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Old 06-11-2002, 12:19:08   #1
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The Dim Witted Cowboy

http://www.guardian.co.uk/usa/story/...830255,00.html

Thought this was a really good article when I read it yesterday.

Quote:
George Bush is a dim-witted cowboy who cheated his way into the White House. Well, that's the popular view on this side of the Atlantic. But as he joins the US President on the campaign trail for tonight's crucial midterm elections, Jonathan Freedland gets a very different impression
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Old 06-11-2002, 12:21:54   #2
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It's like in China where they advertise Chinese wine with a character pirated off the Marlboro Man advert. (Yes, the wine is genuine but the advert pirated)

He's on his horse in the poster riding towards you with a bottle of Beaujolais in his hand.

Just not the same image...
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Old 06-11-2002, 12:28:43   #3
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I'm sure that makes sense to you.
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Old 06-11-2002, 12:29:51   #4
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Perfect sense...
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Old 06-11-2002, 12:33:36   #5
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This is what I have been telling you guys Mikey, a lot of you see him as a buffoon, you couldn't be more wrong.

This guy might be the most capable President since Harry Trumen.
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Old 06-11-2002, 12:34:39   #6
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Quote:
Originally posted by Funkodrom
Thought this was a really good article when I read it yesterday.
How about today?
It only tries to explain why americans like bush, and how americans want to perceive a president. Doesn't shed any light on his capabilities.
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Old 06-11-2002, 12:40:29   #7
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Apart from the usual fun with Bush, I've always said that he's of average intelligence. Politically the man is pretty much a mystery. Populist talk, a probably honestly simplistic worldview, easily reconciled with a stunning level of corruption.

That he is resonating with the American public is telling us a lot about the Yanks.
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Old 06-11-2002, 12:41:00   #8
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Does it matter about his capabilities? Providing he is good (or well-advised) at appointing staff.

For example, I am a lousy driver but if I hire the best chauffeur then I think I've done a good job.
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Old 06-11-2002, 12:43:28   #9
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Keep underestimating him.

The guy puts on a simpleton act, it's part of his persona, it's too bad you don't see as he really is.
(In fact, HBO is running a documentry made by a Democratic reporter that went on the campaign trail with Bush in 2000, it shows him as quick witted, and extremly capable).
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Old 06-11-2002, 12:46:20   #10
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Chris, believe it or not I agree with you. In Europe, we seize upon anything as that allows him to fit our view of the Yanks as parochial half-wits.

I believe he is a lot smarter than he appears and how we portray him.

Sure, he mangles his words, but I'd call that a feature not a bug.
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Old 06-11-2002, 12:49:05   #11
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Quote:
Originally posted by Drekkus
How about today?
It only tries to explain why americans like bush, and how americans want to perceive a president. Doesn't shed any light on his capabilities.
That's why it was good I thought. It does explain why people in his own country like him.

Chris: The article shows that he's a clever politician who's good at dumbing down issues so that the common people can grasp them, something a lot of politicians should really do. The problem is that with dumbing the issues down seems to be that he's also dumbing down the solutions. To European ears what he says seems really oversimplified.
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Old 06-11-2002, 12:51:18   #12
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RC, no question about that, but who tells the driver where to go?
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Old 06-11-2002, 12:51:28   #13
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I know, we do the same with Euro-politicians, who are viewed as weak-willed fags who would rather do buisness with anyone no matter what they are up too then fight terrorism.

The main problem is Bush is VERY pragmatic, Europe fell in love with Clinton the liar, a man who would tell you what you wanted to hear, knowing it could NEVER happen (the ICC, Kyoto, ect), so now Europe reacts with hostility toward the man who is honestly telling you those things aern't possible.
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Old 06-11-2002, 12:52:55   #14
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Quote:
Originally posted by Resource Consumer
Chris, believe it or not I agree with you. In Europe, we seize upon anything as that allows him to fit our view of the Yanks as parochial half-wits.

I believe he is a lot smarter than he appears and how we portray him.

Sure, he mangles his words, but I'd call that a feature not a bug.
We (in the UK media at least) are vicious at characterising politicians and satirising them. Look at John Major's brutal portrayal as the grey man for instance. It didn't matter that he was a very cometent politician with his hands tied by a totally split party, and, apparently, very charismatic if you met him, to the country at large he was incredibly dull. End of story.
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Old 06-11-2002, 12:52:59   #15
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He's obviously a robot built by the CIA in his fathers image. They just haven't perfected the speech program. His humble and honest face program works just fine.
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Old 06-11-2002, 12:54:14   #16
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Quote:
Originally posted by Chris
In fact, HBO is running a documentry made by a Democratic reporter that went on the campaign trail with Bush in 2000, it shows him as quick witted, and extremly capable.
I would like to see that one.

I guess americans want a tough and clever leader, and europeans more of a wise man leader.
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Old 06-11-2002, 12:55:58   #17
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Definitely. I think that sums up the major difference.
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Old 06-11-2002, 12:56:35   #18
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Quote:
Originally posted by Chris
Keep underestimating him.
I'm not misunderestimating him, on substance his policies are a total desaster in virtually everything.

