Before today, I was unaware of a person named Billy Bush. However, now I know that, in additional to being the person on the Trump tape where Trump talks about how fame is very attractive to women, even married ones, Billy is a member of the political Bush family.
His Uncle is President Bush, the one that was VP under Reagan, and so his cousin is President Bush, the one that inspired the SNL sketch that gave us the word “strategery.”
Since I don’t know who he is, or at least didn’t before today, I can only state that he has at least one virtue that is apparent; he is not yet another Kennedy.
It is very unhealthy for a country to get bound up in a given family, as the United States has been doing on and off since the founding. How much leadership talent was squandered and lost because we kept electing Kennedys to positions of power, no matter how debauched their behavior? How much real news was displaced by meaningless and lurid Kennedy news?
What does the Bush family have that anyone should consider promoting them endlessly through the generations? What indispensable qualities do the Clintons have? NBC News hired Chelsea Clinton to report even though she had virtually no experience and, of course, it didn’t work out. Kennedy family members have been put in charge of all manner of things based on their name alone. Surely, Billy Bush used his name to advance his career which landed him the interview with Trump.
Due to his 11-year-old interview with Trump, it is said the family “brand” is damaged. What did that brand stand for again? I can’t remember. He says he was young and didn’t realize he shouldn’t play along with Trump, though he was 34 at the time. Hey, Billy, when you’re 34 and a married father of two kids, you are old enough to know better.
Famous people are famous, and that is about it. Whatever brought them to fame usually does not translate to other venues and skill sets. People who are famous for being something they were born to, and did not earn, should be held to a higher, not lower, standard of performance. I’ve met a few celebrities over the years and, by and large, was underwhelmed. Meeting celebrities was the least fun part of my job at Columbia TriStar Home Video.
If it’s monarchy we really want, we could hand ourselves back over to the British. If we want to be ruled by Royals, the House of Windsor still sets the standard. Their royals are positively quaint by the standard of loutish famous Americans of our day. How much worse off could we do with Prince William?
May 2023: An update on Billy: ‘Extra’ Stands by Billy Bush After Leak of Sexual Comments About Kendall Jenner