In a recent interview on CSPAN, I heard President Bush say: "I made a name by being compassionate." I immediately thought to myself, "What?! Are you kidding me?! He really is delusional.."
This whole Republican idea of "compassionate conservatism" has turned out to be nothing but an empty campaign slogan. Remember, it was George HW Bush (#41) that coined that phrase when he ran against Clinton in '92. To me, it has proven to be just a cynical, calculated attempt on the part of Republicans to "soften their image" in hopes of garnering more votes. It's just another shallow example of the Bush administration's use of positive sounding words and phrases to sway public opinion, as though it's somehow sufficient for the public to simply hear the words spoken without the need for an equivalent or corresponding action that would yield the results that the words imply. The Bush /Cheney regime seems to have embraced an Orwellian approach to politics.
In this vein, another example of their Orwellian approach to government is their tendency to name their legislative proposals with positive sounding phrases that reasonable people would readily embrace or accept on the surface. For example, Bush's "Blue Skies Initiative" has a very appealing title, wouldn't you agree? I mean, how many of us would be against "blue skies". It readily evokes images of pure, clean, fresh air and a pristine environment. But the truth about this legislation is that it was a calculated and cynical attempt by the Bush administration to reverse years of environmental progress made during the Clinton-Gore years. And, of course, let's not forget to mention the most obvious example of them all: "The Patriot Act". Need I say more?
So in the final analysis, the positive phrases that they use have no actual correspondence whatsoever to the final results or the intended impact. In fact, the actual results often are the complete reverse of what one would naturally think to be the desired result. Again, they're just cynically designed to give people the surface impression that good works are being done on their behalf when in actuality just the opposite is the case. (Tony Snow, with a straight face, said in a recent press conference that Bush has a good record on environmental issues. I almost puked when I heard that one.)
So, to me, the Bush administration has been anything but "compassionate". They've been a deceitful, hateful, fear-mongering, heartless bunch of subhumanoids whose primary efforts have been designed to concentrate wealth and power at the very top while savaging the middle class through outsourcing, globalization and ridiculous trade policies.
At this point, I wouldn't be all that surprised to learn that a majority of compassionate conservative Republicans would endorse decaptitation as a remedy for those headache sufferers who can't afford health insurance. Hopefully, I'll never hear the words "compassionate conservative" again. The two just don't seem to mix.