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My rage at the current state of affairs in this country--the bigotry of the religious right and their accomplices in both state and federal legislatures; $21 billion that goes missing and a president who likes it that way; our soldiers who continue to come home either in 1) boxes, b) serious mental or physical disrepair; new heights of corruption among Republican legislators while much of the media still tries to portray it as a bi-partisan problem--seems to achieve new heights every day.

But on this day I can't vent any further rage. I just need to calmly go about life, do some work, watch some of the World Cup, and be somewhat placated that, while we have a charlatan and fraud for a president, he's no Dog Whisperer.

In an otherwise disappointing article in the May 22 The New Yorker from the usually brilliant Malcolm Gladwell, I learned something that didn't really surprise me about our current president. According to "movement analyst" Karen Bradley, who directs the graduate dance program at the University of Maryland, GWB, unlike Ronald Reagan or Bill Clinton, has poor physical "phrasing."

The article discusses the unique talents of Cesar Millan to tame what are otherwise out-of-control canines and who is the star of a show on the National Geographic Channel called the "Dog Whisperer." Among other talents, Mr. Millan apparently has exquisite "phrasing," just one of the reasons why he can tame dogs that, up until to the point he entered into their lives, seemed untamable.

At one point, the article comes around to Mr. GWB. And here is what it says:

During this year's State of the Union address, Bush spent the entire speech swaying metronomically, straight down through his lower torso, a movement underscored, unfortunately, by the presence of a large vertical banner behind him.

<snip>

[Bradley] mimed, perfectly, the Bush gaze--the squinty, fixated look he reserves for moments of great solemnity--and gently swayed back and forth. "It's a little primitive, a little regressed." The combination of the look, the sway, and the gaze was, to her mind, distinctly adolescent.

<snip>

[Bush] moves like a boy, which is fine, except that... he can't stop moving like a boy when the occasion demands a more grown-up response.

So there you have it. He may be a two-term president of the most powerful country in the world, and he may be driving our little experiment in Democracy into the crapper (along with the rest of the world), but George W. Bush moves and talks like a child.

He's no Dog Whisperer.

Originally posted to Whigsboy on Fri Jun 09, 2006 at 06:17 AM PDT.

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Comment Preferences

  •  I think this is it! (3+ / 0-)

    Cesar Millan (The Dog Whisperer) talks about the universal language - Energy. He says it is what dogs "read" about human beings, since they don't understand words. I agree.

    I think this is precisely why so many of us picked up on Bush very early on, and why our antipathy is so strong. He has LOUSY energy. He is not calm assertive, he is weak. His posture is often almost whining (which SNL captures!). Many of us would never trust him because of his weak energy.

    It reminds me of his first presidential election. Even then, someone asked me who would have to be running for me to vote for Bush: names like Jeffrey Dahmer were all I could think of. And I might just abstain in a campaign like that.

    "The opposite of war isn't peace, it's CREATION." _ Jonathan Larson, RENT

    by BeninSC on Fri Jun 09, 2006 at 06:16:28 AM PDT

    •  And he creates (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      BeninSC

      high-level anxiety energy in his base when he leans into the podium with his sleeves rolled up repeating some Rove-crafted slogan, particularly, during those carefully screened townhall events. So, bascially the GOP is an unstable pack needing a calm assertive leader; Ann Coulter has long been a redzone case. I do believe that even Cesar wouldn't be able to rehabilitate her; she needs to be put down.

      •  He doesn't just create (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Geronimo, Cat Whisperer

        The high-level anxiety of which you speak, it is that he stands atop an entire political MACHINE to do that very thing! Cesar treats every animal he EVER encounters with far more respect than Bush and his machine treat any animal or human being on the entire planet!

        "The opposite of war isn't peace, it's CREATION." _ Jonathan Larson, RENT

        by BeninSC on Fri Jun 09, 2006 at 06:32:21 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Agreed (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          BeninSC

          Just my lame attempt at humor.  

          •  Isn't it delightful (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Geronimo, Cat Whisperer

            That Coulter is being seen more and more for the red zone case she is?

            Sadly, there is no philosophical monopoly on red zone, and it isn't strictly a conservative affliction, it is cultural. But as DW shows us, it doesn't have to be.

