The abil­ity for a chief exec­u­tive to sim­ply author dicta which are to affect the lives of mil­lions is not democ­racy; it is a form of total­i­tar­ian con­trol. Recently a cer­tain pres­i­dent of a Western hemi­sphere nation was heav­ily crit­i­cized out­side his coun­try; his most recent actions have been described as

a rad­i­cal lurch toward author­i­tar­i­an­ism by a leader with unchecked power.

This isn’t Mahmoud Ahmadinejad; this time It’s Hugo Chavez, Venezuelan president.

Chavez is more or less get­ting him­self carte blanche from his con­gress, allow­ing him to essen­tially wave any law into exis­tence that he might want to have. This is, of course, dis­turb­ing — yet you won’t hear many right-​​wing apol­o­gists for Il Duce decry­ing his abil­ity to behave more or less as Chavez. (Or, for that mat­ter, the Iranina president.)

After all, Bush is the one who’s requir­ing hand-​​picked over­seers to approve of all Federal actions in the US gov­ern­ment, a de facto fifth col­umn that makes it impos­si­ble for any depart­ment to func­tion with­out his direct approval. This isn’t sim­ply micro­man­age­ment gone mad; it’s an almost breath­tak­ing level of con­trol being exerted over an allegedly free and self-​​determining government.

Where are the anti-​​dictator pro­test­ers when you need them most? Oh yeah — they’re squeal­ing about Chavez.

Meanwhile, in his con­tin­u­ing efforts to pre­serve his shitty legacy, the Textard is now sug­gest­ing in a recent speech that CEOs are overpaid.

Government should not decide com­pen­sa­tion for America’s cor­po­rate exec­u­tives,” the White House said in a report ahead of Bush’s speech. “But the salaries and bonuses of CEOs should be based on their suc­cess at improv­ing their com­pa­nies and build­ing value for their shareholders.”

Based on that met­ric, I’d say Bush owes each of us some­thing on the order of (cue Dr. Evil ges­ture) one bil­lion dollars.


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