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Bush admits past drug use in interviews with author

by Josh K / February 21, 2005 4:23 AM PST
Author: Bush tapes not meant for public

NEW YORK (CNN) -- An author who secretly recorded his conversations with then-Gov. George W. Bush told CNN Monday that the tapes were a historical record that he never wanted made public.

Doug Wead -- a former aide to President Bush's father, George H.W. Bush -- said he was thinking about writing a book when he made the tapes, but would not say whether he thought the tapes would boost sales of his book about presidential childhoods.

In a segment of the tapes made available to CNN by ABC News, the president appears to admit to trying marijuana.

Bush says he "wouldn't answer the marijuana question ... 'cause I don't want some little kid doing what I tried."

"But you gotta understand, I want to be president, I want to lead. I want to set -- Do you want your little kid to say, 'Hey daddy, President Bush tried marijuana, I think I will?' " he said.

In a segment of the tapes played on ABC's "Good Morning America," Bush says the same holds true for questions about cocaine use, which have dogged him since the 2000 election.

"The cocaine thing, let me tell you my strategy on that," Bush said on the tape. "Rather than saying no ... I think it's time for someone to draw the line and look people in the eye and say, you know, 'I'm not going to participate in ugly rumors about me and blame my opponent,' and hold the line. Stand up for a system that will not allow this kind of crap to go on."

Wead told ABC that Bush, who has acknowledged past alcohol abuse, spoke about past drug use "often" in their conversations. But Wead told CNN that the drug use was "an irrelevant point to me."

"He's already said he was young and irresponsible," he said. "That established the point I needed to make in my book about the man in the shadow. My feeling was because of his indiscretions as a young person, it took the pressure off him, the expectations he'd have to achieve and live up to the Bush image."
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Big deal ...
by Evie / February 21, 2005 4:29 AM PST

... he "tried marijuana" -- don't know very many baby boomers or even those of my generation that haven't.

As for the cocaine addict charges that are often thrown around,

"The cocaine thing, let me tell you my strategy on that," Bush said on the tape. "Rather than saying NO ... I think it's time for someone to draw the line and look people in the eye and say, you know, 'I'm not going to participate in ugly rumors about me and blame my opponent,' and hold the line. Stand up for a system that will not allow this kind of crap to go on."

The REALLY interesting things about those tapes are that

(a) Bush is no puppet of, nor beholden to the fundamentalist "Christian right"

(b) Bush is no gay basher. Quite the opposite.

(c} He is smarter than many of his critics. He saw Gore for what he was.

Evie Happy

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Still looking at the world through Bush colored glasses
by Ziks511 / February 21, 2005 6:17 AM PST
In reply to: Big deal ...

If it was anybody else, even a quarter inch to the left of Bush, you'd be out to drive a stake through his heart.

Ah well, Evie. At least I now know it's your picture in the dictionary illustrating the word "partisan".


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(NT) (NT) so he smoked pot, and so did clinton
by Mark5019 / February 21, 2005 7:08 AM PST
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BS Rob.........
by Glenda / February 21, 2005 7:21 AM PST

was no big deal when Clinton used it either! And I bet John Kerry did too! IF they continued to use it that would be a different story! Most of us grow up at some point and put childish escapades behind us, Just like Bush and Clinton did!

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Actually I was very impressed by the tape,
by Ziks511 / February 21, 2005 4:02 PM PST
In reply to: Big deal ...

I thought it a very sensible response to the issue and it's the first thing I've heard him say that sounded honest and personal. I think he's to be commended. Surprised? I was.

As to the media, they're doing what they always do, following the story. Whether it's the Swifties or this they're just publishing whatever will sell newspapers or advertising space on their news programs.

You're right in two of three of your points, and may be correct about him being smarter than many people give him credit. The Gore remark was what sparked the partisan comment above, I think it vitiates your whole post. Re your first point though, his not being a puppet hasn't prevent him from sucking up to them in every way possible, which seems kind of hypocritical to me, but it is politics and he was intent on winning. Strange bedfellows and all that.


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It is the media that is partisan.
by Evie / February 21, 2005 8:59 PM PST

It should come as no surprise that it was his editors over at Simon and Schuster that urged the "outing" to the NYTimes reporter. Leave it to the mainstream media to make the "story" about drug use. It is such a non-issue that Bush admits to "trying marijuana" it is almost laughable. However there is much good in the tapes that the mainstream will ignore.

