I never thought it would come to this, but I am reduced to complimenting George W. Bush! After making snide remarks about him, his election-stealing, his apparent lack of intelligence, his over-reliance on clichés, his penchant for acting like a bully, and various other unsavory aspects of his personality, I was struck by two comments, one by Bush directly, the other in an administration comment.

I must admit, this galls me. As I’ve written before, George W. Bush is not the President, he’s only the Resident. He’s Dubya, Shrub, Junior, Boy George, the Thief-in-Chief, Bush league, born with a silver foot in his mouth, with an addictive personality, and with a very sneaky brother named Jeb. Usually, I think he’s not even the Resident, he’s just playing him on TV, and not very well at that.

But, I must admit, I now think he’s a master of understatement.

At a rally in New Jersey, pimping for the local Republican multi-millionaire running for the Senate, Bush discussed the economy, saying “The economy has all the right ingredients, but I’m not satisfied yet.” Not satisfied! HE’S not satisfied. What an amazing pitch! And WE’RE supposed to be satisfied that’s HE’S not satisfied!

He’s not the one trying to live on a minimum-wage job in a city where the rents have skyrocketed over the last few years. He’s not the one whose retirement plans have vanished, along with over 25 percent of the “value” in the stock market, in the less than two years the Resident Bush has been supposedly running things.

Amazing understatement. Usually W. pitches things way over the top, exaggerating, implicating, insinuating, regurgitating, agitating, threatening, blustering, and in general being totally stupefying.

Then there was the statement issued by the White House about Israeli actions threatening to blow up the headquarters of the Palestinian Authority, with Arafat inside. The U.S. statement said that the Israeli actions, “were not helpful to the cause of peace.”

Well, duh! No kidding! You think?

Threatening the equivalent to the head of state of another government not helping peace? How about threatening to invade? How about threatening unilateral bombardment?

Obviously, such things are not “helpful to the cause of peace.” None of the actions of the Bush administration have been.

Going to the United Nations only in the most grudging way, and at the same time as Bush asks for a UN resolution, he makes clear that the U.S. intends to take unilateral action whether or not the UN passes a resolution! That doesn’t sound “helpful to the cause of peace.”

So congratulations, Sonny-boy, you’ve finally found occasions to understate matters instead of fulminating in all circumstances. Now how about taking “yes” for an answer? How about actually doing something that will be helpful to the cause of peace?

Marc Brodine is the chairman of the Washington State Communist Party. The author can be reached at marcbrodine@attbi.com