Falling off the wagon
Via Steve Gilliard:
Faced with the biggest crisis of his political life, President Bush has hit the bottle again, The National Enquirer can reveal.The source of this story, if you didn't notice, is the National Enquirer, so make of this what you will (Gilliard makes it a point to defend them).
Bush, who said he quit drinking the morning after his 40th birthday, has started boozing amid the Katrina catastrophe.
Family sources have told how the 59-year-old president was caught by First Lady Laura downing a shot of booze at their family ranch in Crawford, Texas, when he learned of the hurricane disaster.
His worried wife yelled at him: "Stop, George."
Following the shocking incident, disclosed here for the first time, Laura privately warned her husband against "falling off the wagon" and vowed to travel with him more often so that she can keep an eye on Dubya, the sources add.
"When the levees broke in New Orleans, it apparently made him reach for a shot," said one insider. "He poured himself a Texas-sized shot of straight whiskey and tossed it back. The First Lady was shocked and shouted: "Stop George!"
"Laura gave him an ultimatum before, 'It's Jim Beam or me.' She doesn't want to replay that nightmare” especially now when it's such tough going for her husband."
Bush is under the worst pressure of his two terms in office and his popularity is near an all-time low. The handling of the Katrina crisis and troop losses in Iraq have fueled public discontent and pushed Bush back to drink.
A Washington source said: "The sad fact is that he has been sneaking drinks for weeks now. Laura may have only just caught him” but the word is his drinking has been going on for a while in the capital. He's been in a pressure cooker for months.
The result is he's taking drinks here and there, likely in private, to cope. "And now with the worst domestic crisis in his administration over Katrina, you pray his drinking doesn't go out of control."
Another source said: "I'm only surprised to hear that he hadn't taken a shot sooner. Before Katrina, he was at his wit's end..."
Another source said: "A family member told me they fear George is 'falling apart.' The First Lady has been assigned the job of gatekeeper."
Dr. Justin Frank, a Washington D.C. psychiatrist and author of Bush On The Couch: Inside The Mind Of The President, told The National Enquirer: "I do think that Bush is drinking again. Alcoholics who are not in any program, like the President, have a hard time when stress gets to be great.
"I think it's a concern that Bush disappears during times of stress. He spends so much time on his ranch. It's very frightening."
Personally, I find it kind of hard to believe that Bush really cares about this shit enough to be coming to pieces over it. However, having his vacation ruined by Cindy Sheehan, and then having to cut it short because of Katrina - now that might have brought him to the breaking point.