Anyone caught the George W. Bush book tour? It’s hard to miss; he’s been on CNN with Candy Crowley, on MSNBC with Joe “Ass Face” Scarborough, and everywhere else in between. And somehow the years have been good to W. He looks leaner, younger, and has even improved his diction. Sure, he still says “inny” instead of “any”, is still worried about “big Gubmint”, and still wants to privatize social security, but the Hat looks like he finally bought some Cattle. And, as you’ve probably guessed from the above video, I’m not talking about the former President, I’m talking about the new, shinier version of W: Governor Rick Perry of Texas. If you haven’t caught his act, think Josh Brolin in the Oliver Stone flop “W”.
Yes, this newly minted Bush seems a tad smarter than W, but don’t be fooled. Perry hates homos, wants to outlaw abortion, loves capital punishment, believes global warming science is bullshit, thinks the states should decide who gets to sit at the lunch counter, and his version of religious intolerance rivals that of the Taliban.
Until now, Perry is probably best remembered for issuing an executive order mandating that Texas girls receive HPV vaccinethat protects against some strains of the human papilloma virus, a cause of cervical cancer. At the time of the order, Gardasil, a newly approved drug manufactured by Merck was the only FDA approved HPV vaccine. The move made national headlines, and apparent financial connections between Merck and Perry were reported by news outlets, such as a $6,000 campaign contribution and Merck’s hiring of former Perry Chief of Staff Mike Toomey to handle its Texas lobbying work.
But that was then, and this is now, and now Perry is riding the crest of the Republican congressional take-over, and a new book, “Fed Up! Our Fight to Save America from Washington“. Perry was on “The Daily Show with Jon Stewart” Monday night fielding softball questions, spewing his opinions about deregulation and lower taxes, and yukking it up with the host. ( See yesterday’s blog about Stewarts sudden veer to the right.) That’s when it occurred to me that Perry is just a slicker version of Bush, and in a suddenly more demented America, that’s a threatening prospect. President Palin? President Gingrich? President Romney? Come on! This over-achieving cracker would wipe the floor with all of them.
Oh yeah, the actual George W. Bush is pimping his book on national TV, too, but that Bush appears, if possible, even dimmer and self-delusional than I remembered, sanitizing the crime scene of his presidency with revisionist lies and self-aggrandizing platitudes. For me at least, to go back down that road with Bush is infuriating, nauseating, and unwatchable. But to not keep a keen eye on Rick Perry in the next couple of years would be unthinkably naive.