The Republican KennedysPincher Martin -- Wednesday, June 23, 2010 -- 06:18:51 PM
The Bushes: Two presidencies, two governorships, one vice presidency, one senator's seat. All provided with minimal skill and flexible ideology. The GOP family that just won't go away, no matter how badly they mess things up for both party and country. A thread to discuss all things Bush, including whether Jeb will add to the family's resume.This thread is tagged:
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Bush's immediate stunned paralysis after being notified is all you need to know about that entire presidency. It's the whole thing writ small. The face of a guy who's realizing this isn't going to be the fun gig he thought it'd be.
Don't be ridiculous. If there's one thing that Bush did right during his presidency, it was the way he handled 9/11. It was a defining moment indeed, of both his patriotism and his ability to rise to the importance of his position.
You are such a hack for Obama. Tell me if you agree with our abject apologizing and his trite comments about how important that was in "calming the situation" after yet another 2 soldiers were killed yesterday.
No, I think making any sort of immediate statement was a complete mistake on Obama's part.
Bush's immediate response once his brain kicked into gear was fine, though he did not capitalize on it to mobilize the country well at all. Remember being told to keep shopping? We're still funding our own attackers with drug & oil money so nothing's changed there. And it's everything after the immediate response that got fucked up.
But is that really your defense? "September 2011 to Spring 2012 he was awesome?" You know how much of an incompetent he'd have had to have been to screw up looking good after 9/11? A ham sandwich would've looked patriotic atop that pile of rubble with a bullhorn.
He had a few moments. But those moments were the exception, not the rule. And many other moments, like the carrier landing and "good job, Brownie" and Harriet Miers, ended up haunting his own presidency in deservedly mocking fashion.
Is that really your comeback? To shift the direction of my critique of your comment away from you?
Listen, you're the one who argues Bush was an abject failure. PM is your friend here. I don't agree with either of you. Bush may have not had a stellar presidency, but compared to Obama, he's a Lincoln.
Nor do I think Bush is soley responsible for the Iraq campaign, there's plenty of blame to go around Congress there, including many democrats, who seem to have developed amnesia about their roles.
No, I don't. Nor do I think he was incompetent, certainly not compared to this current administration, and as for his foriegn policy stances, I agree more with them then I do the apologist in the White House.
Hackishness in evidence again, but history will be the judge with time as to the quality of the Bush presidency, that is if historians in the future can manage to break away from their ideological biases.
Nor do I think Bush is soley responsible for the Iraq campaign, there's plenty of blame to go around Congress there, including many democrats
In what way did Bush ever not get precisely what he wanted for Iraq or Afghanistan from Congress?
In what way did Congress ever protest or even seriously consider not funding his or the military requests? This was a consensus war, bucko.
It's not all his fault because they should have not allowed the Commander in Chief leeway to run the war as he and the Joint Chiefs saw fit?
Okay, I'm good with that as long as we can blame the fiasco of Afganistan on your guy. All of it, including the lack of willingness to protect and stand up for our men that has led to their murders.
If we're going to judge these two presidents by their foreign policy wars of Iraq and Afganistan, I'd say Bush comes out 10 lengths ahead on that race.
You've got to be kidding me. I don't even think the Bush sycophants go this far. Really, MsIt? Really?
You and Greg deserve each other.
Yes, some Democrats voted for the war and they should be held accountable for their votes. (And as Kerry found out in 2004, when push comes to shove, they usually are.) But most of the Democrats who supported the war, like Kerry and Clinton, didn't promote the campaign to start the Iraq war, or interpret the intelligence that justified the war, or develop a strategy to win the war, or run the war. Bush did all that. It was his job as Commander-in-Chief.
So don't even try to foist some sort of rough equivalence on the two roles. The Democrats' role was passive and pretty much left to that of authorizing the war. Once that moment was past, all the Democrats had left in their arsenal was cutting off funding, which most people agree was not a serious option. Bush's role was day-to-day and as close to absolute as we get in our democratic society.
Yes, really, compared to Obama, Bush looks very good. I know your position on this, I don't agree with it.
I don't support a Jeb Bush candidacy but that doesn't mean I think GW was the president from hell.
