The Complete Bushisms

The 43rd president's accidental wit and wisdom.
March 20 2009 3:48 PM

The Complete Bushisms

Updated frequently.

"This is my maiden voyage. My first speech since I was the president of the United States and I couldn't think of a better place to give it than Calgary, Canada."—As reported by the Associated Press, Calgary, Canada, March 17, 2009

"I'm going to put people in my place, so when the history of this administration is written at least there's an authoritarian voice saying exactly what happened."—On what he hopes to accomplish with his memoir, as reported by the Associated Press, Calgary, Canada, March 17, 2009

Jacob  Weisberg Jacob Weisberg

Jacob Weisberg is chairman and editor-in-chief of The Slate Group and author of The Bush Tragedy. Follow him on Twitter.

"I guess it's OK to call the secretary of education here 'buddy.' That means friend."—Philadelphia, Jan. 8, 2009

Click here  to see video of Bush's comments. The Bushism is at 2:38.

"One of the very difficult parts of the decision I made on the financial crisis was to use hardworking people's money to help prevent there to be a crisis."—Washington, D.C., Jan. 12, 2009

Click here to see video of Bush's comments. The Bushism is at 20:48.

"In terms of the economy, look, I inherited a recession, I am ending on a recession."—Washington, D.C., Jan. 12, 2009

Click here  to see video of Bush's comments. The Bushism is at 13:48.

"The best way to ensure that there is a sustainable cease-fire is to work with Egypt to stop the smuggling of arms into the Gaza."—Washington, D.C., Jan. 12, 2009

Click here  to see video of Bush's comments. The Bushism is at 4:48.

"I'm telling you there's an enemy that would like to attack America, Americans, again. There just is. That's the reality of the world. And I wish him all the very best."—Washington, D.C., Jan. 12, 2009

Click here to see video of Bush's comments. The Bushism is at 20:25.

"So I analyzed that and decided I didn't want to be the president during a depression greater than the Great Depression, or the beginning of a depression greater than the Great Depression."—Washington D.C., Dec. 18, 2008

Click here  to see video of Bush's comments. The Bushism is at 19:09.

"People say, well, do you ever hear any other voices other than, like, a few people? Of course I do."—Washington, D.C., Dec. 18, 2008

Advertisement

Click here to see video of Bush's comments. The Bushism is at 31:42.

"I've abandoned free market principles to save the free market system."—Washington, D.C., Dec. 16, 2008

Click here  to see video of Bush's comments. The Bushism is at 1:40.

"I've been in the Bible every day since I've been the president."—Washington, D.C., Nov. 12, 2008

"He was a great father before politics, a great father during politics and a great father after politics."—On his father, George H.W. Bush, Washington, D.C., Nov. 12, 2008

"Yesterday, you made note of my—the lack of my talent when it came to dancing. But nevertheless, I want you to know I danced with joy. And no question Liberia has gone through very difficult times."—Speaking with the president of Liberia, Washington, D.C., Oct. 22, 2008

Click here  to see video of Bush's comments. The Bushism is at 0:23.

"I want to share with you an interesting program—for two reasons, one, it's interesting, and two, my wife thought of it—or has actually been involved with it; she didn't think of it. But she thought of it for this speech."—Washington D.C., Oct. 21, 2008, discussing PlayPumps International, which improves access to clean water in Africa

Click hereto see video of Bush's comments. The Bushism is at 13:39.

"This thaw—took a while to thaw, it's going to take a while to unthaw."—Alexandria, La., Oct. 20, 2008

"Anyone engaging in illegal financial transactions will be caught and persecuted."—Washington, D.C., Sept. 19, 2008

Click here to see video of Bush's comments. The Bushism is at 4:56.

"I didn't grow up in the ocean—as a matter of fact—near the ocean—I grew up in the desert. Therefore, it was a pleasant contrast to see the ocean. And I particularly like it when I'm fishing."—Washington, D.C., Sept. 26, 2008

Click here  to see video of Bush's comments. The Bushism is at 5:06.

"We're fixing to go down to Galveston and obviously are going to see a devastated part of this fantastic state."—Houston, Sept. 16, 2008

See
video of Bush's comments. The Bushism is at 3:10.

"The people in Louisiana must know that all across our country there's a lot of prayer—prayer for those whose lives have been turned upside down. And I'm one of them."—Baton Rouge, La., Sept. 3, 2008

Click here  to see video of Bush's comments. The Bushism is at 3:40.

