George’s Gestures

GEORGE’S GESTURES….This is probably old news by now ? it’s one of the drawbacks of blogging from the Pacific time zone ? but the DNC has a quickie video up on its site that showcases all of George Bush’s off camera grimaces and eye rolling during the debate. Go take a look. It’s only about a minute long.

It’s worth nothing that this was different from Al Gore’s infamous sighing in 2000. Gore’s performance was quite obviously that: a performance. He made a conscious decision that this was a good way to get across the idea that Bush was a dimwit. Conversely, Bush’s gestures this year seemed entirely genuine.

What does it mean? The sense I got from Bush’s weird inability to control himself wasn’t so much that he was bored or annoyed ? although he was obviously irked during some of his responses ? but that he just can’t stand to wait around while someone else has the stage. He’s the guy in charge, and people are supposed to listen to him, not the other way around.

At least, that’s how it struck me. Your mileage may vary.

Support Nonprofit Journalism

If you enjoyed this article, consider making a donation to help us produce more like it. The Washington Monthly was founded in 1969 to tell the stories of how government really works—and how to make it work better. Fifty years later, the need for incisive analysis and new, progressive policy ideas is clearer than ever. As a nonprofit, we rely on support from readers like you.

Yes, I’ll make a donation