A View From The Handbasket

Sunday, October 01, 2006
Line of succession
Posted by neros_fiddle at 12:37 AM
So far, the administration has been following the "Dictatorships for Dummies" playbook with great precision. Taking advantage of a traumatic attack, they have equated dissent with treason, created a climate of perpetual war against a vague enemy, elevated the executive branch over the legislative and judicial branches, and created a police state apparatus.

But there will still be at least the appearance of an election in 2008, unless the transformation into authoritarianism becomes completely overt before then. (Another terror attack would probably do the trick.) Conspicuous by its absence is a clear heir to Bush's throne. This is puzzling. Why go to the trouble of subverting the Constitution, only to voluntarily abandon the supreme executive branch you have so painstakingly created?

Other than periodic rumblings of a run by the stunningly inept Condoleeza Rice, no one within the administration seems poised to front the machine in two years. Cheney doesn't seem to have the appetite (or the ticker) for it. Rove isn't the in-front-of-the-throne type. I'm trying to imagine an insider, and coming up empty.

Congress isn't burping up any likely suspects, either. McCain loathes most of the White House, though he'll play ball as long as it's to his advantage. The once-mighty Santorum doesn't appear likely to even retain his seat this year. Frist is hip-deep in scandal and doesn't play well on the national stage.

Usually by this point the intended successor is clear. That clarity is, so far, lacking. Who do you see as the new face of the regime?

There's always Jeb Bush, I suppose. If you're going to give up the pretense of democracy, you might as well go with the obvious.

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