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Watching the president's press conference, we have finally gotten to see what happens when George W. Bush is forced to face reality. It wasn't pretty. He was prickly from the word go, defensive, and also revealing. He was trying to say (I think) that he had already decided to fire Rumsfeld last week, even as he was insisting that Rummy would stay for two more years. So Bush's own spin is that he was lying through his teeth last week. Good to have that confirmed in his own words. The removal of the increasingly deranged Rumsfeld is, of course, great news. This blog has been calling for such a move for close to two years. Frankly, I doubt it would have happened without what Bush called the "thumping" of last night. But it's a start. If Bush were truly interested in reaching out, he would have picked a Democrat to replace him. I'm not sure what to make of Gates. But Rummy's removal shows we do not have a complete nutcase in the White House. Given recent comments, that's a relief.

(Photo: Brooks Kraft/Corbis for Time.)

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