When you compare his post-Presidency career to some others out there, George W. Bush may as well be a recluse. He very rarely speaks publicly or does interviews, and chooses instead to spend more of his time traveling and doing charity work. Does some of that come following a very criticized Presidency? Sure, but based on the way Bush spoke during “The Tonight Show with Jay Leno” last night, it sounds like much of that was a deliberate choice. He explained that he does not feel like it is his role to criticize anything that a current President is doing, and that he’s not too worried about his legacy. He joked that if they are still writing biographies about the “first guy” in office, then he should be just fine.
We’re not a political site, so it seems foolish to sit here and get into polarizing conversations about policy or various right-wing / left-wing ideologies. What we found more fascinating in watching this interview was simply the notion of what happens after fame.
Look at it from Bush’s perspective: For eight years, this man was the most important guy in America. Where do you go from there? How do you adjust and focus for the rest of your life? You can either start to fixate and hover around politics forever, try to do something new, or just hide in a corner and never do anything again.
We, like Leno, were surprised to find out that Bush decided to even appear on the show in the first place. But just from the perspective of fascinating television, we’re glad that he did. Leno at least asked a couple of remotely-difficult questions, and while he didn’t grill him in the way in which some people would have wanted, we probably would not have had as candid an interview had he chose to do so. There’s a reason why Bush agreed to come on, and much of that is due to Leno rarely going off-book and surprising anyone.
Politics aside, did you find this interview interesting just from the perspective of what it is like for a public figure to try and readjust to life? Share your thoughts on the subject below.