Bush throws his Hail Mary and it MUST be important. How do I know? There was no American flag (except the old lapel pin). And he stood in front of real (apparently) books.
George Bush? In front of books? Is he serious? Oh yeah, he must be. There are books.
Finally and most important, George Bush did not say "Good night and God bless America."
That, or some variant has been, if my memory serves me, in every presidential speech since at least His Goodness Ronnie Reagan if not before. Absent that phrase there was NO mention of god in this speech. He did refer to the "author of freedom" but hell that could have been Thomas Jefferson for all we know*.
Once again, the staging is more important than the speech itself. Bush and his team want us to know that there really is no room for political code here. Is the absence of code, code?
Well. Let's look at the history. Everything the Bush Administration does is political. That is Karl Rove's job and legacy after all. There has not been one staged event from Mission Accomplished to Katrina where George Bush did not stage it without absolute attention to detail.
This is one more. The message this time? George Bush grows up.
Of course in both those cases as a MAJOR HISTORICAL WAR PRESIDENT and as a MAJOR HISTORICAL REPAIRER OF NATURAL CATASTROPHES George Bush has shown that the pictures he makes never measure up to the message and most importantly to the actions he achieves.
So we can expect that George Bush as a MAJOR BIG PERSON will fail.
Let us be clear what this speech was all about. George Bush the consummate jock is playing out the clock. On Jan 20th 2009 at 12:01 PM the Iraq war will be someone else's war to lose.
* I was most amused by George's ability to keep a straight face while he was talking about responsiveness of the Iraqi government and the need for freedom while of course His Highness has done everything in and out of his power to defeat same in his own country. Nice touch George.