THE BLOG
05/23/2006 01:06 am ET Updated May 25, 2011

Dubya-Talk -- The Official Language of Irony-Lovers

As Bush's numbers sink ever lower into the tank and on each TV appearance he looks even more like a pet goat caught in the headlights - I find myself mesmerized by his uncanny appeal.

The amazing thing about this President is that he lacks.... everything. You name it - he lacks it.

Most of all he is devoid of irony.

Now I have often taken issue with those of my American friends who claim that their nation doesn't appreciate irony. Only in America could a wonderful singer such as Gloria Gaynor have a walloping great number one hit with a defiant declaration titled "I Will Survive" - and then never be heard of again for three decades...

You just can't BUY that kind of dry humor. Not for ready money. Or even for gas money.

So I have to salute President Bush for his latest broadside - that helped galvanize the Senate into passing the resolution about English being the Official Language of America.

Now, as an Englishman living in America, I think I'm entitled to a view on this issue.

As I explained to a Flight Attendant the other day.

I was seated in the Emergency Exit row of a flight from New York. Shortly before take-off she came and spoke to me and the others in the Emergency Exit row. In that halting and careful voice that we reserve for speaking to three-year-olds and "challenged" presidents - she said that it was necessary for anyone seated in the Emergency Exit row to be fluent in the English language. She concluded by saying: "I now have to ask each person if they can speak English"

When she looked at me - I responded by saying that as someone born of the nationality that had invented the language a few millennia ago - that yes I had a moderately reasonable grasp of the Mother Tongue. And that - by the way - shouldn't she have said: "I now have to ask each person if HE OR SHE can speak English - as distinct from "THEY" - which is a plural usage - inappropriate for the singular application.

Unless of course someone in that row had a multiple personality - that would in itself render HIM OR HER a rather unsuitable candidate for the Emergency Exit row.

Well, she looked at me in a VERY dignified presidential way. Rather like President Bush last Monday night when he was caught on TV rehearsing his sincerity for the cameraman...

Anyhow - I'm with the President on this issue. Look again as what he read - very bravely I thought - last Monday night from his script-writers' speech:

"We are bound together by our shared ideals, an appreciation of our history, respect for the flag we fly and an ability to speak and write the English language. English is also the key to unlocking the opportunity of America."

Now you've GOT to love a man of his somewhat distinctive command of the English lingua who touts the ability to "speak and write the English language" and who explains that it is "the key to unlocking the opportunity of America."

NOW maybe we liberals and progressives can better understand what got him elected President in 2000 and 2004.

I say that we SHOULD adopt English as the Official Language of America - just as soon as we again have a President who can speak it...

Meanwhile George Bush continues to mangle the language I love - and despite having a approval rathings somewhat south of Britney Spears' IQ number - proclaims that he will survive. Just like Gloria Gaynor's career.

So I - humble lover of irony - am now proud to declare myself a Dubya-Liberal...