As noted in this thread about Dick Cheney, the President has a heavy burden as Commander in Chief. In fact, as Cheney said, “The President carries the biggest burden, obviously”. Sure, soldiers are getting blown up, but it’s the President who has to actually send them out there. Major burden.
I started to wonder if maybe President Bush kind of envies the soldiers, Marines and thousands of civilian volunteers involved in Afghanistan and Iraq. They get to have all the fun, while he’s stuck in an office job. Apparently I was right; on March 14, President Bush held a videoconference with U.S. troops in Afghanistan via satellite. Bush said this:
I’m thinking that George, like a lot of aging men, regrets not being more romantic and adventurous in his youth. In fact, he’s probably kicking himself for passing on the chance to have hair-raising adventures in exotic Southeast Asia back in the late 1960s, which would have provided fodder for many thrilling yarns he could tell his grandkids.
But it’s not too late! George will be retiring next year, and at 62, still young enough to get involved and make a little history in some far-flung corner of the world. Let’s come up with some ideas for places where George could have two-fisted, pro-democracy adventures of his own!
I talked to an older gentleman the other day who was just a hair too young to enlist during WWII, and he explained that he thought that this was a major motivator for the older guys like Cheney, Rumsfeld, etc. - that they were kids when there was a lot of romance and adventure surrounding going to war and being a soldier, but because they never served and never got smacked with the horrible reality of it, they’re stuck in a sort of arrested “war adventure” mindset. GW Bush would very well fit into that, (though obviously not over WWII).
Hey now, Peace Corps is for people who want to get away from George Bush.
(Actually, this may be a good time for me to tell the story of George Bush and the Peace Corps Volunteers. Last spring he did a tour of Eastern Europe - remember when the Albanians stole his wristwatch? - and they had a reception at the embassy in Sofia when he came to Bulgaria. All of us volunteers got invited, but it was on a schoolday, plus I don’t live all that close to Sofia, and I hate Bush, so I didn’t go. In fact, only a couple of volunteers in my group did go, two guys. When they got to George Bush to shake his hand, he took one look at them and asked, “When did Peace Corps Volunteers start drinking so much?” Their answer: “When we got to Bulgaria”. It kind of makes me wish I’d gone after all.)
“Sir, our operation in Mosul is going well. We’ve uncovered and vacated a number of insurgent strongholds.”
“Things are a little tougher in the west, though. We have unconfirmed intelligence about weapons caches but we’ve been unsuccessful in getting the population to provide information as to their locations.”
“Mmm. What’s the status of securing the Thillonrian Peninsula?”
“The troops we got from the Caliphate of Ekbir. They were supposed to leave the Basin and move east. When are they expected to arrive?”
“Uh, sir, you’re getting Iraq confused with Greyhawk again.”
“What? Bullshit. Gimme the dice, I have to make a save against intelligence.”
Well, seeings how one of his great accomplishments that catapulted him into the big time in Texas politics was co-ownership of the Texas Rangers, I say he should buy a major (but not majority) stake in a professional Iraqi soccer team. His folksey way of … uh … whatever it is he did won over the hearts of the people of Texas and is sure to do the same in Iraq.
Cheney dicked (heh) around in the Political Science department at the University of Wisconsin as a grad student during Vietnam. As soon as he was no longer eligible to be drafted, he dropped out of school.