...in an interview with a book author in the Oval Office one day last December, he [Bush] daydreamed about the next phase of his life, when his time will be his own.This comes from a book on the Bush Presidency by Robert Draper about to be published.
First, Mr. Bush said, “I’ll give some speeches, just to replenish the ol’ coffers.” With assets that have been estimated as high as nearly $21 million, Mr. Bush added, “I don’t know what my dad gets — it’s more than 50-75” thousand dollars a speech, and “Clinton’s making a lot of money.”
Then he said, “We’ll have a nice place in Dallas,” where he will be running what he called “a fantastic Freedom Institute” promoting democracy around the world. But he added, “I can just envision getting in the car, getting bored, going down to the ranch.”
For now, though, Mr. Bush told the author, Robert Draper, in a later session, “I’m playing for October-November.” That is when he hopes the Iraq troop increase will finally show enough results to help him achieve the central goal of his remaining time in office: “To get us in a position where the presidential candidates will be comfortable about sustaining a presence,” and, he said later, “stay longer.”
Mr. Draper agreed to share parts of his transcripts from those interviews, and the book itself, with The New York Times under the agreement that they would not be published until shortly before the book, “Dead Certain,” is officially released on Tuesday.It is rather clear that he still has no idea how truly bad his Presidency has been. I wonder if he will somehow recognize how awful his administration has been, then perhaps learn to cope with his failure, or if he will simply continue to float cluelessly in a sea of unawareness.
The transcripts and the book show Mr. Bush as being keenly interested in what history will say about his term despite his frequent comments to the contrary; as being in a reflective mode as his time at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue dwindles; and, ultimately, as being at once sorrowful and optimistic — but virtually alone as commander in chief, and aware of it.
I would guess that he will "float cluelessly." The reports will not be too his liking, so he will then he will blame others for misinterpreting his decisions and blaming him.
But there is still 17 months left for them to really mess things up worse. As I wrote yesterday in Plans for war with Iran well-advanced:
The recent increase in propaganda designed to justify the war against Iran is especially noticeable from the News Corp publications and particularly FOX News.I wish I thought that was unthinkable, but I don't. It is a reasonable prediction to make about this administration. They are ready to attack Iran at a moment's notice, and the only thing stopping them is concern for the political consequences here in the U.S.
As for when the Bushies will pull the trigger on the attack, my bet is that they are watching the polls. The poll results are being looked at two ways.
The first focus of the "Attack Iran" propaganda effort being coordinated out of the White House is to see how much general approval they can get, especially among independent voters. They will pull the trigger as soon as they think the American electorate generally will support them, unless it means too many Republicans are likely to lose in the 2008 election as a result. The second focus is the 2008 election and how the attack on Iran will effect the Republican Party effort to regain control of the House and Senate in 2008.
Enough push back from people who recognize that this is an unnecessary war will delay it until November 2008. After that the White House has the rest of November, all of December and most of January to attack Iran. They will do it.
Why? Simple. They have no positive legacy anyway. But the hardliners are certain that Iran is an existential threat to the U.S. An attack on Iran would stop or severely delay any threat Iran poses. They know that the Democrats will not conduct the attack on the flimsy evidence that exists to so frighten the hardliners. The domestic political cost in the 2008 election will remain too high for them to conduct the attack before that election, but nothing prevents them from acting afterwards.
It is my opinion that the Bush hardliners will take that last 12 weeks in the White House after the election to conduct a "Hail Mary" action. The attack on Iran will be seen as the last chance for a big gain. They really think it will very possibly create - at the last moment - the positive legacy for the Bush administration that has eluded them for eight years now.
The Bush people think they can frighten and bludgeon their foreign enemies into submission, and they don't see that they are actually creating frightened, angry enemies who will do whatever it takes to stop this rogue nation, America, from destroying the rest of the world.
Talk about a prescription for disaster!
Meanwhile, Bush drifts along in a fog of ignorance and indifference. His post Presidency will be more of the same.