Bush legacy

December 5, 2008

Now that he’s on his way out, how do you think president George W. Bush will be remembered? Here’s a few of my ideas.

  • The Iraq war. It was unnecessary, it’s justification was either deceptive or incompetent, it was poorly executed, and there was an utter failure to deal with the aftermath. It also represents a major change in foreign policy: “preemptive” war. It will for a long time be regarded as the greatest foreign policy blunder in the history of the United States.
  • The contentious 2000 election.
  • 9/11. Because he was president when it happened.
  • The huge economic crisis that began in 2008. The extent to which he will actually be blamed for it isn’t clear to me, but all future discussions of the recession will include his name, as he was president when it came down.
  • Torture. Rendition. Secret prisons. Abu Ghraib. “Detainee abuse.” All that stuff.
  • Illegal wiretapping of American citizens.
  • Hurricane Katrina. Again, I doubt whether historians will place the blame for New Orleans solely on the federal government or the Bush administration. But one thing is sure: the president’s “heckuva job” tone-deafness has become one of the iconic moments of the incident.
  • Record budget deficits and record debt.
  • Embarrassing inarticulateness. “Bushisms.”

George W. Bush will not be thought of as a good president. Those who believe he’ll be remembered well are delusional. By the time eyewitnesses such as myself have passed on, this list may be distilled down to one item: the Iraq war. It’s possible, though, that the current economic crisis may rival it in historic importance. Let’s hope not.


No comments yet

  1. 1. Hate-filled ideologues who would not, could not see any good in the man no matter what he did, who actually went so far as to brand him Hitler, and who would do anything to see him fail. (See post above and posts elsewhere in this blog for examples).

    2. The complete erosion and demise of objectivity in mainstream journalism (for example, Dan Rather threw away his entire career to meet the objective of 1., above).

    3. The biggest temper tantrum in U.S. history (Al Gore and his “every vote must be counted, but only in Democratic districts, and continue to be recounted until I get my way!”)

    4. The undermining of the electoral process by liberals who want to “interpret votes” and who claim minorities are too stupid to get IDs before voting.

    Oh, and then there’s also the other stuff, like no terrorist attacks on American soil since 9/11, more AIDs relief provided than by any other President in history or from anywhere else in the world, adoption tax benefits. And other good things you would probably rather die than acknowledge.

  2. *** I’m sure that the people of Iraq will long remember Mr. Bush, every time they vote or exercise freedom of speech. As for pre-emptive strikes; We are sure lucky that France and England did not practice such barbarism in 1938. Sure, it gave us a war that killed 50 million, but at least it was good liberal policy. How about that little incident in Dec of 1941? Sure glad we took that one up the torpedo tube rather than strike first. After all, it was just wicked soldiers…no real matter.

    *** The 2000 election where Gore claimed the election had been stolen in counties that were run 100% by Democrats? The election that was counted 5 times in Bush’s favor? Why count anyway… facts are so confusing.

    *** 9-11, caused by the terrible CIA-FBI information firewall and the decimation of American intelligence capabilities by the previous president? The 9-11 that was the ONLY attack that happened? Yes, he will be remembered as presiding over the last 7 years of safety in the US. God forbid that winning streak should come to an end.

    *** Though I’ve no doubt that you and the other latte sippers will blame GW for all economic ills ( though Clinton bears no blame for 9-11…lol) the current economic downturn will fall fully on the new messiah. He will sink or swim based on his own actions the results of Obamanomics…if he ever makes up his mind about it. Perhaps the advice of his “all-Clinton administration” will help. Change, lol

    *** Secret prisons and detainee abuse (heck, the AC never cools my cell below 72 degrees. Abuse!)? Sound like the Office of the President Elect is already starting to waffle on that one. Those CIA briefings must have been a bit sobering for a community organizer.

    *** Illegal wiretapping? Hm, perhaps you mean wire tapping of illegals who are engaged in illegal terrorist plots and activities… just like we do to the mob in RICO matters. Sound like the big “O” might be looking at keeping some of that too. Change… lol

    *** Katrina? I doubt whether liberals will place any blame anywhere else. George was responsible for everything from the warming that caused the storm to the production of the dynamite that Dick Cheney used to blow the levies.

    *** No one holds any record greater than the one that the Pelosi-Reid axis created with the multi-trillion dollar bailout. I can’t wait to see how the new congress will fund the added trillion in new programs promised by our BaRock-star elect. Should be fun.

