Home / Dumpster Bust Keeping It Real Politik: No, they didn’t… Time magazine names George W. Bush 2004 Person of the Year

Dumpster Bust Keeping It Real Politik: No, they didn’t… Time magazine names George W. Bush 2004 Person of the Year

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Time magazine has named President George W. Bush as their 2004 Person of the Year.

If the President was chosen for this honor as the person who had the most influence on the past year’s events, then I suppose I can buy it. But if the selection was made in terms of “greatness” (and I paraphrase Yoda circa The Empire Strikes Back to illustrate this point: “War makes a person not great”) then I just can’t stomach it.

Give me the Boston Red Sox, give me Donald Trump, give me Paris Hilton. Just not Bush. Anybody but Bush (sound familiar?).

And I’ll end this gathering with another movie quote, one of my favorites, from The Matrix:

“Not like this… No, not like this.”

Update: Bombs in Karbala, Najaf kill more than 60

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  • I’m somewhat more surprised Time Magazine is still published, and people still read it. But then, the people who read it, probably agree with what they’ve been told.

  • Why are you suprised Jim? is this a shot at Time in particular or print media in general?

  • I had the exact same thought as Mr. Stark, though he stated it far more succinctly than I would have.

    However, Jim, you seem to be taking a shot at the readers of Time (or readers of mass media in general?) — that they’re sheep who will adhere to whatever they’re being fed.

  • I meant to put that last thought as a question, and to state that it seems as though you also imply that the readers of Time are sheep.

  • Time names anyone it’s judged most influential as “Person of the Year” – they gave it to both Gandhi and Hitler, to LBJ in a year where he was embattled, and even to Stalin twice (once when he signed the secret pact with Germany, then when he became an ally with the US). So, yes, it’s a sign of influence rather than greatness.

  • Daryl –

    I thought that was the case, but I just can’t agree with it for a few reasons, the strongest one being that if the award were to go to the most influential person every year, it would go to the President of the United States every single year. No one’s more influential in modern times, particularly post-Cold War.

  • Time said it chose Bush:

    “for sharpening the debate until the choices bled, for reframing reality to match his design, for gambling his fortunes – and ours – on his faith in the power of leadership. . .”

    Where I come from, reframing reality to match your design is just called lying.

    But with Bush, we’re dealing with a guy whose biggest selling point is that he’s “from Texas,” when his family is one of the wealthiest in the history of Connecticut, he was born in New Haven, Connecticut, and he went to high school at a prep school in Massachusetts, and college and business school in New Haven, Connecticut.

    I guess anything less dramatic-sounding than “reframing reality to match his design” would have been understating things. I’m not saying you can’t move around (I’m from the South, and I live in New York), or that there’s anything wrong with someone with an uber-Yankee petigree being elected Governor of Texas (that’s up to them). But it really rubs me the wrong way for “Southern-ness” to be Bush’s biggest selling point.

    During the week after the election, a girl at my school who’s a native New Yorker, and a big Bush supporter, walked into class wearing a shirt that said “Texas” – presumably in celebration of victory. I was going to say “hey, my grandmother’s from Texas,” but then I realized that saying anything about the shirt would give her an opening to say something about the “Bush is Southern” myth.

  • Thad – I’m not sure if Southerness was Bush’s chief selling point. In my opinion, he sold himself as Protector of the People and Cutter of Taxes and Banning of Gay Marriage and Stem Cell Research.

    But it doesn’t really matter. I won’t get into whether Bush lied or not to the American people. But he was relatively straight-forward in the ’04 campaign about why he was running for re-election.

    And the People re-elected him.

    To quote an old and weird sci-fi horror flick called Hardware:

    This is what you want, this is what you get.

    And that’s what happened this time ’round.

    ~Eric B.
    KE’04 Super Strong Supporter

  • RJ

    Who else was Time going to pick?

    They almost always pick an elected US President in an election year.

    GW Bush in 2000.

    BJ Clinton in 1992.

    RW Reagan in 1980.

    Carter in 1976.

    I’m sure Kerry would have been POTY if he had won. What’s the big surprise?

  • RJ –

    I guess I’m not so much surprised as disappointmented with the award itself and its winner.

    Of course, I’m spectacularly biased…