Saturday, April 17, 2004

Maybe its nothing, but... 

I'm starting to wonder if something is medically wrong with Bush - garrulousness, grandiosity, sometimes anger . . .
Today I read this in Peggy Noonan's column:
I noticed once again at the news conference that Mr. Bush has turned garrulous. He has taken to speaking at great length in venues of his choosing, and more and more he chooses. A week ago I took part in a seminar on book writing at a gathering of Republicans in Georgia. The president spoke to the gathering later that night, at an informal dinner for a few hundred, and I stayed on to watch. Everyone knew his remarks would be brief, but they were not. After an hour the governor of Florida, sitting behind him on the small stage, shifted like someone who knew big brother was going on too long, and finally threw a dinner roll at his back to make the point. I made the last part up, but Jeb Bush looked like someone trying to throw his voice: Wrap it up, buddy. Eventually the president did, with what seemed reluctance, after an hour and 20 minutes of a tour of his horizons, a personal and at times startlingly blunt appraisal of other leaders and the realities they face. When I mentioned to a friend that I'd never heard of Mr. Bush speaking so long, the friend, who sees him often, said the president had recently spoken for more than an hour at a lunch, to the startlement of listeners who wound up furtively checking their watches. Another Washington denizen shared a similar story. This is unlike our president. I don't know what it means. She goes on to talk about how he is choosing the speaking venues where he is stongest etc etc.
But I wonder.
A few weeks ago, I posted some other stuff about odd behaviour:
'Dana Milbank's White House Notebook has an item about Bush's "pothole" joke, which he apparently uses every time he talks to a mayor.
Then there is the odd You remind me of my mother joke at a Texas fundraiser.
And his apparent slapping down of an AP reporter who addressed him as "sir" rather than "Mr. President"
And the "looking for WMD" banquet joke.

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