Wednesday, August 31, 2005

And on it goes.....

Bush has left Texas a few days early to go and oversee the recovery of Hurricane Katrina, and I have to say that he did the right thing. It is a small thing to go back a few days early, but it does speak to his commitment and compassion.

And now with him gone, Cindy "the ringmaster" Sheehan is packing up her circus in Crawford too. She isn't going home though, she is vowing to continue the protest.

But something she said as she was leaving struck me as very much a glimpse into her motives.

A friend sent me an email about this, and with a quick search I found the article in question, from the Seattle Times:

(hat tip to Sheri)

CRAWFORD, Texas: The woman who led an anti-war protest since Aug. 6 near President Bush's ranch said yesterday that she is glad Bush never showed up to discuss her son's death in Iraq, saying the president's absence "galvanized the peace movement."

"If he'd met with me, then I would have gone home, and it would have ended there," Cindy Sheehan said.

Her comments came as war protesters packed up their campsite near the ranch and prepared to leave yesterday for a three-week bus tour that will stop in 25 states.

Buses on three routes will meet in Washington, D.C., for a Sept. 24 anti-war march.

First of all, the comment about it ending there is utterly ridiculous. It would not have, any more then it ended the first time she met Bush in 2004. She, or one of her high power handlers would have a press statement released, detailing his indifference and refusal to listen to her, and her reluctant decision to continue the fight before the mud dried on his shoes.

Second, Bush didn't galvinize a peace movement, any more then she did. She stepped onto the front of a well oiled, highly polished media machine, that had been created long before she arrived. She was nothing more then a new hood ornament.

Third, her comments about being glad he didn't come out were not a surprise, she as much admitted this same thing on Tony Snow's radio show weeks ago, a fact the media must have missed. And if nothing else it proves what her true intention was not to meet with him, but to make enough noise to get the press to notice her and be inconvenient enough to make him stay away.

For all her rhetoric and her signs crying *why*, it was all a joke, and she never cared about the answer. For her, the protest itself meant more then the reason behind it. But it still irritates me as it again, to me, shows how she cared less for her son's actual death then she did for the ammunition it gave her.

And finally, it appears she did not serve her purpose very well.

A recent poll found that 79% of people surveyed did not change their minds about the war, 10% are now pro war where they were against it and 9% now against when they were previously pro.

In other words, a net gain of 1% in favor of the war. It isn't really a significant or meaningful number, except when compared to the claims of overwhelming support she and her followers claim. If she wants to call a 1% net loss of support galvinizing, well ok.

Regardless, public opinion about her was 38% against, 35% for, and that mostly along party lines. Not a big surprise.

So on she goes, on her bus tour...or so it seems. It seems a report from within her camp has uncovered the fact that she will not be on the tour for the most part, she will be off doing speaking engagements and interviews. And that just proves that she is just a figure head, and the protest itself drives on without her at the wheel, which is not surprising, as it shows who is really driving.

By the way, read the report of what the inside of Cindy's protest really looked like here:

It was hardly the grassroots, simple tent meeting protest it appeared.