Bush QUOTES - "Bushisms"

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Below are quotes of George W. Bush, mostly issued from about 1998 through 2008 --- from his first campaign for the Presidency through his second (disastrous) term in office

--- which was 'punctuated' by the Great Recession (toxic mortgage meltdown).

Bush has a way with words --- kind of like Yogi Berra had a way with words.

So some of Bush's utterances could be mistaken for Berra-isms.

Then again, some of his utterances seem like they came from the mouth of a 7-year-old --- or a 3-year-old.

Then, still others seem to come from an addled mind --- like he just woke up out a deep sleep --- or, looking at the glass half-full, it seems like he is having a good day for a lobotomy patient.

It is hard to describe in words what a Yogi-Berra-ism is, so here are a few classics, to give the general idea.

  • "This is like deja vu all over again."

  • "You can observe a lot just by watching."

  • "I didn't really say everything I said."

You can see more Berra-isms via a WEB SEARCH on keywords such as

'yogi berra quotes'.

Rating the quotes:

For each of Bush's quotes that sounds like a Berra-ism, this library may eventually assign one to five Berras, depending on how much the quote sounds like it came from Yogi Berra.

Similarly, for the quotes that sound child-like, one could assign one to five Kiddies.

And for quotes that sound like they came from an addled mind, one could assign one to five Tangles.

One could find appropriate icons for these categories of Bush-isms and display the appropriate icon (and number of icons) beside each quote below.

Giving Bush a Break:

One can't help but think that, under daily scrutiny by the international press, almost anyone would commit quite a few verbal blunders, such as

  • wrong tense of a verb,

  • incomplete sentence followed by an alternate sentence,

  • a double-negative leading to the opposite meaning from what was intended.

But the sheer quantity of the Bush blunders is astounding.

In about 8 years, he seems to have outdone a lifetime of Yogi Berra-isms.

It leads one to a much increased appreciation for the speeches and quotes of Abraham Lincoln and John Kennedy and Barack Obama.

It reminds me of the House of Representatives steroids-in-baseball hearings in early 2007 when Roger Clemens was testifying.

The poor man (Clemens) couldn't complete a sentence.

Clemens would repeatedly stop in mid-sentence and start another sentence.

This leads me to wonder whether Bush had a steroid problem.

Data Presented with the Quotes:

The Bush quotes below are provided with a date of the quote --- and, if available, a location (typically a city) where the quote was recorded.

    (Many of the quotes are actually available in videos on the web --- that is, on "the Internets". You can use "the Google" to find the videos.)

The quotes are provided in chronological order so that as more quotes are added, we can be reasonably certain not to create duplicates --- unless Bush repeats his Bush-isms on multiple dates and/or in multiple cities.

Also, having the date, if there is some doubt as to the accuracy of the quote, one can, perhaps, find the quote via a web search using key words in the quote and the date (and/or the location and/or the circumstance).

Order of Presentation of the Quotes:

The quotes are presented in order from oldest to latest so that we can see if there is a pattern developing --- such as improvement in reasoning skills --- or de-evolution.

Actually, it appears that Bush's possible steroid use (conjectured above) may have been increasing, and that it may have reached mind-numbing levels by the end of 2008.

Additions to Each Quote:

The curator of this library --- the BMPOL (Bush Memorial Presidential On-line Library) --- pronounced 'bimpol', rhymes with 'pimple' --- has high-lighted some of the words and phrases in the quotes in bold.

And comments, in brackets ( [...] ), have been added after many of the Bush quotes.

For More Bush Quotes:

Near the bottom of this page is a collection of links to web sites that may be 'mined' for more Bush-isms.

For more images (and data) for this wing, see the WEB SEARCHES section below.

Those searches may suffice in case I never return to add to the quotes on this page.

If you received a desk calendar of Bush-isms for a Christmas past, that is a source of more quotes.


Dec 18, 2000 -
site of quote unknown :

"If this were a dictatorship, it'd be a heck of a lot easier, just so long as I'm the dictator."

