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Thread: Dinner With The President

  1. #1
    Cyburbian Emeritus Bear Up North's avatar
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    Dinner With The President

    I just know that the introduction of this thread.....and, specifically, this topic.....will bring out the best and the worst of the residents of Cyburbia. But I will throw it in the fire, anyway.....

    Imagine that YOU were invited to a dinner with the President of The United States, George W. Bush. Just you and "Dubya". One (1) hour. No handlers. No notes. No reporters. Just you and The Prez.

    What would YOU talk about? What would you ask him or tell him? Would you be courteous? Would you be "fair" in your conversation?

    Would you talk about yourself? Would you explain the positive or negative impact of his policies on your family and your life? Would you talk about sports? Would you try to convince him of anything?

    Perhaps you would "freeze" or sound like Jackie Gleason doing his "humna-humna-humna" bit? Would he intimidate you?

    Would you smack him? (Just kidding, double-secret probation Secret Service squad reading plannerblog entries. )
    ______

    For the record.....

    He would probably intimidate me at first. Yes, I would tell him about my family and talk about his family. Baseball would certainly be mildly discussed. I would hope to focus any "arguments" that I have with present policies on the issues that are most important to me, such as a move to more liberty and less government, reducing taxes, the debt problem.

    No matter how I have felt about all of the USA Presidents we have had since 1948 (when this Bear was borne) I would feel honored to shake the hand of any USA President after our one (1) hour dinner.
    _____

    What say you?

    Bear
    Occupy Cyburbia!

  2. #2
    Cyburbian otterpop's avatar
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    I would politely decline the invitation. I think so little of Dubya and the incompetent and arrogant ways he has conducted his presidency that I know I would not enjoy the experience. Nor would he.

    To sit down for dinner with Jimmy Carter or Bill Clinton would be a pleasure. Carter has done so much with his life since he left office. Clinton is an intelligent and fascinating man. Both men have lived and are living interesting lives.
    Last edited by otterpop; 15 Nov 2005 at 6:51 PM.
    "I am very good at reading women, but I get into trouble for using the Braille method."

    ~ Otterpop ~

  3. #3
    Cyburbian zman's avatar
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    Although I never voted for the man, or anyone within his party, I would probably attend a dinner. I would attend the dinner with any president throughout history.

    -I would first like to know what he thinks (politically, economically, and his personal opinion) of Colorado as a state and the Denver area. I always wonder about people's opinions of my home state and city.

    - I would then talk football with him, (I heard he and Condi are big NFL fans) so what he thinks of the Broncos' chances and such.

    - I would probably then ask his personal opinion of our profession, as well as other issues important to me like laborers/workers rights and benefits, the environment, and non-militaristic diplomacy. (I feel though, he would be touting his usual lines he says in public)

    - Then I would ask him if he would redirect some money into really benefitting some of the world's less fortunate, like providing clean water to the 1 billion without it, or maybe what we can do domestically for the many who go to bed sick and/or hungry. Also, what he would think of saving family and small scale agriculture.

    - Then I would see if he has any Single Malt on hand and if he would want one on the veranda outside the Oval Office.

    - Then the usual, swipe some toilet paper and silverware (for Rumpy), a couple Presidential bathrobes, monogram towels, etc. and head home.

    But of course, I would do this with ANY President.
    You get all squeezed up inside/Like the days were carved in stone/You get all wired up inside/And it's bad to be alone

    You can go out, you can take a ride/And when you get out on your own/You get all smoothed out inside/And it's good to be alone
    -Peart

  4. #4
    Cyburbian el Guapo's avatar
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    I'd be honored to accept. I'd be respectfull of course, and I'd let the conversation go where it naturally went. I wouldn't see it as an opportunity to effect change. I'd answer any questions he asked honestly and I'd offer advice if asked. On the way out, I'd pause and try to get one of the twin's phone number for MichaelSki.

    Oh, and at the very end of the evening I'd tell that both BKM and Jordanb were members of an Al Quaeda sleeper cell. Then I'd let the Gitmolarity commence!

  5. #5
    Cyburbian plankton's avatar
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    I, too, would respectfully decline the invitation. My contempt for the man could not be hidden and The White House would be an improper venue in which to express my disdain.

    Good question, though, Bear, but no thanks, I must pass.

