Wednesday, January 29, 2003

Home Run: Sorry I'm late, but I had trouble with the web this morning. It gave me a chance to peruse the papers. There is a lot of nitpicky criticism of the SOTU, but nobody tackles it head on. I think it was a home run. (David Brooks comes closest to agreeing with me. It would be Radley, who's right on in nailing Bush on the price of the domestic programs, except that I buy the war argument.) For two years I watched Bush's speeches on the edge of my seat, waiting for the grammatical train wreck or the deer-in-the-headlights look. I've stopped. He's in command; he's a good speaker when it's written out (this can't entirely be said of his father); and, dammit, I like him. Yes, he is like Reagan, just as the liberals claim. He's easy to peg as a doltish pushover. Remember when Reagan went to Iceland for a summit with Gorbachev? Everyone said, "Oh, Gorby's so smart, he's gonna eat Reagan's lunch." Not so. If anything, the reverse happened: Reagan told Gorby that we could reduce arms together, but Star Wars was going forward and the USSR could pound sand if they didn't like it. Young George is like that, too. Friendly, informal, but with a determination that isn't obvious at first.

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