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George Bush DUI in Maine.
November 2, 2000 9:44 PM   Subscribe

George Bush DUI in Maine. Impregnates a 15 year old girl, caught drunk driving in Maine - are there any laws he hasn't broken?
posted by kristin (22 comments total)

 
The misdirected muddle of the press in this campaign surely reaches its height in reaction to this story's breaking.

Is anyone really surprised by this? Was it not sufficiently clear to all that Bush used to be a frat boy cliche and a drunken lout? This is not news; this is redundant confirmation.

More importantly, does anyone care??? I for one am not concerned with how many beers the man had 24 years ago, or even with what poor judgement he exercised after having however many beers 24 years ago. What I am concerned with is what this story reveals about his values and personality as a man TODAY. For after all, it is now that he seeks to serve as our president if elected.

Why does no one ask him to explain his rationale that not telling his daughters about his long-ago mistake somehow HELPS them to avoid similar behavior? That rather than share the wisdom earned by making a mistake and learning from its consequences, he covers it up, essentially lying to his own family for their entire lives (while making sure, however, to bring his campaign manager into his confidence--after all, that's really important!). What kind of example does this set? What kind of role model does this make him? Admirable only by default, so long as one remains ignorant of his true history?

I think this is a perfect illustration of what has made me so nervous about Bush for most of this campaign. He is a sham. He has no substance. He mimics and mouths and smirks and dodges any semblence of substance (e.g. "fuzzy math"), but when pressed, he crumbles into emptiness. He has no understanding of why it might be better to do the right thing without being caught out and forced to it, without straining to see just how much he can get away with (rather reminding me of a certain other Southern ex-governer...).

I would be disgusted if one of my parents had deceived me in such a petty, selfish, puerile manner. Is a mistake not a mistake if it is successfully covered up? Is covering up part of Bush's philosophy, part of his strategy for dealing with other human beings? If this is his idea of how to behave with his own family, what debt of honesty and honor will he feel toward his country?

It's not about what he did 24 years ago. It's about what he's done since, and what he continues to do, and what he will do for the next 4 years. Yes, it is about character. Imagine that.
posted by rushmc at 10:32 PM on November 2, 2000


I found another link to this Bush DUI story -- the text of the original story on a Maine TV station that started this media frenzy tonight.

This is a disastrous story to break so close to an election. Bush could have released the details of this nine months ago when people were speculating about his wild past, and it would be completely forgotten by now.

After watching several different cable news channels tonight and Nightline, it appears that the story was broken by a Maine TV reporter who heard a courthouse rumor about a judge and attorney talking about a 25-year-old DUI arrest of Bush. The reporter tracked down an attorney, and when she asked him for details on this rumor, he said there was documentation in his office. That attorney was a Gore delegate to this year's Democratic convention.

The GOP is going to launch a frenzied effort to make this look like an orchestrated dirty trick, but if the reporter is telling the truth, it seems like a very clumsy way to make her aware of the story. Partisans spoon-feed stories to reporters all the time.

I don't know if it costs him the election, but the race is so close that a 1-2 percent decline in Bush's popular vote could be catastrophic.
posted by rcade at 10:38 PM on November 2, 2000


Kristen: Wait, are you talking about Bush, or Ted Kennedy...
I guess it does not matter, I hate 'em both.
posted by thirteen at 10:42 PM on November 2, 2000


Yeah, this is a non-issue. What is an issue are the approximately 4,217 reasons that a Bush win would be a disaster for the nation, and possibly for the world. So, America, I beg you, don't vote against Bush because of a DUI. Vote against him because he's an arrogant, clueless, horse's ass.
posted by Optamystic at 11:30 PM on November 2, 2000


Two questions:

1) Bush said of the charge: "I occasionally drank too much, and I did that night. I learned my lesson." Why did it take him another 10 years to quit drinking?

2) Do we want someone for President who can not even handle the responsibility of driving a car safely?
posted by DragonBoy at 11:50 PM on November 2, 2000


"They want the federal government controlling Social Security like it's some kind of federal program."--St. Charles, Mo., Nov. 2, 2000

America: Do. Not. Elect. This. Man.
posted by owillis at 11:50 PM on November 2, 2000


I would be disgusted if one of my parents had deceived me in such a petty, selfish, puerile manner.

How do you know they haven't? Parents naturally don't tell their kids every last detail about themselves, and I think that's often a good thing. There are certainly things about my parents I wish I didn't know. Most people who have children or parents instinctively understand why Bush didn't tell his daughters about his DUI, and many of us would do exactly the same thing.

If you had been arrested for a misdemeanor, would telling your kids about it undermine your effectiveness as an authority figure? If you decided to tell them, at what age do you suppose it would be appropriate to sit them down and have The Talk?
posted by kindall at 11:56 PM on November 2, 2000


A DUI arrest is taken seriously today, though it was admittedly treated as a harmless misdemeanor 24 years ago (as Bush's $150 fine illustrates).

