Tuesday, November 09, 2010
I'll make this quick.
They say absence makes the heart grow fonder; whether that's true or not, time certainly has a way of helping to whitewash the sins of the past. With that in mind, two years isn't nearly enough distance from the colossal failure that was the Bush presidency for me to be willing to forget or forgive George W. Bush's myriad transgressions, let alone start warming up to the guy -- and it's a testament to why I disliked him so intensely as a person that he's shamelessly arrogant enough to think that he can step right back into the spotlight, pretty much where he left off a couple of years back, and go right on literally rewriting history as if nothing happened and no one will notice.
I won't lie and say that I'm going to read the book he's currently hawking, the one he's tawdrily referring audiences to whenever anyone asks him a question he knows he can't answer -- as if somehow all will be revealed within its pages, which you know damn well isn't the case. A perfect example of why I won't read is in the quick quote from the book currently on display over at the Huffington Post, where Bush engages in almost mind-bogglingly laughable revisionism when describing those glacial seven minutes that followed Andy Card telling him that two planes had just hit the World Trade Center and America was currently under attack. Watch Bush predictably substitute swaggering bravado and steely calm for the pissing-his-pants terror that we all know was really the case:
"My first reaction was outrage. Someone had dared attack America. They were going to pay. Then I looked at the faces of the children in front of me. I thought about the contrast between the brutality of the attackers and the innocence of those children. Millions like them would soon be counting on me to protect them. I was determined not to let them down.
I saw reporters at the back of the room, learning the news on their cell phones and pagers. Instinct kicked in. I knew my reaction would be recorded and beamed throughout the world The nation would be in shock; the president could not be. If I stormed out hastily, it would scare the children and send ripples of panic throughout the country."
It reads exactly like what it is: that scene in every hacky Hollywood movie where the supposed tough guy cowers during the big fight then steps out once it's all over, tries to compose himself and begins boasting to his suddenly embarrassed-for-him girlfriend about what he was just getting ready to do. That's what George W. Bush is -- what he's always been: A sad cliché. A fuck-up with delusions of heroic grandeur. A buffoon whose self-confidence is surpassed only by his lack of self-awareness -- who can't even begin to comprehend how bloody incompetent he really was and is. He's David Brent with a body count.
And, no, two years isn't nearly enough time for me to be willing to rethink my views on the eight years before them.