Monday, April 02, 2007

Bush: Crusader for the Common Man?

I felt the need to reflect on something I just heard on C-SPAN a few minutes ago. I was watching the tail end of a Q&A interview with Michael Gerson, Bush's former speechwriter. He and Brian Lamb were discussing Bush and his reading habits, and and the conversation led to a point in which Gerson commented the Bush was not anti-intellectual, but anti-elite, and opposed to the contempt elites have for the common man. Bush was lauded as a regular guy, with a common man's disposition. Now, some may accuse me of predictable Bush-bashing, but I find that declaration dubious. Bush is a man born into the patrician elite, and has reaped many of the privileges of his wealthy upbringing. He just hides it better than say John Kerry, who is actually less wealthy, but still gets painted as a Brahmin (which he is). What is it about Bush, who is just as much a product of wealth as Kerry and Gore, that allows him to pass as a regular guy? Is it because he's legitimately more likeable, as those who've met him attest? Kerry comes off as an emotional black hole, and Gore has his issues, but how is Bush any less of an elitist? Keep in mind, that I'm not suggesting that there's anything wrong with wealth.

Take a guy like John Edwards, who started off from poverty, and worked his way up to wealth, and now wants to give back through policies he believes will help the poor. Truly, many may disagree with his policies, but what is it about Edwards that garners so much contempt from some? What I'm asking is, why is wealthy Bush the everyman, while wealthy Edwards is a self-righteous elite?

Am I missing something? What I'm asking is, how is Bush different?

1 comment:

c.q. banks said...

Bush is not different. Kerry, Gore, Edwards, and Bush are pretentious in presenting themseleves as representatives of the people. They are nowhere close in identifying with the average American.

The contempt for Edwards is that he did not earn his wealth. He extorted his wealth by justice rent seeking and jurisprudence black mail. He did not produce a thing. He never got his hands dirty or broke a sweat. All he did was take advantage of a corrupt tort system. The American tort system is no better than that of organized crime.

Bush's wealth is unearned as well. He was born and reared in privilege. It's not hard to be wealthy when you already have it.

Kerry is married to a heiress, so he's living xxxl.

Gore's family was wealthy and connected.

All four are elitists and no different.