Thursday, May 25


If I were George W. Bush, I would never appear in the United States at the side of Tony Blair. The contrast is too great. Bush started tonight's press conference with a scripted statement that was a reprise of every banal statement about the Iraq war he's ever made. Tony Blair, on the other hand, spoke, seemingly, extemporaneously, and was far more inspiring and believable.

As the press questioning started, Bush's responses began extremely low-energy and recycled old talking points, and then progressed to pique at the questions. Blair, who thinks well on his feet, then took control of the press conference, selecting the questioners.

Initially, Blair's responses to questions seemed to give Bush some additonal energy (although not much), so that he started spouting his usual "freedom is universal" cant. But then he reverted to his robo-like, smirking, rambling statements.

How much did he have to drink during Happy Hour with Blair? The man was visibly irritated with questions that required him to respond to press revelations. At one early point, he just caved and, after some awkward silence, indicated that he wanted Blair to respond in his stead. Blair tried, but he was also thrown off by questions about Iran.

At some point, both Bush and Blair got downright belligerent, shooting down strawmen and reacting angrily to reporters. Bush, I should say, was belligerent, while Blair was more passionately defensive.

Bush, responding to Martha Raddatz, said he's completely relying on Gen. Casey's appraisals of conditions on the ground, and he will do whatever Gen. Casey says we should do. He said we don't want politicians basing decisions on politics, he's set clearly the objective, a country that can sustain itself and protect itself. Blair chimed in with more "in the next few months" theme. Bush interjected to Martha that "in the long run, we want to achieve our objective." He made a big deal about Al Qaeda and Zarqawi. He WANTS out troops out, he understands what it is to put our guys in harm's way, he's going to a memorial service. But he also understands that it is "vital that we do the job, that we complete the mission." It's TOUGH, he says, but what we're seeing in Iraq could happen all over the world if we don't confront these people who have no rules.

Asked what he would miss about Tony Blair, Bush replied, "His red ties."

So on and so on. I have to cook dinner.

It was a disastrous performance.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

The level of questioning from the press was dissapointing.

There has been some serious mistakes made by two heads of state and they seem to gloss over this.

4:18 AM  
Blogger Motherlode said...


11:48 AM  
Anonymous Silmarill said...

I listened to a great deal of the press conferance on NPR on my drive home from work. I thought Bush sounded the most coherent I've heard him sound in a long time which begs the question do I dislike the man so much and has my opinion sunk so low that merely being average makes me think he's done incredibly well for himself. I have to think that not seeing the two men visually had a big impact on my perception of the press conferance. If I could believe Bush, if he had any credibility whatsoever then some of what he said I could deal with. Fact is you can't be corrupt to the bone, as he has been proven to be time and time again, and then pose as a decent man fighting for decent ends. He's a bastard by evidence and only decent by claim. His performance, for me, be it bad or good matters not at all. All his evil works scream loudly in my ears while his words fall to the ground unheard and meaningless.

12:04 PM  
Blogger Motherlode said...

Well well, welcome back, Silmarill!

(For those who don't know, that is my brilliant son!)

8:01 PM  

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