50-Year Politics

Ross on David Brooks's talk at Aspen:

Brooks brought up President Bush, and remarked that in all of his conversations with the President he'd always been struck by the extent to which Bush seemed (unconsciously, in ways he'd never articulate if pressed) to think of decisions in terms of fifty-year time horizons - almost as if he couldn't conceive of political action except in long-run terms. I'm paraphrasing a bit here, and this might not be exactly what Brooks meant, but I think it's an interesting way to think about what's gone wrong - and occasionally right - in the Bush Presidency, and especially the extent to which Bush's actions have been influenced, unconsciously or consciously, by the long-running American narrative of What Makes Presidents Great, often to the detriment of his day-to-day execution of the job.