February 10, 2013

Rarely is the question asked “Is our leaders painting because they are depressed?"

Sailing and golf? Forget that. The former leader of the free world turned his hand to painting to express his artistic side.

An excerpt from Aaron Dykes's article, "Is George W. Bush Depressed?":
Former presidents LBJ and Nixon both sunk into deep depressions after they left office, sunken, perhaps, by a combination of leaving the busy public life and its frequent and serious stimuli, as well as the pressure of guilt, regret and other emotions over their roles in some of the most controversial and unscrupulous presidential actions, to which the public reacted with strong disapproval.

LBJ had JFK, the Gulf of Tonkin and the Vietnam conflict. Nixon too shared Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia, and of course, had Watergate. Bush had 9/11, the phony WMDs, the PATRIOT Act, torture and the shameful War on Terror.

Has Bush’s legacy — along with widespread public hatred, ridicule and calls for impeachment — left him depressed?

Reports circulated in 2004 claiming that then President 43 was taking “powerful anti-depressant drugs to control his erratic behavior, depression and paranoia.” Speculation about the president’s depression and coping mechanisms continued through the end of his second term.