Yoshihiro Tsurumi, a visiting associate professor of international business at Harvard Business School between 1972 and 1976, and now a professor of international business at Baruch College in the City University of New York, said he remembers the future president as scoring in the bottom 10 percent of students in the class.
The article goes on to report:
Thirty years after teaching the class, Tsurumi
said the twenty-something Bush's statements and behavior-"always very shallow"-still stand out in his
"Whenever [Bush] just bumped into me, he had some flippant statement to make," said Tsurumi
when reached at his home in Scarsdale, N.Y. "The comments he made were revealing of his prejudice."
particularly recalls Bush's right-wing extremism at the time, which he
said was reflected in off-hand comments equating the New Deal of the 1930s with socialism and the corporation-regulating Securities and Exchange Commission with "an enemy of capitalism."
"I vividly remember that he
made a comment saying that people are poor because they're lazy," Tsurumi
said.Tsurumi also said Bush displayed a sense of arrogance about his prominent family, including his father, former U.S. President George H.W. Bush.
said that the younger Bush boasted that his
father's political string-pulling had gotten him to the top of the waiting list for the Texas National Guard
instead of serving in Vietnam.When other students were frantically scrambling for summer jobs, Tsurumi
said, Bush explained that he
was planning instead for a visit to his
father in Beijing, where the senior Bush was serving at the time as the special U.S. envoy to China.
In addition, Tsurumi
is still sore about what he
recalls as Bush's slight to his
cinematic taste.When he
arranged for students to view the film of John Steinbeck's The Grapes of Wrath during their study of the Great Depression, Tsurumi
said, Bush derided the film as "corny."
At the time, Tsurumi
worries about his
student extended no further than the boardroom."All Harvard Business School students want to become president of a company one day," Tsurumi said.
"I remember saying, if you become president of a company some day, may God help your customers and employees."
discovered that his
former pupil was vying for the presidency in 2000, Tsurumi
tried to inform the public about his
experience with the then-Texas governor at HBS-but
got few results beyond hate mail.
"Last election time, if you recall, the American mass media did a shameful job of vetting [the presidential candidates]," Tsurumi
As another November approaches, Tsurumi
is trying again to air his
criticisms of the man he
once taught and his
actions as president.
"This time it seems to be getting around a bit more widely," he
said."After three years of dismal record, people seem more inclined to believe that all his
failed leadership was apparent during the Harvard Business School
In a July 2 speech to the Foreign Correspondents Club of Japan
in Tokyo, Tsurumi
repeated the broadside he
has launched repeatedly in the past.
"I always remember two groups of students," Tsurumi
said then, according to published reports.