July 16, 2002                              

"Public officials should call on Americans to be responsible, but lectures do not replace leadership. Leaders must lead by example. Leaders must be responsible, and in our great democracy, the top responsibility rests with the President of the United States."
-- George W. Bush

Can you believe that quote? Do you think even Bush believes what he said? If you do, I can sell you the Brooklyn Bridge at a bargain price. How does he do it? What type of personality defect allows the leader of the free world to make such astounding statements knowing all along that he has no intention of living up to what he says?

Read the complete article on BuzzFlash.com:


Joe Conason
Bush talks -- the market tumbles. And despite offering "hope" to young Americans, the job market is faring badly, too.

July 15, 2002  |  Talk that's not cheap
When George Bush talks, people listen -- and sell. When Bush stopped talking for a few hours, the market eventually rallied, although not quite enough to erase the sickening 439-point plunge that followed his speech. Listening to the president dish out platitudes in Alabama could make any intelligent American despair. He still boasts about his tax cuts, and complains about the inheritance tax, with considerably more conviction than he can muster when he finally mentions corporate corruption. He still talks about reining in the trial lawyers, as if they're somehow to blame for the drifting economy.

Bush's inability to focus and provide real assurance about the direction of the economy and the integrity of financial markets is spooking investors. And for obvious reasons, he cannot bring out that former Halliburton executive down the hall (or down in the bunker) to borrow some gravitas.

It is true, as Bush said so cheerily in Birmingham, that the economy has seen some positive indicators in recent months. There has been some growth in the service sector. Inflation, as he said without irony, is certainly low. Bitter laughter might have been more appropriate than applause, however, when the president spoke repeatedly of his concern about the need to create jobs and to help "young Americans who have no hope." For the most disturbing numbers crunched by those Washington wonks disparaged by Bush are the employment figures, which show that this feeble recovery is creating very few new jobs…

Corporate reform, meaning reregulation of big business, is essential. But a real program for rapid economic growth is just as important. Yammering about death taxes and trial lawyers achieves nothing, even if Republicans still applaud those lines in Alabama…