Thursday, March 02, 2006

How the mind works

Revka is enraged:

Nagin is a loser. I haven't heard him truly humble himself and admit his mistakes, because when he tries it is followed by an excuse.
Indeed. It's all Mayor Nagin's fault. Excuse me, make that "Chocolate City Nagin." Well put, deary. It's fascinating to watch the conservative mind at work.

Trent Duffy, SpokesmodelRevka was, of course, responding the video recently released which:

shows President Bush sitting passively as he is briefed on the killer storm heading directly for the Gulf Coast. Senior officials voice dire predictions including the distinct possibility of severe flooding in New Orleans.

He asks no questions. And when he spoke it was to offer what turned out be unfounded assurances:

"I want to assure the folks at the state level that we are fully prepared to not only help you during the storm, but we will move in whatever assets and resources we have at our disposal after the storm to help you deal with the loss of property, and we pray for no loss of life, of course."

Apparently as a rejoinder to the new video, the White House yesterday suddenly sent around a transcript that it previously said didn't exist, from a conference call on the following day. It includes a second-hand account of Bush's activities from Michael Brown, the Bush-appointed FEMA director who later resigned in disgrace, describing the president as engaged, watching TV and asking questions.

White House spokes[model] Trent Duffy said this yesterday: "I hope people don't draw conclusions from the president getting a single briefing. He received multiple briefings from multiple officials, and he was completely engaged at all times."

But where, then, is the first-hand evidence of this engagement? Where is the evidence of Bush's leadership?
I'm not interested in the pettiness of the defenses the administration has offered (the President was warned about massive flooding, but levee breaches would be totally different? WTF?).

I want to ask if there's something inherent to the name "Trent Duffy" that makes me want to type "spokesmodel."

Because last time we discussed Mr. Duffy, I spontaneously tagged him as a spokesmodel and felt compelled to construct the Photoshopped image above. And I couldn't help reproducing that image this time and to edit the story I just quoted, which originally identified him as a "spokesman," to reflect my own bizarre bias.

Yes, "Trent" is a classic WASP/surfer name, and "Duffy" is fairly WASPy and surferish. But is that really enough to transform a hard-working liar into a hard-bodied ditz?

No. It requires that the hard-working liar also say things that are truly absurd.

Last time, it was "The president is less interested in yesterday, and more interested with today and tomorrow, so that we can be better prepared for next time." This time, it was asking us again to ignore the publicly available history in favor of the history he won't let us see.

Why does his mind work that way?