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Sunday, February 25, 2024

What will George do after 2008?

I have always wondered what President Bush will do after he finishes his second term, assuming that he consents to go. He could be a professional brush clearer, a producer of exercise-bike videos or a private elocution teacher for would-be politicians who need to mangle their sentences in order to achieve the common touch.

I have always wondered what President Bush will do after he finishes his second term, assuming that he consents to go. He could be a professional brush clearer, a producer of exercise-bike videos or a private elocution teacher for would-be politicians who need to mangle their sentences in order to achieve the common touch.

Perhaps he will be dean of the Alberto Gonzales School of Law in Texas. (Motto: “What’s a Constitution Between Friends?”) Yes, the possibilities are endless for one so talented. As for endorsements, I understand that a company wishing to build a new Titanic is clamoring for his support.

While I know that Bush will be the decider of his future fortune, it seems pretty clear to me that he will become a history professor, perhaps at one of the nation’s military colleges.

The president is renowned for constantly making speeches to those in uniform. Indeed, many of us are surprised that he hasn’t mistakenly given a speech to a convention of ice-cream vendors or even a gathering of clowns. (Wait! That was his State of the Union address.)

Bush’s fondness for uniforms has never been properly explained, but I refuse to believe that Bush prefers the troops because the common taxpayers have a habit of asking pesky questions. Perish the thought!

No, it’s because he is a “war president” and the whole country has been mobilized and even the rich have agreed to tax increases as part of the shared national sacrifice because civilization itself is at stake!

(Editor’s note: The preceding paragraph was sponsored by the American Society to Eradicate Hypocrisy, which touchingly supposes that conservative readers will be moved to think by the force of irony.)

Last week, he spoke before the Veterans of Foreign Wars at their convention in Kansas City, Mo. It was the next-best thing to speaking to current veterans — or, as former Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld might have said, if you are the war president, you go with the audience you’ve got.

Bush was in rousing form. He gave a history lesson to those boys and gals in the VFW caps like they have never heard it before. This was probably a bit of a surprise to some in the audience because they had made the history he was explaining and surely knew better. Nevertheless, they cheered him to the rafters.

It just goes to show what happens when an audience that perhaps has had one or two beers in the VFW hall over the years meets a president who sat too long on the bar stool during the war of his generation.

Now that we are all sober, just a few million brain cells short of a load, who can remember how history went down? Cambodia? Vietnam? Hard to keep ’em straight.

Bush’s history lesson may have owed little to scholars such as Arnold J. Toynbee or Edward Gibbon, but with that going for it, this was just the sort of thing that our young people should hear today.

For one thing, his history is so simple and easy. Back in the day, some of us had to write tedious essays on the causes of various wars and it was all a tangle of archdukes, armament build-ups, spheres of influence, commercial rivalry, interlocking alliances and so on and such like.

Not in Prof. Bush’s class. No, sir. According to his theory, all wars are basically the same. Why, I could get a gentleman’s C in his class — and I am rarely accused of being a gentleman.

Sample question: What was the cause of the war with Imperial Japan? Or in Korea? Or in Vietnam? Or in Iraq and Afghanistan?

Correct answer: The enemy hated freedom.

The only challenge is to expand this answer to 800 words. But knowing some of America’s college students as I do, they are the masters of creative double spacing.

If Bush becomes a history professor, I certainly intend to go to his class. In order to get my questions answered, I know I will have to put on the old bush hat or the rakish beret of my former service in Vietnam, where, as it happens, I never got to ask the enemy why he hated freedom because he was too busy hating us for being there.

I love freedom myself. I wonder what part of it our enemies hate? The part where we vote on electronic machines that cannot be trusted?

Gosh, with history explained, perhaps Bush will make math easy. Oh, I forgot, he did that already with his ever-rosy news about the economy. Such is life in the struggle for civilization.

(Reg Henry is a columnist for the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. E-mail rhenry(at)

19 thoughts on “What will George do after 2008?”

