(Y)ou probably read about Matthew Dowd's duplicitous and self-serving mea culpa in yesterday's NY Times. Dowd is a repulsive character but his turnaround on Bush must be even all the more painful because he really and truly has been one of them, heart and soul. Today's rat jumping off the sinking ship is Vic Gold, a personal pal of Lynne Cheney's who spills the beans to the Washington Post. Actually all the beans are coming in his soon-to-be-published (this month) book, Invasion of the Party Snatchers: How the Holy-Rollers and the Neo-Cons Destroyed the GOP.
Until then we'll just have to be satisfied with what Gold, a close associate of Bush's father and a true believer from the Barry Goldwater days of conservatism, had to say to the Post:
"For all the Rove-built facade of his being a 'strong' chief executive, George W. Bush has been, by comparison to even hapless Jimmy Carter, the weakest, most out of touch president in modern times," Gold writes. "Think Dan Quayle in cowboy boots."
Gold is even more withering in his observations of Cheney. "A vice president in control is bad enough. Worse yet is a vice president out of control."
For Gold, Cheney brings to mind the adage of Swiss writer Madame de Stael, who wrote, "Men do not change, they unmask themselves." Cheney has a deep streak of paranoia and megalomania, Gold suggests -- but he says he did not see it at first.
He was hiding who he really was," Gold says. "He was waiting for an opportunity."
In many ways, Gold's tale of disillusionment is a familiar one. There are plenty of veterans of Reagan and Bush 41 around town who believe Bush and Cheney trashed the institutions and party they helped build from the wreckage of the Goldwater campaign.
According to USNews, we're just one month from the next spiller of the beans: George Tenet.