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Poppy's Royal Legacy
August 23, 2002
By John Garza

The recent defeat of Bob Barr gives only momentary satisfaction to us Democrats, since he will no doubt soon be resurrected and magnified, financially and in positions of power, by his wingnut friends. Either Fox Propaganda Network or the Bush administration will give him a job. This is a pattern the Bushes have practiced well: over-rule defeats, rejections, and losses with family influence and non-elected appointments.

Our current ruler, George W., has been noted to have a deep strain of anti-democracy in his personal make-up. Obviously, there are "that" election and his "Who cares what you think" management style. Hard upon taking power, it was noted that he was ruling as if he had won an actual mandate. But what needs to be identified and emphasized is the profound anti-democracy at the core. It's the royalty, stupid.

It only takes a light scratching of the surface of the Bush family history, going back only just to Poppy, to uncover traits of profound anti-democracy: Royal entitlement to positions of wealth, influence, and power; demanding to rule and to impose policy against the expressed will of the people.

Poppy's lessons in life have been well absorbed by W. and Jeb: 1) When you are rejected, use your family connections to prevail. 2) Money, influence, and power are what really count. And 3) Elections can be "arranged."

It turns out that Poppy experienced rejection from the beginning, despite his royal heritage. His preferred choice of employer, Proctor and Gamble, turned him down. The poor lad was reduced to using his family and its connections to make a living. Sound familiar?

Later on, he was defeated for Senator by Ralph W. Yarborough, fittingly enough, since Senator Yarborough came to be known as "the people's Senator," whose career comprised winning oil revenues for public education, sponsoring many of the milestones of the Great Society, the update of the G.I. Bill, being one of only three Southerners to support Voting Rights and the Civil Rights legislation, consumer and employee protection, and countless other populist measures. The antithesis of the royal Bush agenda.

While Poppy won two short terms as congressman, he lost another Senate election (to Lloyd Bentsen), and a presidential primary, but the pattern of loss was over-ruled by the slew of appointments he was not ashamed to accept: Liaison to China, ambassador to the U.N., chairman of the RNC, Director of the CIA, and Vice President.

There was always that peskiness of elections to have to pretend to kiss up to. First there was that October deal with Iran - not allowing a hostage deal that President Carter could take credit for before Election Day. And later, he "won" the presidency on Reagan's shirttails, before resuming his losing on his own.

And W. picked up where Poppy left off: Fast forward past all the Fortunate Son details we know and the media ignores (the failed businesses, the family influence, the fleecing of the taxpayers). Skip to the part where W. re-installed most of Poppy's rejected administration officials. Then to the part where he extended the family's outreach to like-minded others, such as Ashcroft being salvaged through non-elected appointment. And Asa Hutchinson being salvaged through non-elected appointment.

In the fist of Poppy's family, the fašade of "public service" crumbles readily, to reveal noblesse oblige and rapacious robber baron-hood. So don't cry for Bob Barr. The Bush family torch has passed to the extended family of partisans. The Bushes have granted their courtiers the royal family prerogatives of over-ruling the unwashed masses, demanding to take positions of wealth, power, and influence, and wielding power without restraint.


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