One thing we should look for in political leaders is someone who uses words clearly (I know this is a tall order) because not only does it help me understand what the issues are, it provides evidence of someone who is thinking clearly. Not surprisingly, this is one of Bush’s main problems. Words just tumble out of his mouth. Consider this one example from last week. Here is Bush condemning the Bhutto assassination:
“The United States strongly condemns this cowardly act by murderous extremists who are trying to undermine Pakistan’s democracy. Those who committed this crime must be brought to justice.”
OK. Murderous, extremist, yes. But cowardly? I just don’t see it. Killing yourself for a cause may be bad, crazy, and extreme—but it doesn’t seem cowardly.
Cowardice would be something like aggressively avoiding military service personally during a time of war—say, by seeking five draft deferments—then aggressively seeking military service for others as a political leader by advocating war a solution to virtually every foreign policy issue.