Bill Moyers on Karl Rove

From Bill Moyers’ Journal –

My Fellow Texan

by Bill Moyers

Like the proverbial hedgehog, Karl Rove knew one big thing: how to win elections as if they were divine interventions. You may think God summoned Billy Graham to Florida on the eve of the 2000 election to endorse George W. Bush just in the nick of time, but if it did happen that way, the Good Lord was speaking in a Texas accent.

Karl Rove figured out a long time ago that the way to take an intellectually incurious, draft-averse, naughty playboy in a flight jacket with chewing tobacco in his back pocket and make him governor of Texas, was to sell him as God’ anointed in a state where preachers and televangelists outnumber even oil derricks and jack rabbits. Using church pews as precincts, Rove turned religion into a weapon of political combat — a battering ram, aimed at the devil’s minions. Especially at gay people. It’s so easy, as Karl knew, to scapegoat people you outnumber. And if God is love, as rumor has it, Rove knew in politics to bet on fear and loathing. Never mind that in stroking the basest bigotry of true believers you coarsen both politics and religion.At the same time he was recruiting an army of the Lord for the born-again Bush, Rove was also shaking down corporations for campaign cash. Crony capitalism became a biblical injunction. Greed and God won four elections in a row — twice in the Lone Star state and twice again in the nation at large. But the result has been to leave Texas under the thumb of big money with huge holes ripped in its social contract, and the U.S. government in shambles — paralyzed, polarized, and mired in war, debt and corruption. Rove himself is deeply enmeshed in some of the scandals now being investigated, including those missing emails that could tell us who turned the Attorney General of the United States into a partisan sock puppet.

Rove is riding out of Dodge City as the posse rides in.

At his press conference this week he asked God to bless the President and the country, even as reports were circulating that he himself had confessed to friends his own agnosticism. He wished he could believe, but he cannot. That kind of intellectual honesty is to be admired, but you have to wonder how all those folks on the Christian right must feel discovering they were used for partisan reasons by a secular skeptic, a manipulator.

On his last play of the game all Karl Rove had to offer them was a Hail Mary pass, while telling himself there’s no one there to catch it.

  1. gasdocpol

    The scam is over but what a run it had !

  2. dylanfreak

    Thank you for this post and for your site in general. I will be adding you to my blogroll. I was wondering if you could check out my own thoughts on Rove’s awkward departure “The Fall of the Rovan Empire” at my blog, located at:


  3. I don’t know – I hate to be paranoid, but there’s something with Rove’s resignation that stinks to high heaven!

    Something’s up – and it can’t be very good. A guy with this kind of power doesn’t just up and resign to “spend time with the family.” Power like that is a drug – and I don’t see him just giving it up.

    And I don’t think for a minute that it’s so he can’t be called to testify – watching his history, he’s the kind of guy who’d be itchin’ to take Congress on.

    No…like I said – something’s up and if involves KR and GW and DC – it can’t be good.

  4. Karl Rove, unemployed, rubs his cheek against the bathtub spigot because he misses that heavy, stick-to-your-ribs Ukrainian home cooking. Karl Rove capitulated completely, offering total loyalty as he accepted the position of White House Reich Ministry for Popular Enlightenment and Propaganda: “I love him,” Karl Rove wrote, rubbing his chubby little hands together, “because he has thought through everything. Such a sparkling mind can be my leader. I bow to the greater one, the political genius, the President of the War on Terror.” Karl Rove rubbing his porcine body along an arm or leg of its human is not only a way in which to attract attention (and perhaps a morsel of food); it is also a way of “marking” the United States as his own.

  5. sarah

    What smells?

    During the briefings at Treasury and Commerce, then-Bush administration political director Ken Mehlman and other White House aides detailed competitive congressional districts, battleground election states and key media markets and outlined GOP strategy for getting out the vote. Commerce and Treasury political appointees later made numerous public appearances and grant announcements that often correlated with GOP interests, according to a review of the events by McClatchy Newspapers. The pattern raises the possibility that the events were arranged with the White House’s political guidance in mind.

    The briefings are part of the legacy of White House political adviser Karl Rove, who announced this week that he’s stepping down at the end of the month to spend more time with his family. Despite Rove’s departure, investigations into the briefings are expected to continue.

  6. illa morales

    102,023 Votes for the impeachment of Cheney, so far. MOST ACTIVE VOTING QUESTIONS: Should Vice President Cheney Be Impeached? Should H.R. 676 Be Passed (National Health Care)? Should the oil companies be investigated for anti-trust price gouging? Should there be Mandatory Paper Ballots for All Elections?

  7. illa morales

    How Rove Directed Federal Assets for GOP Gains
    Bush Adviser’s Effort to Promote the President and His Allies Was Unprecedented in Its Reach

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