It may be too early to declare Bush's plan dead, but it's not too early to stop declaring it's too early to declare Bush's plan dead. It's almost dead. If it were in a hospital the ACLU would be suing to have its feeding tube removed.
Since it is springtime, here is a topical answer - his game is baseball, and George Bush is not afraid to swing hard in case he hits it.
So, "W" is playing for the long ball. He is not going to look back, twenty years from now, and have to endure criticism about "the vision thing". He is not going to have to wonder whether he should have pushed for something more ambitious than school uniforms.
Now, let's agree - if (I am still saying "if") this Social Security effort ultimately results only in lost time and an emboldened opposition, Bush may have to wonder whether he achieved too little by attempting too much. But he will have time to think about that as he walks back to the dugout shaking his head.
And as Glenn points out, in the long run, being the leader of the Party of Ideas against the Party of the Status Quo may be good positioning. Odd positioning for the erstwhile "conservatives", maybe, but good.
MORE: However this Social Security debate turns out, we will never, ever make the "post hoc, ergo propter hoc" mistake of thinking that the "rhetorical enchantment" of Josh Marshall's blog had anything at all to do with this. It will literally never cross my mind, and I know Ed Kilgore will agree.
That said, other blogs may occur to me.