A Perfect Storm
Ernest Partridge, Co-Editor
The Crisis Papers
May 9, 2006
A Prince, whose character is ... marked by every act
which may define a Tyrant, is unfit to be the ruler of a free
Declaration of Independence
“A perfect storm” occurs when several weather conditions – for example,
a low pressure area, a cold front, a diversion of the jet stream -- each
significant by itself, converge and combine at a particular time and
place, with catastrophic results.
Analogously, a perfect political storm may now be gathering over the
Bush Administration, with each element intensifying the effects of the
others. Heretofore, the Bush regime has been able to handle one element
or two at a time, put the emergency behind them, and then move on.
Similarly, the problems facing the Busheviks today might be dealt with
successfully if they were to appear in sequence. Unfortunately for Bush
and the Republicans, they are arriving all at once, and this time they
may well be overwhelmed and, come November, overthrown.
The Opposition is being heard. This has been an extraordinary
month for speaking truth to power. On April 6,
Harry Taylor, an ordinary North Carolina citizen, told George Bush
directly that he had “never felt more ashamed of, nor more frightened by
my leadership in Washington, including the presidency.” Then, three
weeks later, comedian
Colbert skewered Bush and the White House press corps, as he stood
just a few feet away from the President. And just last week, CIA veteran
Ray McGovern called Donald Rumsfeld a “liar” to his face, whereupon
Rumsfeld replied with yet another demonstrable lie. And throughout the
month, eight retired generals openly criticized Rumsfeld’s (and by
implication Bush’s) conduct of the Iraq war.
All these incidents took extraordinary courage. But now that these brave
individuals have led, expect many more to follow. And while the
mainstream media (MSM) have heretofore failed to report such incidents,
now at last they can no longer be ignored -- thanks in no small part to
an independent internet.
Which leads to our next point:
The mainstream Media is losing its grip on public opinion. Soon
after the 9/11 attacks,
70% of the American public was led to believe that Saddam Hussein
was involved in the attacks, and
believed that he was an ally of al Qaeda. We now know that both of
these allegations were false. These falsehoods could only have been
conveyed to the public through the mainstream media. In February, 2002,
Colin Powell presented alleged “proof” to the UN Security Council that Saddam
Hussein was in possession of weapons of mass destruction and was
with al Qaeda. The American corporate media was
unanimous in its
praise of that speech, and in its pronouncement that Powell had
“made his case.” Subsequent events have proven that speech to have been
a pack of lies, for which Powell has apologized.
Despite the continuing submissiveness of the MSM to the official White
House “line,” the public is at last beginning to “get it.” In December,
2005, only 22% still believed that “Saddam Hussein helped plan and
support the hijackers who attacked the U.S.” on 9/11, while 42%
continued to believe
the myth of
the Saddam-AlQaeda link
In addition, today Bush’s approval rating is in the low thirties, and
that of the Congress down to 22%. A majority of Americans disapprove of the Iraq
war and believe that the country is “moving in the wrong direction.”
These indicators of public opinion have been arrived at despite, rather
than because of, the mainstream media.
As significant as the false reporting has been the non-reporting. The
“Downing Street Memos,” the top-secret notes from British cabinet
meetings which exposed the treachery of Bush’s decision
to go to war with Iraq, were essentially absent from the mainstream
news. “Old news,” said the Washington Post. Steven Colbert’s performance
at the White House Correspondent’s dinner was initially deemed unworthy of mention
by the New York Times, and only a passing comment by the Washington
Post. And to this day, there is virtually a complete ban on even
mentioning the question of fraud in the 2000, 2002 and 2004 elections.
Even so, these issues and more have been “kept alive” by the independent
Clearly, the mainstream media has lost much of its credibility with the
public. It no longer leads public opinion. So the question arises: will
it now follow public opinion and respond to the public’s increasing
demand to be told the truth?
The Law is at last catching up with the White House and the GOP.
Karl Rove, Bush’s evil political genius, appears to be on the brink of
indictment, and there may be still more in the Bush Administration to be
caught in Patrick Fitzgerald’s legal net. The convictions of Randy
“Duke” Cunningham and Jack Abramoff are probably just the opening act to
Progress Report describes as “the most extensive corruption
scandal in a century.” At least a half dozen GOP Congressman are
believed to be involved.
But far worse than all this perjury, obstruction of justice, bribery and
corruption is the claim of Bush, Cheney, Gonzales, et al, to be above
the law and the Constitution. The rights of the accused to confront
their accuser, to a speedy trial by jury, to habeas corpus
(specification of charges), to advice of counsel – all these rights
specified in the Bill of Rights – have been casually set aside. The
Geneva Conventions: treaties with the force of federal law?
“Inoperative.” The Fourth Amendment guarantee of the citizens’ right “to
be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against
unreasonable searches and seizures.” Overruled.
The President, along with every federal officer and every member of
Congress, all take an oath to “support and defend the Constitution of
the United States.” Yet a majority of those members of Congress,
including virtually all Republicans, in violation of that oath, choose
instead to “support and defend” a President whose willful and flagrant
violation of the Constitution is open and beyond dispute – a President who
places himself above the law, despite the Constitutional requirement
that “he shall take care that the laws be faithfully executed.” (Article
2, Section 3).
