Friday, April 09, 2004

Things are falling apart in Iraq and the whole damn country is in an uproar over Condi Rice and Her Lies to the 9-11 Commission, so what's a proper President supposed to be doing? Why not go on Holiday!
Democrats criticized Bush for taking the Easter-week vacation while U.S. forces are struggling to put down an uprising in Iraq. Campaigning in Milwaukee, Sen. John F. Kerry, the presumed Democratic presidential nominee, said: "I notice President Bush is taking some days off down at Crawford, Texas, and I'm told that when he takes days off, you know, he totally relaxes: He doesn't watch television, he doesn't read the newspapers, he doesn't make long-term plans, doesn't worry about the economy. I thought about that for a moment. I said, sounds to me like it's just like life in Washington, doesn't it?"

White House communications director Dan Bartlett retorted that Bush is "not skiing" in Texas, as Kerry did on a recent vacation in Idaho. He said Bush remains in contact with his military advisers and is spending Easter weekend with his family. "Most Americans will understand that," Bartlett said.

This is Bush's 33rd visit to his ranch since becoming president. He has spent all or part of 233 days on his Texas ranch since taking office, according to a tally by CBS News. Adding his 78 visits to Camp David and his five visits to Kennebunkport, Maine, Bush has spent all or part of 500 days in office at one of his three retreats, or more than 40 percent of his presidency.

Well at least he's not skiing....

However, it's not all beer and skittles down in Texas these days:
The president and his White House aides have not changed their public claims that the uprising in Iraq is the work of a relatively small number of extremists who will inevitably be crushed. But, in private, Bush is apparently expressing a more grim view. According to the Kremlin, he placed a 20-minute call to Russian President Vladimir Putin yesterday, and "serious distress was expressed" about the "escalation of violence." Bush aides refused to discuss the details of the conversation.

While the White House has been sanguine about the turmoil in Iraq, some of its allies are calling for a more frank acknowledgment of trouble. Kenneth L. Adelman, a Reagan administration official who is close to several Bush officials, said he is surprised that "it's a lot tougher slogging than I expected" in Iraq. He said Bush should make new overtures both to Democrats and to traditional allies urging them to condemn the violence. He should tell them that "now is not the time to say I told you so, and urge the allies to become more heavily involved," he said.

Might Dear Leader be finally waking up after his 3 1/2 year nap?