            I do think the DW - without expressing any political affiliation - can dramatically help progressive causes, because his ideas are so SANE and advanced!

            "The opposite of war isn't peace, it's CREATION." _ Jonathan Larson, RENT

            by BeninSC on Fri Jun 09, 2006 at 06:52:10 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

    •  So why (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Geronimo

      have only some of us picked up on that?

      •  Million Dollar Question! (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        newfie, Geronimo, Cat Whisperer

        I think many books have been written on the question you asked, newfie.

        In many respects it is because not everyone has been exposed to good energy in their communities. It may be because some people are, to an extent, energy-deaf. I think a major factor is that he wraps himself in the flag of the church, so to speak, and many people in this country aren't every going to critically evaluate someone who does that.

        For me, Cesar Millan has given us an incredible lens. But there are many lenses out there, and not everyone is exposed to or chooses to use each given lens - even WE change the lenses we use to perceive things at different times. I do think the DW lens is one of the very best, and I could not be more delighted to see people here talking about using it!

        "The opposite of war isn't peace, it's CREATION." _ Jonathan Larson, RENT

        by BeninSC on Fri Jun 09, 2006 at 06:42:18 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  And that is where (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Geronimo, BeninSC

          and I hate to use the phrase for obvious reasons, "trusting one's gut" comes nto play.  Bush has ruined that phrase because he means "ignore fact and evidence to do what you want" and not to trust your ability to pick up on the myriad of non-verbal cues - even if you are not totally aware of them - that often provides insight on more intrinsic factors of relating to others.

          I think we all receive the cues but only some pay attention and even fewer understand exactly what it is they are paying attention to.

          •  It is precisely for this reason (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            newfie, Geronimo

            That I think talking about the Dog Whisperer can have such value for progressives and progressive ways of thinking. If you watch DW episodes the people who call him in on a case don't understand why things have gone so wrong with their dogs. That is because they don't understand how their energy is being "read" at every moment by those dogs, much less have a clear appreciation of how easily they can influence the dog's behavior for the good simply by projecting a new and different energy. No human being had ever spoken to them about energy before, which is why Cesar's lens is such a brilliant one.

            All of the dog owners are seeing the signals and the cues the dogs are giving, they just have not known before Cesar how to read and understand those signals. They have never examined their OWN energy projections, so they have no idea of the signals they are sending. If they cannot read their own signals, it is not difficult to understand why they cannot read Bush's.

            A challenge for us is helping others learn to read the signals as we have. Dogs do not care what people say. They care what they DO. And what energy they project. Conservatives win elections in part because they "say" the right thing, the Luntz thing, the Rove thing, the Norquist thing, the "gut" thing. Even when so often, they use Orwellian language to say what they say.

            If they say something which gets the votes, it means there is that much less pressure on them to DO something, even something consistent with what they say or have said. Because their interest is power. Not its responsible exercise.

            "The opposite of war isn't peace, it's CREATION." _ Jonathan Larson, RENT

            by BeninSC on Fri Jun 09, 2006 at 10:31:52 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

  •  He's a whispering lame duck... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    newfie

    Dudehisattva... <div style="color: #0000a0;">"Generosity, Ethics, Patience, Effort, Concentration, and Wisdom"&l

    by Dood Abides on Fri Jun 09, 2006 at 06:16:41 AM PDT

  •  he certainly isn't a pack leader (5+ / 0-)

    what amazes me is that so many people think he is.  Maybe that is why most people on the right have turned into rabid ankle bitters.  They are understress from having no real leader.

    •  Warped idea of what constitutes strength (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Geronimo, Cat Whisperer

      Exactly, Teresa. That is because people in our country have become accustomed to thinking of rigidity and woodenness as strength. That strength is exemplified by unleashing the dogs of war. But it takes far more strength to hold back those dogs, and it takes more, still, Cesar is showing us, to use imagination to train those dogs to not PULL.

      These are tricks Dubya will NEVER master.

      "The opposite of war isn't peace, it's CREATION." _ Jonathan Larson, RENT

      by BeninSC on Fri Jun 09, 2006 at 06:22:53 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Rigidity, woodeness (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Geronimo, BeninSC

        and bullying.

