I Was In The Presence of A Bush! I Am Blessed.

Once or twice a year, I go to the "Tonight Show With Jay Leno"--after all, I do live in Burbank and I think all residents are required to make this pilgrimage at least once a year.

I went late this afternoon without any knowledge of who the guests would be. The younger fans screamed when Jay revealed before the show that David Cook, the winner of last night's "American Idol" would be on and then I could only find it ironic regarding his other main guest(s)--Laura and Jenna Bush.

If you have read my politics on here, you already know why.

If I had merely turned on the show that night and known they were to be on--I would have turned it right off. But I was there as an invited VIP guest--guaranteed a seat. So I had to sit through it.

It was a mixed bag. I actually heard something I thought quite inspiring. And then I heard something that made me cringe.

In the inspiring part, the Bush mother and daughter have written a children's book. It is at the top of the Best Seller's list--and actually has caused families to go out and buy a book, read it to their children and as a result, encourage reading in the family. That is great! Anything that gets kids to read or listen to a book is a very positive thing!

Then the subject of the wedding came up. Mom and daughter talked about it. There were some interesting intimate revelations--including this one. They revealed that dad, one George W. Bush, teared up when walking down the aisle. Probably what any father would do.

But he is the President of the United States. The chief protagonist of a war that has seen 4,000 Americans and over 1 million Iraqis lose their lives.

Every day, the statistics are staggering. Children, moms, dads, uncles, aunts, cousins, grandmas, grandpas blown up in a never-ending cycle.

It made me wonder. When George W. Bush hears about an Iraqi mother crying because her children have been slaughtered, does he tear up? Does he gulp or start choking? Does he become emotional and question his role in this quagmire?

I'll take Ladybird and Lucybird instead any day.

You Wanna Be President? You Better be Funny!

All 3 major Presidential candidates have something in common.

They have all made appearances on late-night comedy shows,

"Saturday Night Live" in addition to "David Letterman," "Jay Leno" and others.

They have all been taught the major techniques of live comedy TV:

Always look into the camera, pause if the audience responds with laughter and give a deadpan-style presentation.

Why have they been doing this you might ask.

Isn't this below the dignity of a person who is going to be President of The United States?

Obviously, they are trying to reach younger voters and those who might not follow political shows. They want your vote by showing their softer side.

Ronald Reagan never did it. John F. Kennedy never did it. Lyndon Johnson never did it.

But it might surprise you who did.

It was 1968. Vietnam, political assassinations of both Martin Luther King and Robert Kennedy, protests in the streets of America. It was a chaotic time unlike any other had been in American history.

In early 1968, a comedy skit and gag show called "Laugh-In" appeared on NBC and gave most Americans what they were looking for--a distraction from the intense political climate that had developed in the country. Filled with one-liners, skits, gags and a psychedelic motif that would make stars out of Goldie Hawn and many others--Americans of all ages were glued to their TVs on Monday nights (remember, no VCRs or Tivos) so they could for one hour, forget about the war and the generation gap that had destroyed families throughout the land.

Many expressions and phrases used on the show would become the patter of millions of Americans the next day in offices, schools and at the barber shop. "Here come de judge," "You bet your sweet bippy" and "Look that up in your Funk and Wagnall's" became a staple of every American's vocabulary.

Everybody's favorite from the show was "Sock it to Me."

Uttering that expression by the show's cast members might result in a pie in the face or some other comedic visualization. But it was the funniest when major movie stars or other public figures who would rarely make a TV appearance would suddenly be on the little screen uttering those words, sometimes resulting in some delightful image. Imagine John Wayne saying "Sock it to Me" and having a bucket of water thrown at him from offstage.

America's sons were dying in Vietnam. Parents and children were not talking to each other. Weeks earlier, the Democratic convention in Chicago turned into a police riot on live TV worldwide with America's youth being beaten violently by Chicago's finest.

When Americans turned on "Laugh-In" the night of September 16, 1968, they expected the usual variety of fast jokes, gags and a fun time.

Considering the mood of the country, they would soon be shocked into nervous laughter and amazement at what they would see:

President-to-be Richard Nixon, who would soon escalate the Vietnam war, turning to the camera and saying "Sock it to Me?"

It really happened. You can see it here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1ItU6tkdF2A

It's still unbelievable when you consider Nixon's role in the "60's"

If you don't know what this picture is about,