has george dubya become an unlikely [and unwilling] role model for feminists?
May 6, 2001 11:20 AM   Subscribe

has george dubya become an unlikely [and unwilling] role model for feminists? "Bush has given the entire country something almost as valuable [as his support for workers rights] -- his example. With Bush in mind, working parents can demand a promotion and nights and weekends off. After all, why should they have to work longer hours than the most powerful man in the world? Today's [feminists] want power and time to watch Little League. And our friend Dubya is leading the way." Is Bush the Younger really doing it right, or ought he be working harder?
posted by palegirl (8 comments total)
Well, I think that Uncle Dick (Cheney) is more than willing to keep Junior relaxed and happy and well-rested: a little workout in the WH gym, a hearty lunch, a nap, some Playstation, a few signatures on executive orders here and there...the less he's around, the less the grownups have to take the time to explain Junior what's actually going down...
posted by matteo at 11:32 AM on May 6, 2001

I think that story is just leftovers from 10-day-old White House spin. There were three messages in that public relations campaign (which they got very, very good results from):

1. He's not what you think: He's smarter than you think. He's being underestimated according to his plan. He's not slow, he's country-shrewd. He's not less open than previous presidents and the infrequent press conferences don't matter, he's really a savvy political animal, no talk and no wonk, just action and speed. He'll surprise everyone. He's more moderate than you think. His mistakes are really calculated political moves. (This is the one the Sobel story falls under).

2. He has a well-organized machine operating, centered around a corporate-like White House power structure. Borrowing from successful business practices is good for the nation because it's efficient and savvy. (This is leftover from the last major spin they put out; it just needed reinforcement to counteract the he's-not-working-as-hard-as-Clinton and he's-not-as-bright-as-Clinton stories. Another part of that counter-spin was the he's-always-on-time-and-more-efficient-than-Clinton-so-it-doesn't-matter-if-he's-not-putting-in-the-hours stories).

3. Dick Cheney isn't making up for Bush's inexperience, he's really doubling effectiveness compared to the previous administration. Let people believe in a co-presidency: they scoffed at Hillary as Bill's co-president and Gore always seemed to get short and invisible shrift, but Cheney is trustworthy with more power than any vice president has ever wielded. Elect one president, get one free. But Bush is the leash-holder.

The key memory words for this campaign were something similar to surprise, savvy and in-charge, I'm guessing.
posted by Mo Nickels at 11:41 AM on May 6, 2001

i get the feeling this discussion is going to be partisan.
posted by wantwit at 11:58 AM on May 6, 2001

I'd just like to make clear: my post above presents my interpretation of a White House spin campaign, not my own beliefs.
posted by Mo Nickels at 12:38 PM on May 6, 2001

Ok, coming out as a partisan, stridently anti-Bush, you have to give the guy credit. He's stupid, like a fox. For any of you have read the Art of War, Patton's Memoire, Bradley's A Soldier's Story or any other book on strategy, it's clear that the drooling bubba is a fascade meant to keep us off guard. Sure he's a blue-blooded twit, but he's also shrewdly manipulating us to think that he's actually stupid. He's likely every bit as inarticulate as he appears but that plays into his strategy of being the disarming bubba. He plays to his strength, which is clearly not public speaking. Dubya is also masterfully manipulating the images of his being out of the White House so that if there is too much backlash he can always chop heads and distance himself from unpopular action.

Watch this guy. He's in many ways much more capable a manipulator than Clinton or Reagan ever dreamt of being.
posted by shagoth at 2:20 PM on May 6, 2001

shagoth- quite possibly you are on the mark with that post. i agree. it is the perfect facade right now.
posted by wantwit at 3:25 PM on May 6, 2001

I'm reminded of the earlier thread about the students who bluff their way through college, and the ones who run all-nighters to get the essay in on time. Clinton was a classic all-nighter-doer, which is of course in part to blame for all that messiness with the young lady in the bathroom, but also meant the buck most obviously began, as well as stopped, with him. Such a workaholic must have known all that was going on, you'd think.

I'd be happy with Bush working office hours, or even maintaining the facade of keeping office hours, if he read his bloody foreign policy briefs.
posted by holgate at 4:26 PM on May 6, 2001

Sorry.. Bush may want to be Reagan or his Daddy or some unholy combination of both... but he's really got the IQ of Homer Simpson and should be a role model for no one. However, I think he's a great MOTIVATOR for feminists... he makes me want to go protest on the Washington Mall for the next four years. Beats college.
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posted by ali at 7:29 PM on May 6, 2001

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