  1. “NASCAR driver” was my answer, posted 6/10/07 at

    Bush announces post-presidential plans

    Crawford TX 6/10/07

    With the countdown on his presidency eagerly watched by his foes, George W. Bush’s remaining admirers have been pressing him to declare his projects for after January 2009.

    “President Clinton is working for AIDS treatment around the world; President Carter is conquering guinea worm and now moving on to malaria; I’ve wanted to do something closer to home,” President Bush said; “I’m becoming a NASCAR driver.”

    Press secretary Tony Snow explained: “It’s not all that different from what he’s doing now: he’ll try to stay out ahead of the people chasing after him, encourage gas, oil, and rubber consumption, and advertise his sponsor, the great ex-American company Halliburton.”

    The First Lady, Laura Bush, exulted: “It’s the perfect job for him. Georgie has always enjoyed model cars, and now he can drive real ones and get away from those pesky Secret Service chauffeurs. He can forget all those big words he’s had to learn in the White House. We’ll be installing a 2.5-mile race track on the ranch,” she added, “paid for by Exxon-Mobil.”

    — Nathaniel Smith

  2. You’re all wrong. Ex-President Bush will not do or become any of the above. The first action he will take is divorce Laura. She will get revenge by taking Barney in the settlement. George will put up a fight to keep him, the last gasp will be to openly cry in the lawyer’s office. George will once again grab headlines in every newspaper in the country, he will announce his up coming marriage. He will not say who the bride to be is, when asked why, he will plead the 5th. Amendment. He, at the end of the announcement, tell the date of the nuptials, September 11, 2011, angry mobs will try to attack George saying he is trampling on the dead from 9/11 by getting married to a second wife. Before leaving he turned his back to the 14 people attending this speech, then quickly turning to face them and shout, Gotcha! He was going to name the lucky women all along.
    He cleared his throat, looked the audence in the eye and said,
    “My future wife is somebody everyone should know, she made a name for herself in the early 2000s. It is none other and I am proud and happy that she said ‘Yes’ Cindy Sheehan. A lone Tomato came out of the crowd, it was thrown high and now arching downward. It got george right above the bridge of his nose. It knocked him back a few steps, as he recovered, the juice was dripping into his mouth. He adjusted the microphone and said, “It needed salt”

    Taking One Day at a Time

  3. He’ll be hired by Faux Gnus to masquerade as a wildebeeste wrangler and line up guests for Bill O’Really to shout down.

  4. I don’t see him giving any speeches, because the kind of people he’s been speaking to these past few years, the captive audiences of military bases, and VFW posts, are not likely to be the kind to pony up cash to pay to hear him, and I don’t see him going to the kind of audiences that could pay for him. They’re just not interested. I imagine he’ll continue trying to restore some semblance of a decent reputation, you know, the legacy thing. And, honest to God, I can’t imagine him in a college, lecturing, although the secrets he’s been let in on would be interesting if you could trust him to ever tell the truth.

  5. If there’s justice in this life, the thing he’ll ‘do’ is hard time after being convicted of war crimes by an international tribunal.


  6. Veterans of Foreign War — it ain’t Christmas, but what the hey — Bah!!! Humbug!!!

    We don’t need more Veterans. It’s time for a colonic treatment on the rest of the world to clear our military from it.

    Oldernwiser and Veteran, too.

  7. How about being the executioner for the Lone Star State? Unlike the Texas prison officials, Bush has no qualms about dispatching miscreants – or even suspected miscreants. He would provide a valuable service to the prison employees who have consciences but, unlike GW, have no direct communications with God Almighty. It would be so fulfilling a task for GW that he would serve the Lord and the State by performing these awesome duties gratis. And he would also be pleased to serve Allah as Hangman of Baghdad, but there doesn’t appear to be a shortage of Iraqi volunteers already there. Instead, he could emulate ex-President Carter, observing executions around the world, just as Carter observes national elections. GW would enjoy his many trips to China, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, etc., and maybe he could even promote world peace on discovering that he shares common ground with the merciless mullahs of Iran.

  8. mr. hirsh
    stock market
    I don’t know. I give up. Why use my imagination on
    someone without one?

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