        "Nobody expects the Spanish Inquisition" - Monty Python

        by MadRuth on Fri Jun 09, 2006 at 06:42:56 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Bullying, with its inevitable twin (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          MadRuth, Geronimo

          Cowardess.

          It is no accident that he picked Iraq to attack. His intelligence information was better than he will admit. He knew that, militarily speaking, he was picking a country which couldn't fight its way out of a paper bag.

          I know the terrorist insurgency is a different story, but he never saw that coming through his rose-colored lenses.

          "The opposite of war isn't peace, it's CREATION." _ Jonathan Larson, RENT

          by BeninSC on Fri Jun 09, 2006 at 06:48:06 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  I thought that the runup to war was (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Geronimo, BeninSC

            funny as the descriptions of Iraq's military power were dated back to the pre-Gulf War era.  Pre-Bush's Folly War Iraq was being touted as the largest most capable military force in the region.  I kept thinking that that could not possibly be true because of the pounding their hard assets took in the Gulf War.

            •  I was amazed no one could remember (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              newfie, Geronimo

              All I could think of when the war was about to start was the columns of Iraqs streaming out of the desert in the first Gulf War, prisoners giving up. They weren't driving out in tanks. They weren't being ferried on the Iraqi equivalent of a humvee. They walked. But they did not just walk. They had no weapons. They had no helmets. They had no bullet-proof gear. The striking thing to me was what ELSE they did not have: shirts and SHOES, in many cases! They walked out of the desert wearing PANTS. That was it.

              And this was what Saddam was putting into the field against a 21st Century military? Now that IS a war crime!

              But it was clear to me that this was not a country which was going to be a significant threat in 12 years. Though I did feel sure that the 2003 Iraqi military had finally gotten their shoes and shirts.

              "The opposite of war isn't peace, it's CREATION." _ Jonathan Larson, RENT

              by BeninSC on Fri Jun 09, 2006 at 07:31:26 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

  •  Fascinating (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    BeninSC

    Is the New Yorker story available in it's entirety online?  

    Bush has always seemed unevolved to me in so many ways.  He has the selfishness of a drunken frat boy.  He points the finger and blames others like a 5 year old caught misbehaving.  That he postures and moves like an adolescent is no surprise.  

    He and his packagers spend so much time trying to make him seem manly, but has never demonstrated the character or accountability of an adult.  

    •  no article, but Q&A with Gladwell (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      MadRuth, roses, Geronimo

      My first search on the New Yorker Web site didn't turn this up, but a second search turned up this Q&A with Gladwell:

      http://www.newyorker.com/...

      The article itself is just kind of boring, which is highly unusual for Gladwell. He's such a great freakin' writer, even if he looks like Sideshow Bob.

      'The war is over,' so said the speaker, with the flight suit on. Maybe to him I'm just a pawn, so he can advance. ... All I wanna do is dance.

      by Whigsboy on Fri Jun 09, 2006 at 06:28:52 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Unmanly (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      MadRuth, Geronimo

      This was NEVER more clear than in the video of him twitching and fidgeting and wondering what the hell to do in the classroom when he was informed about the 9/11 attacks.

      How can that be SOOO clear to us and not to the 61 million who voted for this jerk?

      "The opposite of war isn't peace, it's CREATION." _ Jonathan Larson, RENT

      by BeninSC on Fri Jun 09, 2006 at 06:34:30 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  He's an insult to all 'frat boys'. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Geronimo, awakenow

      He's the kind we would kick out after a month for being a useless prick.

      "I beg to dream and differ from the hollow lies." Green Day

      by UndercoverRxer on Fri Jun 09, 2006 at 06:58:35 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  There are many who would like to see him kicked (0+ / 0-)

        But as many have said, then we get ... Cheney?!

        "The opposite of war isn't peace, it's CREATION." _ Jonathan Larson, RENT

        by BeninSC on Fri Jun 09, 2006 at 07:01:23 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  depends on the frat (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        MadRuth

        I know frat boys he reminds me of.  And bear in mind he was probably very good at partying.  So for those kinds of frats he would have been a prized possession.

