George Bush, Decisionmaker

GEORGE BUSH, DECISIONMAKER….At today’s White House press briefing, reporters were asking whether the Pentagon plans to release all the Abu Ghraib pictures that it has in its possession. Via Josh Marshall, here are the answers:

MR. McCLELLAN: Well, we are in close contact with the Pentagon on those issues….

MR. McCLELLAN: Well, the Pentagon is looking at all those issues….

MR. McCLELLAN: Well, again, I think that those are issues the Pentagon is working to address…

MR. McCLELLAN: ….But, again, I think the Pentagon is the one who is working to address these matters. We’re going to continue to stay in close contact with them on these issues….

MR. McCLELLAN: These are issues the Pentagon is working to address, and they have to take into account other considerations….

Why is George Bush shoving this completely off onto the Pentagon? McClellan acts, as usual, as if Bush is just a befuddled bystander whenever something goes wrong, rather than a commander-in-chief who could actually make a decision about something like this. He’s had all weekend to think about it, after all.

A couple of years ago, when Army Secretary Thomas White was engulfed in scandal, Bush told him, “As long as they’re hitting you on Enron, they’re not hitting me. That’s your job. You’re the lightning rod for this administration.” This is typical of Bush’s CEO-style MO: take credit for everything that goes right, but head for the hills and let your subordinates take the rap whenever something goes wrong.

We’ve all had bosses like that before, right?