Monday, January 03, 2005

DDN: "Bush, like Democrats, on diversity push"

In an editorial that was intended to look fair and balanced, the editorial board can't resist taking a slam or two at the President.

They start by firing off a roster of Bush appointees that are minorities:
Look at all the big appointees, nominees and advisers who fit into one "minority" or another: Colin Powell, Condeleezza Rice, Karen Hughes, Alberto Gonzales, Ann Veneman, Carlos M. Gutierrez, Norman Y. Mineta, Elaine L. Chao, Gale Norton, Rod Paige. There are others. According to a tally by Washington Post writer Terry M. Neal, the Bush record is even better than Bill Clinton's if one factors in the "prestige" of the various positions.
They then spend a good bit of time explaining a number of complaints about the President and his staff:
To some people, this shows only that Republicans are trying to pretend that their party is more diverse than it really is, trying — for political reasons — to live down the charge that the party, at its heart, is for the privileged and the white. (Actually, a remarkable number of the president's appointees also come from decidedly unprivileged backgrounds. He likes up-by-the-bootstraps people.)

Bush critics also insist that the real power has always been with the white guys: Dick Cheney, Donald Rumsfeld, Karl Rove, various generals, John Ashcroft.

And they will say, sure, there are people to represent plenty of demographic categories, but these people are deeply unrepresentative of those categories, meaning far more conservative.
But they just can't resist taking a dig...
There is truth to all the complaints.
What would the Dayton Daily Democrat know about truth?

The truth is that the Bush administration is diverse...but it isn't because of affirmative action. These folks have all been qualified to be where they are in the don't get that with affirmative action.

At least they recover well...sorta...
And yet the larger fact is that this conservative president has accepted one of the central thrusts of modern liberalism: its emphasis upon American diversity, its insistence that the country's leadership must do more to embrace that diversity and foster it. He has, at least, accepted that Democrats have a good issue.
It is a good issue. It is an important issue. One party (the Republicans and the Bush administration) is doing something about it...the other (Democrats) is pandering.

But here is the one nugget of truth in the editorial:
At any rate, if the symbolic gestures are what voters want — simply the presence of their group in the high councils of government — fine. If the voters aren't focused on the policies those appointees actually follow, that's the Democrats' problem. It means their stands on issues aren't compelling enough.
The Democrats' position is pandering...that doesn't resonate well with the American people. Demnocrats seem content to keep people poor and stupid...maintaining the status quo, as it were...with their programs and handouts. It has to be about the American Dream...the Democrats still don't understand this very simple concept.


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