Bush the Elder Swats Bush the Younger Good


bush 41.jpg
Kremlinology may be anachronistic, but observing and interpreting Bush-world has taken its place as one of my extra-curricular activities.
I can hardly believe that George Bush 41 throttled his son so harshly in a speech he gave last night at the home of the German Ambassador to the U.S. on the ‘Day of German National Unity.’
OK — it may not sound like hard core throttling, but in the world of president to president nuance, this is about as rough a critique as one can expect.
Bush the father stated:

Such celebratory occasions are necessarily marked by gratitude; and here at home, I think first of my predecessor, Ronald Reagan, who met the Soviet challenge head-on and gave me a unique chance to work so closely with the players who would come to shape Europe’s destiny.
I also think of a very fine White House foreign policy team, who debated freely and forcefully [emphasis added] — and who served with great honor. Their names are well know to most of you, but let history record that Gen. Brent Scowcroft, Jim Baker, Colin Powell, Dick Cheney, Condi Rice, Bob Gates, Bill Webster, and so many others earned their nation’s thanks — and their President’s — for a job well-done.

In the curmudgeonly, cryptic way that Bush senior speaks, this is a powerful statement of criticism regarding his son’s myopic, buffered from reality management style of the national security portfolio of the nation.
— Steve Clemons


21 comments on “Bush the Elder Swats Bush the Younger Good

  1. lugbolt says:

    In my mind 41 and 43 are staves out of the same barrel.


  2. semper fubar says:

    In what way do Condi Rice, Dick Cheney and Colin Powell deserve our thanks? They lied to get us into an illegal, immoral war, and Poppy hasn’t said boo about it.
    Time to get over your infatuation with Bush I. The evil corruption of the Bush family didn’t start with GWB — it goes back generations.


  3. John Wilson says:

    Hey, ‘profound nuance’, that’s the ticket!
    My sppech is largly nuanced profoundly.
    Maybe that has something to do with
    the rotton eggs and ripe tomoatoes
    trhat are thrown at me whereever I go.
    It seems I profoundly nuance the hell
    out of ’em.
    Kremlinologics sure came up with the
    prediction of it’s collapse did’t they? 🙂
    Did you see Jon Stewart’s guest: Author of
    “The J Curve, on a new way of looking at
    why civilizatons rise and fall” —
    HE says no single Presidential Term can ruin us…
    Good News!


  4. grytpype says:

    “Debated freely and forcefully?”
    “Deserve the nation’s thanks?”
    Sounds more like a whitewash to me.


  5. hotsalt says:

    Just a little aside. In a small town on the coast of Maine, a yearly celebration is held to celebrate the history of the area. Old Bristol Days is what it is called. Included in the yearly celebrations is a lobster boat race. The fishermen uin the area take this seriously–it is called the Merrit Bracket boat race and there is a cash reward for the winner. I have watched these races for several years and it is serious business for the fishermen.
    It was reported that Bush senior, visiting a life long friend in Pemaquid Harbor just across the harbor from the base, to whom he visited via boat from Kennebunkport, decided he was going to “enter the race” so to speak. He appeared in the tranquil harbor amidst the celebrations, in his cigarette boat, accompanied by his SS protectors. He charged into the middle of the boat races with his boat, fueled by three 275HP engines, and churned up the bottom of the harbor–he must have thought he was an entrant in the race and wanted to show off his superiority and huis boat to the rest of the little lobster boats running in the race-this show off display by the rich and the priveleged Bush, who must have thought the applause would be overwhelming, shows that George is merely a spin off the actor, his father. He, #41, invaded a small harbor in the midst of it’s small town celebrations, spun it up, accompanied by his SS boats all following, churning up the water in the harbor, and thought, perhaps, he should get the prize for the race or at the least the most applause.
    Later, he attended a party by a resident on the other side of the historical harbor who built a six million dollar mansion on the shore. In order to build this mansion, this owner, friend of Bush the first, totally obliterated the historic landmarks in the harbor that have been the pride of this small community since the seventeenth century. He re arranged the landscape in order to build his six million dollar atrocity–this is no salte box or humble fishermen’s cape–has a wine tasting room, an elevator, a media room and all the rest of the crap that the rich think they need in order to live or else they would die or something.
    After his spectacular display, churning up the harbor, possibly against the harbor regulations, he attended the party at the six million dollar mansion–
    This propensity toward the spectacular has been passed down to the photo op loving George the second. It is the world of the elite–where not a one of them thinks they must respect and abide by the laws of the country


  6. Hedley Lamarr says:

    I don’t get it. What’s to praise about Condi Rice and Dick Cheney?