[ I guess that's the Bush sense of humor. ]

March 18, 2003 -
Barbara Bush -
just before her son ordered the invasion of Iraq :

"Why should we hear about body bags and deaths and how many, what day it's gonna happen? It's not relevant. So why should I waste my beautiful mind on something like that?"

[ Later, no doubt, there were mothers who found there was much too much relevance of body bags. I wonder if the minds of those mothers are still beautiful. ]

Nov. 6, 2005 -
Brasilia, Brazil -
after being shown a map of Brazil by Brazilian president Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva:

"Wow! Brazil is big."

[ Condoleeza, you really have to do a better job of preparing him for these trips outside the country. It's not like he's going back to his ranch in Texas where Laura is the only one in hearing range.]

May 24, 2005 -
site unknown :

"See, in my line of work you got to keep repeating things over and over and over again for the truth to sink in, to kind of catapult the propaganda."

[ They feel the same way at FoxSpin --- I mean, FoxNews. ]

Nov. 28, 2005 -
Tucson, Ariz. :

"Those who enter the country illegally violate the law."

[ Tell us something we don't know. ]

Dec. 12, 2005 -
NBC Nightly News interview -
defending Vice President Dick Cheney's pre-war assertion that the United States would be welcomed in Iraq as liberators :

"I think we are welcomed. But it was not a peaceful welcome."

[ I guess they mis-underestimated. ]
[ It was a spirited welcome --- kind of like Boston Red Sox fans welcoming Yankee fans.]

Jan. 10, 2006 -
Washington, D.C. - addressing war veterans :

"You took an oath to defend our flag and our freedom, and you kept that oath underseas and under fire."

[ Was he talking to Navy Seals? Or had he just taken his steroids? ]

Feb. 21, 2006 -
aboard Air Force One -
defending a plan to allow a company controlled by the United Arab Emirates to manage ports in the United States :

"And I want those who are questioning it to step up and explain why all of a sudden a Middle Eastern company is held to a different standard than a Great British company."

[ Shouldn't that be Middle Eastern-ish? ]

Feb. 23, 2006 -
Washington, D.C. -
on the deal to hand over U.S. port security to a company operated by the United Arab Emirates :

"People don't need to worry about security. This deal wouldn't go forward if we were concerned about the security for the United States of America."

[ That certainly is re-assuring. We have nothing to fear but security itself. ]

March 10, 2006 -
Washington, D.C. -
on medical liability reform :

"And so I'm for medical liability at the federal level."

[ The hospitals need help. They just can't generate any more liability than they are now. ]

March 13, 2006 -
Washington, D.C. -
on the bombing of the Golden Mosque of Samarra in Iraq:

"After the bombing, most Iraqis saw what the perpetuators of this attack were trying to do."

[ So THAT's what "perp" means. ]

May 4, 2006 -
Washington, D.C. :

"I was not pleased that Hamas has refused to announce its desire to destroy Israel."

[ They are just not co-operating at all. ]

May 5, 2006 -
Washington, D.C. :

"The point now is how do we work together to achieve important goals. And one such goal is a democracy in Germany."

[ Get right on that, Condoleeza. ]

May 5, 2006 -
Washington, D.C. :

"You never know what your history is going to be like until long after you're gone."

[ That's proof that he has a strong belief in an afterlife --- with the capability for extensive oversight of Earth. Are there reading glasses in heaven, or wherever he's going? ]

May 7, 2006 -
during an interview with the German newspaper Bild am Sonnta - on his best moment in office :

"I would say the best moment of all was when I caught a 7.5 pound largemouth bass in my lake."

[ I thought he'd say it was the first time he said "I am the Decider".]

June 14, 2006 -
Washington, D.C. -
when asked if the tide was turning in Iraq :

"I think -- tide turning -- see, as I remember -- I was raised in the desert, but tides kind of -- it's easy to see a tide turn -- did I say those words?"

