CEO'S IN THE WHITE HOUSE
By Gil Christner
Mr. Bush's first 100 days have come and gone, and, after checking to see that the world is indeed, still here, I took it upon myself to try to figure out what it is about his approach to government that so infuriates everybody except rich people and mainstream journalists. After tossing aside a few radical theories (Hypnotism? Alien abduction? Too X-Files. Arsenic in the water? Too CSI), I finally came upon the reason: Bush, Cheney, and the whole oily gang, are nothing more than CEO's.
Now I don't say that in a negative way (well, I'm trying not too, I can't really help how it sounds once it leaves my lips). But operating from a position of complete authority over a whole hive of working stiffs certainly explains not only the style of Mr. Bush's administration, but why everybody hates it, except for rich guys and media.
Bush, et. al., are running the government like they ran their companies. 9 to 5, weekends off, smile and shake hands with opponents while letting minions stab the self-same opponents in the back, don't take any back talk (let alone another point of view), and if something messes up, blame it on a faceless underling. Hey, works for AT&T, it ought to work for the US of A!
Rich guys love it. That's how rich guys run their own companies. Wear a tie, don't get your own hands dirty, and don't tolerate any dissention. How else do you think the corporate powerhouse Time/AOL/Warner/Westinghouse/Dupont/General Motors/Ben&Jerry's was able to accidentally buy itself in the latest Wall Street merger, and still afford a 60 million dollar buy-out bonus for Michael Eisner, who isn't even involved with that particular company? That's rich guy style!
And the media are such blatant suck ups, they don't see any difference between telling Bush what a brilliant political strategist he is and complementing their boss on his new suit while he fires 50 of their colleagues (can anyone say "CNN"?). Besides, so far, everybody who covers Mr. Bush gets their very own nickname! So what's a little loss of reporting objectivity compared to getting your own handle of Big Guy, or Chief, or Four Eyes? Know what I mean, Sparky?
Believe me, if you could find any truthful journalists (and if that's not an oxymoron, then Haliburton never profited in the Gulf War), then they would tell you that they're not going to rock the boat, because they're just thrilled to be on television without actually having to have talent, or at least outwit a naked gay guy on an island in the South China Sea. Trust me on this one, as long as there's free drinks in the press room, every newsperson's nose is going to be browner than Bernie Shaw's.
So rich guys and the media love Bush's CEO style. Run the country like work, and everyone's happy. The only trouble is, the rest of us stiffs know the truth about work: it sucks! We already spend 40 hours a week nodding in agreement to boss who doesn't know anything but will talk our ear off about it anyway. No CEO in the world has any clue as to how to actually get things done, because they never had to actually change a gasket, or build a house, or balance a spread sheet, or get a roomful of kindergartners to take a nap (extra bonus points if you can guess which one is harder!) We can't actually prove it, but we've all got a hunch that CEO's just walk through their marble halls with their toadies licking their shoes while the rest of us bums actually make the place run.
So who wants the country to be just like work? Not us. Not the people who actually have to live here. Please, we have to put up with clueless bosses 8 hours a day at work, couldn't we at least have an actual politician run the government? Either that, or at least supply us with some company stationery we can steal. At least at our jobs, we get paid weekly (very weakly, ba-da-boom, goodnight folks, tip your waitresses!)