This is the exact opposite of how the media treated the Swifties. The mainstream all but ignored them, or did I miss the hour long 60 Minutes devoted to them? Nope, 60 Minutes had their Bush-bashing (Simon and Schuster) Book of the week parade on, however, with O'Neil, Clarke, and Wilson (how did S&S miss publishing this one?) topped off by Rather Biased Phony Document debacle. Wilson and Clarke got MTP, didn't see John O'Neill or Jerome Corsi. I don't recall the Swifties getting fawning interviews on Today Show and in that arena. So please, don't insult the collective intelligence by suggesting the media is treating these tapes just like the Swift Boat Vets' story.

Speaking of MJ use, however, there is a video of Candidate Kerry doing a little "faux toke" on a joint at a campaign "house party" when his long time friend (convicted child molestor) Peter Yarrow played "Puff the Magic Dragon". You KNOW had that been GWB, it would have been splashed all over the TV screens non-stop. And there would have been no end to the denouncing of this as "unPresidential". But the mainstream media had little interest in this video. Kerry 'Toke' Draws Little Smoke

As to Gore, if you don't like my assessment of him, that happens to agree with Bush's, oh well. I'm beginning to wonder if being a pathological liar is a pre-requisite for being a Democratic candidate for President. One surely gets the impression that Kerry believes all his lies, a tell tale sign of when a penchant for exaggeration and stretching the truth has "turned".

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Actually I was too (believe it or not)
by Josh K / February 21, 2005 11:35 PM PST

I thought he made a lot more sense on the tape than he did when he dodged the cocaine question. If he'd given an answer similar to the things he said on the tape, it probably wouldn't have become the story it did.

My personal feeling is that unless he was an addict, or was dealing, a bit of recreational drug use isn't that big a deal. Anyone who came of age in the 60s was in their teen/college years during a period when drugs were very fashionable.

At least from what was exerpted in the article, it's less clear about the cocaine than about smoking pot, which he clearly admits having done. But so did I, y'know?

I've said before and I'll say again, I don't think it's really an appropriate question for a journalist to ask, but once asked the best course of action is to answer it honestly. It just makes for a bigger story if you dodge it. Bush could have used the question as an opportunity to deliver an anti-drug message. Instead he came off as someone trying to hide something.

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or trying not to have kids say
by Mark5019 / February 21, 2005 11:37 PM PST

dad the president did it hmmm
wait till your child grows up

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sniffffffffffffffffffff (b/s, not cocaine)
by jonah jones / February 21, 2005 4:47 AM PST
Doug Wead -- a former aide to President Bush's father, George H.W. Bush -- said he was thinking about writing a book when he made the tapes.... but would not say whether he thought the tapes would boost sales of his book about presidential childhoods.
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and clinton didnt inhale right
by Mark5019 / February 21, 2005 5:18 AM PST

pot should be legal

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(NT) (NT) I heard the tape, he denounced drug use.
by Jerry562 / February 21, 2005 6:20 AM PST
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by Rolway / February 21, 2005 5:30 AM PST

I think this yo yo Wead is fulla crap. Hes out to make a buck somewhere.


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Actually, are we now
by Jerry562 / February 21, 2005 5:57 AM PST

praising the guy that taped a private conversation and released it decades later?

I remember watching a show where some creep setup cameras in the bathrooms of his rentals so he could watch his female tenants.

After they caught him and let him go, they said if he recorded their voice he would have been in big trouble, but there was no law against the movies.

It sounds like Gov. Bush has some creep friends that don't know what a private conversation is.

I'm on forums that routinely use any subject, any cuss word, whatever you want. Just do not take a private email and post it publicly.

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by dirtyrich / February 21, 2005 7:39 AM PST

He faced significant personal problems and was able to overcome them... and while he is not comfortable admitting them now, he does not deny them and lie. He had the courage to face his problems then and get help, had the courage to strive for his goals, had the courage to admit his past faults AND to act to prevent others from making the same mistakes.
I think any criticism of hypocrisy because Bush used drugs and now stands against them is BS. Just because you made a bad mistake doesn't allow for another person to make the same mistake, instead, the first person has a moral responsibility to prevent others from going down the same road.
Thats what has caused A LOT of the current drug use in my observations, I had 4 acquaintances in high school who were caught using marijuana. When confronted by their parents, the kids simply shot back that the parents did the same when they were young (which they had previously told the kids), and the parents backed off, just saying they didn't want it to happen around the house in case the police got involved.

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Most weenies are fast to point out
by Jerry562 / February 21, 2005 11:04 AM PST
In reply to: admirable

he was born rich, fooled around at Yale...

The never mention, he grew up, went to Harvard, got a degree, found God. Being a Christian is a point of laughter to many Liberals. I remember the assault on Jimmy Carter after he admitted he lusted in his heart.

