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Wednesday, August 24, 2005
Presidentin' is hard
If we would just hurry up and win,
the President could sleep better at night.
I don't usually check in over at Instapundit since I've been diagnosed as heh/indeed-intolerant, but walking down the blind alleys that make up the internets I stumbled upon this post (you don't have to click on it. That's what I'm here for) in all of it's "heh" glory.
First off, we find out that Sister Mary Catherine Slapthemeek is having her moment of doubt ("Bushie. Why hast thou forsaken me?"):
Does anyone remember April and May of 2005? And the months preceeding them? The Orange Revolution? The Arab Springtime? The Cedar Revolution of Lebanon - all of them seeming to have a fire lit under them, a wonderful fire of liberty. Remember Revolution Babes?
All around the globe, there was a spirit of something that felt a lot like the Will to Power - something that was building in momentum…like we were on the brink of something truly remarkable and historic and new.
Then, suddenly - poof! - it all stopped? It all just seemed to go away. It was like a big giant foot just came down and stomped out all of those wonderful fires…and the White House seems to have just…blink! Forgotten about it.
I like W a lot, but what the hell?
W will have jumped the shark when we get a WTF out of her.
Meanwhile, Glenn gets email:
Meanwhile, reader Mike Walker emails:
I think whats wrong with the President is that he is tired, as we say in the south "slam wore out". Like a good blue tick after hunting, he needs to crawl up under the porch out of the heat and sleep for a good long spell. Look at pictures of him, you can see the graying, the wrinkling, and the fraying take place right before your eyes.
The man has had to preside over some momentous events during his 2 terms, from 9/11 to Enron et al to recession to Afghanistan to Iraq to a bitter, long and momentously important election to supreme court appointments. Every step of the way he has been criticized, demonized, lied about, misrepresented, belittled and opposed. No matter what he has done, he has been trashed out by someone somewhere, often including his own party members and some "supporters". He has been betrayed by members of his own party in the senate. HIs victories are ignored and his losses maginified a thousand times over.
The cumulative effect of all this, from what I can judge, has worn him out and drained him of his fire and energy. Lets face it, he is human, and the man has borne some unbelievable burdens over the last 5 years, where his choices were often between shades of the lesser of evils, and no choice was ever easy or apparent. HIs tank is low, and he needs some uplifting by those who believe in him. Nobody will please us 100% of the time.
But what do we do? We start criticizing him again for not being super-human, and we start asking "whats wrong with the president?", as if we ourselves never get tired, worn-out, run down, and just plain disocuraged in our jobs or lives. As a people, have we become this divorced from the realities of high-stakes leadership, and the toll it takes on those who take it on? Worse yet, have we no understanding and empathy for it?
Maybe the real question is, whats wrong with us?
Lordy. As they also say in the south, "That boy ain't right in the head. Tie him up in the yard."
"Like a good blue tick after hunting, he needs to crawl up under the porch out of the heat and sleep for a good long spell."
Isn't that what he is doing?
President Bush is getting the kind of break most Americans can only dream of -- nearly five weeks away from the office, loaded with vacation time.
The August getaway is Bush's 49th trip to his cherished ranch since taking office and the 319th day that Bush has spent, entirely or partially, in Crawford -- nearly 20 percent of his presidency to date, according to Mark Knoller, a CBS Radio reporter known for keeping better records of the president's travel than the White House itself. Weekends and holidays at Camp David or at his parents' compound in Kennebunkport, Maine, bump up the proportion of Bush's time away from Washington even further.
Bush's long vacations are more than a curiosity: They play into diametrically opposite arguments about this leadership style. To critics and late-night comics, they symbolize a lackadaisical approach to the world's most important day job, an impression bolstered by Bush's two-hour midday exercise sessions and his disinclination to work nights or weekends. The more vociferous among Bush's foes have noted that he spent a month at the ranch shortly before the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, when critics assert he should have been more attentive to warning signs.
To Bush and his advisers, that criticism fundamentally misunderstands his Texas sojourns. Those who think he does not remain in command, aides say, do not understand the modern presidency or Bush's own work habits. At the ranch, White House officials say, Bush continues to receive daily national security briefings, sign documents, hold teleconferences with aides and military commanders, and even meet with foreign leaders. And from the president's point of view, the long Texas stints are the best way to clear his mind and reconnect with everyday America.
As long as his security briefings don't look like this, and "everyday America" doesn't look like this.
And you want tired. I gotcher tired right here. Now he could have taken a well-deserved nap a couple of weeks ago but there was the people's work to be done and do it he did.
Of course we never asked him to start a war of choice and how Enron wore him out, other than the ducking and the running, is a mystery. Add to that the fact that the Supreme Court nomination didn't need to be so tough, and one has to wonder how many of his of his "momentous events" were self-inflicted. But let's take pity on the poor guy. In fact, if he wants to resign and stay in Crawford we won't think any worse of him.
Because, trust me, it wouldn't be humanly possible.