  6. #6
    Cyburbian Richmond Jake's avatar
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    I would accept the invitation. But I would complain about the wine selection the whole time. "This choice doesn't compliment (choose the course)."
    Annoyingly insensitive

  7. #7
    Cyburbian illinoisplanner's avatar
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    Of course I would be honored to have dinner with him. I'd talk to him about the great things he's done for this country, about past Republican politics and politicians, about current issues, about God, about hunting/shooting, about family, about the war on terrorism, about music, about sports, about business, about urban planning maybe (lol), about courting the other side of the aisle, about how he led us after 9/11, about Illinois politics.... The list goes on and on. Of people currently living, he's probably the one I'd like to meet most. At the end, I'd thank him for his gratitude and inspiration and for leading our country so greatly even through some of the roughtest times in our history.
    "Life's a journey, not a destination"
    -Steven Tyler

  8. #8
    Cyburbian abrowne's avatar
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    I think I'd ask him why supposedly Christian values such as the family and small scale agriculture, and truly community based ideas such as smaller neighbourhoods and local commerce were being ignored. That's the only thing that puzzles me about him. It seems to me that his Christianity (in all its good AND bad incarnations) is far more powerful than his allegiance to big business, so the reconciliation of these ideas are puzzling given that TRULY traditional values lose out.

    Or I'd be a proper Canadian and hit him with a lemon merangue pie. It's what we do to all of our beloved politicians. Chretien for Emperor! :-P

  9. #9
    Quote Originally posted by otterpop
    I would politely decline the invitation. I think so little of Dubya and the incompetent and arrogant ways he has conducted his presidency that I know I would not enjoy the experience. Nor would he.

    To sit down for dinner with Jimmy Carter or Bill Clinton would be a pleasure. Carter has done so much with his life since he left office. Clinton is an intelligent and fascinating man. Both men have lived and are living interesting lives.
    What he said

  10. #10
    Cyburbian AubieTurtle's avatar
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    I just don't think we would have any common ground on which to have even a social conversation. The only possible topic I can think of would be fishing but I stopped doing that about ten years ago.

    Perhaps we could discuss some marginal issues that float near the center of the political spectrum.

    While it would obviously be an ego boost to be invited to have dinner with the leader of our country, I would be unable to seperate respect for the office from my disdain for the person filling that office. I doubt having me going in there screetching at him would be of any benefit to either of us.

    I do think Carter would be a very interesting person to have dinner with but not because he was ever President but because he just seems like a very genuine person who would be a very gracious host. I think he would make even his most passionate opponets feel at ease and welcome.

    Clinton could be interesting too but I'm not sure I'd have much in common with him personally either. He seems like an intelligent person and very personable so a couple of hours would be ok, but I just don't see him as being someone I'd have dinner with a second time.

    If he was still alive, I would jump at a chance to have dinner with Nixon. Not because I like him (because I don't) but because I do think he would have some interesting things to say and could hold a logical conversation, even if that logic was based on some very flawed foundations.

    Ford would probably be someone fun to invite over for a bar-b-q and watch some football but pretty boring to discuss politics with.
    As democracy is perfected, the office of president represents, more and more closely, the inner soul of the people. On some great and glorious day the plain folks of the land will reach their heart's desire at last and the White House will be adorned by a downright moron. - H.L. Mencken

  11. #11
    Cyburbian imaplanner's avatar
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    I would be conflicted. If it were not for politics I would probably like the guy- and I bet he's a decent enough dude to hang out and talk with. I feel like I would actually like him personally- it's just that I despise everything his presidency stands for and just about everything he has done as president.

  12. #12
    Cyburbian el Guapo's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by imaplanner
    I would be conflicted. If it were not for politics I would probably like the guy- and I bet he's a decent enough dude to hang out and talk with. I feel like I would actually like him personally- it's just that I despise everything his presidency stands for and just about everything he has done as president.

    Exactly the way I feel about Clinton. Spooky!

  13. #13
    Cyburbian imaplanner's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by el Guapo
    Exactly the way I feel about Clinton. Spooky!
    This is what confuses me. I can't see how you would despise everything Clinton did - i think he had a very good presidency. Yet it probably doesn't make sense to you why I or other would despise everything Bush has done. I find this very intrigueing - or rather I would find it intriging if I could spell

  14. #14
    Cyburbian illinoisplanner's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by imaplanner
    This is what confuses me. I can't see how you would despise everything Clinton did - i think he had a very good presidency. Yet it probably doesn't make sense to you why I or other would despise everything Bush has done. I find this very intrigueing - or rather I would find it intriging if I could spell
    Haha...me too. Clinton seems like such a friendly, easygoing guy who I could probably talk about anything with. But some of the things he did or didn't do during his presidency would get me. Nevertheless, it is nice to engage in friendly debate with someone from the opposite political party.
    "Life's a journey, not a destination"
    -Steven Tyler

  15. #15
    Cyburbian Future Planner's avatar
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    I would ask him about his reasoning and justification for continuing to roll back environmental protections and policies to allow more destructive development, more pollution, etc.

  16. #16
    Cyburbia Administrator Dan's avatar
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    Great minds think alike. You made the post about a day before this article appeared in The Onion.

    Long-Awaited Beer With Bush Really Awkward, Voter Reports
    November 16, 2005 | Issue 41•46

    WARREN, PA—Although respondents to a Pew poll taken prior to the 2004 presidential election characterized Bush as "the candidate they'd most like to sit down and have a beer with," Chris Reinard lived the hypothetical scenario Sunday afternoon, and characterized it as "really uncomfortable and awkward."

    [snip]

  17. #17
    Quote Originally posted by otterpop
    I would politely decline the invitation. I think so little of Dubya and the incompetent and arrogant ways he has conducted his presidency that I know I would not enjoy the experience. Nor would he.

    To sit down for dinner with Jimmy Carter or Bill Clinton would be a pleasure. Carter has done so much with his life since he left office. Clinton is an intelligent and fascinating man. Both men have lived and are living interesting lives.


    I'm with you. I think so little of W, I would decline. Our views on politics, social issues, the environment and the role of the public sector vs corporation are so different, it would not be worth it. I agree with Carter and Clinton. Both would make great dinner guest.
    When did I go from Luke Skywalker to Obi-Wan Kenobi?

  18. #18
    Cyburbian michaelskis's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by el Guapo
    I'd be honored to accept. I'd be respectfull of course, and I'd let the conversation go where it naturally went. I wouldn't see it as an opportunity to effect change. I'd answer any questions he asked honestly and I'd offer advice if asked. On the way out, I'd pause and try to get one of the twin's phone number for MichaelSki.
    I like the way that you think!

    In all seriousness, it would be a conversation much like the one described by EG. I will express my support with many of the choices that his has made. I would also ask him about his life, the people that he has met, and the places that he as gone. If he asked me about my thoughts on things such as domestic or foreign I would give my honest opinion, and possible things to think about.

    I would then ask him to look into endorsing Dick DeVos for Governor of Michigan.

    Finally I would tell him that EG was joking about JordanB and BKM, and that they are actually closet conservatives.

    Quote Originally posted by otterpop
    I would politely decline the invitation. I think so little of Dubya and the incompetent and arrogant ways he has conducted his presidency that I know I would not enjoy the experience. Nor would he.

    To sit down for dinner with Jimmy Carter or Bill Clinton would be a pleasure. Carter has done so much with his life since he left office. Clinton is an intelligent and fascinating man. Both men have lived and are living interesting lives.

    Realizing that regardless of him being the president, W has meet so many fascinating people, been to places that many of us will never see, and witnessed so many things, he must have some amazing stories to tell. I think that it would be a great time, even if you did not see eye to eye with him on political issues.
    Trusting a DC politician with your money is like trusting a hungry dog with a raw steak.

  19. #19
    Oh, I'd definitely accept the invitation. I'd like to see for myself how out-of-touch he is with the *work-a-day* world, if he understands how much mis-trust there is for the man and his administration. I'd see if I could explain how he has utterly (and possibly forever) alienated centrist Republicans like me and handed the once Grand Old Party over to the neo-cons. I'd want to know if that upsets him.

    I'd ask if he has an exit strategy for his war. I probably wouldn't be invited back, but I'd be respectful to the office at all times.
    Je suis Charlie

  20. #20
    Chairman of the bored Maister's avatar
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    I swore I wouldn't do this sort of thing for anything but a laugh, but since the topic invites .....it just so happens I did chat with Pres. Clinton for a grand total of maybe a minute. I was standing in line with about five other people on a rail platform surrounded by a small army of secret service people. It was basically just a photo op for some of the local Party members who coordinated his campaign visit and I was at the end of the line.

