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Monday, May 08, 2006

Yoohoo! Bush Library Folks! May We Have Your Attention?

The NY Times reports today that President Bush's thoughts are turning toward his post-presidential legacy, and that he plans to establish a policy center "focused on the spread of democracy and Alexis de Tocqueville's vision of America as a nation made better by its 'associations,' or community groups."

Um, just coincidentally, if there are any Bush administration folks reading our humble blog, would this be a good time to point out that Rick and I are big fans?  And that we'd more than happy to outsource any research assistance work to Halliburton?  Just asking.

Posted by Paul Horwitz on May 8, 2006 at 12:31 PM in Current Affairs | Permalink


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Press accounts have described the president's having become an avid reader of history. There are lots of lessons for him in deTocqueville's writings which preceded even the time when France gave the Statue of Liberty to the US. I see Bush having a hardy old age with time to learn about the energies which cobbled together our national experiment.

Yet, he is a member of a politically savvy family, and likely will reserve many documents from public access in his archive until long after his presidency has ended. Viewed 25 years before that threshold, it is difficult to imagine the vastness of that trove of classified and reclassified documents. One especially interesting part is the presence of some very smart people in his administration, whose writings will become available when his presidential library fully populates its shelves in 2034, approximately.

By then, it will be time to restore the Reagan presidential library archive with documents regarding some of Bush's appointees, including Chief Justice Roberts. The CJ has a gift of satire, apparently: in his speech at the Reagan library in March 2006 he joked about the excessive amount of documents the library released to investigators who were preparing questions for his congressional hearings when he was nominated; the Simi Acorn newspaper in the community where the library is situated reports Roberts' quip here: http://www.simivalleyacorn.com/news/2006/0310/Community/011.html

Posted by: John Lopresti | May 9, 2006 4:18:51 AM

That's really interesting: during the 2000 campaign, his answer to "who's your favorite political philosopher or thinker?" was "Jesus"; and his answer to "what's your favorite book?" was "The Willie Mays Story." Now he's a de Tocqueville aficionado. Amazing how, after spending the first 40-odd years of his life doing pretty much nothing, he suddenly develops a yen for 19th-century French political thinkers while serving as President....

Posted by: Scott Moss | May 8, 2006 9:33:27 PM

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