I wonder if in his comments today about Harriet Miers the president hasn't finally brought his presidency to a sort of implosive harmonic convergence.
We are, needless to say, engaged in a vast, shambling and tragic occupation of Iraq, the nominal aim of which is to create a secular, rule-of-law-based democracy which would end the cycle of repression, fanaticism and violence which spilled onto America's shores four years ago.
At the same time, President Bush argues for Miers' confirmation neither on the basis of her 'judicial temperament' nor her judicial philosophy or ideology but because she is a staunch evangelical Christian.
The fact that many of the president's more theocratic supporters don't seem to believe him just adds a level of irony or entertainment for those of us still holding out for the Enlightenment tradition.
But doesn't the juxtaposition really show the game is up at some level?
A year ago, in light of one of White House's many wag-the-dog stunts, I noted "how truly important it is that we democratize the Middle East. Because once we have, some of them will be able to come back here and redemocratize us."
Perhaps the same goes for ending theocracy over there. Sooner the better, so they can bring modernity to us too.