Speaker Pelosi's Criticism Hit The Proverbial Nail On The Head
Yes, the escalation has begun. In fact, Bush escalated the escalation process when confronted by the real possibility that Congress would withold its approval and funding of the "surge". Bush pretended for two months to be weighing his military and diplomatic options in Iraq. Turns out, he knew all along that he wouldn't listen to anyone outside his inner circle. His mind had already been made up. During this phony deliberative stage, plans were already being executed to mobilize the "surge" -- before Congress would have an opportunity to stop it.
What Nancy Pelosi said is true: Bush rushed to put the extra troops in play for Iraq to avoid having to finally listen and conform to others' points of view. His play for time was merely an attempt to convey a false "image" that he was deeply considering others' opinions. Image over substance -- PR and spin over truth and reality -- These will be known as the earmarks of this Bush administration.
The truth of the matter is that he felt that he already had all the answers and to hell with everyone else. His stubborness, a euphemism for stupidity, manifested itself again to the dismay and consternation of most observers within the United States. Once again, he domonstrates that he is impervious to reason and logic when it differs or conflicts with his own.
One could reasonably ask if Bush is a "dictator". And the shocking truth is that one can reasonably answer the question in the affirmative. The argument by some against such a label or definition is that Bush is merely executing his authority as "Commander-in-Chief". This argument, however, loses its appeal in rather dramatic fashion when viewed in the context of his history in office. Domestic spying, "Signing Statements", Patriot Act, Rendition, Habeas Corpus -- all these point to an alarming centralization and concentration of power in the Executive branch. And this is just the short list. There are many other examples of constitutional overreach. The point is that Congressional and Judicial oversight has never been more important in our nation's history. The integrity of our constitutional democracy weighs heavily in the balance. The results of the midterm elections confirm this analysis. People are concerned. And justifiably.