    What Significant and Pressing Matters of Great Importance did we discuss, you ask? I was wearing a campaign button with his picture on it and he said "I like that button." A secret service man then approached and indicated that the box of donuts he had purchased at a local bakery 'checked out'. Clinton offered me one and I politley declined. I asked him if he happened to watch SNL the past weekend and he said he had seen it (they made jokes about Clinton's weight). I said he better make sure that the photographer (he seemed to have what I'm guessing was a presidential photographer following him around shooting pics ever 10 seconds or so) didn't take any pictures of him eating those donuts or he'd end up on the next weekend update too. He politley chuckled at my lame joke said he'd end up on weekend update next week no matter what happened and proceeded to give me the donut anyway that I had earlier refused. Then he was whisked off by his handlers.
    There was nothing particularly uncomfortable about the moment. I certainly didn't feel in awe of being in the presence of the Leader of the Free World or anything like that. Despite all the daunting security precautions necessary to get near him, he seemed to be an incredibly approachable guy once you were standing in front of him. Later on recalling the moment, I actually have difficulty picturing him in a grave moment of deep presidential consideration because he seemed to assume an air of perpetual friendly optimism in person and it seems like this quality about him always shows through when you see him on camera.
    People will miss that it once meant something to be Southern or Midwestern. It doesn't mean much now, except for the climate. The question, “Where are you from?” doesn't lead to anything odd or interesting. They live somewhere near a Gap store, and what else do you need to know? - Garrison Keillor

  21. #21
    Cyburbian boilerplater's avatar
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    I'd accept and then fill up on Kielbasa, sauerkraut and black beans beforehand. I'd sit through about half the meal and then get up and take a dump right on the table. With one blunt metaphor, I'd be stating my opinion of what his administration has been doing to a lot of people around the world, securing my place in history, and probably getting myself committed to an asylum for the rest of my life.
    Adrift in a sea of beige

  22. #22
    moderator in moderation Suburb Repairman's avatar
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    I had the displeasure of meeting him (sort of) as governor of Texas. He spoke at the state dinner for new Eagle scouts and throughout his speech seemed like he didn't want to be there. He did not eat at the dinner and immediately left after his speech and some lame staged photo-op with some scouts. No shaking hands, no nothing. I did meet his daughters though...

    I would accept the dinner invitation, and this would probably be my first topic of conversation--why can't he actually be the nice down-home guy rather than just pretending to be one on TV? I would then briskly run through my opinions on his policies and suggest a couple of books for him to read (not slanted one way or the other) that talk about what policies he should be looking at if he really is all up on his "Christian values". Once that the dirty work is out of the way we will probably discuss sports since he is into that stuff. I wouldn't want politics to take up more than 10 minutes because I would want to enjoy the dinner and stick to normal chatter.

    That is, of course, if he can actually act interested in the conversation.

    "Oh, that is all well and good, but, voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same way in any country."

    - Herman Göring at the Nuremburg trials (thoughts on democracy)

  23. #23
    Forums Administrator & Gallery Moderator NHPlanner's avatar
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    Regardless of who the president was/is/would be, I would decline. I doubt that any president would give a rats ass to hear what a planner from NH has to say, and would be a total waste of my and his/her time. And frankly, I'd much rather chat up with state or local politicians than anyone at the federal level.
    "Growth is inevitable and desirable, but destruction of community character is not. The question is not whether your part of the world is going to change. The question is how." -- Edward T. McMahon, The Conservation Fund

  24. #24
    Unfrozen Caveman Planner mendelman's avatar
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    I'd accept and then proceed to get real trashed on the free wine throughout dinner then, possibly, vomit my previous 4 courses on the Japanese ambassador.

    Then I would scream, "You're all hosers. Take off, eh!"

    I'm sorry. Is my bias showing?

    The ends can justify the means.

  25. #25
    Cyburbian Joe Iliff's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by NHPlanner
    Regardless of who the president was/is/would be, I would decline. I doubt that any president would give a rats ass to hear what a planner from NH has to say, and would be a total waste of my and his/her time. And frankly, I'd much rather chat up with state or local politicians than anyone at the federal level.
    Probably true . . . now a presidential candidate might be interested in talking to a NH voter, but not a second termer.

    Come to think of it, what would-be-presidents have been visiting the granite state? It's only 1000 days until the election.
    JOE ILIFF
    ________________________________________________________________________
    Debt is normal . . . Be weird!
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    "Rarely do we find men who willingly engage in hard, solid thinking. There is an almost universal quest for easy answers and half-baked solutions. Nothing pains some people more than having to think."
    Martin Luther King, Jr.

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