The marketing side however is much better - and having the dems in their seemingly unlimited stupidity help the Bushies is an extra....
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Old 06-11-2002, 12:57:32   #19
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Quote:
Originally posted by Funkodrom
Chris: The article shows that he's a clever politician who's good at dumbing down issues so that the common people can grasp them, something a lot of politicians should really do. The problem is that with dumbing the issues down seems to be that he's also dumbing down the solutions. To European ears what he says seems really oversimplified.
So it may seem, but look at the record.

It was ASSUMED he would over-react after 9/11, this didn't happen, the response was calculated and effective.

It was ASSUMED he would not seek UN approval for actions against Iraq, he has indeed sought UN approval, in fact, he paid the US's long over-due UN bills, and got the US involved in UN programs again, unlike his moronic predecessor.

When he says the US will act against Iraq if it feels threatened, whether the UN likes it or not, is BRINKSMENSHIP, and it's working, Pakistan complied, Iran arrested Al Qaeda suspects, even Saddam is now saying he will comply will lawful UN resolutions.

By all accounts, his approach is correct, the talk and stall of France and other nations isn't.
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Old 06-11-2002, 13:00:14   #20
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"When he says the US will act against Iraq if it feels threatened, whether the UN likes it or not, is BRINKSMENSHIP"

How can you be so sure ?

I think it's 50:50 whether we'll get an Iraq war regardless of what Iraq does.
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Old 06-11-2002, 13:01:29   #21
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Quote:
Originally posted by Roland
I'm not misunderestimating him, on substance his policies are a total desaster in virtually everything.
That's bull and you know it.
Explain why US economic indicators are on the up-swing the last two months and US unemployment dropped for the 4th straight month.
Quote:
The marketing side however is much better - and having the dems in their seemingly unlimited stupidity help the Bushies is an extra....
You always do this Roland, you accuse Bush of failure, and NEVER back it up.

How has he failed?

Say so.

Exactly how, no airy "total disaster" nonsense, specific events.

Put up or shut up dude.
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Old 06-11-2002, 13:05:39   #22
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Quote:
Originally posted by Drekkus
I would like to see that one.

I guess americans want a tough and clever leader, and europeans more of a wise man leader.
No, you guys want a President that will obey you.
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Old 06-11-2002, 13:09:03   #23
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Just open your eyes.

"Explain why US economic indicators are on the up-swing the last two months and US unemployment dropped for the 4th straight month."

What indicators ? Consumer confidence ?

As for US unemployment, the rate rose last month if you haven't realised that 5.7 is higher than 5.6. If you look at the underlying data you'll also see some odd seasonal quirks like a sharp rise in farm employment and a fall in the labour force.



Then we could look at fighting the corporate corruption mess. Nada.

Then we have fiscal policies with the firm establishment of a budget time bomb, aka the Bush tax cuts.

The only success I can think of was Afghanistan. Anything else ?
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Old 06-11-2002, 13:11:39   #24
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That's a double talk answer, you said "total disaster", where is it?

Still waiting for something concrete.
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Old 06-11-2002, 13:14:41   #25
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Quote:
Originally posted by Venom
No, you guys want a President that will obey you.
What? Obey who? You want a leader who does the opposite of what you want? Please explain.
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Old 06-11-2002, 13:16:43   #26
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You (meaning you Europeans) want a President (of the USA) to obey you (meaning you Europeans) and say all the things you want to hear.
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Old 06-11-2002, 13:20:11   #27
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Quote:
Originally posted by Chris
That's a double talk answer, you said "total disaster", where is it?
I wonder how many gazing errors you have to make to concede a point...

Anyway, the economy is set for the next recession (mostly Greenspan's and Rubin's fault, but the Bushies made it even worse). The "war on terror" is going nowhere since Afghanistan. US foreign policy is losing international support at a record rate.

I won't go through the laundry list - suggest a topic.
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Old 06-11-2002, 13:20:39   #28
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Quote:
Originally posted by Venom
You (meaning you Europeans) want a President (of the USA) to obey you (meaning you Europeans) and say all the things you want to hear.
AND IN FRENCH!!!
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Old 06-11-2002, 13:22:26   #29
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Ah, like that. Ehm, I think everyone would like the next door leader to have the same ideas (if you agree with the ideas, that is). You want the iraqi leader to obey you, no?
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Old 06-11-2002, 13:23:43   #30
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Yeah. The war on terror is going no where. Even though we're blowing terrorists up in Yemen and having them handed over by other countries.
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Old 06-11-2002, 13:27:24   #31
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While there's no trace of Osama or Omar, AQ is fully operational, US "homeland security" is a chaos, and their radical islamist power base looks to be growing solidly.
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Old 06-11-2002, 13:34:12   #32
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Quote:
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Ah, like that. Ehm, I think everyone would like the next door leader to have the same ideas (if you agree with the ideas, that is). You want the iraqi leader to obey you, no?
Just want to make sure he has no terror weapons. It'd be nice to let his people actually choose who they wanted to lead them, but that may not be feasible. Part of the whole war on terrorism. Of course, we can't do that because the UN is pussing out.
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Old 06-11-2002, 13:35:21   #33
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Quote:
Originally posted by Roland
While there's no trace of Osama or Omar, AQ is fully operational, US "homeland security" is a chaos, and their radical islamist power base looks to be growing solidly.
Your AQ Monthly magazine give you that information?
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Old 06-11-2002, 13:37:49   #34
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Yes, fine. Point I'm trying to make is that you like Blair better being the good puppy that he is than him having a mind of his own. And who could blame you.
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Old 06-11-2002, 13:40:06   #35
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Whoa, a political discussion thread. Anyone care what I think?
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Old 06-11-2002, 13:40:24   #36
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"Your AQ Monthly magazine give you that information?"

