Saturday, February 5, 2011

Rummy And Poppy

Blame, Not Shame
Published: February 5, 2011

Parsing the psychodrama of the Bush Dynasty is a long-lasting obsession of Maureen Dowd and a new memoir by Donald Rumsfeld adds new fuel to the fire. Maureen has a soft spot for George I with nothing but disdain for the his more hot-headed son.

As she sees it, Rumsfeld has the obverse opinion. Rummy is envious and disdainful of George H. W.:

Rummy has never hidden his disdain for Poppy, whom he regards as a flighty preppy who didn’t have the brass to march into Baghdad and take down Saddam Hussein. {snip} No doubt Rummy feels that if he’d been a pedigreed scion instead of a working-class scholarship kid, he could have been president. And he wouldn’t have made a hash of it, like some presidents he worked for.
Meanwhile, W. hero-worships the rough-hewn Rumsfeld, giving him a Rude Name® and all:
The 78-year-old Rumstud, as W. dubbed him, was both the youngest defense secretary in American history and the oldest. {snip} W., however, loved Rummy’s blunt muscularity and contempt for weakness.
And this is where Rumsfeld forms a hinge in Dowd's working thesis that the W.'s actions are all predicated on resolving his deep-seated daddy issues.
Rummy writes about the president-elect. “He had to be aware that I did not have a close relationship with his father.” At some level, that must have appealed to the wimp-phobic W., who spent more time trying to be Ronald Reagan’s heir than his dad’s.
Rumsfeld shares one other attribute with the president who saw an invasion of Iraq as a way to right perceived weaknesses.
The high school wrestling champ doesn’t wrestle with self-doubt.
If only he and the last president he served had been more right rather than so certain.

No comments: