New York

Hue and Cry

by


Get the Draw on Bush

Isn’t there anything that can make Bush blush? Guess we’ll have to do it ourselves, with the help of Karen A. Ocker‘s witty George W. Bush Coloring Book, available from Garrett County Press, out of New Orleans. The 24-page book features 17 full-page line drawings, each accompanied by priceless Dubya quotes, heavily annotated and sourced. Remember when he said, “We need an energy bill that encourages consumption,” at a National Guard base in Trenton, New Jersey, in September 2002? (Oh yes, he said it. Check it out on the White House’s official site.)

No New Yorker could forget that the ever oblivious Dubya, speaking barely three months after the 9/11 attacks, summed up his first year in office this way during a December 21, 2001, Oval Office photo-op session to show off a new carpet wifey Laura designed: “All in all, it’s been a fabulous year for Laura and me.” (You can’t make this shit up. See the White House’s own transcript. Let’s see . . . where did I put those black and blue crayons?)

The only quote in Ocker’s book about which there’s any doubt (the White House calls it “total crap”) was Bush’s reported question in March 2001 to Fernando Henrique Cardoso, who was at the time the president of Brazil. “Do you have blacks, too?” Bush is said to have asked Cardoso. (Read this Washington Post story about the flap.)

Ocker, a New Yorker, draws the whole cast of characters, and there’s a serviceable screed about Bush by Joely Wood, the learned editor in chief of the Garrett County Press. The drawings are funny—Bush as a cheerleader in a skirt and holding pom-poms, Bush and Condoleezza Rice riding a WMD missile like a bull, that kind of thing. And here’s a chance to decide for yourself exactly what color Condi really is. Or maybe draw handcuffs on Don Rumsfeld and grab your burnt sienna and glop a waxy Abu Ghraib shroud on his head.

As for Bush himself, why not consult the Crayola timeline and use one of the venerable crayon maker’s two newer colors to capture his tone? Either “inch worm” or “beaver” should do it.

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