May 3, 2007

Time: Bush Less Influential Than ... Queen Elizabeth

You have to love the American media and its love of lists. They feel compelled to categorize the top 100 most, least, biggest, most beautiful of just about anything that talks, walks, or crawls -- and they almost always manage to get it completely wrong when doing so. Time Magazine has just published its list of the 100 Most Influential People In The World, and guess who got left out? Just the leader of the Free World, that's all (via Mac at Heading Right):

Heartthrob Leonardo DiCaprio and envelope-pushers Rosie O'Donnell and Sacha Baron Cohen are among the entertainment newsmakers on Time magazine's list of 100 people who shape the world.

The list of 100 most influential, on newsstands Friday, also includes Queen Elizabeth II, presidential hopefuls Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama, YouTube founders Steve Chen and Chad Hurley, director Martin Scorsese and model Kate Moss. It does not include President Bush.

Let's see if we can make sense of this. Two Senators who want to win a nomination for the next presidential election are more influential than the man who currently holds the position? I'm not saying that Hillary and Obama do not have influence -- after all, they are the frontrunners for the Democrats. However, arguing that they have more influence than George Bush is simply unrealistic, and it betrays the bias of Time in its attempt to sell their list. Bush just demonstrated that he has equal influence as the entirety of Congress in vetoing the supplemental bill.

Love him, hate him, or feel indifferent, but one cannot deny that the President of the United States has a great deal of influence. This one in particular has toppled two brutal dictatorships and currently runs a controversial war in Iraq. He has worked with four other nations to isolate North Korea and pushed the UN Security Council to isolate Iran. Bush has, for better or worse, negotiated free-trade agreements with most of the rest of the world during his six years in office, and has even begun to attract nations like Canada to his policy on greenhouse gases.

So who does Time consider more influential than that? Queen Elizabeth II. That's right, the figurehead monarch that has no political power at all, and whose family forms the basis of a sneering wing of the global media, has more influence than the President. Why? Apparently, according to Catherine Mayer, because she's cut back on family expenses.

Who else? The Anglican Archbishop of Nigeria. Don't know his name? Perhaps that's a measure of his influence.

What about Condoleezza Rice? I agree that she is tremendously influential, but more so than the man who sets the policy she implements? Don't get me wrong -- I believe she should be on the list, but there is a logical error that Time's editors seem to have missed. Rice is the envoy of Bush's policy, and as such she acts as a proxy for Bush, just as any Secretary of State does for any President. Reagan knew the difference, as his sharp-tongued diary entry regarding Alexander Haig proved.

Any list from Time would not be complete without a sop to a Communist, and Time helpfully provides Raul Castro. Not Fidel, but his younger brother and chief toady, a man so uninteresting that he went weeks without a public appearance following Fidel's illness and the media barely noticed it.

All of these people, Time would have you believe, have more influence than a sitting President of the US during a time of war. Maybe Time wanted to dent Bush's credibility, but they torpedoed their own instead.

CORRECTION: Six years in office, not six terms. No, that's not wishful thinking either; eight years is enough for anyone, including Ronald Reagan. Thanks to CQ commenter Faith1.


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Comments (30)

Posted by rbj [TypeKey Profile Page] | May 3, 2007 9:19 AM

Yet the media has no agenda.

I wonder if Time did a list like this when Clinto was president, and if he was ever anything but number 1.

Posted by Faith1 [TypeKey Profile Page] | May 3, 2007 9:26 AM


"most of the rest of the world during his six terms in office,"

Don't you mean six 'years' in office?

Posted by David [TypeKey Profile Page] | May 3, 2007 9:28 AM

Obvious bias such as the current example are exactly why I canceled my subscription and sold my stock in Time/Warner.

Why they keep sending me deals to resubscribe tells me they believe their own PR and fail to listen to readers comments. Their desperation is showing itself as fatal narcissism. They are slow learners on the road to irrelevancy.

Posted by jerry [TypeKey Profile Page] | May 3, 2007 9:30 AM

Captain Ed:

The name of the Archbishop of Nigeria is Peter Arkinola. While he doesn't have the influence of the President of the United States or even President of France he is probably the most influential Anglican in the world today.

He is leading the Southern Hemisphere's revolt against apostate Anglicans throughout the developed world and to some degree has forced the current Archbishop of Canterbury to enforce traditional Anglican norms against the North American Churches. He will shortly ordain a new Bishop under the Province of Nigeria in Virginia that will be independent of the American Church despite demands by the Presiding Bishop to cease and desist.

If biblical Christianity is going to survive in the mainline Protestant churches in the developed world Archbishop Akinola will be the man responsible. For this he belongs on the list.

Posted by Duke of DeLand [TypeKey Profile Page] | May 3, 2007 9:34 AM

Selling your stock in Time/Warner and other old media sounds like a good idea to me. After all, the left-biased media seems to enjoy its status, much to the chagrin of the stockholders. This in the face of declining circulation and revenue.

Just read somewhere out there a bit about how nice it would be to see one major market print media outlet actually move to the middle or toward the right and see what happens to circulation/advertising.... Hummm!


Posted by johnCV [TypeKey Profile Page] | May 3, 2007 9:45 AM

Time magazine......Time magazine.....hmmmm

Hey I remember - didn't they used to be some sort of influential news magazine a long time ago?
I wonder what all the fuss is about, I mean nobody actually reads them anymore, do they?
Well nobody who actually wants factual information anyway.

Posted by richard mcenroe [TypeKey Profile Page] | May 3, 2007 9:50 AM

Actually, I think Rosie is more of an evelope stretcher than a pusher...

And don't diss Time Magazine. Their last issue had almost 20 pages of copy in between the ads...

Posted by Fausta [TypeKey Profile Page] | May 3, 2007 10:07 AM

Time after time, Time shows it's run out of ideas

Posted by AnonymousDrivel [TypeKey Profile Page] | May 3, 2007 10:22 AM

TIME magazine circulation trendline (1988-2004)

The cropped ordinate is a bit misleading, but the trend definitely continues downward. I'm certain their continued bias, their diminishing credibility as elucidated by such a "Top 100" list, and the general decline of glossy news will only accelerate the current trend.

While discussing their questionable choices draws attention and may boost exposure short-term, those very choices undermine their perceived judgment by subscribers and would-be subscribers such that long-term sales will surely drop.

Keep it up, TIME. You'll be out of yourself in no time.

Posted by negentropy [TypeKey Profile Page] | May 3, 2007 10:35 AM

Time magazine? I wouldn't wipe with it.

Although it does have the effect of making me look forward to when it's my turn at the dentist, as I've only read it when in the waiting room.

Posted by AnonymousDrivel [TypeKey Profile Page] | May 3, 2007 10:46 AM

RE: negentropy (May 3, 2007 10:35 AM)
Although it does have the effect of making me look forward to when it's my turn at the dentist, as I've only read it when in the waiting room.

Now that's an interesting dilemma. Would you opt for a) root canal or b) reading TIME if money wasn't a factor. I'm leaning "a". How unfortunate it is that you must experience both on the same day. ;)

Posted by Gregg Calkins [TypeKey Profile Page] | May 3, 2007 11:06 AM

Was Baba Wawa on the list? I mean, she certainly showed Rosie who had the most influence over at her place, didn't she?

Posted by Fritz [TypeKey Profile Page] | May 3, 2007 11:32 AM

I can't think of much to say about a story like that except idiocy has no limits.

Posted by BrandonInBatonRouge [TypeKey Profile Page] | May 3, 2007 11:40 AM

With this level of idiocy, you'd think they'd do a cop-out and name "everyone" as the Person Of The Year.


Posted by wham1000 [TypeKey Profile Page] | May 3, 2007 11:57 AM

They definitely failed to remember about our "Commander Guy". Lucky them!

Posted by Ham [TypeKey Profile Page] | May 3, 2007 11:59 AM

Its not the most "influential", but most "popular"! Just like the ole high school trick; the cool kids were cool for all the wrong reasons and ended up being voted "most likely to succeed", but ended up being life insurance salesmen, driving mazdas and drinking lite beer.

Posted by docjim505 [TypeKey Profile Page] | May 3, 2007 12:40 PM

This is nothing but a temper tantrum by the lefty editors at Time.

"Bushitler won't agree to surrender??? Well, f*** him! We won't put him on our list of the most influential people! Yeah! That'll fix that fascist!"

Posted by jerry [TypeKey Profile Page] | May 3, 2007 1:42 PM

Time has an interesting history when it comes to this sort of thing.

Here are some notable Men/Person of the Year awards...

1931 -- Pierre Laval, he went on to actually run Viche France behind the Petain facade

1938 -- Adolf Hitler, Der Furher himself

1939 & 1941 -- Josef Stalin

1951 Mohammed Mosdedeq, wanna be Stalin of Iran

1957 -- Nikita Khruschev, The cuddly Stalin

1974 -- King Faisal of Saudi Arabia, Wahabisit

1979 -- The Ayatolla Khomenni -- enought said

1983 -- Yuri Andropov, KGB thug (with Reagan)

1985 -- Deng Xiaopeng, Chinese Khrushchev

1987 -- Michail Gorbachov for "shattering" Soviet lethargy also man of the Decade in 1989 (Does Time even know who Boris Yeltsin is?)

So there you have it.

Posted by Carol_Herman [TypeKey Profile Page] | May 3, 2007 1:58 PM

The Bush Family Business is to be the Realtors to the House of Saud.

True, you don't here this delivered, much.

Not even in Israel. Where Olmert is still holding on. The Winograd report refused to tell you WHY it was working to undermine Olmert. But the truth is that in Israel, for the past 30 years, the baton had passed from Labor. To Likud. Until Arik Sharon got very, very angry at a few insiders.

So, WInograd, like the lawyer, Mazuz, swing their powers to obviate the people the Israeli public votes for INTO office. (Yes, the lists are long. Individuals meander their votes all over the lists.) But LIKUD lost its ability to DICTATE. Which is what Arik Sharon hated, before he stroked.

That politics is a hardball game? Yes. Instead of bats, there are knives. And, some politicians, like Bibi, Ehud Barak, and Shimon Peres; really can't get elected DOG CATCHERS! But they are very adept at manipulating the press.

So far? Olmert holds.

But no one's come forward and stated the truth OUT LOUD. Not even the Winograd report. Which tried to oust a sitting prime minister with bullshit.

In the Lebanon Summer of last year, James Baker showed up. Not just Condi, doing her jig for the House of Saud.

Where this sits with the American people?

Do notice that Bush's popularity is flagging even lower than his dad's.

One reason for 2004? People didn't want Kerry.

But if you run stinkers, you're taking a terrible chance. You're taking the chance, for instance, that hilllary "could" win. Even though she's no more popular than pelosi. (Pelosi, by the way, currently has more power.) Do you know why? Pelosi drives the 225 seat majority, in the HOUSE. Headlines are her's whenever she wants them. While Hillary's one dudette, among 100 balloons. And, those ego's always seem to be in the need of pricking.

I'd guess, up ahead, the GOP "insiders" ... who don't want to lose their seats like George Allen, Tom DeLay, Newt Gingrich, etc. Are thinking deeply that Dubya's flawed. (Romney isn't. He's attaching his "cah-shay" To the White House.) Perhaps, he lacks any other position? Did Fred Thompson suck up all the right wing votes?

Politics is so interesting for the people who follow this, it's like a horse race with twists and turns through blind alleys. Ya got nothing but an ability to bet. And, that means nobody can call all the probabilities that can happen in the future; all that accurately. It's the way the Man Upstairs designed the rules.

Even if you think you're seeing books now? I think once 2008 comes into play, the books will flow like a river. Full of more information. Will you be surprised? Or do you understand me, when I say Mr. Bush is the Realtor for the House of Saud.

At least Condi won't be anywhere near the 2008 ticket. Ah. Israel's luckier. They're about to shed their dog, Livni.

Posted by Earnest Iconoclast [TypeKey Profile Page] | May 3, 2007 2:04 PM

Arnold Schwaznegger?
Isn't Oprah an entertainer?
The President of Harvard?
Al Gore is a Scientist or a Thinker? Hah...


Posted by PersonFromPorlock [TypeKey Profile Page] | May 3, 2007 2:13 PM


[T]he cool kids... ended up being... life insurance salesmen, driving mazdas and drinking lite beer.

Nah. God wouldn't be so cruel to them, or so kind to the rest of us.

Posted by Carol_Herman [TypeKey Profile Page] | May 3, 2007 2:51 PM

Let's see? Some people, here, don't recognize the POWER in the hands of Arnold. Just a quirk on the right side of things?

The way politics WORKS, if you have the governor of a large state rooting and tooting for you, "things happen."

For example. To limit the damage that New Hampshire's done in the past; Schwartzenegger was empowered to change the rules in California. WHICH HE DID!

No politician worth his salt would let it go unnoticed, that California's primary has been moved up to February 9, 2008. Less than a year away, now. And, a big boost to whomever claims this state. ON BOTH SIDES OF THE DIVIDE.

Meaning? California is now in play as a primary target. And, it will matter as much to the donks. As it does to the GOP.

The other thing to notice? Well, you notice it with Fred Thompson. In American politics, some actors get to have some amount of leverage; because their hollywood jobs are not held against them.

