October 27th, 2009
10:03 AM ET
4 years ago

Bush debuts as motivational speaker

Bush spoke at a 'Get Motivated!' event in Fort Worth, Texas Monday night
Bush spoke at a 'Get Motivated!' event in Fort Worth, Texas Monday night

(CNN) - Former President George W. Bush made his debut as a motivational speaker Monday night, telling a Fort Worth, Texas crowd it's futile to waste energy chasing popularity.

"It's so simple in life to chase popularity, but popularity is fleeting, it's not real," Bush said at a "Get Motivated!" business seminar, a multi-city event its organizers describe as an "energizing, action-packed, star-studded, fun-filled, spectacular stage show."

The president himself saw wild popularity swings during his eight years in the White House, garnering nearly a 90 percent approval rating in the months following the attacks on September 11, 2001 and exiting office with only the support of 31 percent of Americans, according to a CNN/Opinion Research Corp. poll.

The former president was greeted enthusiastically by the 11,000 attendees of the event, according to the Fort Worth Telegram, and he spoke casually for about 20 minutes.

Event organizers declined to disclose how much the former president was compensated for the appearance, though former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani received $100,000 for a similar speech at the event two years ago.

Bush, who has made few public appearances or statements since leaving office nine months ago, also took the opportunity to reflect on his presidency.

"Every single day, I was honored to be your president by bringing honor and dignity to the office," he said. Bush also added later that his faith played a large role in guiding his decisions: "From a personal perspective, I don't see how you can be president without relying upon an almighty."

Colin Powell, the former Bush Secretary of State who sparred with many members of the president's inner circle over the invasion of Iraq and endorsed Barack Obama's presidential bid - also spoke at the event and offered high praise of his ex-boss.

"We are safer than we were before 9-11 because of President Bush," Powell said.
The former president is also scheduled to participate in another "Get Motivated!" seminar in San Antonio, Texas on December 2, according to the company's Web site.

"For a limited time only," the Web site says, tickets are available for that event at $4.95 per person or $19 for a group.

Follow Alex Mooney on Twitter @awmooneycnn


Filed under: George W. Bush • Popular Posts
soundoff (225 Responses)
  1. Rob Bedard

    First off, nobody likes Bush, so who cares.
    Secondly, Last night was Monday so you may want to correct that you put Tuesday night.

    October 27, 2009 10:10 am at 10:10 am |
  2. Tom

    I find it quite amusing that Bush is attempting to be a motivational speaker, when he failed miserably at it for 8 years. But, the price is right: $4.95 beats paying $60+ to see a comedian onstage these days.

    October 27, 2009 10:10 am at 10:10 am |
  3. Geri

    CNN always hammered President Bush for his mistakes and errors in speaking. Isn't today Tuesday? Did Pres. Bush not speak last night, on Monday?

    October 27, 2009 10:10 am at 10:10 am |
  4. g

    making money is easy get 25 mil, from your daddy,s friends invade a country for oil and the money will start rolling in

    October 27, 2009 10:10 am at 10:10 am |
  5. John

    "Energizing and action-packed" are not words I usually associate with GW.

    October 27, 2009 10:15 am at 10:15 am |
  6. Fools and their freedoms are soon parted

    Please run for president Mr. Powell.

    October 27, 2009 10:15 am at 10:15 am |
  7. Jim Hall

    All I have to say is ha------------ha-----------ha-----------–ha. I wouldn't even waste the $4.95. That would buy me a McDonalds meal. Him and his gang should have been impeached then taken out imprisoned. I hope that he is proud of how his destroyed this country and left it for another man to clean up. What an idiot Bush and his cronies were. Signed a former republican that did not vote for him for him nor McCain Jim Hall.

    October 27, 2009 10:16 am at 10:16 am |
  8. Bob

    Please just go back into your hole and take Darth Cheney Vader with you...you could not give a coherent speech in 8 years so good luck giving "motivational" talks beyond backwater Texas or a local church.

    October 27, 2009 10:16 am at 10:16 am |
  9. KP

    I wouldn't pay 4 cents to hear this fool talk about anything.

    Motivational Speaker? HA! Surely, you jest.

