My, how GWB–who started his term shaky in January 2001 and appeared to be running out of steam by summer 2001–has grown! He carried himself magnificently in last night’s State of the Union address, a confident world  leader as he proudly scrolled through the list of the more than 20 nations that have supported the Iraq invason and the rout of Saddam in his “hole,” as Bush pointed out (and rubbed it in). It was fun to watch the TV cameras pan the scowls on the faces of the preempted Usual Suspects among the Democrats: Hillary, Charles Rangel, etc. Ted Kennedy’s face, spotlighted as Bush described his Medicare prescription drug amendment, was clearly saying, “Hey, that was my idea!” Delicious! Furthermore, as one of Lucianne’s chatters puts it:

“Dubya delivered a sucker punch to the Democra[t]s when he said the Patriot Act is running out, and the Dems cheered, and he quickly added that the terrorists were not running out, and Reps cheered.”

My only cavil: I wish Dubya hadn’t ended the speech by trailing off off into one of those Bill Clinton-esque laundry lists of domestic policy micro-proposals that are supposed to solve every social problem short of athlete’s foot. Still, Bush deserved that round of rapturous applause at the end, and I jumped up quickly to shut down the telly before the usual round of sour and predictable Democratic “reaction.”