[ No. It was your evil twin. ]
[ Apparently he had not heard of the term 'the tide is turning'. I guess they don't have books, radio, or TV in the desert. ]

June 27, 2006 -
Washington, D.C. :

"We shouldn't fear a world that is more interacted."

[ He'd been watching too much Google. ]

Oct. 24, 2006 -
interview with CNBC's Maria Bartiromo (video clip on Internet) :

Maria Bartiromo:
"I'm curious, have you ever googled anybody? Do you use Google?"

President Bush:
"Occasionally. One of the things I've used on the Google is to pull up maps. It's very interesting to see -- I've forgot the name of the program -- but you get the satellite, and you can -- like, I kinda like to look at the ranch. It remind me of where I wanna be sometimes."

[ It reminds me of where I wanted you to be, 2000-2008. ]

Oct. 26, 2006 -
Des Moines, Iowa :

"You know, when I campaigned here in 2000, I said, I want to be a war President. No President wants to be a war President, but I am one."

[ A new record for juxtaposition of contradictory statements. Zero inches apart. There will be no more Guinness World Records in this category. ]

Nov. 4, 2006 -
Greeley, Colo. -
on the war in Iraq :

"The only way we can win is to leave before the job is done."

[ Even better --- leave before we entered. ]

Nov. 30, 2006 -
Amman, Jordan -
on speculation that U.S. troops could be withdrawn from Iraq :

"This business about graceful exit just simply has no realism to it at all."

[ Apparently John McCain does not share this opinion. McCain seems to think parades will be marching in the streets of Baghdad, bands will be playing, confetti will be falling, Iraqis will be kissing in the streets. ]

Dec. 7, 2006 -
Washington, D.C. :

"Make no mistake about it, I understand how tough it is, sir. I talk to families who die."

[ He sees dead people. That might make a good movie. ]

Jan. 29, 2007 -
interview on National Public Radio :

"I think that the vice president is a person reflecting a half-glass-full mentality."

[ Get the picture. A glass cut in half, full to the brim. Priceless. Yogi Berra couldn't have done better. ]

Jan. 29, 2007 -
interview on National Public Radio :

"And there is distrust in Washington. I am surprised, frankly, at the amount of distrust that exists in this town. And I'm sorry it's the case, and I'll work hard to try to elevate it."

[ Mission Accomplished !! ]

March 1, 2007 -
New Orleans :

"I'm a strong proponent of the restoration of the wetlands, for a lot of reasons. There's a practical reason, though, when it comes to hurricanes: The stronger the wetlands, the more likely the damage of the hurricane."

[ I have NO idea what this man is saying. Does he? ]

April 19, 2007 -
Tipp City, Ohio -
on military benefits :

"One of my concerns is that the health care not be as good as it can possibly be."

[ He was also concerned that 'the environment' and 'the economy' not be as good as they can possibly be. ]

May 2, 2007 -
Washington, D.C. :

"The question is, who ought to make that decision? The Congress or the commanders? And as you know, my position is clear -- I'm a commander guy."

[ like Flash Gordon --- or, for younger readers, Han Solo --- or, for realists, Dr. Evil ]

May 2, 2007 -
Washington, D.C. :

"Information is moving -- you know, nightly news is one way, of course, but it's also moving through the blogosphere and through the Internets."

[ Here is a quote for the ages. ]

June 27, 2007 -
quoted by the Sun newspaper (London) -
on former British Prime Minister Tony Blair :

"I've heard he's been called Bush's poodle. He's bigger than that."

[ Good one. Did he intend that to be a joke? He might qualify as a joke writer for McCain. ]

July 10, 2007 -
Cleveland -
answering a question about a possible flu pandemic :

"I'm going to try to see if I can remember as much to make it sound like I'm smart on the subject."

[ No wonder the U.S. health care system is such an expensive, error-riddled mess. ]

Sept. 7, 2007 -
APEC (Australian) Business Summit :

"As John Howard accurately noted when he went to thank the Austrian troops there last year..."

