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Texas Students Who Were Kept Away From Obama Speech Will Be Bused to See Bush Speak

This is the man who once expressed concern for the nation's students by asking: "Is our children learning?"

So now we know that the same Texas school district that decided not to air President Barack Obama's 18-minute address to students yesterday -- in which he spouted such Marxist rhetoric as the importance of hand-washing and staying in school -- plans to bus its 5th graders to a speech delivered by former President George W. Bush at Cowboys Stadium in Dallas later this month.

On its surface, this may seem wildly hypocritical -- "I do not understand the duplicity in this situation," one local pastor said about the move -- but in a way it makes sense. This is Texas, after all, Bush's home state, where the school board is considering revising its textbooks to include "significant conservative advocacy organizations and individuals, such as Newt Gingrich, Phyllis Schlafly and the Moral Majority." Plus, aside from passing such widely admired legislation as No Child Left Behind, Bush himself has a demonstrated history of concern for the students of this country, through such statements as, "Rarely is the question asked: Is our children learning?"

Bush has stayed relatively quiet since leaving Washington, but he'll surely have plenty to say that contrasts with Obama. For example, while the current president admitted to his high school audience yesterday that as a youngster, "I did some things I'm not proud of, and got in more trouble than I should have," Bush is famous for his inability to recall a single mistake he made in his first term. ("I wish you'd have given me this written question ahead of time so I could plan for it," he said at the time, although he did later admit to a minor misstep, telling ABC News last year, "I think I was unprepared for war.") And whereas Obama, surprisingly, upon being asked by a student for career advice, cited a cautious approach to social media as "number one" -- "First of all, I want everybody here to be careful about what you post on Facebook" -- Bush has shown no such facility with the internet at all, often preferring to cite an even more powerful force as the secret to his professional success. "I don't see how you can be president … without a relationship with the Lord," he once told The Washington Times .

Liliana Segura is a staff writer and editor of AlterNet's Rights and Liberties and World Coverage.

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