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Film stills courtesy of Live Action Projects If you were the worst president in American history, you’d be home now. Ranch Dressing Just another Texas town, ready for its close-up By STEVEN G. KELLMAN According to Jean Baudrillard \(echoing Plato, who dismissed the world we inhabit through our senses as all is simulation. In the postmodern hiphop world of universal sampling, it is meaningless to ask whether something is primary or authentic. Only a patent attorney might worry about the honesty of an eatery that calls itself Tia Maria’s Original Tacos. So when Ronald Reagan, emphasizing his disdain for Washington, established a ranch in Santa Barbara as the Western ‘White House, few voters cared that the former screen actor’s version of home on the range was copied from Hollywood. Though George W Bush was born in Connecticut, far from sagebrush and saguaro, he emulated Reagan’s imitation. In 1999, using profits from the sale of the Texas Rangers, Bush purchased 1,583 acres near Waco, Texas, that he calls a ranch, despite the fact that it lacks any livestock other than four or five cows, hardly enough for a stampede or a cattle drive. In fact, according to Revolution of Hope, the 2007 autobiography of Vicente Fox, the former president of Mexico, Bush is a “windshield Cra wford Produced a nd directed by David Modigliani 26 THE TEXAS OBSERVER MARCH 7, 2008