[ referred to Australian troops as Austrian troops --- Howard was Prime Minister of Australia ]

Sept. 20, 2007 -
Washington, D.C. -
on the former South African president, who was still very much alive :

"I heard somebody say, 'Where's (Nelson) Mandela?' Well, Mandela's dead. Because Saddam killed all the Mandelas."

[ Nelson Mandela understands that Bush made an honest mistake. After all, Nelson thought Bush's brain was dead. Apparently it's on life support. ]

Sept. 20, 2007 -
Washington, D.C. :

"All of us in America want there to be fairness when it comes to justice."

[That's an interesting concept he brings up, accidentally --- 'unfair justice'. Reminds one of the Department of Justice under his appointee, Attorney General Alberto Gonzalez.]

Sept. 26, 2007 -
Washington, D.C. -
on the No Child Left Behind Act :

"As yesterday's positive report card shows, childrenS do learn when standards are high and results are measured."

[ apparently the American people haven't set the standards high enough for the Presidency ]

Oct. 3, 2007 -
Lancaster, Pa. :

"You know, when you give a man more money in his pocket -- in this case, a woman more money in her pocket to expand a business, it -- they build new buildings. And when somebody builds a new building somebody has got to come and build the building. And when the building expanded it prevented additional opportunities for people to work."

[ Huh ! Musta been a smudge on the teleprompter. ]

Oct. 3, 2007 -
Lancaster, Pa. :

"My job is a decision-making job, and as a result, I make a lot of decisions."

[ and proud of it, no matter the outcome ]

Oct. 17, 2007 -
Washington, D.C.-
on the need for political progress in Iraq :

"I fully understand those who say you can't win this thing militarily. That's exactly what the United States military says, that you can't win this military."

[ Tell McCain that. He seems to think there will be a grand military end, like the turning over a sword by terrorist dignitaries dressed in tuxedos and top hats, on the deck of a U.S. battleship, like in Japan at the end of World War II. ]

Oct. 25, 2007 -
San Diego, Calif. -
after meeting with California wildfire victims Kendra and Jay Jeffcoat :

"My hearts are with the Jeffcoats right now, that's what I'm thinking."

[ Cheney had him equipped with a backup heart, just like his own. ]

Oct. 25, 2007 -
San Diego, Calif. :

"All I can tell you is when the governor calls, I answer his phone."

[ Apparently hyper-speed is one of his super-powers. ]

Nov. 13, 2007 -
New Albany, Ind. :

"If you've got somebody in harm's way, you want the president being -- making advice, not -- be given advice by the military, and not making decisions based upon the latest Gallup poll or focus group."

[ I am the advice-maker AND the decider. ]

Jan. 4, 2008 -
Washington, D.C. -
on how he can contribute to the Middle East peace process :

"I can press when there needs to be pressed; I can hold hands when there needs to be -- hold hands."

[ See, no-child-left behind is nothing new. They had it when he was in school. They passed him from 1st through 12th grades.]

March 3, 2008 -
Washington, D.C. -
to Army Gen. Ray Odierno :
"And so, General, I want to thank you for your service. And I appreciate the fact that you really snatched defeat out of the jaws of those who are trying to defeat us in Iraq."
[ Cheney, help him out here. ]

March 5, 2008 -
Washington, D.C. :

"Let me start off by saying that in 2000 I said, 'Vote for me. I'm an agent of change.' In 2004, I said, 'I'm not interested in change -- I want to continue as president.' Every candidate has got to say 'change.' That's what the American people expect."

[ His main priority (get re-elected) explains just about everything. ]

April 6, 2008 -
Sochi, Russia :

"A lot of times in politics you have people look you in the eye and tell you what's not on their mind."

[ That would be a good way to get the ethical path from his lobbyist-advisors. ]

April 19, 2008 -
Camp David :

"How can you possibly have an international agreement that's effective unless countries like China and India are not full participants?"

