The Corpus Callosum

New Concepts in Spin

So far, I have resisted commenting on the report of the Iraq Study
Group.  But this is too good to pass up.  From DeLong,
who got it from Alter
, comes a precious quote from a Presidential
press conference

Q Mr. President, the Iraq Study Group said that
leaders must be candid and forthright with people. So let me test that.
Are you capable of admitting your failures in the past, and perhaps
much more importantly, are you capable of changing course, perhaps in
the next few weeks?

PRESIDENT BUSH: I think you’re probably going to have to pay attention
to my speech coming up here when I get all the recommendations in, and
you can answer that question, yourself. I do know that we have not
succeeded as fast as we wanted to succeed. I do understand that
progress is not as rapid as I had hoped…

You wanted frankness — I thought we would succeed quicker than we did,
and I am disappointed by the pace of success…

“We have not succeeded as fast as we wanted to succeed.”

So what are the possibilities?

  • I understand that our influence in Congress was not
    increased as much
    as we were counting on, in the midterm
  • Victims of Katrina are still struggling.  I see
    that.  And I know that we are doing a heck of a job much
    more slowly
    than we planned.
  • I know I said “bring it on.”  I just hoped they
    would bring on less than they did, and not
    as fast
    as they did.
  • When I said “Mission Accomplished,” I meant that it would
    be accomplished fairly soon.
     And it is not happening as soon I thought
    it would.
  • I’m a uniter, not a divider, but the rate at which the
    country is uniting is not yet above zero.
  • Look, the economy is improving.  The fact the
    foreclosures, homelessness, and childhood poverty are up, simply means
    that progress is being made, but in the wrong direction.

I’m sure some of you can come up with better ones.


  1. #1 Elf Eye
    December 10, 2006

    “pace of success”

    Success? Where? Did I miss something?

  2. #2 Greg P
    December 10, 2006

    What we see is that it is possible to turn success into an active verb, as in a process of succeeding.
    So, the idea is to begin something, announce success, then keep talking about the progress of your success.
    Thus, the rate of our success with conquering HIV, our trade imbalance, Iraq, Afghanistan, and many other things is proceeding more slowly than we had hoped.

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