    *** Bushisms? I’m sure that those will be chanted by the typical white arugula and latte crowd in all 57 states. Oh, and I can hardly contain myself glee at the thought of Joe Biden chewing on his own foot for four years. At least he has that nice clean black man to look out for him.

    You factphobic liberals are always so amusing…please do continue. I love a good fairy tale.

  3. Some other highlights:

    1. The politicization of the Justice Department, which was turned into a branch of the Repuklican party.

    2. The brazen use of signing statements and the so-called theory of the unitary executive to declare himself beyond the reach of the law.

    3. The completion of the military-industrial complex and its attendent crony capitalism.

    4. The appointments of Harriet Myers to SCOTUS, Condi, Alberto, Ashcroft, Bernard Kerik, to name but a few.

    I am afraid we will not learn the full extent of the horrors this administration has inflicted for many months.

    BTW, MM sounds like a, dare I say, soreloserman, complaining bitterly about the 2000 election. Get over it already, will ya? You guys took that one, remember? And try to remember that in the weeks after 9/11, practically the entire country, and most of the world, was behind Bush, and supported him. Even liberals. Yet he squandered all the goodwill in his rush to destroy Iraq. Put the blame where it belongs.

  4. Yeah, you enthusiastically supported King George, the election stealer, the appointed president… The Stupid, Grinning Monkey… yeah right, I remember. Bull.

    Actually, Some Lib, Obama winning the election never entered my mind while I was writing my comment. I wonder why you brought up soreloserman? Are you a Franken supporter from Minnesota by any chance?

  5. Gosh, some liberal, so when Obama places his own Democrat politicians into the Justice Department, will that be politicizing it? He is already picking them. It IS each president’s right to place his own people in those positions, so I hope you won’t come out too harshly against Obama when he does so. No, the factphobic liberal will overlook it.

    Obama has already stated he will be heavily using executive orders to govern, just as you have criticized Bush for doing. Since it is his right to do so, I hope that you will not attack Obama too harshly for it. No, the factphobic liberal will overlook it.

    The military-industrial complex? ROFL. Have you been trying on Snabby’s tin-foil hats? A silly argument used by Poli-Sci professors and guys trying to pick up chicks at Move-On.org parties.

    As far as Bush’s appointments go, some were not good, but most were spot on… but that’ll never get you laid at the Move-On Cappuccino-fest. Obama’s appointments are easy, as we have seen most of them before… during the Clinton administration. I shall find four years of joy simply watching the smiles droop on the hurt faces of the choir in the Obama Church of Change. Welcome to Clinton 2, the sequel. (hopefully Obama can avoid the semen stained dress and the parade of hand maidens in the Oval Office, no need for part two there).

  6. The 24-26% do exist, and they read Scott’s blog. I was wondering where they were.

  7. It depends on whom you ask, and when. The McCain voters of today, if asked in 15-20 years, will probably hold the same views as they do now. Same with the Obama voters.

    But getting into the 50-100 years from now range, I think the more common theme that will arise from an objective view of the Bush years will be how he managed to enable far more authority in the Executive branch than had existed before and was ever intended by the Founding Fathers. A side-effect of that, and implemented by Bush via his SCOTUS picks of Alito and Roberts as well as the economic bailout, is the expansion of the use of Federal authority over the states and private commerce.

    While many label Alito and Roberts as “conservative”, their true colors have much more in common with the rest of the “liberal” court. That being they will, when all else is equal, side in favor of Federal authority over State and individual rights. The consequences of this will be seen much more in decades ahead of than they do right now.

    The bailouts of the big companies will set a precedent for much more involvement in the day-to-day finances and operations of business (small and large alike).

    My personal opinion on Bush is that he has been a disaster, but only partially for the reasons Scott listed. He has given the Federal government and Executive Branch far too much power. From the illegal wiretapping, to torture, and everything in between – we have way way more Federal government right now than we should. As much as I despise Noam Chomsky, he was mostly right when he said that the U.S. Presidency is just a series of four-year dictatorships.

    What would help, if people got their heads out of their asses to get it passed, is allowing the states to collectively have a “check and balance” against the Federal gov’t. There should be a Constitutional amendment that allows that States – without any Congressional or Executive action – to overrule a Supreme Court decision with a 2/3rds vote of the state legislatures.

    But getting entrenched incumbents in Congress to do this would be impossible. The states would have to enact a constitutional convention – and since it has never happened with any of our current amendments it would be hard to figure out how to do it, where lines are drawn, etc. But I can still gaze at the stars and wish for such a thing… 😉

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: