He left office with the US embroiled in two wars, a Great Recession and with his approval rating a toxic 22 per cent. So the next stage in his career is obvious. George W Bush — who last year inspired millions of people to vote Democrat — is about to become a highly-paid motivational speaker.
On Monday the former Republican President will appear as the headline speaker on the popular Get Motivated seminar programme, which describes itself as an “action-packed, fun-filled, explosive, exciting, inspiring, skill-building business event that is world famous for its mega-watt superstar speakers and spectacular stage production.” He will appear again in San Antonio in December.
The Forth Worth event, in Mr Bush’s home state of Texas, will also feature Colin Powell, the former Secretary of State, Rudy Giuliani, the former New York Mayor, and Rick Belluzzo, a former Microsoft executive.
The Get Motivated programme has been a huge business success, but the appearance of Mr Bush at a seminar about, among other things, “How to Master the Art of Effective Leadership” has produced guffaws.
I can personally attest to Bush’s motivational powers: his presidency encouraged me to seek out options for citizenship in another country just in case he really did end up driving the US into the ground.