What, you no subscriber ?
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Old 06-11-2002, 13:42:57   #37
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Whoa, a political discussion thread. Anyone care what I think?
Think? You mean stink?
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Old 06-11-2002, 13:43:26   #38
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Same thing.
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Old 06-11-2002, 13:45:11   #39
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So, what do you stink of, Lurker?
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Old 06-11-2002, 13:47:07   #40
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Politicians.
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Old 06-11-2002, 13:49:18   #41
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Quote:
Originally posted by Funkodrom
... with his hands tied by a totally split party, and, apparently, very charismatic if you met him, to the country at large he was incredibly dull. End of story.
I thought his hands were tied by Edwina...
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Old 06-11-2002, 13:49:40   #42
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Old 06-11-2002, 14:03:51   #43
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Quote:
Originally posted by Drekkus
Yes, fine. Point I'm trying to make is that you like Blair better being the good puppy that he is than him having a mind of his own. And who could blame you.
Yes, ideally we want the US to have a president who has vaguely similar ideals and policies to Europe. I think Drekkus is right, you also want European leaders who have similar ideals and policies to you as well.

We don't want to order you around but we don't want to be bullied into things by you either. The best thing would be to find some common ground to work together on but we seem to be getting further apart not closer.
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Old 06-11-2002, 14:14:52   #44
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Which comes across to us as you turning a blind eye to people attacking us. And we don't dig on that.

And I really don't care if Europe agrees with us. Different people. Different cultures. Different ideas. You'll never understand why we think what we think and we'll never understand why you think what you think. We're just different people. There will never be a solution. Nations will never get along because neither side takes the time to understand the other. All they do is throw around blame and mock each others points of view.
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Old 06-11-2002, 14:19:20   #45
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Hmmm... why does it come across that we're turning a blind eye to people attacking you? Just asking 'cause the amount of discussion here about world terrorism and the best ways to stop it etc. has been one of the biggest debates in this country for the last year.
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Old 06-11-2002, 14:31:35   #46
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Besides the UN handcuffing us on Iraq, the general malaise you show towards our war on terror policy. Blair supports us, and you call him a puppet.

Stupid flood control.
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Old 06-11-2002, 14:42:32   #47
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When has Iraq attacked you ?

And that we think YOUR "war on terror policy" is counterproductive in many ways does not mean we turn a blind eye. Just on the contrary, the attacks against the french and germans in Pakistan, Yemen and Djerba seem to always escape US attention when it is "Our war, our war, OUR war...."
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Old 06-11-2002, 14:45:12   #48
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Saying that it's not OK for a country to just invade another country whenever they feel like it and with little useful evidence about why it's a good idea seems pretty sensible to me.

And there hasn't been any serious evidence that Iraq could attack the US with WMD or had anything to do with 9/11.

The problem with your war on terror policy is not that we don't agree with the aim but that we don't always agree with the means. There isn't just one way to deal with things which we are trying to hamper.
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Old 06-11-2002, 14:46:58   #49
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Quote:
Originally posted by Roland
When has Iraq attacked you ?

And that we think YOUR "war on terror policy" is counterproductive in many ways does not mean we turn a blind eye. Just on the contrary, the attacks against the french and germans in Pakistan, Yemen and Djerba seem to always escape US attention when it is "Our war, our war, OUR war...."
Exactly.
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Old 06-11-2002, 14:49:18   #50
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Quote:
Originally posted by Roland
When has Iraq attacked you ?

And that we think YOUR "war on terror policy" is counterproductive in many ways does not mean we turn a blind eye. Just on the contrary, the attacks against the french and germans in Pakistan, Yemen and Djerba seem to always escape US attention when it is "Our war, our war, OUR war...."
I want to bust those terrorist heads just as much. And Iraq harbors terrorists just like AFghanistan. Afghanistan didn't attack us but we were well within our rights to attack them. Have you not noticed the troops we have in Yemen? Did you not see the AQ terrorists with a truck load of explosives that we blew out of the desert? I think you'll find Hussein is supporting those that support these attacks you think we don't notice. You're the one not noticing things. You sit there and complain that we do nothing when you bitch when we want to do something.
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