  7. David Studhalter says:

    I could maybe see the point if he hadn’t mentioned the Liar Rice and Darth Cheney. By mentioning them, the effect is diluted so much as to be ephemeral.
    Sorry for the epithets… can’t help myself sometimes.


  8. MT says:

    I’m sure it stands out more in Russian.


  9. AlanDownunder says:

    Talk about unconsciously damning a guy with faint praise!
    Newton acknowledged that if he saw further it was because he stood on others’ shoulders. Dubya could acknowledge analogously. Wasn’t there some Central American stuff between Vietnam and Iraq? Aren’t there still a lot of the same fellas around, pardoned or otherwise?
    But I suppose I have to admit that Newton and Dubya are, in their respective ways, a bit special. The shoulders don’t explain it all.


  10. TokyoTom says:

    Wait … Steve’s right … we’re drowning, so we’d better start grasping at straws.
    No doubt GHWB IS a little perturbed at how W is managing to spin gold into lead for the country as a whole, but for the past six years he’s been VERY cooperative with W and made nary a peep, no doubt consoled by the national wealth that has been diverted into the Bushes’ pockets from our disastrous GWOT.
    Still, nice of him to throw a few words out that can be spun as criticism. Sharp eyes, Steve, and thank you very much, Mr. Bush! We appreciate your love of country!


  11. Lara says:

    Carroll, that was priceless!


  12. Carroll says:

    Nope, we have been forced to become “criminologist” in order to follow current events.


  13. Carroll says:

    Way too cryptic for me.
    I voted for Bush I but my opinion of him can be summed up in one example…when confronted by the press with the leak that his son had gotten an illegal loan from the SBA for a oil operation that went bust..Bush I whinned,…”my boys have a right to make a living”..he whinned the same thing when his other son turned up in the S&L scandel.
    Well no Bush, your sons don’t have a right to make a living stealing from taxpayers to finance their failures…which seems to be habit with your family.
    To the Bushes nothing is more important to them than their own welfare, not the country, not other people’s lives, nothing…down South we call people like this carpet bagging white trash.


  14. Steve Clemons says:

    You guys clearly have lost any respect for profound nuance. Were none of you Kremlinologists??
    — Steve Clemons


  15. Fel says:

    Oh please. That’s really a stretch, Steve. Back to more serious matters.


  16. Norm DePlume says:

    Uh… I think maybe you’re thinking a little too hard about this one.
    Seems like I recall Bush once saying he didn’t like broccoli. Maybe “broccoli” was a really a code word meaning “that rotten kid of mine.”


  17. Zathras says:

    Interesting that the elder Bush would find it prudent to make this statement at this juncture. I wonder if he had in mind Vice President Quayle as “one of the others.”
    I concur with other posters here that the implications of the quoted statement are negligible to non-existent. The elder Bush has never hidden his view that his foreign policy team served him well, and to be truthful — this coming from someone who does not admire the first Bush administration’s record overall or in foreign affairs — with respect to the then-difficult question of German reunification he and his people got most everything right.


  18. Aunt Deb says:

    Hm. I think this is just swatting at flies, Steve.


  19. Scoper says:

    Maybe a very oblique swipe, but you are reading very closely.
    Prez George II’s list of his foreign policy team includes a few who worked quite assiduously to screw things up for us under Prez George III.
    Are you intercepting father-son telepathy here? Would George III, thin-skinned but thick-headed, be less able than you to discern the message?


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