate reality in which it is necessary to create new enemies daily even though our world provides enough real ones to keep this country alert for years. He must keep putting us in harm's way in order to keep saving us. Enemies, for him, as with Giuliani, give him the strength he needs to wake up in the morning, and in Bush's case, never to think of the irreparable damage he has done to this country and to the lives of millions. Unfortunately, armed with his fantasies this madman can send armies out to die and to blow up whole civilizations, and there is little resolve in the Congress to stop him. One reason is that we Americans are so suspicious of psychological mumbo jumbo; we have been so overdosed to psycho-babble by our Dr. Phils and all those other TV explainers who can't accept the messiness of the human condition that we are reluctant to recognize a lunatic when the real one comes along. The old news is that all families, even the best of them, are dysfunctional, and all of us are plagued by our own desires and disappointments during our lifetimes. That's okay. It's called real life. This is what our forefathers knew and managed to live with. Life can't often be cured, sometimes it must be endured. But how do we endure a madman at the head of our government? What can we do about it? Very little in the way of a solution comes to mind. Nancy Pelosi will not be fitting this President with the straight-jacket he needs, nor will his doctor dare prescribe the anti-psychotic medication that might restore him to reality and the country to peace again. In all probability we will be obliged to wait out this year, hoping that Freddy Krueger POTUS doesn't decide to strike again.