Wednesday, June 08, 2005

Tony Blair Finally Gets Disillusioned by George Bush

After being in bed with George Bush for so long and through so much, can Tony Blair really be so naive as to believe that Bush is a nice guy underneath it who wants to send more than pathetically-small token help to Africa and to address the destructive power of global warming?

Give us a break, Tony. We could have told you....Bush is a greedy, selfish, short-sighted man, and a leader of wealthy US corporate chieftains, not of the world or even all US citizens. He's a devoted and faithful follower of atheist Ayn Rand economics.

Tony...where have you been? Wake up and smell the Starbucks.

One thing I'll admit about George Bush....he's consistent and entirely predictable.
From the Center for American Progress.....

For Bush and Blair, The Honeymoon Is Over

Though it hardly seemed possible, the Bush administration appears ready to thrust the United States even further into global isolation. Even President Bush's most loyal international ally, Prime Minister Tony Blair, now appears disillusioned with America's faltering leadership.

Blair traveled to Washington yesterday to discuss next month's G8 conference (which his nation is hosting) and to press the Bush administration to support his agenda for the talks. No dice. The two men "appeared as divided as ever" on two of Blair's highest priorities – global warming and Africa – and Blair showed it.

At their joint press conference, "Blair was unsmiling and appeared subdued," the Boston Globe reports. It's gotten so bad that even the right-wing Heritage Foundation is wondering whether "disagreements over Blair's 'soft issues' agenda [will] damage the special relationship."

Below, a run-down of the growing fissures in the transatlantic alliance:

BUSH, ALONE AGAIN, PUSHES SCRAPS TO AFRICA: Nearly all the pieces are in place to implement Tony Blair's ambitious plan to double aid to Africa to $50 billion: studies by the World Bank, the IMF, and several expert commissions say it will work; the world's major donors have pledged their support; even the public is getting engaged thanks to a global series of free Live 8 concerts.

The one hold-out, the lone voice in the wilderness fighting against this new "Marshall Plan" for Africa: President George W. Bush. Bush rejected Blair's plan again yesterday, but tried to fool the press by using Blair's visit to "unveil" a plan to spend $674 million more in emergency aid in Africa – funds "that Congress had already approved for needy countries." The Washington Post took the bait: its headline today reads "Bush, Blair Agree on Aid For African Famine Relief."

GLOBAL WARMING SPLIT – WHETHER OR NOT TO IGNORE REALITY: Blair and Bush also disagree on how to tackle global warming. Blair's unique strategy is to actually address the problem: he "has vowed to make climate change a central issue" at the G8 meeting, and has been pressuring industrialized nations for months to boost energy efficiency and use more renewable energy.

Meanwhile, Bush still prefers to deal with global warming by attacking the facts: according to today's New York Times, his administration has been letting a former oil lobbyist personally edit government climate documents "in ways that play down links" between man-made emissions and climate change. (This is especially damaging since the best Bush could say about combating global warming yesterday was that his administration "lead[s] the world when it comes to dollars spent … on research about climate change.")

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