Ann Althouse asks this question in response to Peggy Noonan's editorial which I won't quote extensively. You can go read it yourself. Noonan brings up interesting questions, but she has been notably ambivalent about Bush. Yes, I know she quit writing for a while to work on his re-election campaign, but I think she was terrorized by the alternative. Here's her synopsis:
It is part of the Bush conundrum--a supernal serenity or a confidence born of cluelessness? You decide. Where you stand on the war will likely determine your answer. But I'll tell you, I wonder about it and do not understand it, either what it is or what it means. I'd ask someone in the White House, but they're still stuck in Rote Talking Point Land: The president of course has moments of weariness but is sustained by his knowledge of the ultimate rightness of his course . . .You know what, Ms. Noonan? Frankly, it's nice to not see a simpering mess of a man who faces a mess of a world. I'm not interested in his weeping, time-ravaged face on TV. Yuck. I'm interested in him bucking up and doing the job. He can cry in private, if he must. I also get the feeling that Ms. Noonan resents the fact that she's not in the inner circle. Get over it! With one year left, your towering wisdom (and I do believe you have a good deal of it) won't right the course of this assumed "wrong" presidency. Just like James Baker won't. Just like Sandra Day O'Connor won't.
If he suffers, they might tell us; it would make him seem more normal, which is always a heartening thing to see in a president.
I tire of the condescension. Do you think Bush and his not-quite-worn-enough-face tires of it too? That alone would piss me off enough to keep a decidedly stiff upper lip. Bush is his mother, more than his father's, son. She's a tough old bird and he is, too.
Winning or losing he isn't going to be Princess Diana. He's more like the Queen. Being a girl who is tired of public displays of feigned emotion, I'm greatly relieved.