And you are whack on this topic.
It was, but he had solid congressional support, including from democrats.
Yes, just like Obama's in Afganistan. By the way, whatever else you might think, Bush did leave his presidency with the Iraq war in better shape (with respect to American interests) than Obama will leave Afganistan.
I don't care that you disagree with my position. I love disagreement. I live for it. What bothers me is that, like Greg, you can't support your opinion. Your argument here -- to the extent you even have one -- is completely without merit. Someone could perhaps make a decent case for what you want to make (although I doubt it), but you can't.
I don't care about Jeb Bush right now. I want to know how any idiot who was sentient over the last decade still thinks George W. Bush's presidency could look like Lincoln's presidency in any comparison.
Yes, on day one, Bush had all the official support (including from some Democrats) he needed to go to war. No one really disputes that.
But the war lasted the rest of Bush's presidency, and the Democrats didn't have a say in how it was run. Even skeptical Republicans in Congress didn't have a say in how it was run. That the war was authorized by Congress doesn't absolve the president of his responsibility in running it nor does it mean he shares equal billing with those who voted for it. When judging the leadership qualities of a president, especially in war, you don't just look at day one. You look at how well a president was able to set goals and meet them, especially when you consider how little interference he has from others to do what he believes needs to be done.
No, he did not. And the fact you think so just shows how ignorant you are of the entire War on Terror. You're still lost in the headlines somewhere. I think you're seeing "Surge" and leaving it at that. Bush was in Iraq for six years -- a period nearly twice as long as the period we spent fighting Imperial Japan and Nazi Germany. Everything positive he got done there was taken care of in the first six to twelve months. Everything else was a waste -- a waste of good men, a waste of money, and a waste of time.
Are you really this fucking stupid that you still don't know that?
Well, then make an intelligent case. Comparing Bush to Lincoln, and equating the roles Bush had in running the war to some Democrats' roles in authorizing the war, is stupid mindless hackery.
I agree with the Ms. I don't think she was saying that Bush was Lincoln; merely that Bush is that much better than Obama.
I'm no fan of Bush at all. And I disagreed with his vision for America. But I'd take his over Obama's.
I wasn't going to say anything more about this, but I don't want an inaccurate description of my back-and-forth with MsIt to stand. I read what she wrote, and I think I responded appropriately:
It doesn't matter how you compare him, Bush is still no Lincoln. Pick any president you like: Buchanan, Hoover, Nixon, Carter, etc. Bush might look a little better than some, or even all, of those presidents, but he still doesn't look like Lincoln.
What makes MsIt's description the stupidest partisan hackery, though, is that she primarily bases her claim on foreign policy (response to 9/11, the Iraq War), which is one area where Obama has closely tracked Bush's record. The extravagant claims of the neocons aside, the two presidents look very similar, and where they aren't similar, Bush has no advantage.
Obama is not doing anything about Iran? True, but then neither did Bush in his final two years.
Obama got bin Laden. Bush did not.
Obama got Gaddafi in a war I did not support. Bush normalized relations with Gaddafi in a move I did not support. From the conservative position, though, which of the two is worse?
Obama has continued the mindless process of radicalizing the Middle East so we can kick out leaders we don't like and replace them with leaders who are potentially even worse. How is Egypt looking? Does anyone still really think Libya is going to look better? Or Syria, if we knock off Assad? Everyone's favorite Republican says Iraq is "unraveling.". He blames Obama. I blame men like him and Bush for their pie-in-the-sky, no-sacrifice-is-too-great (unless it's higher taxes) game of Risk they decided to play in the Middle East. Bush started that game, and Obama has faithfully continued it to a large degree. But where he hasn't, he has almost always improved on Bush's record.
Obama is trying to get our troops out of the Middle East. Every right-thinking American ought to pray he succeeds. Read this Mark Steyn column and ask yourself what the fuck are we still doing in Afghanistan? Why would anyone criticize Obama for trying to get our troops out of there?
Contrary to MsIt's bold assertion, Bush didn't respond well to 9/11. He was not a good war leader. He took the good will of most Americans that he was given on that day, and he wasted it by formulating a failed strategy for the War on Terror and running it into the ground. I don't blame Bush for not having the foresight that his strategy would fail, but I do blame him for not adapting once it became clear it was the wrong approach.
