CROUCHING BUSH, HIDDEN ANGER
Behold Jeb’s Mythical Chinese Warrior
Christopher Buckley, writing in the voice of America’s next Bush, tells you about the dynasty’s great defender.
When we were kids, and things weren’t going our way, Dad used to give us a little pep talk and tell us it was time to “unleash Chang.”
We had no idea who Chang was or why he should be unleashed. My brother George said Chang was our grandfather Prescott Bush’s deaf-mute Korean butler, who would decapitate Gramp’s opponents on the golf course with his steel-belted homburg hat.
As it turned out, George had it wrong. It wasn’t the last time George would get things bass-ackwards. But he’s my bro, and I love him.
Years later, I learned who Chang is, thanks to some Chinese folks who had come to Florida—to study, not to have children. (Or as I call foreign kids born on U.S. soil, Stork Bombs.)
These fine, wise Asian persons informed me that Chang was a mythical Chinese warrior. Totally fearsome. Not someone to unleash casually, though Dad was always unleashing him on the tennis court to rattle Jim Baker and George Schultz.
My fellow Republicans, as this cockamamie campaign proceeds, I have been asking myself if the time has come for me to unleash Chang.
This is a complicated decision, and I want to walk you through it.
I have tried to conduct a seemly, issue-oriented campaign. During the first debate, I did not interrupt the other nine hundred candidates, or however many there were.
I willingly agreed to the scrum-diddily-umptious Ms. Kelly’s pledge not to be a spoilsport and run as a third-party candidate. Following the debate, I refrained from insinuating that Ms. Kelly had been menstruating. But perhaps I should have, since this appears to be a guaranteed way to drive up your poll numbers.
I discussed with Chang if we should do this. He said, No, he would prefer not to be unleashed for such a “low purpose,” as he called it. Chinese mythical warriors may be fearsome, but apparently they have codes of conduct.
I asked him if we should dump on John McCain for getting himself shot down over Hanoi. What a loser, right? My dad got shot down in World War II. Did he end up in the Hanoi Hilton for five and half years? No sir.
But again, Chang said, No. Chang feels that John McCain is an authentic American hero. I explained that insulting his valor was a proven way to improve your numbers among angry, disaffected and not very bright folks. Still Chang refused. Boy can they be stubborn, these mythical Chinese warriors.
Almost every day, while I’m out there talking about the issues facing America today, Common Core, legal path to citizenship, how Obama screwed up the Middle East, blah, blah, blah, the good folks in the media—God bless ’em—shout at me, “Would you have invaded Iraq in 2003 like your brother did?”
How I love getting that question. Do they ever ask, “Would you have invaded Iraq in 1991 like your father did?” Noooo.
I love my brother, but given what we know now, it appears that he was menstruating when he invaded Iraq 2003. Okay, already. It happens. The dogs bark, the caravan moves on.
My name is Bush. It’s a name I’m darn proud of, even though you won’t find it on my bumper sticker. Do you see “Clinton” on her bumper sticker? No. Maybe it got wiped, along with the 30,000 emails.
I’ve been patient. But if I get this question one more time, Chang will be unleashed. And in that event, I would say to my good friends in the media, be afraid. Be very afraid. I do not know Chang’s views on the 2003 invasion of Iraq, but I do know his views on the media. So heads up, people.
I would add that Chang is not happy about the way this campaign is going. Not one bit.
Chang was looking forward to a full and vigorous exchange of views about the vital issues facing America.
And what does he get when he turns on the evening news each night? Donald Trump’s latest Tweet assault. For this, men died on Omaha Beach.
Chang said to me, “This is not how we conducted elections in mythical China. The Nine Dragons did not go around breathing fire on women debate moderators. The Three August Ones did not color their hair orange and bellow, ‘Everyone is stupid! Only we know how fix things! Muahahaa!’ The Four Heavenly Kings did not declare, ‘We must have a great wall to keep out foreign rapists and murderers!’”
I was going to say something here, but I bit my tongue. Mythical Chinese warriors can be touchy. And the whole point of having one isn’t to unleash him on yourself.
I told Chang I totally understood. And that I am as disappointed as he is. The way things are going, I wouldn’t be surprised at the next debate to find myself on stage between Caitlyn Jenner and Kim Kardashian. I can hardly wait to hear their views on Common Core.
I like to think of myself as a big tent Republican. Which is to say, I’d rather have lots of people inside the tent, peeing out, than outside the tent, peeing in.
We certainly have a big tent. Nineteen candidates, and one elephant, with a very full bladder, peeing in every direction.
How pathetic is it that we’re all tippy-toeing around the elephant? Because we’re terrified that after he wrecks our tent, he’ll stomp off and put up his own, and elect the Evil Queen of Email.
Our party was once led by Ronald Reagan. Ronald Reagan was a devout believer in the 11th Commandment: Thou shalt not speak ill of thy fellow Republican.
So, tempting as it may be, I have decided for the time being not to unleash Chang. I will not speak ill of my fellow Republicans.
I will go on making my case. Yes, perhaps I should do a better job of this than I have so far. Fair enough. I will do my best. I will abide by the judgment of my party. And if Mr. Trump becomes our nominee, Columba and I can always go live in Mexico. It’s safe there, now that all the murderers and rapists are living here in the U.S.
Chang is disappointed at my decision. He’s been tugging on that leash. But if things work out and I end up the nominee, he’s going to be real hungry a year from now.