El título de esta entrada fue sacado de un notable ensayo de análisis polìtico, escrito por el periodista Joshua Green, publicado en el último número (septiembre) de la revista Atlantic Monthly: Lecciones de una presidencia fallida.

La prepotencia, falta de tacto e ignorancia de las formalidades y diplomacia en el trato con los representantes de los partidos republicano y demócrata es resaltada como la causa del derrumbe de la presidencia de George W. Bush.

Karl Rove, estratega político brillante, artífice de la elección de George W. Bush en dos oportunidades; es señalado como el culpable de la debacle.

El análisis–escrito luego de entrevistar a personas muy cercanas al entorno del presidente y/o involucradas en el proceso de elaboración de políticas de este gobierno-, señala una derrota catastrófica en tres de los temas claves para Bush: guerra en Irak, privatización y reforma del sistema de seguro social y reforma del sistema de inmigración.

De la ambición “histórica” de Rove de rehacer el panorama político de los Estados Unidos sobre la base del partido republicano, sólo queda un amargo sabor de boca.

Los analistas están empezando a repetir una máxima del sistema democrático que los estadounidenses parecieron olvidar con cierta facilidad después de los ataques terroristas del 11 de setiembre del 2001: es muy peligroso acumular todo el poder en una sola persona.

Lástima que les haya tomado tanto tiempo darse cuenta.

El siguiente extracto del artículo del Atlantic creo que es un ejemplo bastante ilustrativo no sólo del estilo de Karl Rove sino de las diferencias de personalidad entre un líder al que respeto y admiro como Bill Clinton y alguien al que desprecio como líder y presidente como George W. Bush:

Dick Armey, the House Republican majority leader when Bush took office (and no more a shrinking violet than DeLay), told me a story that captures the exquisite pettiness of most members of Congress and the arrogance that made Bush and Rove so inept at handling them. “For all the years he was president,” Armey told me, “Bill Clinton and I had a little thing we’d do where every time I went to the White House, I would take the little name tag they give you and pass it to the president, who, without saying a word, would sign and date it. Bill Clinton and I didn’t like each other. He said I was his least-favorite member of Congress. But he knew that when I left his office, the first schoolkid I came across would be given that card, and some kid who had come to Washington with his mama would go home with the president’s autograph. I think Clinton thought it was a nice thing to do for some kid, and he was happy to do it.” Armey said that when he went to his first meeting in the White House with President Bush, he explained the tradition with Clinton and asked the president if he would care to continue it. “Bush refused to sign the card. Rove, who was sitting across the table, said, ‘It would probably wind up on eBay,’” Armey continued. “Do I give a damn? No. But can you imagine refusing a simple request like that with an insult? It’s stupid. From the point of view of your own self-interest, it’s stupid. I was from Texas, and I was the majority leader. If my expectations of civility and collegiality were disappointed, what do you think it was like for the rest of the congressmen they dealt with? The Bush White House was tone-deaf to the normal courtesies of the office.”

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