Sunday, January 19, 2014

Sunday Faith Post II....a story about Christmas and kindness

Please read the original Sunday Faith Blog post below and comment;  I just rec'd this email and thought it so nice I'd share it with you today;

By Reporter Joseph Curl:

Every year, in the week between Christmas and New Year‘s, I think about George W. Bush.

It was in that week each year for the eight that I covered him as a reporter that he gave me a spectacular gift — and he knew it.

I started covering the newly elected president in 2000, when I was in my late 30s. Back then, as a reporter for The Washington Times, we went everywhere the president went. If he went to Charlotte , N.C. , to give a 30-minute speech on an airport tarmac, we went. Up at 4 a.m., an hourlong commute to Andrews Air Force Base, in place on the ground hours before POTUS landed, and there for hours and hours after he left — sometimes right through the evening news so network reporters could file live from the site.

We also went with the president to Texas every summer — often for a month — and every winter, too, over the holidays.

But here’s the thing: In December, we never left Washington , D.C. , until the day after Christmas. Never. Mr. Bush and his wife Laura would always depart the White House a few days before the holiday and hunker down at the presidential retreat in Maryland , Camp David . After a few years, I asked a low-level White House staffer why.

I still remember what she said: “So all of us can be with our families on Christmas.”

Who was “us”? Hundreds and hundreds of people, that’s who. Sure, the reporters who covered the president, but also dozens and dozens on his staff, a hundred Secret Service agents, maybe more, and all of those cops required whenever the president’s on the move in D.C.

For me, that one-day delay was huge. My kids were 6 and 8 when Bush took office. When he went home to Prairie Chapel that last time in 2009, my girl was driving, the boy was 6 foot 1. But in the meantime, I was home for eight Christmas mornings, playing Santa, stoking the fire, mixing up hot chocolates.

That was President Bush. And every year for the last five, I’ve thought about what that meant to me. (By the way, some years, I got holiday duty, which meant I was off to Waco , Texas , the day after Christmas. But once again, the Bush White House had us covered: A press plane flew out with the president, and back then, reporters could pay $100 per family member for the plane ride. So sometimes, the family went along. For the kids, it was an adventure; for me, well, we were all together).

All that has changed with President Obama. No more press plane, for one. Reporters are on their own — so taking family is, say, $1,000 a pop. Not likely. And this president would never delay his trip to his island getaway. He’s off every year well before Christmas. Hundreds and hundreds head off with him, leaving family behind.

No Christmas at home. Instead, the Hawaiian Village Waikiki Beach Resort. Nice, but not exactly home.

Anyway, that’s why I think of George W. Bush every year in the week between Christmas and New Year‘s. Probably will till I die. Thanks, GWB.

Joseph Curl covered the White House and politics for a decade for The Washington Times and is now editor of the Drudge Report. He can be reached at and on Twitter @josephcurl.


Baysider said...

Yes, this jibes with several personal stories I have read about President Bush. The thoughtfulness and genuine human interest he had in people went well beyond when the press cameras had left and there was no political reason to linger. He, or he and Laura, would stay and mix with folks for another hour or more. I recall one event with wounded soldiers specifically. This isn't a policy comment - but he was a truly decent man. I hope each of us can draw from such a reserve of kindness in our own way.

Bloviating Zeppelin said...

As we all know, it's all about Obama.

If Obama were truly concerned about saving cash, about conserving energy, about cutting back, he would do as Bush did on the holidays.


Impertinent said...

Who's surprised by this revelation? Come on..are we kids? We know Obutthead is a narcissistic, hedonistic, selfish, petulant man / child...unconcerned, unaware, unknowing, uncaring, unfeeling, cold, disconnected, dispassionate, unaccountable, lying POS....surrounded by fawning, acolytes, dedicated to the messiah, the myth, the color, the tribe, the theology of hate, the diatribes of Wright, the hit men like Sharpton, the hustlers, the choomers, the media whores, the myth, the lies proffered by a Pravda like media...

The bling, the trappings, the travel, the fine wine, the steak, the rib's, the fried chicken...and screw the rest of them. The workers, the serfs, the whites, the blacks especially....and the Constitution.

This MF...needs a lawyer...and bail. Along with the handcuffs. Rolex of course.

Z said... many nice stories like that, but most folks don't hear them. He did stay longer than most, and he has those amazing bike races with wounded soldiers and visited Walter Reed without the cameras; amazing guy. He felt very deeply about sending those kids to war.

BZ; yes. And remember how the media blasted Bush for going to Crawford so often? And playing golf this often? Have you heard anybody admit Obama's played SO many more times? I have no problem with a president getting some R&R, but the hypocrisy of the media's astonishing..

Imp...just thought I'd share it; not real surprised, but it's a story we haven't heard about Bush.