Since its early days in 2001, the Bush White House has kept the press at arm’s length, but for his new biography of George W. Bush, “Dead Certain,” GQ’s Robert Draper managed to catch a close enough glimpse of the president to confirm that his enduring “obstinate” qualities have impacted the course of world events.

The New York Times:

“Dead Certain,” the title, conveys one of those characteristics. Bush knows he is right. When facts turn out to get in the way, he brushes them off. When “Mission Accomplished” turned sour in Iraq, when various supposed bench marks of success did not stop the bloodshed, the president remained utterly confident of victory. He was sure, Draper writes, that “history would acquit him.”

These are some of the words Draper uses in discussing Bush: “certitude,” “intransigence,” “his obstinate streak,” “compulsive optimism.” “I truly believe we’re in the process of shaping history for the good,” Bush told Draper early this year. “I know, I firmly believe, that decisions I have made were necessary to secure the country.”

At the time of that interview, February 2007, Republicans had lost control of both houses of Congress. “Americans had soured on the president and his war,” Draper writes. “The First Optimist had made pessimists out of them.” But the president did not change. “What had to be believed, he believed.”

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