First Lady Bush is as dumb as a stump.

Laura Bush was making the rounds on the morning shows promoting heart disease awareness. Ok, fine. Then I hear her say “I thought cancer was the number one disease that kills people, then I found out it’s really heart disease.”

This is from a woman who promotes READING! No, forget that. Even NON-readers know heart disease is the number one killer! Laura, you stupid, blank-staring stump!
I know there’s no great tradition of First Lady brilliance, but I think we all had high hopes for Laura in the beginning. Everyone knew George was an idiot. We all hoped Laura would compensate for that.

But now we know why Laura married George. They are stumps! Both of 'em!

I mean, Jesus Christ! You’re in the White House for at least four years in the company of the most powerful administration in the world and all you can do in the past 4 years (4 FUCKING YEARS, PEOPLE!!!) is promote reading one month in 2003 and say that heart disease is bad!!! That’s all you do in all that time!!!

God, please get these yahoos out of our government!

You know what? You’re absolutely right. She should do more.

Maybe she can make like she’s important and position herself for a run at the Senate. How does that sound? Or maybe she can take her shot at health care and fail miserably. Why not?

Give me a break.

This is hardly a Pit-worthy offense, is it? It’s not as if that’s even close to the stupidest thing one can say. A bit ignorant, perhaps, but hardly stupid.

How about if she just keeps her mouth shut. There is no reason at all for Laura Bush to ever express a public opinion (unless she wants to apologize for killing that guy that she killed). I’ve never seen any sign of intelligence in the woman and don’t give a shit what she thinks.

So is she dumb because, before she found out that heart disease was the number one killer, she thought it was cancer, or is she dumb because she doesn’t do much?

If it’s the first, then while she was wrong, it was a good guess. Cancer kills a lot of people, and it’s in the news a lot, and there are probably a bunch of people who think that it’s the number one killer. I’ll also point out that she said that she once believed that… it’s not dumb to say, “I was ignorant of something in the past but have since learned it”. We all can honestly say that, and admitting it can even be a form of humility.

If it’s the second, then first off, the First Lady isn’t required to do anything. She’s not a government employee…she’s the wife of the president. However, that being said, she is doing an awful lot. She hasn’t been promoting reading “for one month in 2003”, as you’ve portrayed. Her “Ready to Read, Ready to Learn” program has been active since February 2001, both promoting prereading and vocabulary programs and recruiting people to teach in inner city schools. As part of that, she, along with the Secretaries of Education and Health and Human Services, sponsored a national summit on Early Childhood Cognitive Development in 2001, along with various regional summits, and has brought attention, publicity, and support to a number of programs promoting education, including “Reach out and Read”, which gives books to parents of young children, “Healthy Start, Grow Smart”, a magazine provided in WIC clinics as well as state Health and Human Services offices that focuses on health, safety, and development needs of babies, and both the New Teacher Project, which recruits teachers from the professional world, and “Troops to Teachers”, which recruits them from recent military veterans.

In addition to this, Mrs. Bush also hosted the National Book Festival, is active in Historic Preservation, and has hosted various book and poetry symposiums.

Heart disease the #1 killer?

I was nearly convinced it was terrorism.

(d’s & r’s)

Step off.


For all you know, she just uses the sound bite of “I didn’t know heart disease was such a big killer, myself!” as something to get people’s attention.

And god, if you were to ask me that question, I would have had to think it over myself. I hear so much about both diseases, I tend to tune it out. More important that I know I need to watch the fat in my diet than to know whether it trumps cancer, wouldn’t you say? Call me self-interested, but I hardly think that not knowing this one fact makes me a total moron.

I think the woman has lousy taste in men, but I’m not prepared to discuss her intellect because I don’t know much about it. And I don’t think you know much about it, either.

Maybe this was just a thinly-veiled attack on a woman whose husband you don’t like. Paired with a chance to pat yourself of the back because YOU know the order of incidence of health-related morbidity. Woo-hoo! Go YOU!

In Time magazine’s April 2003 story on heart disease, the lead is:

This suggests a great many people might have held the mistaken belief that breast cancer was the culprit. Time would not have opened the article that way if the assumption were not widely held.

According to at least two different sources, in the UK cancer IS the leading cause of death, overtaking heart disease.

So why is her assumption so foolish?

  • Rick

The rant is disingenuous. I don’t think much of that family, but this appears to me to be an entirely invalid criticism.


