December 12, 2005
Does Bubble Boy Float?
I love the graphic. I get the point as political commentary. But, as an analogy for how Bush World really works, I think it completely misses the mark.
The reason this doesn’t work is because Bush absolutely fails to see any other world — or world view — beyond his own. Now, if you stuck Jimmy Carter in the bubble and told me he was in the midst of the Iranian hostage crisis, that would make sense. The distinction, however, is that Carter knew he was isolated.
The article says that “the White House is trying to dispel the image of the Bush Bubble (or Bunker).” The problem is, the two metaphors contradict. I think they had it right with the bunker, though. True to the real Bush world, bunkers (in contrast to bubbles) are hard, impenetrably thick and opaque.
In this illustration, I think the scale works — in his messianic march to God-knows-where, Bush has come way down in size. The red party-line tie is good, too — it could be seen to allude to a stubborn partisanship. Even the “air head,” above-the-clouds concept can work. But I think Bush is way too arrogant and defensive to admit (let alone, examine the fact) that he’s isolated.
(photo illustration: Michael Elins. Newsweek. December 19, 2005. Front cover)