I think one of the reasons Colin Powell is held in such high regard may be based on 1 premise: plain talk. Out of all the politcos and talking heads, he comes the closest to expaining things in terms that even the layest of the laymen can understand. No spin, no BS just the facts. If you caught his statement to the press this morning, he laid out the facts in regards to the Woodward book. He stated his case, gave facts and that was it. He said this is what happened, this is what I did, and this is what I know. (He also stated that the book account is "wrong") When he was done he said "that's all I have to say" Instantly the reporters started yapping, and he turned around shaking his head and walked away. You could tell from the look on his face he was disgusted with the whole ridiculous situation. (As an aside, Woodward is now backpedaling on the context that some of the reported quotes) Back to the main point: I think a big part of GWB's problem is that he comes across as being out of touch. Photo ops and snippets of speeches flashed on the tv for 30 seconds do not truly convey who the man is. It's probably safe to say that if any politician came out and talked like the rest of us, normal people would feel a certain kinship to them and could relate to them. (which would translate into votes) I think GWB was at his best when he stood down at the WTC and made his remarks about "the people who knocked down these buildings are going to hear from all of us!" No BS, no spin, no coaching or rehearsal, just the way we all felt at that moment. Moments in time like that are why he probably had 90% approval ratings in the following months. And what's with these assinine disclaimers at the end of campaign commercials "My name is John Doe and I approve this ad"