The Gist

Why Bush 41 Was the Anti-Trump

As president, George H.W. Bush was tight-lipped, decorous, and self-abnegating—loath even to use the word I.

Former President George H.W. Bush in the White House on July 15, 2013, in Washington.

Brendan Smialowski/AFP/Getty Images

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As the Soviet Union crumbled, George H.W. Bush’s strategy was simple: say nothing. Historian Jeffrey Engel tells us about Bush’s plain oratory and his relationship with the USSR’s last leader, Mikhail Gorbachev. Engel says Bush Sr. and Trump scarcely look like they’re from the same party—which, of course, they aren’t. His book is When the World Seemed New.

In the Spiel, reacting to the allegations against Roy Moore and Louis C.K.

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