    October 27, 2009 10:17 am at 10:17 am |
  10. Lucullus

    Bush a motivational speaker?!?!?! You must be joking. The boy is incapable of speaking even the simplest of coherent sentences. What's he going to motivate people to do anyway pile food on the family or co-exist peacefully with fish?

    October 27, 2009 10:18 am at 10:18 am |
  11. Russ in Benton

    Dubya was born rich so he could always use money power instead of being popular or smart. DUH!

    October 27, 2009 10:19 am at 10:19 am |
  12. rick nicholson

    I did not know that there are 11,000 idiots in Fort Worth area that would waste their time to see the worst president in our history.

    October 27, 2009 10:21 am at 10:21 am |
  13. sharon

    He is excellent at motivation. Single handedly he motivated an entire country and much of Europe to become politically active against another fiasco like he and his policies. He is the poster child for the fall of an entire political party. He is motivating.

    October 27, 2009 10:22 am at 10:22 am |
  14. Joey

    Maybe when exiting the office with a 31% approval, people wanted him to serve another term. I still think the Bush did an exceptional job as President, he was reelected another term, the people did approve of him, in contrary to Obama, yes he was elected by the majority of the people, and yet it memain to be seen if he is going to be reelected for another term., Until then the Obama administration needs to refrain from putting the blame on the Bush administration. And as a motivational speaker, its a job.

    October 27, 2009 10:22 am at 10:22 am |
  15. Nick

    You have got to be kidding?!? Or did you mean to say, "Dis-motivational speaker?."

    October 27, 2009 10:23 am at 10:23 am |
  16. Kim

    Well, good. Maybe he can motivate the seminar participants into storming Iraq.

    October 27, 2009 10:23 am at 10:23 am |
  17. Paul Dobro

    $100K for 20 mins?????? And the lesson this motovation seminar teaches is No regrets or reflection oven when you make mistakes that cost BILLIONS of $$$ and thousands of American lives and over 100,000 Iraris???

    And he gets cheered for this? Pawlenty complains Obama is taking away peoples rights and Bush gets applauded for the Patriot act and illegeal wiretaps? Obama has arrested more terror suspects in 9 months then Bush did to keep us safe?

    October 27, 2009 10:24 am at 10:24 am |
  18. Diane Dagenais Turbide

    "Every single day, I was honored to be your president by bringing honor and dignity to the office," he said. Bush also added later that his faith played a large role in guiding his decisions: "From a personal perspective, I don't see how you can be president without relying upon an almighty."

    Nothing wrong with having faith as long as scriptures are not use in the presidential decisions process. We all know the true meaning of the word perception is reality!

    October 27, 2009 10:25 am at 10:25 am |
  19. Gary

    interesting new career. Hope that he is successful.

    October 27, 2009 10:26 am at 10:26 am |
  20. Patrick

    I'd love to see him start a foundation like Bill Clinton did. I didn't like Clinton as a President but I admire his work aftewards, Bush can redeem himself in a lot of people's eyes by doing a lot of charity work; perhaps following up on his great work in Africa.

    October 27, 2009 10:26 am at 10:26 am |
  21. Randolph Carter, I'm no expert but.....

    Motivational speaker? Why not? He's truly proof that anyone can grow up to be president. Have a nice day!

    October 27, 2009 10:26 am at 10:26 am |
  22. quarterback

    Shrub can't talk berry good. He would motivate me to get a speaking coach. Dumbest human to ever inhabit the White House. Well, maybe Millard Filmore might give him a challenge. Abe must hate the fact Shrub is a Republicant.

    October 27, 2009 10:27 am at 10:27 am |
  23. Chris - Denver

    He sure motivated me to volunteer for Democratic campaigns!

    October 27, 2009 10:27 am at 10:27 am |
  24. Marty, Grand Rapids MI

    "Bush also added later that his faith played a large role in guiding his decisions"

    Did God tell you to torture people? How about lying to the American people so you can start a war in Iraq?

    October 27, 2009 10:28 am at 10:28 am |
  25. becky

    The boy needs to stay in Texas.

    October 27, 2009 10:28 am at 10:28 am |
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