All this talk of whether Bush is wired makes me think about an overlooked part of his past: his penchant for computer gaming. While governor in Texas, Bush was a fan of Freecell, a variation of Solitaire. He made the game a part of his daily routine, breaking for a few rounds of Freecell after his lunch time jog. Karl Rove once told a reporter that he knew that Bush had lost interest when he switched conversations to the quality of his hand on screen.
Solitaire abuse once inspired one of Bush’s fellow Republicans, former Senator Lauch Faircloth of North Carolina, to try to ban games from federal computers in 1997 after he found staff members playing the game excessively during the day. “The taxpayers don’t need to be paying the salaries of people who are playing games while on official time,” Faircloth said, “The removal of these games will save millions, if not billions, in lost productivity. It is time to pull the plug on people playing computer games.” Fortunately for Dubya, the Clinton administration shot down Lauch’s bill.