Friday, September 02, 2005
What Does Bush Think...?
The brain is divided into , roughly, three parts: the reticular, the limbic and the frontal or cortical regions. The first rules the Wide World of Wrestling, the second rules the Desperate Housewives and the third rules PBS--on its better days. Of course there is overlap of the regions, especially when it comes to the complicated socio-cultural aspects of death, sex and syntax. Michel Foucault invented a shorthand for measuring the personality of social leadership: how they view their enemies.
I just got done watching C-SPAN for an hour of George Bush travelling the hurrican devastated Gulf Region. I only watched sporatically as I was broiling toast and cheese for dinner, but here is what I saw. George Bush first in Alabama rehearsing the talking points to be made at all the stops including Biloxi, Mississippi and New Orleans. There were six points he repeated:
1. This was a heckuva a storm, but not the worst in history
2. We'll rebuild better than before
3. We will do a better job than we have done up to now
4. Thanks to all the courageous people and politicians
5. Give cash to the Salvation Army and the Red Cross
6. Faith-based and Community-based organizations will lead the way
These were not bad things for people to hear. They were not particularly meaningful, either--except to reassure his base, which doubtless is a major objective in the rescue effort over the next days. There was plenty of touching and affecting footage of Bush mingling with people (I am an admitted sucker for such things and Bush does it well). Afterward I wondered: what does this guy really think about when he is alone?
Is George Bush like most of the other contemporary presidents, save Reagan, who were Presidents having a 'cortical dominant' nature? These presidents possessed a sense of the history of the office. So I wondered, does Bush whisper to the ghosts of Washington, Jefferson and Adams when alone? Does he converse with their portraits? Does he ponder the consequences of even his smallest word? Surely Bush has noticed that when he sneezes, noses are wiped in London, Islamabad and Tel Aviv. Does that humble him? Does it fill him with awe?
Does George Bush marvel at the machinery he commands? Does he have a childlike sense of wonder at the science, technology or the telos of the institutions under his control? There is a wonderful story of Richard Nixon sneaking out of the White House in the middle of the night to engage a group of young anti-war demonstrators in discussion. Nixon was motivated by the notion that if only he could talk to these young people they would see that he was neither the monster nor the fool that the 'liberal' media made him out to be. A friend of mine, who told me this story, remarked: "...can you imagine being with a group of buddies, lying around in sleeping bags--maybe after smoking a joint-- and all of a sudden, out of the fog comes Richard Nixon wanting to talk to you?" Even Nixon, famous for his insularity, found the White House stifling. This is a 'frontal lobe' president. In Nixon's case, there was a lot of serotonin reuptake in the mix, but he was definitely a dominant frontal lobe President. The Motto of the Frontal Lobites: "Keep your friends close and your enemies closer"
Or is George Bush more like Paris Hilton? In such a 'limbic-dominant' presidency, George would be spending his down time NOT thinking. Hell, he spends almost 6 hours a day thinking, give a guy a break! At such times, he plays Yahtzee with Laura or watches a DVD. It's not likely Bush has any hobbies...certainly not reading or writing...so, the avoidance of thinking must be a challenge. When he does think, the limbic president would be contemplating who is up and who is down; who can be trusted, who can't. Limbics love gossip, drama and tend to be borderline personalities. The Limbics Motto: "The enemy of my enemy is my friend"
Or is our President really Slobogeorge Milosobush, the 'reticular-dominant' fascist eeking out reason from the brain stem? They say: "fuck the enemy"
The generous conclusion is that George W. Bush is a melange of all three personalities. But really...what DOES George Bush think about when he is all alone?
My Motto: "We Have Met The Enemy and He Is Us"