Now that the public knows Bush was once arrested for driving drunk, should we really let the guy off the hook completely for never admitting this until he was caught? The idea that he kept this secret solely to protect his 18-year-old daughters, as opposed to protecting his political fortunes, is hard to swallow.
posted by rcade at 12:04 AM on November 3, 2000


Here's the problem with a Bush victory. If The Shrub wins, I'm gonna be forced to do the following:

1) Invent Time Travel
2) Construct a Time machine on a VERY meager budget.
3) Use said time machine to travel back to the day when George Sr, and Barbara met.
4) Figure out a way to prevent them from hooking up. This must be done in such a way that's not gonna muck up the space-time continuum too badly.
5) Return to the present and enjoy the rest of my life in a world that is free from knuckle-headed Bush progeny. (Yes, Jeb and Neil, I'm talking about you, too.)

Now, as you can see, if the above task is even possible, it will be very difficult, time-consuming (no pun intended), and expensive. Since I am both lazy, and broke, I do not look forward to having to save civilization single-handedly. I would much rather drink beer and watch "Frasier". So, please, America: Save me the trouble. Thank you in advance.
posted by Optamystic at 12:12 AM on November 3, 2000


Drudge: Cheney got DUI in '62 and '63. Drunk and drunker...?
posted by owillis at 12:25 AM on November 3, 2000


Non-issue.
posted by lagado at 4:53 AM on November 3, 2000


Could somebody post a link to the original story about Bush having the girl get an abortion? I know I first read about it here somewhere, but I can't find the story. Thanks.
posted by dnash at 6:50 AM on November 3, 2000


Ya. Non-issue. Hell, we all drink and drive don't we? And it's no big deal right? As long as we learn our lesson. I mean come on.... I know people who've been killed by drunk drivers, but that didn't happen here. And he quit drinking 10 years later. I'm sure he's a completely different person now.

I suspect all that drinking and sex with underage girls has given him more character. Yeah. I mean just because we got pissed at Clinton for being a liar doesn't mean we should make an issue out of Bush being a felon.
posted by y6y6y6 at 6:51 AM on November 3, 2000


dnash, I think you'll find everything you need here.
posted by dhartung at 7:21 AM on November 3, 2000


Thanks, dhartung.
posted by dnash at 7:34 AM on November 3, 2000


Bush also lied to a reporter about never being arrested after 1968.
posted by rcade at 7:35 AM on November 3, 2000


You shouldn't be worried about Bush's drunken past. Think about his sober present and future: that's scary enough.
posted by holgate at 7:44 AM on November 3, 2000


Parents naturally don't tell their kids every last detail about themselves, and I think that's often a good thing.

I think it is a cheat and a cowardly avoidance.

There are certainly things about my parents I wish I didn't know.

That is certainly your prerogative. I would submit, however, that knowing less about your parents would mean knowing your parents less. Which I find sad.

Most people who have children or parents instinctively understand why Bush didn't tell his daughters about his DUI

That's a general statement that cannot possibly be supported. It's your opinion; that should be good enough for you.


If you had been arrested for a misdemeanor, would telling your kids about it undermine your effectiveness as an authority figure?

Nope. Because real authority is not based upon deception, hiding or repression of truth, or holding such a low opinion of one's children as to assume that they could not handle reality, leading to a misguided attempt to "shield" them. I believe that authority is based upon respect, and respect is earned, through honesty, openness, and a sincere desire and effort to help, teach, and support.

Bush let his older daughter get on national tv the other day and extol his virtues as a father and as a human being without having all the facts at her disposal. Now she looks a bit silly, and her words cannot but ring somewhat false, through no fault of her own (her shrill, seemingly forced performance notwithstanding). How humiliating. No parent should do that to a child, and I hope she holds him accountable for it.


posted by rushmc at 8:16 AM on November 3, 2000


What's this about getting a 15 year old girl pregnant? Did I miss something?
posted by Brilliantcrank at 11:41 AM on November 3, 2000


... real authority is not based upon deception, hiding or repression of truth, or holding such a low opinion of one's children as to assume that they could not handle reality...

If it gets them to do what you want, the authority is real enough for all practical purposes.

Children are not merely little adults, you know.
posted by kindall at 11:42 AM on November 3, 2000


What's this about getting a 15 year old girl pregnant? Did I miss something?

I did not have sexual relations with that woman!

Er, I mean, Billie Jean is not my lover! She's just a girl who claims that I am the one! But the kid is not my son!

posted by daveadams at 2:03 PM on November 3, 2000


If it gets them to do what you want...

Personally, I find this reprehensible. Children may not be "merely little adults," but neither are they slaves or nonsentient automatons brought into being to do our bidding and dance to our tunes. They are human beings with all the rights that go along with that.

Do we have a responsibility to care for them and protect them from the results of their immaturity? Of course. Do we have the right to lie to them, trick them, manipulate them, or whatever else we want in order to "get them to do what [we] want"? I think not.

Perhaps I am misunderstanding your argument...
posted by rushmc at 6:11 PM on November 3, 2000


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