George Bush Sr. told the Today Show this morning that he’s optimistic about his son’s chances for reelection, even though he himself suffered a defeat following a war with Iraq:
“You know what? American elections are decided on the economy.”
You can see the logical progression from this argument. In 1992, the economy sucked, and that’s why Clinton won. Right? But just when you think a Bush is about to admit a failing, he follows that up with this:
“My problem was the economy was good but I couldn’t get people to understand that.”
See? It’s not his fault he lost. We were just dumb.
This, to me, is a perfect example of the Bush mentality. It’s a unique form of spin control that says: “Forget the facts; if you don’t agree with me, you’re an idiot.”
It’s the same attitude we saw when Bush Jr. was still blabbing about WMDs long after we knew there weren’t any, when he was talking about an Iraq-al Qaeda link while everyone with any knowledge of the Middle East was insisting that Saddam and bin Laden had a total Lindsay Lohan-Hillary Duff thing going on. We see it when he talks about the economy and outsourcing, and when he defends Rumsfeld’s job performance as the hellmouth opens in Iraq. It’s even rubbed off on his staff, like when Condi told the 9/11 commission that pre-9/11 there was no intelligence suggesting al Qaeda might strike in the US and then admitted five seconds later that the title of a pre-9/11 presidential briefing had been “Bin Laden Determined To Attack Inside the United States”.
You can only imagine how this kind of thinking might have manifested itself in the next generation of Bushes, Jenna and Barbara: “But I am 21, Officer, you just don’t understand my I.D.!”
As frustrating as it is to hear the President of the United States talk like this, I’m actually hoping that Bush doesn’t catch on to how self-destructive it is before November. People got tired of it in his father, and I have to believe they’ll get tired of it with him, too.
Let’s just hope we don’t have a repeat of the 2000 race, when George W. lost the election, but no one could get him to understand that.