PAY ATTENTION!….Conservative apostate Bruce Bartlett explains how he got snookered by George Bush:

My own excuse for not predicting the disaster that Bush’s presidency has been is that I simply didn’t believe a word he said during the 2000 campaign. I assumed that every word out of his mouth had been put there by Karl Rove and it was all based on polling and focus groups. I knew that Bush is a bit of a dim bulb, so it never occurred to me that he actually had any ideas of his own.

….My point is that it is very easy to get cynical about politics and think it is all a game. That was the mistake I made in 2000, along with lots of other people. If we don’t want to make the same mistake again, all of us who comment on politics need to pay closer attention to what these guys are saying and make some allowance for the possibility that they actually believe it.

It’s an interesting thought. What if we actually took presidential candidates at their word and quit playing the game of looking for ulterior motives in everything they do? (Polls, interest group pandering, desire to show toughness, looking forward to the general election, etc.) That would eliminate about 90% of all political punditry (and about 99% of it on TV), but I’m sure we’d all find something else to do with all that free time. It’s so crazy it might work!

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