Wednesday :: Jul 19, 2006

The Myth of the Second Term Presidency

by Mary

Conventional wisdom says that second term presidents spend a lot more time on international policy than domestic policy because it's easier to keep the press abey. For Bill Clinton, a trip to a foreign land was a welcome respite because he always found a foreign press that loved pointing out what a great job he was doing. What a presidential figure he made while overseas. Meanwhile, back in the United States, the scandal mongers kept up the steady drumbeat about each and every new fake scandal that erupted from the VRWC. Clearly for Clinton, it worked to spend time on international issues.


But, for George W Bush, it seems that the escape from the looming problems on the domestic front by playing leader of the free world at international summits has proven to be yet one more way to point out what a total failure he is as President. uggabugga asked a good question about Bush's latest trip overseas: "what the hell's going on?"

So, what's going on? Well, gosh, it's been almost a year from the last extended vacation for Bush. And just when he is feeling the strains of the job and really, really needs another long vacation, there is no way Karl is going to let him have 5 weeks off this summer. Then there is the reverse halo effect whereas good press in the states leads to bad press overseas and vis versa. For Bush, the US media goes out of its way to make his every utterance and every appearance Presidential, whereas the foreign media is working overtime to point out every gaff he makes.

For George W Bush, going overseas is a traumatic experience because he doesn't get to do what he wants, has to eat strange food, and he is exposed to people who are more than willing to take him down a few pegs. And being a fratboy at heart, his little "jokes" are his way of relieving tension especially when under such intense scrutiny. Too bad he doesn't have a few butterflies that he can dismember to help with the pressure. Karl must be pulling his few remaining hair out over trying to keep his protege in check this summer.

By the way, I found this picture attached to an article from the NRO dated Sept. 4, 2001. So what's Derbyshire's perspective on Bush today?

Mary :: 12:30 PM :: Comments (8) :: TrackBack (0) :: Digg It!