You just can’t beat the London Review of Books. There’s nothing like it here:
In the book, as in his life, Bush the postmodernist is a simulacrum: a Connecticut blueblood who pretended to be a Texas cowboy, though he couldn’t ride a horse and lived on a ‘ranch’ with no cattle. He was, and is, happiest when surrounded by professionals in the three areas in which he was a notable failure: athletics, the military and business. He is like a sports fan who dresses up in the team jersey to watch the game. References to his ‘military service’ recur frequently throughout the book, as though it were actually more than a few months spent avoiding it. He was the only modern American president to appear in public in a military uniform – even Eisenhower never wore his while president – like a ribboned despot from a banana republic. He has said that one of his proudest moments was throwing out the ceremonial first pitch in a World Series game. The frontispiece to the book is the photo of Bush in his other proud moment, standing in the ruins of the Twin Towers with his cheerleader bullhorn, just one of the relief worker guys.
A pup in a valley of alpha males, inadequate compared to Dad, humiliated by Mother, he classically became a bully to compensate: an ass-brander, noted for what he calls verbal ‘needling’; a boss who cussed out his subordinates and invented demeaning nicknames for everyone around him; a president who taunted terrorists, most of them imaginary, and challenged them to ‘bring it on’.
The whole review is brilliant. I don’t usually like the whole “this is so post-modern thing” but it’s on the money here.