Archives About Staff BagNews is dedicated to visual politics, media literacy and the analysis of news images.
March 2, 2006

Laura’s India Scrapbook – 2/2/06



(with rebuttal from Arundhati Roy)

(image 1: B Mathur/Reuters. Gandhi memorial.  Rajghat, New Delhi March 2, 2006.  Via YahooNews.  image 2: AFP/File.  March 2, 2006.  Via YahooNews.  image 3: Jim Young/Reuters. Gandhi memorial.  Rajghat, New Delhi March 2, 2006.  Via YahooNews.)

  • John-Riley

    I can’t wait to see him shaking hands with Jesus H. Christ.
    The banner is interesting. It almost seems like a wedding invitation, in the sense that the anpersand is obscured: President Mrs. George W. Bush?
    Why you gotta let the minorities do all your heavy lifting?
    Oh, and is the guy on the left wearing hemp?

  • The BAG


    Sorry, but I took the picture you’re referring to out of the post.  (Overkill, I thought.)  To be fair, though, it’s right here.

  • Hobbes

    Is that how they are laid out? They just seem so wrong in so many ways. “You too can be as revered as Ghandi with just a handful of petals”.
    Btw, the other one you removed is interesting too. When I first saw it I thought they were saying it was the death of the presidency. Do they normally put the givers name on wreaths so big? Most Funerals I have been to I have never seen this to be the case, and if someone did do it you would think they are being pretencious.

  • itwasnt me

    Once you’re dead, you can’t help who stops by your grave…

  • ummabdulla

    Pretentious or tacky…

  • GP

    “It will be as though he has poured a pint of blood on the memory of Gandhi.” — Arundhati Roy
    Now go back and look at that first picture again.

  • hauksdottir

    And Laura is SMILING as the petals are tossed!?!
    They could be feeding crumbs to ducks or tossing coins in a fountain for all the solemnity they are showing.
    That wreath is simply too huge and too tacky… posting the image wasn’t overkill, but the wreath itself was: it could be a birthday cake for 400 hungry teenagers. I’ve been to funerals, and I’ve walked through cemetaries where floral tributes have been spread out, and the names are not displayed like that.
    Usually you can tell the source from the quality of the flowers and arrangement. (Good design is expensive and subtle.) Doesn’t the White House have a chief of Staff? Doesn’t he have a staff? Surely there is someone who handles protocol and knows about ordering flowers for heads of state, nobel scientists, prelates, and generals?
    Admittedly, some funerals are joyous (wakes are known for stories and jokes as well as tears). However, these are world leaders involved and a bit of respectfulness graveside would make a better impression than tra-la-ing through the park. But sensitivity and compassion requires skills even a floral designer can’t supply.
    Suddenly I’m reminded of John Denver and his song about Forest Lawn… and wonder what Bush has designated for his monument. “I wanna go simply when I go: They’ll give me a simple funeral there I know. I’ll lie beneath the sand With piped-in tapes of Billy Graham. Oh, take me when I’m gone to Forest Lawn.”

  • The BAG

    Okay, the wreath is back. Deferral to your (always) good sense.

  • black dog barking

    Less than a month ago President & Mrs Bush were seated prominently at the Scott King funeral. Now Gandhi’s grave? Just making sure nonviolence is dead?

  • jt from BC

    Gandhi’s Seven Deadly Sins
    Wealth without Work
    Pleasure without Conscience
    Science without Humanity
    Knowledge without Character
    Politics without Principle
    Commerce without Morality
    Worship without Sacrifice
    Unquestionably “W’s” behavior is farcical but how bizarre might his response be, to addressing only ONE of Gandhi’s basic principles ?
    From the grave a Gandhi chuckle ,
    “Gandhi went to Buckingham Palace to have tea… He wore a loincloth, sandals, a shawl, and his dangling watch. Later, someone asked Gandhi whether he had had enough on. “The King,” he replied, “had enough on for both of us.”
    Louis Fischer, The Life of Mahatma Gandhi (Harper & Row, New York, 1983), pp. 2801.

  • Asta

    When I first saw the wreath, I thought it was a life saver from a cruise ship — the USS George W. Bush. Or maybe, more appropriately, the Titanic.

  • jt from BC

    The PRESIDENT & MRS GEORGE W BUSH banner over the name of the recipient confirms who is #1 & # 1A in this photo.
    The Mahatma would see this as a trivial frivolity, but really breakup at such a gaudy garland.
    By including Laura, this cuts “W’s” audacious presence but the irony remains @ 100 %

  • Neil

    Next on Who Are You Fooling: George W. Bush performs John Lennon’s “Give Peace a Chance” anthem.

