Tuesday, July 03, 2007

3 July

The day when things, changed, things happened (yes, yes, that's deliberately cryptic, not to be explained tl this blog's last post).

A trip to the TV tower observation eck on a hot, humid, hazy day with insignificant visibilty.

Lunch at the same Freedom Store where we lunched in 1997 en route to the Great Wall (and where Shayna maybe ate rice for the first time).

Then on to the Great Wall.

Would it be better than '97?

Yes it was, but not by a great deal.

We took a short cable car ride to a nasty i.e. hilly stretch of the wall. On a day that was still hot, humid, etc.

Then on to a Beijing Duck dinner. Quaaaackkk---**!!!

And after dinner, the sea change, as it were....

Monday, July 02, 2007

The Genius of Our Beloved Leader

Simple answer for simple minds: Legacy: Worst President since before Lincoln.

And a pleasure to be rid of.
The president of the United States has taken to inviting writers and philosophers and other big thinkers to the White House to help him ponder his legacy. Among the questions he poses: "What is the nature of good and evil in the post-Sept. 11 world? What lessons does history have for a president facing the turmoil I'm facing? How will history judge what we've done? Why does the rest of the world seem to hate America? Or is it just me they hate?"

The thing is, the Post says, Bush seems to save these weighty matters for his invited intellectual guests. An old Bush pal named Robert McCleskey says the president talks with him about more pedestrian matters, like whether he's caught any fish lately. And Democratic Rep. Charlie Rangel, who seemed to think that he'd be talking immigration with the president during a recent trip aboard Air Force One, found himself locked in a chat about baseball instead. "He talked a lot about the [Texas] Rangers," Rangel tells the Post. "I didn't know what the hell he was talking about."

Our Beloved Leader on Russia's Beloved Leader:
Bush: Hold on a second, please. And so we discussed a variety of ways to continue sending a joint message. And by the way, one other issue that I didn't mention in my opening comments that I think you'll find interesting is that President Putin proposed a regional approach to missile defense, that we ought to work together bilaterally as well as work through the Russia-NATO Council. And I'm in strong agreement with that concept. That's all I've got to say -- if you've got something else you want to say. . . . We're close on recognizing that we got to work together to send a common message. . . .

Reporter: Mr. President, six years ago you seemed to have formed a bond with President Putin, when you said you had gotten a sense of his soul. Do you still feel that you trust him? And how troubled are you by the political freedom -- the state of political freedom in Russia?

Bush: Here's the thing when you're dealing with a world leader. You wonder whether or not he's telling you the truth or not. I've never had to worry about that with Vladimir Putin. Sometimes he says things I don't want to hear. But I know he's always telling me the truth.