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Dana Milbank on Movement Analysis


Dana Milbank on Movement Analysis

Many of you know I am a movement analyst and I comment on body language for the media. Today I am joned by the Washington Post columnist, Dana Milbank, in his new-found understanding of the interpretation of movement. Welcome to the dance, Mr. Milbank:

"...this much could be seen watching the tape of NBC's broadcast during Bush's 14-minute pre-sunrise interview, in which he stood unprotected by the usual lectern. The president was a blur of blinks, taps, jiggles, pivots and shifts. Bush has always been an active man, but standing with Lauer and the serene, steady first lady, he had the body language of a man wishing urgently to be elsewhere."
What Dana Milbank described is a man in serious adrenalin distress--the fight-or-flight response--blinking, dry lips, hypervigilance, shallow breaths, tics, cognitive distress--words are failing him.

Only when he physically connects with Laura Bush can he feel safe, can he calm down and string words together again.

In my professional opinion, this is a man having panic attacks, folks. Panic can be defined as a loss of attachment -- one feels adrift and disconnected from all objects, including loved ones. When he is not in physical contact with Laura, he is flailing around like a man drowning in a sea of the unknown.

We have observed for some time that GWB needs to be in a particular setting, and to be connected to an external voice, a podium, a tool on the ranch, or Laura, in order to stay focused and to deliver his messages. But the external voice is clearly gone (was it Rove? Cheney?); the podium is not going to be appropriate in the Gulf Coast setting, the tool was clearly not enough, and only Laura can save him now.

We see. We know. We are so deeply sad for both of them -- and of course -- for all of us. I cannot help but think of those who voted for him, thinking he was strong, thinking he understood right from wrong, thinking he is close to God. He is not close to God. He is in hell. And therefore, so are we all.

Posted by Karen at October 12, 2005 08:34 AM

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I missed the interview, but after reading this story I am really looking forward to seeing clips on Hardball and/or The Daily Show.

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