"We will never back down, never give in and never accept anything less than complete victory," Bush said in a speech on Washington's war on terrorism.In a baffling statement better left to the screenplay of Se7en, he ascribed to the terror-artists formerly known as evildoers "a set of beliefs that are evil but not insane." His new name for the ideology (is it really new?) is "Islamo-fascism."
Bush used new and more specific language in characterizing the opponents as part of an Islamic radical movement "with a clear and coherent ideology" and territorial ambitions, rather than dismissing them as the terrorist "evildoers" of his early speeches on the issue.
Bush also warned further sacrifice will be required.
What, exactly, have we been asked to sacrifice? Tax dollars? No, he keeps sending those back. Materials vital to the war effort? No, we're still allowed to buy and drive big cars. Our fundamental belief in the ability of the federal government to care for us in our hour of need while nation building in someone else's sandbox? Ding! Done, Mr. President. What else would you like us to give up?
In related, but less dire, word-play news: The Roundup relays Schwarzenegger spokesman Rob Stutzman's recent comments to the LAT on his boss's slumping approval ratings:
"'Californians are not mad at Arnold Schwarzenegger,' chief spokesman Rob Stutzman recently told The Times. 'They are rooting for him. They want him to succeed. And all that goodwill that buoyed us at absurdly high approval ratings a year ago still exists as a reservoir of goodwill.'"Um, pssst, it might be time to let loose a bit of that stored goodwill. And I'll leave alone his use of "absurdly." Some low-hanging fruit should be left to pretty the tree . . . .