Tag Archives: George H.W. Bush

The Matriarch: Barbara Bush and the Making of an American Dynasty Book Review

When I was growing up in the 1980s and 1990s, the late former First Lady Barbara Bush looked like a grandmother straight out of Hollywood central casting. Her white hair was cut short, she was known for her pearls and matronly clothing and she was the matriarch of a large family. But there is so much more to her than the image.

Susan Page’s new biography, The Matriarch: Barbara Bush and the Making of an American Dynasty, tells the story of Mrs. Bush from her perspective. Born in 1925 to a wealthy family whose roots went back to the founding of America, she was the third of four children. Equally belittled and ignored by her mother about her weight, the future First Lady never got over the comments she received as a child.

In her late teens, she married the future President George H.W. Bush. Married for seven decades, she brought six children into the world. Her oldest son, George W. Bush, followed in his father’s footsteps. Her oldest daughter, Robin, died of Leukemia at age three, leaving her mother with an emotional scar that never healed. Later as an adult, she battled depression and aided both her husband and son during their time in the White House.

Containing interviews with Mrs. Bush, President Bush, her family, political aides, press clippings, diary entries and other details, this books is the complete story of one of America’s most respected First Ladies.

One of the things that I was surprised about was how emotionally strong and outspoken Mrs. Bush was. Like many women of her generation, her adult life focused on her home and her family. But unlike the Donna Reed-like ideal of the 1950’s and 1960’s, Mrs. Bush was not the yes-woman to her husband nor was she the picture of motherly perfection. She was bold, she was outspoken and not above providing unsolicited advice. She may not have been a traditional feminist, but she is the definition of a strong, intelligent and capable woman.

This book is a must read, especially if one is a political junkie. It sheds light not just on the public side of Mrs. Bush, but also the private that only a few were privileged to see.

I recommend it.

Advertisements

Leave a comment

Filed under Book Review, Books, Feminism, History, Mental Health, Politics

Do Not Take Away Our Healthcare

The bedrock of American society is based on the following statement: life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

I’d like to talk about the first word in that statement: life. That requires seeing a doctor, even if it is just for an annual checkup. The problem in this country is that for many citizens, their ability to see a doctor is dependent on if they can afford to see the doctor. Now that the Mueller Report is out, you know who has his sights set on destroying the ACA once and for all.

Unlike other first world countries (Canada and Britain come to mind) where the healthcare system is funded by the tax payers, Americans are generally in two categories when it comes to healthcare. They either have a medical plan via their employer or they receive benefits from one of the government-funded plans. This should not be the case, which is why the ACA was created. The problem is that you know who is so obsessed with erasing is predecessor’s legacy and fulfilling his promise to his base, that he is leaving millions of Americans behind.

Newsflash, politicians make promises on the campaign trail and end up breaking them after being elected. When the late President Bush was running for President in 1988, he infamously promised that there would be no new taxes. A couple of years into his Presidency, he made the difficult decision that additional taxes were needed. In 1992, that promise backfired on him when Bill Clinton was elected.

No healthcare system is perfect. I’m sure Canadian and British citizens have gripes about their healthcare system. But the point is, that it’s there for anyone who needs it, regardless of income or employment status.

We are just under a year and a half away from the 2020 Presidential election. I predict (though I could be wrong) that healthcare will be one of the top issues and will have a hand determining who ultimately wins the election. If you know who wants another term as President (G-d help us if he does win), I suggest that he puts his ego aside and remember the people who voted him into office.

P.S. Is anyone as disturbed as I am by Betsy DeVos removing Special Olympics from her budget and and Alabama Rep. Mo Brooks (R) quoting directly from Mein Kampf? The Democrats may have their issues, but at least I know that they aren’t screwing this country over to save their own skins.

 

1 Comment

Filed under National News, Politics

Thoughts On SNL’s Impression Of The Late President Bush And His Reaction

There was a time in this country when political satire was merely part and parcel of the way that the voting public viewed those who they voted into office.

In the late 1980’s and early 1990’s, Dana Carvey portrayed then President George H.W. Bush on Saturday Night Live.

It was brilliant, it was funny and most of all, the real President Bush laughed along with the rest of America.

With his passing yesterday, the country is in mourning for not just a President, but a politician who understood and appreciated the value of political satire.

These days, depending on where you stand on the political spectrum, political satire is either a way to let off the stress one feels about those currently in the corridors of power or it is deeply offensive.

As I stated in yesterday’s post about the late President Bush, I was too young back then to have a reaction to the decisions he made while in office. But I look back now and if nothing else, I appreciate that he understood that political satire was an important aspect of the American political scene.

It would be nice if the current White House resident understood that.

 

Leave a comment

Filed under International News, Politics, Television, Thoughts On...., World News

RIP President George H.W. Bush

Few things bring a country together like the passing of a former President.

This morning, it was announced that former American President George H.W. Bush passed away last night. He was 94 years old.

The patriarch of the Bush political dynasty, President Bush led the country from 1989-1993. Two of his sons followed in their father’s footsteps. George W. Bush was President from 2001-2009. Jeb Bush was Governor of Florida from 1999-2007 and a Presidential candidate during the 2016 Presidential election.

He is remembered not just a President. He was a World War II veteran, a public servant, a husband, a father, grandfather and great-grandfather.

I don’t remember much about his time in office. I too young back then to know or understand how his leadership was impacting the country. But I can respect someone who understands what they are getting into when they get into politics. It’s not about them or their needs/ego/desires. It’s about serving the American public and realizing that the voting public, not the special interest groups or billionaires, are the ones who the politicians are responsible to.

I also deeply respect that his marriage to his late wife, Barbara Bush lasted 73 years. If we are lucky enough, we will find someone to spend nearly three-quarters of a century married to.

May his memory be a blessing to all of us, especially those who knew and loved him best. RIP.

 

 

Leave a comment

Filed under History, International News, National News, Politics, World News