Wednesday, January 12, 2011

A practical difference between George Bush and Barack Obama

President Obama was (rightly) criticized in the first two years of his term for a dictatorial tone, for example claiming to phone BP and tell them what to do instead of letting that be handled through normal legal processes.

But in at least one respect he is less dictatorial than his predecessor. When George Bush came to Tucson for a 2008 fundraiser for Tim Bee, police--working overtime on the taxpayer dime--closed the entire length of Swan for at least four hours, from Davis Monthan AFB all the way to Sunrise. Without warning Tucson was split into two halves; people had to take detours of 15 miles or more to get from the west side to the east side, just to give George Bush a grand entrance. Hundreds were late to work or to get home to their children. Private driveways and business road cuts were also blocked along the entire route.

It's unclear to this day which of Bee or Bush was responsible for such waste and such gross inconveniencing of the common man. No President before or since has, to my knowledge, engaged in such a practice; clearing a path and restricting the movement of the plebs is better suited to a banana-republic caudillo. However banana-republican he has been at times, Barack Obama didn't have any roads shut down today yesterday. [BSK: post rescheduled.]

And Bee never did reimburse the public treasury or the many he inconvenience. He did, however, end up the victim of some great real-life trolling.

No comments: