Monday, August 11, 2008

The Olympics or a Political Statement or Both?

Bob Costas interviewed President Bush last night. Now, it is no secret that I think our current administration is corrupt and ridiculous. However, I have never really believed that the PURE EVIL went all the way to the top. I rather think that President Bush surrounded himself by smart people, knowing that he was missing some of the crayons in his own box, and compensating. Most presidents do this. The fact that he chose so many vile people was perhaps more error in judgment than rotten to the core-ness.

But I digress.

What I really came to say was that he was very good during the interview. The setting was relaxed and comfortable. Costas was a little heavy on the political questions, but other than a little bit of stuttering and that shocking accent, President Bush handled himself very well. He said something that I thought was very bold, and not incredibly popular, but true. He said essentially that once religion takes hold in a country, then there is no stopping people's desire for freedom. It is true that while religion has also been used to DEPRIVE people of their rights, when their is religious freedom, the opposite effect happens. America's experiment in democracy could not have happened without abolishing any compulsion to worship or not worship. I'm not sure that a president who was not a lame duck would dare to make such a statement. But then, to his credit, President Bush has never been ashamed of his faith.

On another blog, I was reading about favorite Olympic memories. Here is mine. I was nine years old that summer. We were at Bear Lake, staying at the condos at Sweetwater, but every afternoon when it was too hot, and every evening when we were bored, we turned on the summer Olympics. America was so dominant that year (because of the Soviet and company boycott), and it was fun to watch our men and women mop up in every event. The other family we were vacationing with had a daughter who was very much into gymnastics: though she was just a year or two older than me, she had already competed all over the western US. We couldn't take our eyes off the little gal with the HUGE smile. Has there ever been a better example of grace under pressure?


Sunnie said...

that swimming race last night sure was great. and i'm not huge into politics at all, so my opinion doesn't really stand for much. i kind of see bush as a real person. he's there at the events cheering them on, probably because he thinks it's fun and wants to be there, not because it makes him look good. he may not really know how to run a country perfectly, but as a person, he seems like a pretty decent guy.

Science Teacher Mommy said...

I think that is a great assessment too. He also did a bit on the Ellen Show last year when his daughter was on the show promoting her new book: Ellen talked Genna into calling daddy on the phone and she talked to him. It was very funny. Our Olympic times here are all screwed up--we didn't get that race until after 11 and I went to bed. I was able to catch footage of the whole thing on ABC's Olympics website this morning though. And, yes, it was completely awesome.

Yankee Girl said...

I saw the interview and thought the religion bit was very good but for the most part I couldn't stop laughing at his accent--I just kept thinking I was watching a SNL bit.

Z. Marie said...

I didn't get to watch Mary Lou Retton because we lived in an area where we couldn't pick up an ABC station. It's a hard life, being from the rural South.

Slyck and Slim said...

The "Olympicnics" as my children call them are one of our favorite things -- we even let our kids stay up until 1:30 in the morning to finish the recording for the day. (We don't start watching it until after dinner and fast forward all the commercials.) That won't be a nice habit to change once school starts, I realize. As far as politics goes, it's always political, but I got the feeling watching the interview that Pres. Bush was very frank and open in his answers - possibly because he wasn't running for office again. I don't trust politicians ever, but I'm mature enough to look past his accent and see that he's smarter than he sounds to some people.

Brandon P said...

1) The only people I know of that think Bush is PURE EVIL are on TV. I've never met one in the flesh. Think about it.
2) If Bush's stuttering bothers you, you should see Obama when he's not behind a TelePrompTer.
3) Bush has been talking about the importance of religious freedom his whole presidency. This isn't a new development from his last months in office.
4) I love you STM.

Science Teacher Mommy said...

Ouch, Slim. I think Yankee Girl is fairly mature herself, even if the accent is harder for some people to get past.

I think I'm to the point where "trust" when it comes to politicians is not always a very helpful designation. Even some of our "greatest" politicians have not necessearily been trustworthy. I'm not trying to say that character doesn't matter at all, and I have said all along that I believed George Bush to be a pretty nice guy, a basically moral guy, but I don't think that qualifies him to be the leader of the free world. I think President Bush has shown a shocking lack of judgment when it comes to whom HE trusts. I think that he has surrounded himself with people who have their own agendas for whatever reason. Anecdotes from really intense investigative reporting (NOT pundits on TV, Brandon) illustrate that key people in his first administration were looking for any excuse to get embroiled in Iraq. Men who preyed on American emotions after 9/11 as a means to . . . I don't know, profit? It can't really be said that they meant to secure us. If they had, wouldn't there have been a long term plan in place? But there NEVER was. . . oh, never mind. Just read the next post.

Yankee Girl said...

I actually do think that Bush is rather smart and pretty articulate.