Is there no limit to the capacity of these Republican politicians to
violate their oaths of office as they meekly submit to an outlaw regime?
Or is there, eventually, a breaking point?
The Consequences of “Bushenomics” are being felt in the American
households. The GOP raid on the US Treasury, the “reverse Robin-Hoodism”
(taking from the poor and middle class and giving to the rich), the
“outsourcing” of jobs, all this, the American public has endured in
passive silence. But for how long? Now, with gasoline above $3 a gallon
and the ripple effect of that increase on other consumer prices, the
public is finally waking up. Most Americans have been ruthlessly
swindled by this Administration and Congress. To date, few Americans
have much appreciation of the extent of this swindle. But now the
effects are closing in, and the price of gas at the pump is merely a
harbinger of worse to come. Add to this the public’s loss of confidence
in and approval of the Bush Administration and the Congress. It is a
The Pivotal question: Will the election fraud issue finally break out?
The electronic voting industry is under attack in several states. An epidemic of machine failures in primary elections
has been discovered and disclosed, and
numerous law suits are being filed against e-voting companies and
election officials. And yet, at the same time, thanks to the Help
America Vote Act (HAVA), an ever-growing percentage of votes are being
cast, recorded and tallied with “black boxes” designed and operated by
GOP partisans using secret software and without independent means of
verification. Despite the absence of so much as a mention of these
problems in the MSM, the public continues to lose confidence in the
integrity of the elections.
Suppose that the approval ratings of Bush, the Republicans, and the
Congress continue to fall, and that by November, the polls show Bush’s numbers in
the high twenties and the Congress in the teens. And suppose that the same polls reveal
that the Democrats have a thirty-point lead over the Republicans in the
“generic” vote for Congress. Now imagine that the election returns show
that despite losses in both houses, the Republicans retain control,
thanks to a few “miraculous” upsets in key races, all in favor of the
Will the public accept this? The voters have accepted the very
suspicious results of the 2000, 2002, 2004 and 2005 elections,
essentially on the word of the media. But with the declining credibility
of the MSM, and a nation-wide clamor to “throw the rascals out,”
will the public stand for yet another “miraculous” but unverifiable
“upset” by the GOP?
And there is still more.
The hurricane season will soon be upon us. How will the public react if
and when another devastating storm strikes and the federal government is
once again unable or unwilling to come to the aid of the disaster
The value of the US dollar is sinking in international currency markets,
as the rest of the world appears finally to have had enough of Bush’s
monetary and fiscal recklessness. This has serious implications for the
US economy, and may well signal a recession, or even a depression, in
the near future.
Add to this the imminent collapse of the housing market, which could
lead to the bankruptcy of millions of middle class Americans, while Bush
continues to push for still more tax breaks for the wealthy.
Meanwhile, the Iraq war drags on, the casualty figure mount, as Bush
hints of another war in Iran and United
States government becomes ever more despised in the international
Is there no limit? The Bush Administrations rules through threat
and intimidation. When General Eric Shinseki told Congress, contrary to
the policy of Rumsfeld and the neo-cons, that more troops would be
needed to pacify Iraq, that candor ended the General’s career. When
Joseph Wilson correctly reported that there was no evidence of Saddam
purchasing uranium ore from Niger, the White House retaliated against
his wife, Valerie Plame Wilson, ending her career as a CIA operative.
The Busheviks also rule through fear, with constant reminders of 9/11
and with a permanent and ever-expanding “war on terror.” And when the going gets tough for Bush, Inc.,
that’s the time to trot out another “terror alert.”
Last February, I compared the political scene to a placid
landscape atop an active fault. Below the surface, the tectonic forces
accumulate along the locked fault, until eventually it ruptures,
irrevocably altering the landscape above. Similarly, beneath a quiet
volcanic mountain, the pool of magma ascends until the pressure below
exceeds the capacity of the weight of the mountain above to contain it.
Then it explodes.
Analogously, below the surface of the Bushevik rule by intimidation, retaliation and fear,
the pressure of public opinion, of discontent, of dissent, and political
opposition is rising. A myriad of separate factors – economic,
political, legal, informational – are converging all at once into a
perfect political storm.
Something’s got to give, more likely sooner than later.
In the Chinese language, the concept of "crisis" is expressed by
combining the symbols for "danger" and "opportunity." This aptly
describes this crucial moment in American history. What follows
may be horrible, or it may be hopeful. There exists the danger
that a new terror attack will sweep away all that is left of the rule of
law and the Constitution, and that a dictatorship will follow. On the
other hand, this convergence of forces may present us with an
opportunity to solidify and unify the opposition whereby, as with Nixon
and Watergate, we might re-establish the rule of law and restore
allegiance to the United States Constitution as Bushism is peacefully overthrown.
We are all victims of the ancient Chinese curse: “May you live in
Copyright 1006 by Ernest Partridge
Ernest Partridge's Internet Publications
Conscience of a Progressive:
Partridge's Scholarly Publications. (The Online Gadfly)
Dr. Ernest Partridge is a consultant, writer and lecturer in the field
of Environmental Ethics and Public Policy. He has taught Philosophy at
the University of California, and in Utah, Colorado and Wisconsin. He
publishes the website, "The Online
Gadfly" and co-edits the progressive website,
"The Crisis Papers".
His e-mail is: firstname.lastname@example.org .