vendredi, juin 02, 2006


Former Veep Al Gore is flavor of the month among chastened moderate Democrats longing for a candidate who doesn't have the sharp edges and ambiguous persona of New York Senator Hillary Clinton. In spite of, or because of that, he's also a very bright guy (yes, it is unfortunate that he apparently once made some grandiose claim about the Internet, but who is without sin in that regard?) Asked what he found "most surprising" about current President George Bush, Gore owned up as to how he was most suprised by Bush's "incuriosity." Gore's topic, of course, was global warming-he is now being introduced in ads for his new movie "An Inconvenient Truth" as "environmentalist Al Gore." But his charge against Bush rang true to me. President Bush seems much more a man of action than one of reflection. This is probably why he often seems one step behind current events-witness the fact that his staff didn't even inform him there was an investigation of the alleged massacre at Haditha until a month after it had started! The curious ask questions. They wonder about consequences. They talk to their opponents to see if they might learn something. The comparison between GB and his predecessor in D.C. is stark. Bill Clinton had major boundary issues. However, he did seem willing to ask the strategic, sometimes uncomfortable questions in a perhaps overly collegial (maybe collegiate) way. It's all too easy to demonize Bush for getting us into this disastrous war. But, in truth, its not all his fault. He is a consummate testimony to the notion that in scary times, we don't look for curious leaders. We want certain ones...until we find out how terrible is the price of incuriosity. We can't expect those in authority to have all the answers, but they darn well better be dedicated to grappling with the questions.

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