There's nothing as refreshing as being with fellow journalists to know just how awful things are in the world — especially when the topic of conversation turns to President Bush.
One after another blasted him:
For the war: a disaster.
For the economy: uneven.
Even for the markets: undeserving.
One reporter even said — and I quote — "the guy's just stupid."
When it was my turn to speak, I said, "Well, he's president of the United States and you're not, so end of story."
But that was not the end of the story, because they turned their criticism to me.
How could I be dumb enough to see any virtue in this guy?
Because I'm dumb enough, I said, to realize we haven't been attacked since 9/11.
I'm dumb enough to see more people liberated under this president than any president.
And I'm dumb enough to see an economy apparently the envy of the world, attracting a lot of money pretty much from all over the world.
It is ironic that journalists who pride themselves on their impartiality can be so partial in their hatred — forgetting that polls are fleeting, taking lasting stands are not.
For good or ill, it took guts for this president to say Social Security was broken and needed fixing. It took zero guts to refuse to admit he was right.
History will prove that when this country's chips were down, this president gathered our courage up.
I suspect history will honor that courage, even if a bunch of condescending, second-guessing, weasels-of-the-moment reporters do not.
They won't give you that side of the story. I only thought it fair and balanced that I do.
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