Friday morning Tocqueville pointed us to the most recent Peggy Noonan column, which asserted "confusion . . . followed by frustration . . . has turned into resentment" for President Bush, and not just among Beltway sharpies, but among the plain folks in the heart of Texas as well.

Today (Saturday) the Okie Gardener directed us to Scott Johnson of Powerline and his excellent retort: "Season of the Witch."

In light of this conversation, I am exercising my right to revise and extend my original comments from Friday on this topic:

Dateline: Waco, Texas

I stand by my love for Peggy Noonan. Many years ago the Gardener called her a national treasure. I agree wholeheartedly.

And I like the first two sections of her column: 1) frustrating procedures at the airports; and 2) Obama's problems with Middle America,

but the assertion in re Texans and Bush is balderdash.

Noonan: the people of Lubbock, Texas, "the heart of Texas conservatism...dislike President Bush. He has lost them. I was there and saw it."

Translation: "Peggy Noonan dislikes George Bush. He has lost her."

Ms. Noonan (God bless her) has been writing this same essay for two years now.

Here is what I see on the ground in the Waco, Texas (the true HOT):

Texans who are predisposed to like Bush and Republicans continue to admire Bush (albeit more discreetly, perhaps, than they once did).

Texans who are predisposed to hate Bush and all Republicans are much more empowered by the polls and the media to trash Bush in a louder more public way.

Pure Speculation: if Texans had another opportunity to vote for Bush in 2008 for president against Hillary, Obama, Joe Biden, John Edwards, Bill Richardson, Al Gore, or even Bill Clinton, George Bush would garner 60-plus percent of the vote once again.

As for what Ms. Noonan (God bless her) purportedly sees, sometimes "a woman sees what she wants to see and disregards the rest."

You can't just fly in someplace, stay the night, give a speech, and purport to tell me what the folks of that particular hamlet "really think."

Also, as evidence buttressing her point, Noonan relates that her audiences don't challenge her on her Bush-bashing. I have the same experience when I say negative things about the President: a sheepish silence. However, if you look out and say, "but, you know, I still like the guy," you will see a lot (A LOT) of relieved faces and knowing smiles from people who want to tell you that they still like him too.

Is George W. Bush a classic conservative? No. Has he made a ten-gallon hat full of bonehead errors? Yes. Having said that, who was the conservative option in 2000? It is a stumper. Answer: the same candidate who was the conservative option in 2008. Nobody. Do any of us seriously believe that we are not infinitely better off with our current president than with the actual alternatives to George Bush in 2000 and 2004: Al Gore and John Kerry?

You want a real conservative? Go get one elected (you will need to find one first). But until then, show some backbone and be part of the solution. Everybody loves a winner. But sometimes you need to back a flawed but well-intentioned man doing his level best in a damned-near impossible situation--even if it is unpopular.