"I'm coming as the president of a friend, and I'm coming as a sportsman."—On his trip to the Olympics in China, Washington, D.C., July 30, 2008

"But oftentimes I'm asked: Why? Why do you care what happens outside of America?"—Washington, D.C., June 26, 2008

Click here to see video of Bush's comments. The Bushism is at 14:20.

"And they have no disregard for human life."—Describing the brutality of Afghan fighters, Washington, D.C., July 15, 2008

Click here  to see video of Bush's comments. The Bushism is at 25:47.

"I remember meeting a mother of a child who was abducted by the North Koreans right here in the Oval Office."—Washington, D.C., June 26, 2008

Click here to see video of Bush's comments. The Bushism is at 12:50.

"I think it was in the Rose Garden where I issued this brilliant statement: If I had a magic wand —but the president doesn't have a magic wand. You just can't say, 'low gas.' "—Washington D.C., July 15, 2008

Click here to see video of Bush's comments. The Bushism is at 14:57.

"The economy is growing, productivity is high, trade is up, people are working. It's not as good as we'd like, but—and to the extent that we find weakness, we'll move."—Washington, D.C., July 15, 2008

Click hereto see video of Bush's comments. The Bushism is at 7:55.

"Should the Iranian regime—do they have the sovereign right to have civilian nuclear power? So, like, if I were you, that's what I'd ask me. And the answer is, yes, they do."—Speaking to reporters in Washington, D.C., July 2, 2008

"Throughout our history, the words of the Declaration have inspired immigrants from around the world to set sail to our shores. These immigrants have helped transform 13 small colonies into a great and growing nation of more than 300 people."—Charlottesville, Va., July 4, 2008

Click here  to see video of Bush's comments. The Bushism is at 7:10.

"We've got a lot of relations with countries in our neighborhood."—Kranj, Slovenia, June 10, 2008

Click here to see video of Bush's comments. The Bushism is at 12:56.

"One of the things important about history is to remember the true history."—Washington, D.C., June 6, 2008

"The German asparagus are fabulous."Meseberg, Germany, June 11, 2008

TODAY IN SLATE

Politics

Smash and Grab

Will competitive Senate contests in Kansas and South Dakota lead to more late-breaking races in future elections?

I Am 25. I Don't Work at Facebook. My Doctors Want Me to Freeze My Eggs.

The XX Factor
Oct. 20 2014 6:17 PM I Am 25. I Don't Work at Facebook. My Doctors Want Me to Freeze My Eggs.

Republicans Want the Government to Listen to the American Public on Ebola. That’s a Horrible Idea.

The Most Ingenious Teaching Device Ever Invented

Tom Hanks Has a Short Story in the New Yorker. It’s Not Good.

Brow Beat

Marvel’s Civil War Is a Far-Right Paranoid Fantasy

It’s also a mess. Can the movies do better?

Watching Netflix in Bed. Hanging Bananas. Is There Anything These Hooks Can’t Solve?

The Procedural Rule That Could Prevent Gay Marriage From Reaching SCOTUS Again

  News & Politics
Politics
Oct. 20 2014 8:14 PM You Should Be Optimistic About Ebola Don’t panic. Here are all the signs that the U.S. is containing the disease.
  Business
Moneybox
Oct. 20 2014 7:23 PM Chipotle’s Magical Burrito Empire Keeps Growing, Might Be Slowing
  Life
Outward
Oct. 20 2014 3:16 PM The Catholic Church Is Changing, and Celibate Gays Are Leading the Way
  Double X
The XX Factor
Oct. 20 2014 6:17 PM I Am 25. I Don't Work at Facebook. My Doctors Want Me to Freeze My Eggs.
  Slate Plus
Tv Club
Oct. 20 2014 7:15 AM The Slate Doctor Who Podcast: Episode 9 A spoiler-filled discussion of "Flatline."
  Arts
Brow Beat
Oct. 20 2014 6:32 PM Taylor Swift’s Pro-Gay “Welcome to New York” Takes Her Further Than Ever From Nashville 
  Technology
Future Tense
Oct. 20 2014 4:59 PM Canadian Town Cancels Outdoor Halloween Because Polar Bears
  Health & Science
Medical Examiner
Oct. 20 2014 11:46 AM Is Anybody Watching My Do-Gooding? The difference between being a hero and being an altruist.
  Sports
Sports Nut
Oct. 20 2014 5:09 PM Keepaway, on Three. Ready—Break! On his record-breaking touchdown pass, Peyton Manning couldn’t even leave the celebration to chance.