A couple of passages from the book A Matter of Character: Inside the White House of George W. Bush regarding David Frum may shed some light. First, from pages 137—138, a bit about Frum:
"In his book 'The Right Man,' former White House speechwriter David Frum, who came up with Bush's 'axis of evil' declaration, weighed in on the president's faults as he perceived them: 'He is impatient and quick to anger; sometimes glib, even dogmatic; often uncurious and as a result ill—informed; more conventional in his thinking than a leader probably should be.'
"The analysis provoked tittering in the White House. Frum had gotten it right that Bush was impatient when things did not move as fast as he wanted. But Frum had gotten it wrong on every other count. The reason Bush came under so much criticism was that his thinking was unconventional. His preemptive strike on Iraq was a prime example. Bush was a remarkably sanguine man who expressed frustration but rarely anger...
"The fact that Frum, like many in the media, had so many misimpressions of Bush was not surprising. As a low—level speechwriter, Frum had actually met with the president in the Oval Office only a few times, according to Karen Hughes and chief speechwriter Michael Gerson. Frum hardly knew Bush."
On page 248, description of Miers' operation style as White House staff secretary:
"In contrast Miers, petite and soft—spoken, operated as an honest broker. She applied discipline even—handedly, telling aides that they had not gotten their papers in on time or had written a magnificent paper but it was not tight enough or did not have a bottom line."
One amateur's take is that Frum may have had some of his ideas corrected or rejected at the hand of Harriet Miers and perhaps some resentment overrides the temptation to gloat over having made the Miers prediction before anyone else had even thought of it. The absence of a point—by—point critique of the mere possiblity of a Miers nomination is one of the strangest omissions indeed given the air time and bandwith Mr. Frum has consumed in his attempt to have the Miers nomination withdrawn.
In the end, who knows? But listening to and reading Frum of late is more like visiting the zoo than the museum.
Matt May 10 16 05