Thursday, September 22, 2005

'W' Stands for Waldo

The ‘W’ in George W. Bush stands for ‘Waldo’.

It is now clear what the ‘W’ stands for in George W. Bush. ‘W’ is short for ‘Waldo’—as in ‘Where’s Waldo’? Throughout George W’s life, we witness a common thread: when the going gets tough, Waldo bravely makes himself available for photo opportunities.

With American men and women serving in Viet Nam, ‘Waldo’ is conspicuously absent. Unfortunately for ‘Waldo’, the only real photo opportunity available at the time is in a dentist’s chair in Texas.

While planes are hurling into the World Trade Center towers, where is ‘Waldo’? ‘Waldo’ is glued to his chair, content to finish his photo opportunity with the school children in Florida, then being whisked to an undisclosed location. In the photo-op that follows, ‘Waldo’ bravely counsels the American people to ‘go shopping’.

Weeks after the invasion of Iraq, ‘Waldo’ bravely poses beneath the “Mission Accomplished” banner his own people produced for this event. Several miles from our own shores and far from Iraq, ‘Waldo’ parades before the cameras in a flight suit, declaring victory even as soldiers and Iraqis continue to die.

As U.S. soldiers are dying in Iraq, ‘Waldo’ hides in the Green Zone, behind the barbed wire and the barricades. Cloaked in security, ‘Waldo’ bravely serves a plastic turkey to his vetted props on Thanksgiving Day.

With the Taliban regaining ground and the Afghan women again fearful of their future, ‘Waldo’ bravely sends his wife flying to Afghanistan as his stand-in for six full hours of photographs and camera time.

When Waldo needs a picture of “Bush meets with fallen soldiers’ families”, ‘Waldo’ is happy to use Cindy Sheehan as a prop. But when Cindy Sheehan courageously camps out in front of his ‘ranch’, challenging him to speak face-to-face to her on her terms, ‘Waldo’ hides in his ranch. Surprisingly, during his five-week vacation, ‘Waldo’ finds he does have time to bravely ride his bicycle along side Lance Armstrong before journalists and cameramen alike. Lance has been briefed before-hand never to ride faster than the President. Wouldn’t look good for the shot, you know.

When Katrina hits the Louisiana coast, ‘Waldo’ is still hiding at his ranch. Katrina provides the excuse ‘Waldo’ needs to escape Cindy Sheehan. Fleeing by plane, ‘Waldo’ flies high above the death and destruction that Katrina has wreaked on the citizens of Louisiana. ‘Waldo’ is careful not to come in contact with any actual survivors, however, since a successful photo opportunity depends on restricting the show to a fully vetted audience. Several days later, Waldo bravely admonishes the American people to “not buy gas if you don’t need gas”.

George W. Bush—our ‘Waldo’. We know we can always find him, bravely hiding out in any fully vetted crowd.


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