On the September 11 edition of NBC's syndicated The Chris Mathews Show, New York Times columnist David Brooks revealed that he has learned from private conversations with Bush officials who "represent" what "Bush believes" that from its earliest days, the Bush administration adopted a policy of shielding itself from political damage by never publically admitting a mistake -- even if it meant lying to the media and the American public. The fact that Bush doesn't admit mistakes has been reported by the media for years. For instance, in the September 11 edition of the New York Times, David Sanger reported, "Mr. Bush, his aides acknowledged, is loathe to fire members of his administration or to take public actions that are tantamount to an admission of a major mistake." Brooks himself has previously noted the Bush adminisration's unwillingness to admit mistakes. But what Brooks's September 11 account adds is that Bush is being intentionally dishonest -- in Brooks's words, "totally tactical and totally insincere" -- in resisting such public admissions and in blaming others when failures are too obvious to deny.This is, of course, when asked during the election what errors he had made during his first term President Bush would not admit any. It is the same reason why George Tenet and Paul Bremer were awarded Medals of Freedom despite their respective failures (WMD "slam dunk" and Iraq reconstruction.) It is the reason why Karl Rove is still on staff after it was revealed he was involved with the leaking of Valerie Plame's identity despite President Bush saying he would fire any staff member that was found to be involved with the leak. It is the reason why nothing this administration does is its fault, why it is always someone else's. This administration may not hold itself accountable for its actions, but the American public should not allow its government to continue to mislead it.
UPDATE - It appears that the President may have finally accepted some culpability for his administration.