QUOTE(salvador @ Nov 6 2008, 02:50 PM) [snapback]409616[/snapback]
Anybody with ZERO major league sports experience who can buy 10% of a pro baseball team for $650K is a fucking genius. Not to mention the fact that he was able to convince all those freaky bible beaters that he was one of THEM.
Bush is a lot of things: corrupt, cynical, egotistical, elitist, condescending, ect., but DUMB ain't one of them.
I tend to agree with you, Salvador. He's certainly no genius in any sense of the word, but he is much more shrewd and aware than people realize.
People forget who he learned from.....who his mentor was. He learned at the foot of the man who was the master of modern Machiavelian politics, Lee Atwater. Atwater taught Dubya that truth is irrelevant......all that really matters is perception. When it comes to politics, perception is reality.
George W Bush is from an elite family that had its major roots in the Northeast (Dubya's dad was raised in CT).......yet Dubya was able to brand himself as a "Cowboy" from Texas (ever realize that none of his siblings speak with that southern accent he has?). He was just a regular guy.....he had a charming style about him and a speaking style that made many peg him as a complete moron. But make no mistake - he may not not have read 3 books/month as his mentor falsely claimed to have done - but he knew how to read people. He knew how to get what he wanted.
How did he get the Republican nomination in 2000? He did it by talking about a humble foreign policy, less government spending, more private choices in health care, and vouchers/charter schools to combat the public school monopoly. People bought into it, but he delivered on none of it. He appealed to the religious crowd, by, as you pointed out, convincing them that he was one of them (despite being an alcoholic until the age of 40). He appealed to southerners the same way, despite coming from a family that was Texan in name only.
And then throughout his Presidency........he used what happened on 9/11 to further an agenda of expanding the power of the executive branch and attempting to remake the middle east. He manipulated his enemies into doing what he wanted and when he couldn't, he'd just do it anyway and claim executive privilege when he was found out (ie: FISA).
Everybody thought Cheney and crew were calling the shots......Bush was simply too dumb to be able to comprehend any of what was going on. Sure, he was responsible because he was the President, but Cheney was the truly evil one and Bush was just a puppet. Again, it's all perception.
Over the past eight years, Bush got everything he really wanted and then some. Like you said, he may be a lot of things.....but he is nowhere near the complete idiot that a lot of people think he is.