Forced by this new reality and tremendous pressure from the media, President Bush replaced Donald Rumsfeld as SecDef with Robert Gates, a man who was confirmed in his position with bipartisan support and who was so acceptable to the Democrats that Obama kept him as Secretary of Defense after the former winning the 2008 Presidential elections.
It was a clear example of President Bush reaching across the aisles after a serious defeat in the midterm elections.
As for Rumsfeld, he took the dismissal like a man, 'accepting a bullet in the chest' for the good of his country.
Rumsfeld's firing can be argued to be grossly unfair, since he had been a very effective SecDef. That he was ever mired in the so-called Abu Ghraib scandal was a disgrace, since in the bigger frame of things Abu Ghraib was a joke - a bad joke, true, but a joke nevertheless - that did not warrant affecting the career of a top minister. It was akin to firing John Ashcroft for prison guards molesting inmates in some prison in Dipshitville, and it should have been treated at the local, operational level - which means not higher than Brigadier General Karpinski.
But in this story, all of that is not the point.
The point is that President Bush made a serious effort 'to listen to the other side', however wrong that side was. The GOP was defeated, the President listened. And made concessions.
2.) Fast forward now to the 2014 midterms, in which the roles were inverted. On November 2, the Democrats received such a clobbering that the Republicans gained control in the Senate, as well as the largest majority in the House since 1946. Overall, they achieved the largest majority in Congress since Calvin Coolidge. FYI, that was in 1928.
Not only that, but simultaneously the GOP won two governors' seats as well as countless races on the state and local level.
These sweeping gains together actually accounted for the largest Republican majority in the entire United States in almost a century. As victories go, they were far more impressive than the Democrats' win in the 2006 midterms.
And that is what makes Obama's reaction so very interesting vis-à-vis Bush's one. As we have seen, Bush changed his policies - the Rumsfeld dismissal was possibly but the most obvious example.
Obama, by contrast, actually acts as if the midterms have not taken place. A President worthy of the title, would have shown the voters a De Gaullesque "Je vous ai compris" gesture.
Instead, by pressing on lightning quick with immigration reform and using executive action to push amnesty for roughly 5 million illegals through, he basically just flipped the general American public the finger - and a big one at that.
Don't look to European media to see Obama's latest abuse of power through this prism. Below, for instance, you see how our 'prime' newspaper De Standaard covered the issue:
The choice of the caption is so obviously a pro-Obama spin that calling this kind of coverage yellow journalism is an understatement. It's rather piss-yellow journalism, for it reads :'ONCE WE WERE FOREIGNERS TOO'. The author of the piece goes on to say that Obama effectively halts the 'deportation' of 4 (sic) million illegal immigrants, and promises 'a more just immigration policy.'
That the political mores in the United States require presidents worthy of that title to use executive action only with wisdom and above all, restraint, is apparently unknown to the De Standaard editor. That this one-man initiative is not only a slap in the face of every American who just showed contempt for Obama's policies, but just as well for every serious-minded immigrant who took, or takes, the trouble of going for the long, difficult, and legal way to become an American citizen, also does not cross the man/woman's mind.
There is yet another angle to look at Obama's appalling lack of respect with regards to the voice of the American voter.
On 17 June 1953, the East Germans rose up in defiance against Walter Ulbricht's de facto dictatorship in the laughably named German Democratic Republic. It was brutally put down by the Soviet military, with the full consent of the East German leaders. Reliable West German estimates put the death toll on June 17 at 513 people. 1,838 were wounded, and around 5,100 arrested. Of the latter, around 1,200 were later sentenced for 5 years on average to penal camps.
17 June was another clear repudiation of the government's policies, but unfortunately, in this case the government had the backing of Soviet T-34s.
This is the Marxist playwright Bertolt Brecht:
Following the uprising, he wrote the following poem:
"After the uprising of the 17th of June
The Secretary of the Writers Union
Had leaflets distributed in the Stalinallee
Stating that the people
Had forfeited the confidence of the government
And could win it back only
By redoubled efforts.
Would it not be easier
In that case for the government
To dissolve the people
And elect another?"
I know, I know, there are those who say it's satirical. But with Marxists you can never be sure. In any case, it looks like, unable to digest the defeat of his cronies in the House and Senate, Obama is heeding the advice of a fellow Marxist.
Because, regularizing 5 million illegals means adding, oh, 10 million, no, make that 15 million voters to the American electorate ten years down the line. Because 5 million who are suddenly allowed to stay will mean that their relatives will have it that much easier to come over, and before you know it, they too can determine who sits in Congress and the rest. And of one thing you can be sure: they are NOT going to vote for the GOP.
The American people may just have elected another Congress.
But Obama, has in effect indeed...
... just elected another people.
Are you Americanos finally beginning to understand what this creature meant when he promised to 'fundamentally change the United States'?