Whatever the political right has been suggesting over the last years, George W. Bush, in his attempt to defy virtually any international, moral, humanistic, or logical law, has acted much more according to the classical scheme of a pervert than Bill Clinton. What I would like to propose today is thus an argument for the value of the perverse impetus behind Bush’s actions. While ruining this country and the world as a politician, George W. Bush the pervert can be incredibly interesting, nay, even valuable to us.
Let me make the case: Bush has often been described as psychologically motivated by rebelling against his father. However, this analysis is rather one-dimensional, as it does not account for his seemingly universal defiance of any form of accepted rule outside his own definition. He solicits scientific examinations of problems mainly to assert his own strength in being able to reject these very suggestions for solving a political problem. One should, however, not see this as an act of resistance to paternal law per se, but as in fact paternal law’s institution–it is not a sign of the desire to end law, to rule unequivocally, but rather the desire for the reparation of a lack.
Zizek describes the perverse inclination as follows:
“rather than seeing fantasizing as an indulgence in the hallucinatory realization of desires prohibited by the Law, the phantasmic narrative does not stage the suspension-transgression of Law, but the very act of its installation, of the intervention of the cut of symbolic castration. (…) in contrast to the “normal” subject for whom the Law functions as the agency of prohibition which regulates his desire, for the pervert, the object of his desire is Law itself–the Law is the ideal he is longing for, he wants to be fully acknowledged by the Law, integrated into its functioning, (…)”
Hence it becomes interesting to examine not the relationship between Bush and Bush senior, but rather between Bush’s perversion and the social stability of the rule of Law, of, ipso facto, the transgression of Law by Bush’s perversion as its own constitutive fact. I would therefore propose that Bush can be credited with almost single-handedly repoliticizing a large section of the US social landscape, as via the mechanisms of his own perverse refutation of Law that has instantiated it ever the more strongly in the US and international context, creating dialectically not only his own logical refutation, but his dialectical supersession and the ultimate salvation of Spirit.
Much more dangerous than Bush for the dialectical politicization of the populace was then Bill Clinton. Hegel would have considered Bush the pervert a great historical man.