by Mark W. Brown
Dear Mr. Bush,
What with all of the bad press you've been getting lately,
with people calling you incompetent and all sorts of other
things, I have decided to take it upon myself to call to attention
a job that you have performed flawlessly, and thank you for
it. For it is without a doubt that I can say that it is thanks
to you, Mr. Bush, that I am interested in politics today.
A little over a year and a half ago, I had fallen under the
spell of the ongoing campaign of your own Republican Party.
This campaign, which has for years fought to turn off the
general public from elections, was actually almost a success
on me. For when I saw politics, I thought that everyone was
the same, and that there would be no point in voting, as I
would be but a single young voice, and no one would listen
to me. But then, in what one could only call bipartisanship,
you ran against Senator McCain.
I'm sure you recall that campaign, of course. Mr. McCain
traveled across the country on his bus, the Straight Talk
Express, talking up a storm, and being honest about it. He
admitted there were issues he would neglect in favor of things
he believed were important. He was accurately named the reformer.
In short, Mr. McCain showed you up something awful. And then
there was you, flitting from place to place, never quite knowing
what you were doing, bumbling around and making an absolute
idiot out of yourself. You talked at places like Bob Jones
University, and you had your "fuzzy math" and whatever else
it was you had.
But your party's conservative machine stepped up and smashed
the maverick Mr. McCain back into his Arizona Senate seat,
stealing his title and calling yourself a "Reformer with Results,"
trying to pander to every single voting constituency while
secretly not caring a whit. But hey, it was great for me to
see that not all politicians are the same!
Really, I'm sure you've heard enough about all of that business
with that Gore character. Moreover, I already had my stunning
revelation that not all candidates were the same. So I'm not
going to open old wounds and go on about how your brother's
lackey helped steal the election for you, which was further
sealed by certain lifelong appointees your father had made.
Actually, since you can tell a lot about a man from his friends,
I can say that I learned quite a bit about you from that whole
fiasco. I'll just skip over all of that stuff and get to the
stuff that you've really done since you've been living in
the White House.
You've been doing such a good job at getting me into politics
that naming all of the ways could probably take until the
end of your term, especially considering that you'll still
be in charge through all of it, so really, more could happen.
I really loved it how you had that top-heavy tax cut pushed
through Congress and then signed it. I mean, when the wealthiest
2% of Americans are the main beneficiaries of something, even
young people with no sense notice. And when those rebate checks
with your name on them arrived, I noticed that, too. By the
way, our $600 went into the bank account. I know you wanted
my dad to spend it, but he just didn't want that Playstation
2. I tried.
Anyway, I also noticed the people who didn't get rebate checks.
Why is it that we, who are quite well off, receive all of
the money, and there are people who are worse than us who
received none? A friend of mine, who is a twenty-year-old
single mother in college full-time who needs a part-time job
to pay for it, received only a letter saying that she would
get no refund. Another friend of mine, who is nineteen and
married and in the same situation college- and job-wise, also
I'm not going to dwell on that one issue though. I mean,
you've done lots of other stuff, right? Let's see, there is
your barrage of conservative judges presently awaiting confirmation
in the Senate, your plan to drill in the ANWR and ruin the
habitats of species whose names you can't pronounce, your
appointing John Ashcroft to the post of Attorney General -
The nicest thing about all that you've done, Mr. Bush, is
that you've kept up the effort ever since the tragedy that
occurred on September 11th. I mean, there you were, just barely
removed from your month vacation in Texas. And then, faced
with a nation who needed leadership, you provided just that
as you flew from Louisiana to Nebraska while Ari Fleischer
came on the TV and told me how there was a credible threat
against Air Force One. Just like any White House resident
should have done.
What about the job you've done speaking since, eh? Why, you've
managed to effectively make a point - er, a whole zero times
since then! And while your underlings scurry about and try
to hold together the international coalition that you are
trying your darndest to collapse, well, this whole anthrax
thing went and happened. But hey, you took it like a man,
and didn't give into any paranoia, since there wasn't any
anthrax found anywhere near your house, right? Oh, oh, right,
the Cipro thing while those two untested postal workers died.
Uh, we'll just keep that between you and me. And then there's
this new tax cut thing you're proposing - hey, you know, maybe
I'll get that Playstation 2 yet! Christmas is coming up, after
Though the best has got to be that aptly named USA Patriot
Act of 2001. Boy, Mr. Bush, let me tell you - if THAT didn't
make me want to get into politics, none of this that you did
for me would have. And I'm going to be a patriot like I'm
supposed to be. That's why I'm thanking you!
So thank you, Mr. Bush, for being the one responsible for
transforming me from yet another apathetic youth, to an energetic
and interested citizen of the nation, counting down the twelve
days until I can register to vote. This one job is something
you can always point to and call a success.
Mark W. Brown
Age 17, 11 mos., 19 days
Reisterstown, Maryland, USA
P.S. I know you're great at this bipartisanship thing, so
maybe you can help me with this: Where do I go to volunteer
for Al Gore's 2004 campaign?