Thanks to commenter nonheroicvet, I took a cyberamble over to Craig Crawford's place & found the following:
Emphasis added. I sure hope Crawford's correct about this. But saying it's over doesn't necessarily mean the damage Bu$hCo is doing the country won't continue. His players are still in place & demoralized, hated players can turn even nastier when they realize the game is over. Just note the chippiness in blowout football games or hockey games. We might well be in for a lot worse (read Iran).
"It usually takes a while to pinpoint the downfall of a sitcom, and if the Bush presidency falls apart, historians will argue about exactly when it started. But one possible jump-the-shark moment for this president came in his awkward and incomplete response this month to Harry Taylor, a soft-spoken, 61-year-old real estate broker who cited a litany of complaints about Bush — from his warrantless eavesdropping to his opposing abortion rights — during a meeting in Charlotte, N.C.
“I’m not your favorite guy,” the president said in a play for laughs to diffuse the tension Taylor’s criticism aroused. But the man summed up his concerns in a powerful statement that seemed to leave Bush stunned. “I have never felt more ashamed of, nor more frightened, by my leadership in Washington, including the presidency,” Taylor said. “And I would hope from time to time that you have the humility and the grace to be ashamed of yourself.”
Some in the audience booed, but Taylor became an overnight sensation for Bush foes around the country, seeming to attract more coverage than the president did. The Web site of the liberal magazine The Nation described Taylor’s statements as a “cry from the heart.”
What a missed opportunity for the president. Give him credit for finally opening up his town halls to all comers by abandoning the safety of hand-picked sycophants. But Taylor seemed to present something Bush was not prepared to handle — wide-ranging but respectful criticism that invited a heartfelt and revealing response.
Instead, Bush reverted to his talking points on only one aspect of Taylor’s comments, defending his decision to authorize domestic surveillance without a court order. Once again, he played anti- terrorist in chief, the only role that seems to give the president any comfort. Then he quickly moved on to another question."
"Taylor offered the president a chance to look within himself and present something entirely new and different, an opening to show concerned Americans a genuine and personal side, and perhaps a bit of endearing humility that might get him back on track. Instead, Bush cracked a lame joke, recited oft-repeated lines and ultimately dodged the question. He did it again at another town hall last week, when a first-year student at Johns Hopkins University asked for his views on whether private contractors in Iraq must abide by the same laws the Pentagon must follow in the treatment of prisoners.
"Either unable or unwilling to respond, Bush joked around, saying he would call Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld. “I don’t mean to be dodging the question, although it’s kind of convenient in this case,” he said. “I really will. I’m going to call the secretary and say you brought up a very valid question, and what are we doing about it? That’s how I work.”
"There was plenty of nervous laughter, and some guffaws from the student audience, but watching the episode one cannot shake the feeling that this show is finished. Now in its sixth season, the Bush presidency next year and the year after might well come across like a TV program that producers should have taken off the air before the audience moved on."