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George W. Bush
Note: 1 Klasse: 10
Arbeit: George W. Bush
Author: Jens Smetten
43rd President of the United States
George Walker Bush was born on the 6th of July, 1946 in New Haven, Massachusetts, as the eldest of five children, and grew up in Midland and Houston, Texas. His father George Walker Herbert Bush married Barbara Bush in 1945 at the age of 21, while he was studying at Yale. She is an admired woman, who is proud of her husband and her children and aggressively defends them against every attack. While her husband was President of the United States, she was called "grandmother of the nation" because of her white hair. His brother Jeb (John Ellis Bush) is seven years younger than George W. Bush, his sister Robin died because of leukaemia after having only lived for three years.
At the age of 15 George W. Bush left the freewheeling Texan lifestyle for puritanical New England, where he followed in his fathers footsteps by attending Phillips Academy in Andover, Massachusetts. Unlike his father, who got top notes and who was a good sportsman, George W. was a rather poor student.
In 1964, before he started studying at the University of Yale to which his father went about 25 years ago, he took part in his fatherŒs election campaign for the Texan Senate. When his father failed, he had to bear many comments at Yale on the political ideas of his father. During this time he started to dislike the "east coast intellectuals". George W. Bush didnŒt take part in political activities though it was the time of Vietnam, civil rights activists and Martin Luther King. He preferred baseball and parties. Even today none of George W. BushŒs achievements at the Phillips Academy and the University of Yale are made public because Bush ordered strictly not to publish them. In spite of being a member of the House of Representatives, his father failed again in 1970 when he tried to be elected Senator of Texas. His main mistake was not to be accepted as a man from Texas.
In 1968, his last year at Yale, George W. Bush joined the scary secret society "Skull and Bones". This secret connection was based at Yale University in New Haven in 1832 and it is supposed to have a great influence upon American society. The extremely selected members have friends in very high places. They occupy key positions in the worlds of commerce, communication and media, diplomacy, education, espionage, finance, law and politics. They intend to utilize the institutional networks of the US Government and key private agencies to advance their purpose.Because of the seriousness and the essential confidence it is an onerous way to be accepted as a member in "Skull and Bones": Medieval and strange rituals are done to join strong connections with the members. In the entrance examination people have to lie naked in coffins and there inform the members about the most personal things they went through in their lives.
When you are accepted as a member of "Skull and Bones", you also get the honorary title "good man".
It is rumoured that George W. BushŒs grandfather had stolen the legendary skull which is said to belong to Geronimo, a famous boss of a Red Indian tribe. People say that it was George W. BushŒs father who tapped his sonŒs shoulder on "tap night", the last Thursday in April at 8 oŒclock p.m., and asked him the decisive question: "Skull and Bones, accept or reject?" So he showed him the fourth station on his way of the family tradition: Andover, Yale, "Delta Kappa Epsilon" (a sort of a fine party bunch) and finally "Skull and Bones".
The same year, two months before he had received a bachelorŒs degree and left Yale, Bush joined the Texas National Guard which was also called "Champagne Guard", because its members passed the whole day by playing poker, having parties and flying their F-102 aircrafts along the border of Texas. There were 150 candidates for only two jobs as a pilot. Bush scraped through the entrance examination and got the job all the same. Thus he avoided taking part in the war at Vietnam. By the way: His father had volunteered as the youngest pilot of the navy during the Second World War when he was shot above the Pacific, rescued and highly decorated before he went to war again. After he had done his military service, George W. Bush attended Harvard Business School as well as his father had done before and after having received a Master of Business Administration, he finally decided to go back to Texas in 1977.
At the age of 31, Bush founded his first oil firm called Arbusto (the Spanish name for bush), married Laura, a former teacher and librarian who grew up in Midland, Texas, and tried to get a seat in the House of Representatives but wasnŒt successful. In 1980 he was engaged to his fatherŒs election campaign for President of the United States. His father failed but became running mate for Ronald Reagan. After ReaganŒs term had run out in 1989, his father was elected 41st President of the United States.
After a complicated pregnancy Laura gave birth to twin daughters in 1981. Five years later on the day after his 40th birthday, George W. Bush decided not to drink alcohol any longer. His change of heart to become a teetotaller was caused by the influence of his wife Laura and the religious aspects of the Methodist church, especially of famous American Reverend Billy Graham.
