George W. Bush knows "nothing" about anything and his aides will swear to it

By Bev Conover


Take your pick, George W. Bush: 1) suffers from amnesia, 2) he's an android, 3) he's a prevaricator.

Last week he could not explain how, during the Vietnam War, he zoomed into the Texas National Air Guard ahead of 150 others who were not members of the Bush family. His aides, though, came up with some fanciful tales. To hear them tell it, being the son of the George H. W. Bush, the then congressman from Houston, had nothing to do with it. The most hilarious of their fabrications was that the George Shrub wasn't seeking to avoid serving in 'Nam, why he could have been sent over there at any time. Right, with an antiquated F102 fighter jet that the Air Force had dumped.

So while George Dubya was doing his duty in safeguarding Texas against invasion, he was sent over to fight in the Arkansas war... uh, political campaign of a senatorial candidate. A fella could really get hurt in that sort of dog fight.

Now we find out about the campaign literature Dubya put out in 1978, during what became a failed bid for Congress, claiming he had served in the U.S. Air Force, too. Questioned about this during an appearance yesterday in New Jersey, Bush is quoted as saying, "I think so, yes. I was in the Air Force for over 600 days.'' His communications director, Karen Hughes, called the claim "accurate."

The Air Force, however, doesn't think it either "so" or "accurate." Once a guardsman, always a guardsman, says the Air Force. According to the Air Force, even while receiving active duty pay, a guardsman is never counted as a member of the Air Force. Okay.

It gets better.

Ms. Hughes wants you to believe that Dubya didn't know that the deed to a home he purchased in North Dallas in 1988 contained a "whites only" covenant. While such restrictive covenants were declared illegal by the U.S. Supreme Court in 1948 and finally nullified by Texas in 1984, are we really to believe that the man who now wants to be president didn't read the documents sent to him by the title company? Yet that is precisely what they want us to believe. While many properties had such deed restrictions which are now meaningless, why all the fancy footwork to say Bush, who sold the house in 1996 after being elected governor, didn't know? If this is truly the case, is he fit to be president? Imagine if he fails to read bills he signs or treaties he enters into, what the outcome might be.

One explanation the Bush camp seems to lack is why he was issued a new Texas driver's license number. We have spent more than a month now playing phone tag with Mindy Tucker, Dubya's press secretary, in trying to get an answer to that question raised by Online Journal. Was the new driver's license number issued to conceal something on Bush's old record or have his people run out of creative responses? The truth, regardless of whatever it is, would be refreshing.

While Ms. Tucker tried to downplay any importance to the new driver's license number, we cannot overlook the fact that, if not repealed, a provision of the 1996 Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibilities Act mandates that your driver's license on Oct. 1, 2000, become your national identity card. Also, according to a program called "Big Brother" recently aired on the Discovery Channel, the FBI is currently working to set up a database using driver's license numbers.

Moving along�

Ms. Hughes denied knowing that Remedios Diaz Oliver, a member of the host committee for Dubya's Miami fund raising bash, had legal problems and had copped a plea to federal charges of income tax evasion and Customs fraud. After all, Ms. Diaz Oliver, her husband and their business partner in Spanish Foods, Inc., were only named in an 18-count indictment in 1997. Never mind that the Diaz Olivers are listed among the 80 wealthiest Hispanic families in the nation; that Remedios is the only Hispanic woman from Florida to sit on the board of a Fortune 1000 company; that when Dubya's daddy was president he would dispatch Remedios to attend inaugurals in South America. (See "First it was Columba and now a Bush supporter -coincidence or something darker?")

Rather than offer one of their creative replies to questions about the wife of Dubya's brother, Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, who had a run in with U.S. Customs when she tried to smuggle nearly $19,000 in Paris purchases into the country, the Texas Shrub's people brushed it off as having nothing to do with their boy. So how come President Jimmy Carter was held responsible for the antics and illegal activities of brother Billy? Remember Billy Beer and that sweet Iranian deal of Billy's?

The major media that went ballistic over lesser things in previous presidential campaigns have no concern about any of these. A little dribbles out here and there, and within a day or so it becomes non-news.

Who cares if Dubya doesn't want to talk about his past. Bill Clinton's past was important and Bill Clinton wasn't involved in a quarter of the things George W. and the Bush family have been involved in. Character issue? What character issue? Dubya says his past is a non-issue and he done got religion. That must count for something, right?

So what if he called Greeks Grecians and Kosovars Kosavarians, among other things? Poor old Dan Quayle is still trying to live down "potatoe."

What about Funeralgate? It's just a lawsuit filed back in March by a Texas Funeral Service Commission whistle blower against the state, funeral home giant Service Corporation International (SCI)  and it's chairman, claiming she was fired for reporting violations of the law. Who cares that the suit alleges that Dubya and other politicos, who intervened on SCI's behalf, all received major political campaign donations from SCI's political action committee? Or that Dubya has so far ducked being deposed? Hey, he's busy campaigning for president.

Or how about that story in the other day's San Jose Mercury News? The one about Dubya, during his visit to Silicon Valley, calling upon his daddy's old friends who now are at the Hoover Institution to help draw up his tax cut plan? There was no mention, of course, that Richard Mellon Scaife-that fella who worked so hard to get Clinton tossed out of office-is one of the largest contributors, via his foundations, to Hoover.

None of these things mean anything to the brain dead major media pundits. What's important is trotting after George Dubya as he runs around the country, how far ahead of his opponents he is and the money he claims to be raking in.

"It's the horse race, stupid!" is the slogan of the 2000 presidential campaign.

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