  • tracy

    Although Agra’s Taj Mahal is the pride of the continent, Bush decided not to visit. He blamed his “scheduler,” but Agra is only 130 miles away from New Delhi.
    “NEW DELHI (AP) – Add India’s prime minister to the list of people giving President Bush a hard time for not visiting the country’s famed Taj Mahal.
    “As the leaders toasted each other and their nations’ ties Thursday before lunch alongside several hundred guests, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh briefly paused and addressed Bush’s wife, Laura.
    “‘I am truly sorry the president is not taking you to Taj Mahal this time,” Singh said. “I hope he will be more chivalrous next time you are here.’”
    How do you say Ugly American in Hindi? I’m pretty sure it’s pronounced Schmuck.

  • BIG russ

    Very interesting photo a waxen Bush and a de-dyked Condi in sari on front cover of 3/3/06 NYT. It’s really raising eyebrows…
    Analyse it!

  • tracy

    I’ll give it a go, BIG russ.
    In the enlarged version of the NYT picture, he looks skeptical and displeased with Condi. It’s the same look he has on his face at press conferences when he announces his new appointments. First he names the appointee/nominee, then he stands back as the appointee/nominee says a few words. Most often he is looking at them out of the corners of his eyes with skepticism while he experiences in advance the displeasure he would feel if they were to screw up. He’s silently warning them not to.
    BTW, Condi’s not wearing a sari. That’s an evening gown over which she’s thrown one of the tablecloths from the banquet room.

  • readytoblowagasket

    Why would Bush go to the Taj Mahal in India when he can go to the one in Atlantic City?

  • Quentin

    If anything, that wreath is supposed to be from the U.S. people, not personally from their Texas Rajah and His Spouse. So much the better, though, then it’s all their bloody responsbility. The arrogant pricks.

  • jt from BC

    QUENTIN, I notice your email address is in the UK are you suggesting that George has been mistaken when he referred to Winston Churchill as one of his great mentors, and that he was ill informed by not knowing what this great icon of “blood, sweat and tears” thought of that “little man in diapers”. Perhaps “W’s” recent reading about ‘Winnie’ did not carry this revealing thought from the great man,
    “It was while addressing the Council of the West Essex Unionists on February 23, 1931, that Churchill remarked of how, to him and most likely to much of his audience, it “was alarming to see Mr. Gandhi, a seditious Middle Temple lawyer, now posing as a fakir of a type well known in the East, striding half-naked up the steps of the Viceregal Palace, while he is still organising and conducting a defiant campaign of civil disobedience, to parley on equal terms with the representative of the King-Emperor.”
    Is it your intention to compare the citizens of the UK and the USA as equally historically culpable in India ? What is it exactly you have in mind with your comment?

  • khanum

    The NYTimes front page of Condi in silk – the opulence of colour is staggering.
    With so much
    death in Iraq the past two days, who could be smiling?

  • ummabdulla

    I also thought that the wreath should say something like “from President and Mrs. George W. Bush on behalf of the American people”, shouldn’t it?
    I didn’t see yesterday’s NY Times – is this the picture? Bush is looking at her, but I don’t know if it’s disapproval in his eyes.
    There’s another one here, which shows Condi without the “tablecloth”. I’m not exactly the most stylish person, but I’m not impressed with her dress – or with Laura’s, which looks pretty dowdy. They might look much better in some beautiful saris. Cherie Blair wore them a couple of times, and looked better than she usually does. And Princess Diana looked great wearing some traditional Pakistani styles, which then became popular in London.

  • putnam

    Have you seeen the photo of Bush prancing giddyin a black uniform among cold & skeptical soldiers in Afghanistan?

  • Steve Talbert

    Pickles looks like she just saw the price tag at the back or something. Maybe she can tell from the back that they glued petals on an old tire inner tube.
    The boy king is mad that they won’t take the other guy’s name off the flowers.

  • Kitt

    Why would Bush go to the Taj Mahal in India when he can go to the one in Atlantic City? [readytoblowagasket]
    Or Vegas….

  • befromdc

    John-Riley, what do you mean by minorities? 1 billion plus Indians are minorities in relationship to two white folks?

  • readytoblowagasket

    befromdc, I think John-Riley was being ironic; he was using “minorities” to indicate the way the Bushes would view anyone with dark skin.

  • Lt. Bighorn

    Hooray for the Red, White, and Blue!

Refresh Archives

Random Notes