Friday, August 30, 2013

Saying something nice about W.

By Richard K. Barry

As one who probably never said anything nice about George W. Bush during his disastrous tenure as president, I don't mind throwing the man a bone now that he is far from the levers of power. In this case, W. was asked by Fox News to comment on whether or not Obama should intervene militarily in Syria, to which he responded, "the president has to make a tough call," adding that he "was not a fan of Mr. Assad." He also said some things about President Obama having the best armed forces in the world at his disposal should he choose to act, and other such platitudes. 

The point is that in an overheated partisan environment, the former president has kept his head down while others in his administration, notably Dick Cheney, have been obnoxious in the extreme. I am not suggesting that former presidents can't or shouldn't be partisan. They continue to be members of a political party once they leave office, and have every right to support whatever and whomever they like. But, and I'll be a bit of a traditionalist here, once having held the highest office, I think they have an obligation to dignify the experience by keeping their partisan comments respectful of the efforts of those who currently lead. You know, the old "disagreeing without being disagreeable" thing. 

For my money, George W. Bush has done well on that score since going back to Texas. Yes, if we occasionally praise respectful dialogue, we might actually see more of it. And now you can tell me that Bush is the last person to deserve our respect given the fact that he lied so easily to justify invading Iraq where so many have died as a result, which would be another way of saying that there never will be a good time to be respectful in politics. Too bad. 

Labels: , , ,

Bookmark and Share


  • I break the Bush Jr administration into two parts. The first 6 years consisted of Cheney providing 2-3 bad choices for Bush to "decide" on. The last two years, Bush was really in charge. At the time, I got a lot of grief from other liberals by saying that those two years were not bad. As Republican presidents go, they were about as good as you ever get.

    So I don't think Bush is all [i]that[/i] bad. On the other hand, I think he is as narcissistic as they come and he wanted the title of president more than the job.

    But I don't think he is or was an evil man the way most of those he surrounded himself with were. (One could argue that such malleability is evil, but I'll leave that.) And I think had his health been good he would have been at the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington. Unlike most of his party, Bush is not a racist.

    By Anonymous Frank Moraes, at 4:12 PM  

  • re:
    >>I got a lot of grief from other
    >>liberals by saying that those two
    >>years were not bad

    Not bad? Frankly, I vehemently disagree. The U.S. economy COLLAPSED in 2008. It wasn't a typical economic downturn---it was an outright collapse. Although things like QE and Obama's stimulus have helped mask the subsequent pain, I don't believe most Americans realize just how devastating this economic collapse really is. It is nothing less than the beginning of the end for America as a great power.
    What's even worse than that was Bush's reaction to the collapse. He promptly bailed out the crooks on Wall Street with hundreds of billions of our tax dollars. It was an unbelievable, mind-boggling outrage that vividly demonstrates that today's America is nothing more than an oligarchy that has utter contempt for working-class people.
    >>Bush is not a racist.
    You have got to be kidding. What, exactly, does someone have to do in order to be called a racist these days? Burn a cross on the White House lawn?
    In 2000, Bush praised the officials at the outrageously racist Bob Jones University---a school that had a notorious ban on inter-racial dating at the time. There are tens of thousands of schools across America---why did Bush choose Bob Jones?
    Bush attracted a grand total of 8 percent of the black vote in 2000. Maybe not all of them believed Bush was racist. But I'd bet a lot of them did, after the Bob Jones episode.
    Once again, what exactly does one have to do these days to be identified as a racist?
    What if Obama had stopped by and praised a school run by Louis Farrakhan? All we would hear for the next 10 years would be how "Obama is a racist" from Fox News----and I have zero doubt that the mainstream media would be echoing that sentiment as well.
    Bush was a f*cking racist. And he's an evil man who deserves to die (and then burn in hell).

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 8:38 PM  

  • The economic crash was not Bush's fault. It was the result of years of Republicans and New Democratic administrations. And [i]nothing[/i] the Obama administration has done has changed that. I'm not saying that Bush was good, only that he was about as good as any Republican ever is and only slightly worse than our New Democratic presidents. When it comes to the economy, Obama is marginally better than Bush and that's all. Our economic problems are largely the result of liberals thinking Republicans are worse than they are and Democrats better than they are. They are barely different. The sooner liberals start insisting on actual liberal politicians, the sooner we can get this country on a more equitable footing.

    As for Bush's racism: I don't know. That isn't my area. But I do remember his public statements after 9/11 and I thought they were some of the brightest moments of his presidency. And Bush is a lot better than his father or Reagan.

    Hysterics don't help the cause. This isn't about personalities. It's about policies. I want actual liberal policies, not yet another Democrat who claims to believe in what I do but never acts on that supposed belief.

    Meanwhile, what time it is? Are we bombing Iraq, I mean Syria?

    By Anonymous Frank Moraes, at 3:15 AM  

  • re:
    >>The economic crash was not
    >>Bush's fault

    I didn't say the economic crash was Bush's fault. I only mentioned it because you had said that Bush's last 2 years were "not bad." I suppose those years were "not bad" if you weren't one of the tens of millions of Americans who got slammed in the worst economic crisis to hit America since the 1930s.
    Actually, come to think of it, those years weren't bad for the crooked billionaires on Wall Street who got bailed out by Bush with hundreds of billions of OUR tax dollars.
    I'm not sure what you'd define as a "bad" year for America. But a year in which the economy collapses and then the Top One Percent get bailed out with our tax dollars is what working-class people like me would called a sh*tty year.
    Incidentally, the 2008 crash happened 8 years into Bush's presidency. Maybe the crash can't entirely be blamed on Bush. But Bush was the f*cking president for 8 years leading up to the crash. To absolve Bush of any blame really sounds like something Limbaugh or Fox News would say. I'd say a great deal of the blame should be laid at Bush's doorstep. Maybe if America hadn't been spending hundreds of billions of dollars on Bush's disastrous, unnecessary Iraq War, we'd have the money to spend on things that could have helped avert the crash (like beefing up the budget-starved SEC, for one thing).
    >>"Are we bombing Iraq, I mean
    Nobody is confusing the Iraq invasion with the mess in Syria. Obama didn't spend a year cheerleading the nation into war (like Bush did with Iraq).
    Obama isn't lying America into a disastrous, unnecessary war (like Bush did with Iraq).
    In fact, I would bet that Obama wishes to God he didn't even have to deal with Syria. It's nothing but a big mess and there are really no simple solutions.
    In fact, one thing I haven't heard mentioned in the MSM is that the mess in Syria was made much worse by the after-effects of the Iraq War. The latter destroyed Iraqi society and led to the emergence of a powerful Al Qaeda faction in Iraq (Al Qaeda didn't even have presence in Iraq before the war).
    Now, Al Qaeda is sending fighters into Syria. No doubt, this entire mess will continue to grow and spread to other nations. There will be a great deal of horrible violence and instability ahead, which will likely last for decades.
    I believe the day will come when America's elite will be nostalgic for the days of Saddam (and, no doubt, they'll recall why they installed him in the first place in Iraq).
    Bush was nothing but a terrible disaster for both America and the world. We are still suffering from the effects of his disastrous presidency.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 2:13 PM  

Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home