BushŒs Arbusto company wasnŒt a great success but he managed to make a bargain by some take-overs and it is rumoured by using insider dealing, too. In 1990, two years after his father had been elected President, George W. Bush sold all the shares of Arbusto and thus made a good profit. After having assembled a group of partners, George W. Bush purchased the Texas Rangers baseball licence investing 600 000 $ in 1989. Nine years later he sold the company for about 15,4 Million $. Although the Texas Rangers werenŒt a top winning team, George W. Bush and a group of partners made a new stadium built by the support of the citizens of Arlington, called "The Ballpark in Arlington", and thus the value of the baseball company increased enormously.
For George W. Bush himself the engagement in Texan baseball had important effects: On the one hand he became a genuine part of Texas. On the other hand people regarded him as the manager of the Texas Rangers and no longer as George Walker Herbert BushŒs eldest son who improved because of his fatherŒs oil business.
Though he had often thought of entering a political career in Texas, George W. Bush had learnt from his fatherŒs election campaigns and waited till his time came and a firm connection to Texas was established. After his father had lost the re-election for President against Clinton in 1992, George W. Bush was the Republican nominee for Governor of the State of Texas in 1993. When he was asked about his strategy, he referred to four important points: criminality, education, tort reforms and reforms of the social system. Although he hadnŒt developed an election platform, he won the election in 1994 with 53,5 percent of the vote and became the 46th Governor of the State of Texas. Many Texans maintained that his victory was only because of his concession to the Texans of wearing hidden weapons. After this success his father presented him the "most valuable thing he had ever possessed" (for George W. it is the same today): He gave him the cuff-links that he already got from his father.
The day George W. Bush was elected Governor of Texas, his brother Jeb failed narrowly in his attempt to become Governor of Florida.
BushŒs first steps in his new function were unusual: He visited the leaders of the Democrats that nevertheless still played an important role in Texas to find a common basis between Democrats and Republicans. Besides Bush probably recognized very early that the influence of the Governor of Texas wasnŒt immense and that he had no choice but making compromises. George W. Bush isnŒt a good speaker in front of a big audience. He doesnŒt sound impressive and often makes slips. But in a conversation his behaviour is likeable and his arguments are convincing and he has got a good sense of humour.
During his time as Governor of Texas, George W. designated himself as a "compassionate conservative". According to the web sites of the White House this term defines someone who "shapes policy based on the principles of limited government, personal responsibility, strong families and local control".
In 1998 the Bush family finally got the success that wasnŒt reached four years ago: Not only was George W. Bush re-elected as Governor of Texas, but also did his younger brother Jeb achieve the title "Governor of Florida". It was apparent that Jeb had realized his mistakes made in 1994: In those days his views were completely conservative and so he made stirring speeches against Social Security, abortion and for the tightening up of penal laws. Little by little Jeb had become a "compassionate conservative", too.
During his term in Texas, George W. Bush tried to improve education- especially concerning public schools, put welfare recipients to work, strengthened criminal justice laws and Social Security and proposed bold initiatives to ensure that AmericaŒs prosperity has a purpose.
When he was Governor of Texas, Bush delivered the two largest tax cuts in state history. He also ordered the death penalty more than 150 times and thus set up a lonely record. Texas is the only state where mentally handicapped people are executed. George W. Bush took environmental problems over from his predecessor. Nowadays Texas is supposed to be the state with the highest industrial air pollution and generally the state where the most environmental pollutants are released because Texas has to bear most of the petrochemical companies. Bush himself didnŒt care much about the Texan pollution. He simply wanted the industry to react voluntarily and didnŒt make any laws concerning care of the environment.
Encouraged by 68,6 percent of the population of Texas which had given their votes to him when he was elected Governor of Texas in 1998 Bush finally decided to run for President in 2000. He was greatly supported with donations mostly by those people who already supported his father in his election campaign years ago. Many people also invested in Bush because they hoped for new laws to be in their favour. Bush established another lonely record when there were finally over 100 Million Dollars at his disposal. Ultimately there were only the Democrat Al Gore and the Republican George W. Bush that courted the nationŒs favour. As one analyst said, Bush and Gore seemed to have divided up Bill ClintonŒs personality. Gore got the wonky and instructive part, and Bush got the charming, devilish rogue. You couldnŒt foresee who would win the race. In the end - after having put good fights in TV-battles - many invalid votes, several courts and the strange American election system made George W. Bush the 43rd President of the United States. Actually Al Gore got the most votes but he didnŒt have George W. BushŒs overwhelming self-confidence and perhaps thatŒs the reason why he failed.
George W. Bush now has to get through hard times to convince people of his capability to act as the most powerful person of the world. He has to resist many prejudices because of his controversial election victory, his past and the prejudice of being a "lame duck". Anyway he may trust in his vice-president Cheney and many other of his appointed colleagues: The majority of them had already worked reliable, active and faithful for his father in good as well as in bad times while he was President.