Then, you could add that being in front of cameras; rather than crowds; has still given Arnold and Fred the ability to get recognized at campaign stops. How they then relate to crowds is up to them.

Now. Let's look at Oprah. She's Black. She's more famous than Obama. And, just about as inexperienced. If she wanted to throw her hat into the political ring? She'd get more leverage among Black voters than you think. True. She's not interested. Probably because it would mean she'd earn way less money. Lose a lot of privacy. And, the gains, by comparison, wouldn't make her any more famous.

What's missing for the GOP? You'll notice "affirmative action" is a noose, now. Does it matter? Well, ask yourselves. Can you get elected on the white man's votes, alone? Because politicians will not be discussing with your what their strategies are.

Including some who might be angling for the veep spot? But you don't know this! But if you want to guess. What happens to the senate seating, if McCain gets the veep's slot?

What happens in the senate if hillary wins? Well, New York's governor is a democrap.

What happens in 2008 is beyond the reach of anything but the bettors. And, Nick the Greek is dead. If Guiliani wins the nomination, whose he gonna want as his veep? That's about as good as the question, gets.

As to the donks? How come no one is mentioning Richardson? Isn't there a big hispanic vote out there? Why did Beldar pick Warner for hillary's veep? Why not a "more balanced approach" with Richardson? Given that Hillary can portray herself as from Arkansas and New York, it's a wonder why her ass isn't filling both columns. But that's just too rediculous.

I still think the right wing nutters have lost steam in their cause; because of the overthrow last November. And, the new seating arrangements in the stadium called the Congress. But that's just me. Predictions are never to be taken seriously. Really. Not anyone's.

Posted by scrapiron [TypeKey Profile Page] | May 3, 2007 6:45 PM

Time, Do you mean someone still reads that POS? I thought they were out of business. Oh well, they soon will be.

Carol_Herman, get real. The dumacrats carried the congress by the least margin in history for the middle of a presidents second term. If you aren't educated then just act like you have some common sense. I'm glad my children chose the mental health field. Soon there will be millions of dumocrats flipping from BDS and Rovian nightmares to total insanity. They can make millions of dollars off the elitest. Well, they already do, but they can make more millions. Keep filling the lefties heads with hate for America, it's good for business.

Posted by Carol_Herman [TypeKey Profile Page] | May 3, 2007 11:15 PM

Scrapiron, I took the view about the donk's role, over 60 years worth of time, from Tom DeLay.

You ought to read his wonderful book.

Tom DeLay got to DC in 1980. One of six Texas republicans elected. And, on the coattails of Ronald Reagan.

If ou think DC isn't run like a whore house and a snake pit, I just don't know what to tell ya.

But the Mafia has NOTHING on these dudes and dudettes, when it comes to handling power.

That's how a republican works. Our Constition makes it legal. While what the mafia does, is all those things our government keeps illegal.

What can't be broken is the GOP's propensity to screw themselves. They've got leadership problems.

Make fun of the donks all you want. But they're not facing firing squads.

Read Tom DeLay's book. You'll get the picture.

Posted by BarCodeKing [TypeKey Profile Page] | May 4, 2007 4:51 AM

The only reason that there weren't 101 people on the list (and not President Bush) is that Anna Nicole died before they could publish it.

Posted by BarCodeKing [TypeKey Profile Page] | May 4, 2007 4:58 AM

And it should be noted that the people on the list were chosen by polling TIME's readership. It's hard to put down deep intellectual roots in such rocky soil.

Posted by Aaron | May 7, 2007 12:04 AM

Er, Jerry, there's no contradiction in having Hitler and Stalin represented in various years as Time's Person of the Year. That particular cover is not intended as an honor, so much as a statement of the obvious. Like it or not, Hitler, Stalin - and yes, Gorbachev, were pretty damn influential... And by the way, Yeltsin was nowhere to be seen in 1989 when Gorbachev was declared person of the decade, so his exclusion from that particular honor goes without saying. Go get yourself an education...

Posted by Christine | May 9, 2007 10:48 PM

Interesting that you sold your TW stock over crap like this. I sold mine because their CEO was an idiot and they were buying AOL.

Posted by viking01 [TypeKey Profile Page] | May 9, 2007 11:01 PM

The spirit of the late, lamented Mr. Luce must be in interred rapid rotation mode now that his once reputable publication now has the veracity of a Newsweak poll, a Dan Rather "memo" or a Jayson Blair screed.

Once upon a Time one could distinguish Time from base People magazine. Now they've both devolved into flirts of fashion gossip nowadays readily excelled by superior venues of contemporary journalism such as the National Enquirer.

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