      •  Hard thing to do (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        MadRuth, newfie

        I always found most frat boys to be pricks - and I'm a guy - so Dubya just sort of seemed to fit the mold! :D

        'The war is over,' so said the speaker, with the flight suit on. Maybe to him I'm just a pawn, so he can advance. ... All I wanna do is dance.

        by Whigsboy on Fri Jun 09, 2006 at 07:21:52 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Unfortunate stereotype. (0+ / 0-)

          I'm was a fraternity guy, I drank and partied, as did my bros, but we were not jerks.
          We had fun parties that did NOT involve drunken grope fests or pig parades. We did service projects and had good grades, many of us are doctors,lawyers or PhD's now. I guess it might have been because we don't have pledges or haze our members, our membership was based on mutual respect.

          "I beg to dream and differ from the hollow lies." Green Day

          by UndercoverRxer on Fri Jun 09, 2006 at 09:15:33 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  Wow. An American(?) watchng the WC2006! (0+ / 0-)

    Or are you, like me, a transplant from a more footie-friendly country.

    Good article pick up, I am not in the slightest bit surprised that Bush physically telegraphs his childishness.

    "I have a pretty short message, Tim. Tell the truth, fire the incompetents, get out of Iraq."
    -- John Kerry

    by deafmetal on Fri Jun 09, 2006 at 06:23:26 AM PDT

    •  An American (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      deafmetal

      I got hooked into futbol about 2 years ago by a friend of mine who is a big fan of Italian soccer - such as it is these days, with all of its various scandals. Two books also did it for me: "How Soccer Explains the World," by Franklin Foer and, for a truly great read, "The Miracle of Castel Di Sangro" by Joe McGinnis. If you haven't read that one, it is a MUST read.

      'The war is over,' so said the speaker, with the flight suit on. Maybe to him I'm just a pawn, so he can advance. ... All I wanna do is dance.

      by Whigsboy on Fri Jun 09, 2006 at 06:31:18 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  We aren'r all soccer haters. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      deafmetal

      I had 3 kids who played, and I've watched every world cup since the one in the US.

      "I beg to dream and differ from the hollow lies." Green Day

      by UndercoverRxer on Fri Jun 09, 2006 at 07:05:34 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  good TV coverage this year (0+ / 0-)

        I think ESPN and ABC are basically showing all of teh games, and a 2-hour highlight show every night, which is pretty incrdible. My Tivo will be going nonstop!

        'The war is over,' so said the speaker, with the flight suit on. Maybe to him I'm just a pawn, so he can advance. ... All I wanna do is dance.

        by Whigsboy on Fri Jun 09, 2006 at 07:08:40 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  It is... (0+ / 0-)

          ...and every year it seriously astounds me how much better the photography is on the TV broadcasts, I mean this is where my anti-corporate interests conflict with my sport viewing passions, I can't be in Germany watching the game live, but damnit I can see it so much better on TV anyway! How crazy is that?

          Glad you're a fan, you're certainly in the most diverse company of humans (all 1.5 billion of us!) ever to assemble around the communal TV or Radio since broadcasting became a verb!

          "I have a pretty short message, Tim. Tell the truth, fire the incompetents, get out of Iraq."
          -- John Kerry

          by deafmetal on Fri Jun 09, 2006 at 05:14:39 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  Not to be glib but... (0+ / 0-)

    We need to perform an "Alpha Roll" with GWB. And never let him up. That is what Cesar would do.

    "Democrats win when people think"...Bill Clinton

    by Limabean on Fri Jun 09, 2006 at 07:50:43 AM PDT

  •  Would you consider (0+ / 0-)

    I know diaries can be edited, I think tags can be, as well? Would you consider adding Cesar Millan and Dog Whisperer to your tag list?

    I really believe in the power of his philosophy to tilt the political debate in a progressive direction, and it would be nice if we could find diaries on the subject through tags as well.

    Thanks!

    "The opposite of war isn't peace, it's CREATION." _ Jonathan Larson, RENT

    by BeninSC on Fri Jun 09, 2006 at 09:03:25 AM PDT

    •  i'll try (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      BeninSC

      my skill with diaries is pretty limited.

      'The war is over,' so said the speaker, with the flight suit on. Maybe to him I'm just a pawn, so he can advance. ... All I wanna do is dance.

      by Whigsboy on Fri Jun 09, 2006 at 09:41:21 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

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