[ Hard to tell what he is really trying to say here. But that's not uncommon. Laura probably knows what he means. ]

May 12, 2008 -
Washington, D.C. :

"I'll be long gone before some smart person ever figures out what happened inside this Oval Office."

[ Yes, you've left a challenging legacy. Historians will probably spend decades trying to figure it out. ]

May 27, 2008 -
Mesa, Ariz. -
visiting the Silverado Cable Co.:

"And so the fact that they purchased the machine meant somebody had to make the machine. And when somebody makes a machine, it means there's jobs at the machine-making place."

[ said like a pre-schooler ]

June 2, 2008 -
Washington, D.C. :

"We got plenty of money in Washington. What we need is more priority."

[ Just print some more. ]

June 2, 2008 -
Washington, D.C. :

"Let's make sure that there is certainty during uncertain times in our economy."

[ This might actually be a Yogi Berra quote. ]

June 6, 2008 -
Washington, D.C. -
discussing relief efforts after a Chinese earthquake :

"There's no question this is a major human disaster that requires a strong response from the Chinese government, which is what they're providing, but it also responds a compassionate response from nations to whom --- that have got the blessings, good blessings of life, and that's us."

[ It's pretty clear what he means, but wouldn't it be nice to have a President who could say it in a way that is immediately understandable. ]

June 6, 2008 -
Washington, D.C. :

"One of the things important about history is to remember the true history."

[as opposed to the manufactured history, such as that being manufactured in the last days of the Bush presidency, Jan 2009.]

June 16, 2008 -
London :

"There is some who say that perhaps freedom is not universal. Maybe it's only Western people that can self-govern. Maybe it's only, you know, white-guy Methodists who are capable of self-government. I reject that notion."

[ So who does he accept as capable? Olive-skinned Episcopalians ... but not dark-skinned Baptists. ]

July 2, 2008 -
speaking to reporters in Washington, D.C. :

"Should the Iranian regime ... do they have the sovereign right to have civilian nuclear power ... So, like, if I were you, that's what I'd ask me. And the answer is, yes, they do."

[ 5 Tangles go here. (See 'Tangles' rating description above.) ]

July 15, 2008 -
Washington, D.C. -
describing the brutality of Afghan fighters :

"And they have no disregard for human life."

[ bitten again by the double-negative snake ]

Sept. 19, 2008 -
Washington, D.C. :

"Anyone engaging in illegal financial transactions will be caught and persecuted."

[ Great! He's in favor of water-boarding sociopathic CEO's. Why didn't he follow through? About 99% of the country was calling for that in the last few months of 2008. ]

Oct. 20, 2008 -
Alexandria, La. :

"This thaw took a while to thaw, it's going to take a while to unthaw."

[ On a scale of 1 to 5, 10 Tangles go here. ]


This page is a work in-progress (in Feb 2009). The plan is to add more quotes.

The man is a veritable fountain of quotes. The list above only scratches the surface.

Many of the quotes above came (in 2009) from web pages, such as

Here were some other Bush-quote web sites (in 2009)

MORE 'BUSH QUOTES' --- and images with quotes
and for MORE INFORMATION on the subject:

It may be a long time (years or never) before I get back to this page to add more Bush quotes (and images containing his quotes), so here are some links to WEB SEARCHES for more quotes, images, and info.

Also, you can go to suitable Wikipedia pages and follow links from there, such as

Bottom of this
Bush QUOTES ("Bush-isms") page.

To return to a previously visited web page location, click on the Back button of your web browser, a sufficient number of times. OR, use the History-list option of your web browser.

OR ...

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Page history:

Page was created 2009 Feb 11.

Page was changed 2021 Jan 15.
(Added css and javascript to try to handle text-size for smartphones, esp. in portrait orientation. Specified the width of images in proportion to the width of the browser window. Added WEB SEARCHES and Wikipedia links for more quotes and images of quotes.)