Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Five Things I Like About George W. Bush

[Wait! Wait! Don't forget to cast your votes for Seriously Old Books!]

Five things I like about George W. Bush. Now, I know what you're probably thinking. But the man is a human being, and there are really very few people who do not have plenty of redeeming qualities. And I must say, having decided to write this post, it didn't take me more than a couple of hours to come up with five things that I respect and admire about my country's First Citizen and Commander in Chief, President George W. Bush.

So here we are -- five things that I quite sincerely appreciate about the President.

1. The President does not appear to be a racist. At the outset of his first term, I was impressed with the love he was giving Mexico, the important and too often stupidly maligned country on our southern border. After the attacks of September 2001, I thought he displayed excellent leadership in discouraging and decrying "revenge" attacks against American Muslims and people who looked like they might be Muslims. When a company from Dubai was contracted to manage certain U.S. port operations, it was the Democrats fanning grotesque anti-Arab sentiment; the President took a relatively sane line.

2. The President is, frankly, a stud. I respect amateur athletes. An avid mountain biker and runner, Bush has remained in remarkably good shape throughout his presidency. He has not only run in marathons, but acquited himself quite well in them. His best time of about 3 hours, 45 minutes compares extremely favorably with this (much younger) blogger's best time of about 5 hours, 25 minutes. Bravo, Mr. Bush!

3. The President appointed Colin Powell as his first Secretary of State. It was a good choice. The presence of Mr. Powell in that position injected some diversity of style and opinion into the administration, and mitigated some courses of action that would have been worse if he wasn't around. It is a shame that he wasn't able to remain on the team.

4. The President's wife was courteous to my parents. When my mom was a guest at the White House a few years back -- she had been selected to create an ornament for the White House Christmas tree -- she and my dad were impressed with Laura Bush's presence and courtesy during their 20 second photo op. Someone being nice to my parents scores points with me, naturally.

5. The President takes lots of vacations. He should not be criticized for this. There is a story in the Sufi tradition of Islam about an arrogant king who summons a Murid, a kind of wandering holy man. The king asks this question: "What is more excellent than prayer?" The Murid looks about him at the king's luxury and the poverty of the common people, and replies: "More excellent than prayer, lord, is for you to sleep until mid-day, that for this time you will spare mankind your influence."

With this is mind, Michael5000 will be officially on vacation for a few days himself. But I'll be checking in.


fingerstothebone said...

I agree that he doesn't appear to be a racist, nor a sexist. However, I don't think he should get credit for Laura's gracious treatment of your parents!

Anonymous said...

Good points. I don't agree with the word "stud." In shape and athletic, fine, but 'stud' refers to his appearances, which, are not exactly studly.

Jenny! said...

Ok...glad I am not the only person that finds W to be a sexy beast! Him and Tony Blair together...yum!

Rebel said...

yeah, as a woman I'm going to object to the term "stud", he may be in good shape, but Mr. Bush is really not that attractive.

Tony Blair however, he's a hottie!

Anonymous said...

Theres nothing I like about GWB. He's everything any good teacher tells you not to be - arrogant, uncooperative, dishonest, doesn't listen to or respect others, and didn't they tell us not to invade countries just to settle a grudge or boost our political standing?
I don't particularly admire athleticism in general or Colin Powell and Laura's courtesy is hers, not his.

chuckdaddy2000 said...

Interesting list, although I'm not sure ruining Colin Powel's reputation should count. Particularly since he resigned rather than keeping on having his lone moderate voice ignored.

The thing I like best about Bush, is that he's now doing so phenomenally bad. It's not even a question anymore of whether or not his was a failed presidency, it's more of a discussion of where he rates w/ the worst of them. It's kind of like if you hated the Yankees and then got to watch them make terrible decision after terrible decision and then become the laughing stock of the league. Right now my big hope is his approval ratings will drop below Carter (he's like a percentage point away) and Nixon (not as far as you'd think).

Jenny! said...

Nixon's ratings toward the end were aweful, but in my opinion he was one of the greatest Presidents!

Michael5000 said...

@fingers: You don't think? But then I'd be down to four!

@MDIC: Well, you know, "studly." Fit. Trim. In good shape. He could likely kick my young ass.

@jenny!: ...although I would draw the line before calling him a "sexy beast." I myself feel that it has been decades since we've had a seriously yummy chief executive.

@rebel: He certainly upped the ante from John Major. Any thoughts on the hunk quotient of Gordon Brown?

@dug: Gosh, if we took away Colin Powell, I'd be down to only three.

@Chuck: I oscillate between admiration of my man Mr. Carter's principles and aims, and chagrin at the goofy ineptitude at his administration. Which is depressing.

@jenny!: With all respect, that just means you haven't read enough about Nixon. Really.

Rex Parker said...

Thank you for doing this. He is the last person in the world I would vote for - in general, I would say he's been a terrible president - but I'm so so so so tired of the utterly predictable and hypocritically dehumanizing and mean-spirited attacks on this guy. I don't mean the valid criticisms, which are Plentiful. I mean the typical knee-jerk Bush-bashing stuff. Liberals can't preach love and tolerance etc. and talk about the president as if he were not human. Well, they can, but then why take them seriously? It's easy to love your friends, much harder (and more important) to love your enemies.

If I look that good at that age, I'll count myself very, very lucky. I think you could legitimately consider him sexy if he Never Opened His Mouth.


Rebel said...

Gordon Brown is no Tony Blair, but he does have the cool accent which makes him hotter than George W. anyday!

Anonymous said...

This is an excellent lesson in tolerance that's for sure. I have to question why I am so willing to be tolerant of criminal youth and yet not give our president the same turn at the wheel of compassion.

They both have put friends of mine at risk. Hmm. Darnit. It's not safe to hate anybody. Okay, not darn it.

Michael5000 said...

@Rex & Boo: Y'all make me feel all virtuous. But the truth is, much as I believe in principle in seeing the best in everyone, I was only looking for a more subtle way of bagging on W.