Brad DeLong's Semi-Daily Journal: A Weblog: Wow! Francis Fukuyama Is Shrill!
George Bush must have a peculiar genius. He couldn't have gotten where he is without a fantastic gift.
It's not his raw IQ. Based on his SAT scores his raw IQ is probably about 120. Average to above average for college.
It's not his insight, wisdom or judgment. Those have been catastrophic.
It's not his choice of allies. Cheney? Rumsfeld?
And yet ...
He has many followers. He exerts iron control over many who are far more capable, in naive terms, than he.
My guess he has a genius for four related things:
1. Lying. I think he has a capacity for deception beyond everyday imaging. I would NEVER play poker against George Bush.
2. Raw leadership -- the peculiar gene that persuades others that he should be followed, that he is competent and wise.
3. The ability to project the appearance of wisdom, confidence, and considered judgment.
4. Rewarding his allies and punishing his enemies -- thereby imposing an iron loyalty and discipline. This requires the an incredible capacity to carry a grudge.
Combine the above with an insatiable lust for power over others, and we have a recipe for disaster -- GWB, father of the American Chechnya.