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Linwood Barclay

What Boneheaded Design Guides Dubya’s Moves?


How does one explain all the misguided, unwise, sometimes outright boneheaded things the Bush administration has done since taking over nearly five years ago, and continues to do on a pretty much daily basis? How is it possible for a group of supposedly intelligent, experienced individuals to take this many wrong turns? Wouldn't you think that once in a while, even by accident, that George W. Bush and his advisers would make a decision that made sense?

Can this much mismanagement happen totally at random? Would the occupants of the Bush White House have us believe that all these things, these missteps, these miscalculations, these attempts to deceive, that they all, you know, just kind of happened?

I'm not so sure. And I'm not the only one starting to ask questions. More and more, it seems unlikely that mere human beings could make this many mistakes without some sort of misguiding force, a kind of supernatural entity that has trouble remembering where it put its car keys.

That's where unintelligent design comes in.

Once one embraces the concept of unintelligent design — a kind of doofus-like cosmic force — it becomes much easier to get your head around the operations of the Bush administration.

I mean, making executive decisions randomly would still probably result in doing the right thing 50 per cent of the time. So how does one explain such consistent goofiness, like invading a nation based on evidence that the administration knew didn't exist in the first place?

Or exposing a CIA employee's identity just to settle some personal scores?

Ignoring international trade agreements you've signed on to?

Adopting a head-in-the-sand approach to the connection between human activity on the planet Earth and global warming?

Letting the boss be photographed on the ranch, golfing and cutting brush and chilling out and generally having a good ol' time while young Americans die overseas?

Not having the media savvy to have that same boss take a stroll down the driveway and chat with a woman whose son was one of those young Americans?

Doing an end run around the Senate to send a loose cannon to the U.N., while supposedly promoting democracy abroad?

Not firing a defence secretary who totally misjudged how many troops would be needed to secure Iraq?

Giving rich folks back home huge tax cuts while soldiers go without adequate body armour?

Looking upon scientific and medical innovations like they're some sort of voodoo and letting other nations take the lead in these areas for the first time?

You can't tell me that some magnificently dumb force, more confused and baffled than all the members of the Bush administration put together, didn't have a hand in this.

But I know what some of you skeptical types are thinking. You're thinking, hey pal, where's your proof? Where's the actual evidence, the cold, hard facts, to support my contention that unintelligent design has played a role in the decisions of the Bush administration?

Well, that's easy. I have none. Not one shred of solid evidence. But let me ask you this. What evidence do you have that I'm wrong? My theory explaining Bush White House screwups is, by its very nature, impossible to disprove. And if you can't disprove it, then you don't have much choice but to consider it as an alternative.

That's why I'm pushing to have universities start teaching my unintelligent design theory in their political science courses. Sure, these know-it-all professors may be teaching that Bush and his ilk do what they do because they're captives of their own ideology, that they're pandering to baser instincts and popular prejudices to shore up support among certain constituencies, that they're willing to put their own political interests ahead of those of regular Americans.

Yeah, well, maybe. But my theory doesn't take as long to explain on the final.

Linwood Barclay is a columnist for the Toronto Star. Reproduced with permission of Torstar Syndication Services.

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