Here Comes the President's Poodle

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To: Website Fans, Browsers, Poodles
From: Jude Wanniski
Re: Tony Blair is a Joke

more or less knew that British P.M. Tony Blair was visiting Washington
this week, but I was still astonished when I saw the report in the
European edition of The Wall Street Journal about what the
President’s British poodle hopes to accomplish. Here is the
headline I saw and some excerpts:

Blair Will
Use U.S. Trip
To Push Two Initiatives
British Leader to Press Bush
On African-Poverty Relief,
Carbon-Dioxide Emissions

By Marc Champion
[June 3, 2005]

Britain’s Prime Minister Tony Blair on Monday heads for Washington
in an effort to persuade U.S. President George W. Bush to back
his effort to relieve poverty in Africa and cut global warming
at the G-8 summit in Scotland next month…

In the next
few months, Mr. Blair will hold the presidencies of both the Group
of Eight – the seven leading nations plus Russia – and
of the European Union, which has plunged into turmoil in the past
week with rejections by voters in France and the Netherlands of
a new constitution for the 25-nation bloc. Mr. Blair also has
to make a decision whether to yank a planned referendum on the
constitution that had been planned in Britain for next spring.

For Mr. Blair
personally, there is also a lot at stake from this heightened
profile. He won’t stand for re-election, so he is crafting his
legacy – and trying to counter domestic criticism that his
support for Mr. Bush on Iraq has yielded little for Britain in
return. The White House so far has proved resistant to British
requests for support on initiatives to reduce global warming and
to offer the poorest nations some relief from their debt to the

British officials
insist Mr. Blair never looks for "payback" over Iraq
from the U.S. president and won’t again next week. But their relationship
provides sufficient ammunition to his critics – who deride
Mr. Blair as Mr. Bush’s "poodle" – that Mr. Blair
once again won’t pick up the Congressional Medal of Honor he was
awarded two years ago but has yet to collect despite several visits
since then.

Smokes!! Blair expects he can persuade the President to (1) end
his five year opposition of the dopey Kyoto Treaty, which would
shut down the U.S. economy to thwart a global warming that is not
caused by mankind, and (2) agree to sell off some of the gold stocks
held by the International Monetary Fund in order to give the cash
to the poor countries of Africa!! This is another dopey idea, inasmuch
as the IMF gold is a monetary commodity and if the sales were to
be accomplished, there is no telling what would happen to interest
rates and exchange rates around the world. If the President were
to do anything to help Africa, he should advise those poor countries
to cut tax rates that are killing their economies and producing
no revenue.

best we can expect from the Poodle’s visit, though, would be
a promise from the President to Tony Blair – and a pat on his
head – to carefully consider his (ha ha) requests.

For those of you who do not realize how far Blair has gone in licking
his master’s boots, please read Mark Danner’s masterful account
in the June 9 NYReview of Books "The
Secret Way to War: The Downing Street Memo
" That’s the
memo recounting how President Bush decided to go to war with Iraq
at least eight months before he pulled the trigger… and met with
the Poodle in Washington to persuade him to go along with the ruse
that he was trying to avoid war via diplomacy.

7, 2005

Wanniski [send him mail]
runs the financial/political advisory service

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