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"Losing my faith in humanity ... one neocon at a time."

Sunday, November 07, 2004

Bush's Brain: The Early Years

posted by Jazz at 11/07/2004 06:04:00 AM

NOTE: YOU ARE VIEWING AN ARCHIVED POST AT RUNNING SCARED'S OLD BLOG. PLEASE VISIT THE NEW BLOG HERE.

One popular trend in cartoons recently has been the development of storylines which examine the lives of the various pixilated superheros when they were children. Examples can be found in Teen Titans, Super Friends, and at least three different shows about Batman when he was in high school. Of course you can't have a protagonist without his ying-yang equivalent antagonist, so we were also treated to the Joker, the Riddler, and the Penguin as mischievous youths. Perhaps the only one they left out was Karl Rove.

Dr. Brian Moench, a high school friend of Karl's and former Harvard medical instructor, sets matters to rights with this piece in the Salt Lake Tribune. He discusses Rove's life as a high school student, growing up as an outsider - a non-Mormon, bespectacled geek in a Utah school district. His recollections of Rove reveal a man of unique, single minded purpose, unwavering from adolescence to the present day.

Karl was the only 17-year-old I'd ever met whose dreams were limited to being a political operative, period. One mutual friend said, "Karl would stare at a sunset and see only the political implications of it." I never remember Karl talking about making the world a better place. His next milestone: At age 22 he conducted a conference for young Republicans on the art of dirty-tricks politics.

He then goes on to give a rather amusing description of how Rove and Bush found each other, and the odd metamorphosis which shaped the two apparent misfits into one unstoppable political machine.

When Rove decided to reach for the top he found the only presidential candidate who lacked everything he could provide. The symbiosis of Bush and Rove has steamrolled through the political landscape like the Terminator wearing an Alfred E. Newman mask and a cowboy hat.

On the outside there is Bush, with his "aw shucks" down-home-guy act who says he's on a mission from God. On the inside is Rove, the scorched-earth killing machine whose mission is to destroy every political opponent in its path.

On the outside is Bush, who seems to truly believe in Bible literalism and creationism and who admits to allowing his foreign policy to be shaped by an apocalyptic view of the imminent second coming of Jesus. On the inside is Rove, who thinks of the Second Coming as the re-elect-Jesus campaign.

I don't know if Rove's days of kingmaking are done, now that he's achieved the highest prize in the game. Perhaps it's like a gambling addiction and he won't be able to stop himself from picking up the next unlikely savior and molding him into a weapon of mass distortion. Oh, Batman... where are you when we truly need you?

Updates:
Political Wire points out that ABC News has named Rove their "Person of the Week."

From the other side of the aisle, Ed Driscoll thinks that the Salt Lake Tribune is suffering from "Bush Derangement Syndrome" and that Karl is just peachy.

Over at corrente, they are marveling at the fact that this story came out of a very red state.