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Karl Rove#8217;s playbook stolen

There’s a column I’ve been kicking around in my head for some time about the similarities between the present Suffolk administration and the administration of President of George Bush.

When one looks closely at the management style of the city he or she can come to only one conclusion: They have stolen Karl Rove’s playbook, or downloaded it from machiavelli.com.

The similarities are many:

1. There is no correct opinion but your own. Not only do you not listen to anyone else, but you belittle their opinion. Anyone who thinks differently is some kind of crackpot (Any liberal pundit or politician).

2. If the critic wears a suit instead of a flannel shirt or t-shirt and appears to otherwise be a reasonable, intelligent person with an honest difference of opinion who just wants to exercise his free speech rights, use every instrument of government at your disposal to marginalize and destroy him, try to get him fired from his job, threaten him with court proceedings or destroy his business (i.e. Paul O’Neil, Richard Clark, Gen. Shinseki, John Kerry, Joe Wilson).

3. Burn every bridge you cross.

4. Never admit a mistake. If you oversee the construction of a failed seawall costing the citizens millions or violate a court order and destroy someone’s property (And by the way, the person in city government responsible for that is a criminal and should be fired if not jailed. He or she is no better than someone who walks in a bank and robs it), or start a war that you can’t win or enact fiscal policies that bankrupt the nation, just go full speed ahead. Nobody is held accountable for anything.

5. You are above the law (Bypassing FISA court to illegally spy on Americans, aforementioned violation of court order, etc.)

6. Surround yourself with sycophants and live in a bubble. You are smart and always right, everyone else is wrong.

7. Create your own reality. If you start a war that you said will last a month, will not cost the taxpayers anything and that our soldiers will be greeted as liberators, and instead it has gone on for more than three years, could wind up costing more than a trillion dollars and more than 20,000 Americans have been killed or wounded by a raging insurgency, continue to claim that everything is going well, and have your few remaining supporters go on TV to defend it. If 60 percent of the people think your proposed budget stinks, get on the telephone and call every one of your few remaining supporters (those who spoke out in support of the budget at Tuesday’s hearing would “drink the Kool-Aid” if it was offered to them) to praise you and your budget at a public hearing.

8. You have an approval rating in the 30-percent range.

I think it’s interesting, anyway, but kind of scary because whenever the Bush administration gets in trouble, it starts talking about starting a war. With the low approval rating our city government now has, don’t be surprised if we wake up some morning soon and find we’ve invaded Windsor.

Here’s an addendum…

Al Neuharth Bashes Bush, Says His Supporters are ‘In Denial’

By E&P Staff

Published: May 04, 2006 11:30 PM ET

NEW YORK USA Today founder Al Neuharth, once known for his generally Republican views, appears to have seen enough of President Bush. In his column today for USA Today, he once again hits the Iraq war (he is one of the few mainstream journalists to favor a quick withdrawal), then notes the presient’s approval rating having plunged from 71% to 34% in the Gallup poll since 2003.

&uot;How low can Bush’s approval rating go? My hunch is it’s at or near the bottom,&uot; he suggests. &uot;That 34% represents mostly unshakeable far-right wingers. Like Bush, Vice President Cheney and company, they are in denial. As were the 24% in the polls who still approved of President Richard Nixon before he resigned in disgrace.

&uot;What happened to the 37% who have switched from pro-Bush to anti-Bush? They finally realized they were suckered by Bush and his buddies back then about Saddam Hussein’s alleged weapons of mass destruction, his tie to terrorists and his threat to the USA.&uot;

Neuharth, a decorated war veteran, concludes: &uot;President Abraham Lincoln was right when he said: ‘You may fool all of the people some of the time; you can even fool some of the people all of the time, but you can’t fool all of the people all of the time.’&uot;

Neuharth could just as easily be discussing Suffolk politics.