Monday, July 10, 2006

Our Leader

I try not to spend too much time thinking about George Bush in general terms; that is, how his general appeal -- which I understand since I was born a fundamentalist Christian -- overcomes what would seem to be his obvious limitations in talking about what he has done and what he wants to do. He just doesn't seem on top of things, and I'm not quite sure why people don't more often let this tip the balance against him.

Of course, some people may find him Reagan-like. He doesn't need to be the sharpest knife in the drawer because there are other knives in the drawer to do the hard cutting for him, mental giants like Karl Rove and Dick Cheney.

But I was thinking this morning that part of his strength may just be his apparent simplicity. At least some people -- and it doesn't take many in a 50-50 country -- find him sincere if befuddled and that is enough.

It boils down to this. I'm thinking some people find him not dishonest but pre-honest. Even though he's talking about international terrorism or global warming, they think he doesn't know enough about what he's discussing to lie about it. They think he may be wrong, but he's not deceptive. They think he's doing the best he can. They think, Hell, we don't understand it either.

Exactly how you can be the President of the United States and not know enough about something to discuss it intelligently -- well, that's another question.


Anonymous said...

Is it just possible we on the facile left assign too much importance to verbal fluency because that is the crop we bring to market? I wonder what someone who gets filthy with machinery thinks of occupations where a few passable sentences or apercus that draw smiles are regarded as a good day's work. Please do not think of me as astringent.

....J.Michael Robertson said...

In my little flight of fancy, I have misrepresented myself. Personally, I think Bush lies through his teeth and is smarter than he looks. But I don't think *all* of his folksiness is a brilliant facade. I think he is a little bit dyslexic and doesn't think well on his feet. As for those horny-handed sons of toil who grapple Bush to their hearts, I think they get what he's saying. They get the code. He's clear enough about race and homos and uppity women and aye-thists -- if you pay attention. There's more than one kind of verbal fluency. But, sure, I'd like to hear more Democrats give out some Howard-Dean howls, though the press sure recoils in horror when they do.