Frank Rich: The Culture Warriors Get Laid Off

04/15/2009 05:12 am ET | Updated May 25, 2011
  • Frank Rich New York Times

SOMEDAY we'll learn the whole story of why George W. Bush brushed off that intelligence briefing of Aug. 6, 2001, "Bin Laden Determined to Strike in U.S." But surely a big distraction was the major speech he was readying for delivery on Aug. 9, his first prime-time address to the nation. The subject -- which Bush hyped as "one of the most profound of our time" -- was stem cells. For a presidency in thrall to a thriving religious right (and a presidency incapable of multi-tasking), nothing, not even terrorism, could be more urgent.

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