Chelsea Clinton in braces, Dean’s wife, Kerry’s wife, Betty Ford, Billy Carter, and now, Laura Bush.

Why? Her concern for dying people was slightly misplaced. Nay. Nay, I say.

Pick on George all you want to. He takes controversial positions.

Also, given that heart stoppage is a major problem, maybe she thought many heart deaths counted as “natural causes” or something. Personally, I don’t know the answer to that question.

Lame rant. Lamer response by DtC.

Ok, I’ll ‘step off’…a little.

Thanks to Brickner, there appears to be a common conception that cancer IS more of a killer of women than heart disease (and actually is in the UK according to their Office Of National Statistics, although those numbers look suspicious to me, and the Cancer Research numbers were too close to call one or the other for men.)

So, Laura, I apologize for calling you a stump for your statement.

But I don’t apologize for criticizing your lack of activity. Captain Amazing lists some stuff, but if that’s all then wowee. Noble stuff all of it, but again, you’re in a position to do A LOT! A few reading programs and some luncheons? How about taking George’s dropped education ball and making it your own? Remember “No child left behind”? Improving the US Public School system? Too big for you?

Ok, sure, Hillary took on health care insurance and fucked it up. But at least she tried! Some of that shit was gonna happen no matter what, so it’s unfair to blame it all on her.

I’m talking about big issues. Doing some fucking work! Not teaparties and reading to African kids. Those are nice, but you have very little time and there is SO MUCH to do! Why waste it? Shit, you could MAKE A DIFFERENCE!

(am I unfairly projecting my frustration with my local PTA too much here?)

This has got to be one of the dumbest rants in a while. She admits that she once mistakenly thought that cancer killed more people than heart disease, and that makes her dumb as a stump? Puh-leeze.

You think the First Lady is a government employee? You’re dumb as a stump! Why don’t you read a book for once? :rolleyes:

Mr. Doors:

Kindly explain why someone should not campaign for healthcare – especially for those whose hourly income is not in the double digits and whose primary care physician is the ER doctor. Inmates at your local prison receive healthcare on demand, why not the clerk at Circle K, or the elementary school bus driver or the person who answers the bell when your elderly loved one rings for help in assisted living facilities?

Bash Hillary as gratuituously as you will; however, she was fighting for something that should be important to us all – the well being of our family, our neighbors, our friends, and the strangers we pass at the grocery store.

Did the health bill get hijacked by special interests? Undoubtedly. That’s a topic for another thread and I’m sorry to hijack here. I’m just sick to fucking death of witnessing Mrs. C. get a ration of shit for actually taking on the machine and attempting to help the more than 44 million people who do not have health care.

Apologies for the detour and it was wonderful to hear Mrs. Bush announce increased funding for the NEA.


My rants are NOT lame!!!
(ok, that was lame for me to post)
They’re NOT!

I’m sorry, teachers union, arts funding. I hit reply and I don’t pad my post count as much as some of you people. Jes kiddin.

OK, what else could I say…?

Better to have ranted and lost, than never to have ranted at all.

Maybe it’s just me…but I have better things to do than to memorize the importance of a bunch of diseases. All I know is that cancer = bad. Heart disease = bad. AIDS = bad.

And I’m a biologist.

You can bash the woman for a lot of things, but this? Come on now. One shouldn’t have to be Encyclopedia Brown in order to be on a morning talk show. If that were the case, there would only be one person on TV: Encyclopedia Brown.

Y’know, I don’t care at all for George Bush. Not one little bit. But Laura Bush certainly seems gracious and intelligent. Maybe she could do more, but she’s a politician’s spouse, not an elected or appointed official; why should it be her job to cure the world’s ills?

Any mention of when she found out that she was wrong? Or are you just assuming that she found out recently?

We don’t even know whether she ever even really thought that cancer was the #1 killer. It is considered polite among gracious Southern ladies to phrase things in a self-deprecating way. By stating her own ignorance, she can correct others’ misconceptions without seeming condescending.

In other words, she was using a rhetorical device to politely say “Heart disease is the #1 killer. If you think it’s cancer, then you’re wrong.”

Southern ladies are very good at using gentle words to avoid hurt feelings while still getting their point across. Personally, I’m an unrepentant Yank, and I much prefer the Jersey Girl mode of speech* to that of the Gracious Southern Lady, but I think Laura Bush’s polite phrasing is probably more productive in this context.

*[sub] You thought cancer was the number one killer? What are you, stupid? It’s heart disease, dumbass![/sub]