Please God, yes, let this be true.
43 has been having a pretty rockin’ retirement since leaving the Oval Office. The guy works with the Wounded Warrior Project, bought a gorgeous house in Dallas, opened up a presidential library basically across the street from SMU’s Greek Row, and he even started painting nudes of himself (TFTC? TFTC.).
W. also still follows his (and America’s) favorite pastime, baseball, of which he is a huge fan and apparently a veritable encyclopedia of statistical and historical knowledge. The guy is living it up, but could he possibly once again be feeling the itch that only executive power can scratch? Scratching that itch is a TFM, by the way. Rumor has it that he may be looking for a more full-time hobby in retirement, and that he may decide to fulfill his longing to once again run shit by taking one of the greatest jobs in America, Major League Baseball commissioner.
A juicy rumor has circulated for years: George W. Bush entered the political arena only because he could not land the job he really coveted — Major League Baseball commissioner.
Whether the president-as-a fallback story is veritable fact or partisan fiction — and a source close to Bush said he would have enthusiastically accepted the commissioner’s post at one time — the reality is that current MLB commissioner Bud Selig, presiding over his penultimate World Series, has set his retirement date for Jan. 24, 2015.
Regardless of your positioning on the right or left side of the aisle, there is no denying the former Texas Rangers owner’s qualifications for that job.
Squabbles over steroids, luxury tax and instant replay would pale in comparison with 9/11, two wars and a subprime mortgage crisis.
“Anything conceivable that he would have to confront after that,” said Tom Grieve, the Rangers general manager from 1984 to 1994, “would pretty much be a piece of cake.”
W. is about as qualified as anyone for this job, but according to Ari Fleischer, Bush’s former press secretary, it is unlikely the country’s former CiC would take the position.
“The life of a former president is a wonderful life,” Fleischer said. “I don’t think we’ll ever see a day where a former president re-enters or enters the private sector for a regular full-time job.”
DAMMIT! Don’t kill this dream! Think about all the amazing quotes we’d get if Bush were running baseball. All the meetings you or I would absolutely kill to be in, featuring W. and any number of baseball legends. What if he brought on the newly retired Jim Leyland as a consultant and we had the makings for the greatest old guy buddy sitcom fucking ever? Think about the paintings of Bush standing nude in the shadow of the Green Monster at Fenway, or mischievously peaking out of the ivy at Wrigley, as if he’d found his own secret garden to play in behind the walls, where, also, he’s nude.
More importantly, if you love the game of baseball, think about what he’d do for the game from a business and popularity standpoint, just like he did with the Rangers.
During their entire existence, the Rangers finished above .500 just five times before Bush’s arrival. They would match that total by Year Seven of Bush’s tenure.
“It was a revitalization of the franchise,” said John Blake, the Rangers vice president of public relations during Bush’s tenure.
Though similar measures were being killed by voters elsewhere, Bush helped push through a referendum by a 2:1 margin to approve public funds for a new $191 million ballpark.
On April 1, 1994, Rangers Ballpark in Arlington opened. The state of the art, baseball-only facility was completed in just 23 months. Lauded for its aesthetics, the 48,114-seat park led to Texas hosting the 1995 All-Star Game, further cementing the baseball presence of the Rangers in the football-mad state.
So, yeah, this guy really needs to be commissioner of baseball. He also knows how to have fun with the game.
After the Rangers swept New York a couple of years ago, Bush sent a three-word email to Fleischer, a lifelong Yankees fan, which read: “Who’s your daddy?”
And, most importantly, few people could ever represent the game better than Bush.
This needs to happen.