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Bush as Billy Badass

We Americans like our presidents to be badasses. It's deeply ingrained in our psyche and reflected in our pop culture, whether it's Harrison Ford kicking terrorist ass on Air Force One, or Bill Pullman blasting aliens in Independence Day. George W. Bush is the most badass president we've had since Teddy Roosevelt.

Bush has garnered badass points throughout his first term. He earned them for throwing a perfect strike in the 2001 World Series, for his secret Thanksgiving trip to Iraq a year ago, and he earned more yesterday when he personally broke up a fight between a secret service agent and a Chilean security official. (And yes, he also earned them for his landing on an aircraft carrier and piloting the navy plane for part of the flight, although the photo op itself turned out to have been singularly ill-advised.)

I loved that Chilean fracas story. Can anyone imagine John "that sonofabitch knocked me down" Kerry doing something similar? Of course not! The man has zero badass points! Gornischt! (I've been studying Yiddish with Dick and Jane.)

Sure, Kerry probably got his fair share of badass points back in 'Nam, but badass points have a "best used by" date, and Kerry's have long since expired. He's like the veteran great uncle we all have -- a war hero in his youth, but his idea of risk-taking these days is visiting a salad bar without a sneeze guard.

Call me crazy, but I think the "badass" gap was probably the deciding factor in our last election. Bush has a certain magnetic appeal that analysts are always trying to explain. All their terms for it, however -- "likeability," "resolve," "moral clarity" -- seemed to fall short somehow. But I think I've finally identified the X-factor: badass.

To borrow the title of a song from Team America: "Bush: F**k Yeah!"


I see that you are using the "royal we" again. Good to know that we have you to speak for all us Americans. Or are you just speaking for the Americans who agree with you? Other possibilities justifying you using "we" include you having an identical twin who thinks exactly like you or once again a tapeworm has taken up residence inside you. (Although, I have to say, Mark Twain be damned, that, if I were a tapeworm and I heard you speaking for me, I might find ways to make my dissenting opinion known.)

Legal ways, I might add.

Luckily, we live in a land where one can express dissent openly and without fear. While Barry may have given a big f*** you to the Dixie Chicks with his recent vote, the trio did quite well on their tour, after all, and I felt that the CD they put out of that tour was one of their best. Personally, I believe they "kicked ass" on that tour, but then again I doubt that either the Chicks or myself are included when Barry says "We Americans.." (Perhaps George Jones, but the Chicks or Bruce or..)

(BTW, for a fun throwback, checkout Richard Bey's sound clip on richardbey.org where he discusses on WABC the Dixie Chicks with Christina, his call screener. Richard had some fun with selective outrage, before being told his outrage wasn't selective enough.)

I disagree, Barry. I think if you look into the primary reason most voters pulled the lever for either candidate, it was fear. Fear of what would happen if Kerry won, or fear of what would happen if Bush won. Faith in the candidates was secondary in many peoples' minds. It's as simple as that, and it's a really lousy place to make decisions from.

PE, I'm glad the Dixie Chicks' tour was successful, and I share your opinion of "Home" being their best CD. I did indeed relish my "fuck you" of November 2, but I am a fan of both the Chicks and the Boss, and I do not wish ill for either of their careers. I do, however, resent being politically lectured by them. George Jones rules. :-)

Bruce can lecture. Natalie sometimes talks and says shit. I wouldn't take the passion away from either one, though.

I heard about this yesterday. What were the security officials thinking?

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