That was funny to people that marry their own sex.

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All liberals marry their own sex?
by Josh K / February 21, 2005 10:31 PM PST

Wow, I'd better tell my wife she's a man. She'll be pretty surprised.

You may be equally surprised to learn that there are many liberal Christians, conservative homosexuals and others who don't fit into your neat little cubbyholes.

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and..... Is there a point? He didn't say he did it.
by Kiddpeat / February 21, 2005 8:04 AM PST

He refused to discuss the issue.

The left never stops trying does it? Did Clinton inhale?

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Yes he did
by Josh K / February 21, 2005 9:42 AM PST

Read the article.

Funny you should mention Clinton and inhaling. I'm reading his autobiography and today I got to the part where he discusses the "I didn't inhale" statement. He explained that it wasn't for a lack of trying. Up to then (he wrote), he'd only ever smoked pipes and you don't inhale pipe or cigar smoke. Try as he did, he just couldn't inhale the marijuana smoke, so he gave up trying and that was that.

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so he says but then he tried it
by Mark5019 / February 21, 2005 9:48 AM PST
In reply to: Yes he did

and i bet he finnaly did it but thats no biggy
pot should be treated like booze

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pot should be treated like booze
by JP Bill / February 21, 2005 9:13 PM PST
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But MJ ...
by Evie / February 21, 2005 9:25 PM PST

... is not the same as booze. Perhaps Canada is looking for a new cash crop for revenue.

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by JP Bill / February 21, 2005 9:36 PM PST
In reply to: But MJ ...

I believe they are. They are growing it in Manitoba (abandoned mines) but it is of poor quality. Medicinal marijuana.

If the gov could find a way to tax MJ it would be on the shelf llike booze.

It's too easy for individuals to "grow their own" opposed to alcohol which requires a lot more work.


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What you believe is irrelevant
by Evie / February 21, 2005 9:46 PM PST
In reply to: Response

MJ and ethanol have different effects on the human body. MJ is classed as a hallucinogen, EtOH is a CNS depressant.

I'm all for decriminalizing possession, use, and growing for personal use.

Medical MJ should be a topic for a different thread as medicinal use is a whole different issue from recreational use.

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What you believe is irrelevant
by JP Bill / February 21, 2005 10:15 PM PST

What I believe is irrelevant or bringing up medical MJ is irrelevant?

Hallucinogens are a group of drugs that work on the brain to affect the senses


More severe withdrawal symptoms include hallucinations

Hallucinogens cause hallucinations (correct?)

alcohol withdrawal symptoms include hallucinations (correct?)

I don't know about you, but when I drink alcohol it works on my brain and my senses are affected.

Does it really make any difference if a person has a "buzz on" whether they got it from MJ or alcohol. Their senses are still affected.

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Your belief that alcohol and MJ are the same ...
by Evie / February 22, 2005 5:19 AM PST

is irrelevant. The science of pharmacology says otherwise.

I can tell the difference between someone that has an alcohol buzz vs. an MJ buzz vs. a cocaine buzz. That's anecdotal, of course, but there is a scientific reason for it.

Comparing a possible symptom of severe withdrawal from one drug with the classified effects of usage of another is really comparing apples and oranges.

Medical uses of MJ should not be used as an argument to legalize recreational use of it.

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i beleave
by Mark5019 / February 21, 2005 10:36 PM PST
In reply to: But MJ ...

its no worse than beer if you use it in your home.

if found driveing, useing outside then your busted.
its like the booze laws of course thats my opionion

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if found driveing, useing outside then your busted.
by JP Bill / February 21, 2005 10:44 PM PST
In reply to: i beleave

Isn't it illegal to Possess? never mind useing.

How does a person get it Home from their dealer?

Is there a dealer on every corner?

What if the police are watching your dealers house (corner) and see you go in and when you come out "YOUR BUSTED"

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well if your drinking
by Mark5019 / February 21, 2005 11:05 PM PST

outside, and smokeing it outside

just like a 6 pack if conainers closed your not useing it till inside.
kind of hard to figure that out ehhh?

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its like the booze laws
by JP Bill / February 21, 2005 11:13 PM PST
In reply to: well if your drinking

WHAT is like the booze laws?

The Marijuana laws?

Possession of MJ is illegal whether your inside, outside, driving, walking, pasted out on the street, byucycling, swimming,flying or crawling.

It is not like the booze laws.

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jp what are you doing
by Mark5019 / February 21, 2005 11:39 PM PST

i said if it was legal but is it ok in canada is that why you didnt read it ?

dont bogart that joint Grin

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