Obama is not doing anything about Iran? True, but then neither did Bush in his final two years.
The current sanctions have a hell of a lot more teeth in them than anything from the Bush era, and are seriously hurting their economy. Power's shifted from the nutjob Ahmadinejad to the religious leaders, who're now calling nuclear weapons "unislamic". Still a danger certainly, but short of a first-strike what do you suggest?
The "not doing anything" is a bunch of loose talk from McCainalikes & Liebermen who think we ought to just attack Iran. Them and people like them see a pre-emptive strike as the hammer for every nail in that part of the world. Iran, Syria, whatever, let's start another war where we're the clear aggressor based on our fears about what they might have or do a couple years from now. Worked so well before. A thought process that's both disturbing and destabilizing, and I'm glad they don't have the tiller. I don't want to attack another country in the middle east unless/until we actually have to in order to block a specific threat. That time may come with Iran, but in the meantime I'd be overjoyed to find a diplomatic resolution or even buy them off somehow on the nuclear issue.
Far as the Arab Spring events, this may surprise you but we don't control Arab uprisings. And the dictators we'd supported haven't really done very well at making us safer, but have certainly contributed to the popular unrest and sense of powerlessness that leads people toward terrorism.
I want the people in those countries to gain more democratic representation, even if it opposes us, in order to break the logjam in that part of the country. Democracy and having their voices heard has an inherent calming effect, longer term, and will help stabilize the region. Also, a representative government that opposes us can be dealt with on a nation-to-nation basis. It can be fought diplomatically via the international community. It can be bought off. It can be befriended. It can be attacked. All of the above helps get us away from playing anti-terrorist whackamole.
Iraq, Afghanistan, and all these other countries were never going to fulfill neocon hopes & dreams of a democratized middle east. I think the best outcome we can get is a reshuffling of the deck, some representation rooted in popular support (even if it opposes our interests), and continuing internal strife within the muslim world.
You're just babbling. You want to say something positive about Obama and something negative about Bush on their Iran policies, but you don't know how to go about it. So you puff out your chest and try to bluff you way through.
Obama's current tough sanctions on Iran did not come until he was more than two years into his presidency. They were an admission that his previous two years of diplomacy towards Iran had failed. These sanctions will not stop Iran's nuclear program. So the choices are: allow Iran to have nukes or initiate some sort of military action. Thus sanctions are either a prelude to military action or they are worthless posturing.
Obama's current position is that if the sanctions don't work, he will order military action. That's a very Bush-like position (pre-2006) for the president to lay out there. But I think Obama is talking tough to forestall Israeli military action until after the presidential election when he won't need the Jewish vote and the high price of oil isn't so politically dangerous to his campaign.
We may soon find out because it appears the Israelis don't trust Obama and aren't willing to give him the benefit of the doubt. Netanyahu gave an extremely powerful speech at AIPAC last night, and while it was superficially polite to the president, he made clear he doesn't trust the man to do what's right for Israel.
There's no contradiction in saying that McCain and Obama can both be wrong. McCain can be a jingoist and Obama a dupe (or worse). But that's not my argument. I'm saying that as far as Middle East policy is concerned, Obama is essentially Bush. He shows the same aggressive idealism towards the region. Bush talked tough about Iran ("axis of evil"), but didn't do much about it because he was bogged down babysitting Iraq.
Yes, Obama has modified some of Bush's policies, but the War on Terror is still being vigorously prosecuted under his regime in the name of the same ideals. In fact, I've been amazed at how bloodthirsty Obama has come across in some his speeches. He very well may have it in him to bomb Iran.
Surprise me? You're the idiot who was overjoyed by the Arab Spring, as if it augured some positive development for the United States. You're the one who wanted us knew-deep in encouraging these uprisings. I now see we are on the same side of the Syria uprising as al Qaeda.
You do a wonderful impersonation of Bush. He couldn't have said it better himself. Do you, too, have us on the fifty-year plan? I would think you'd have to, Our earliest democratic experiments in the Middle East, which began nearly a decade ago, have still not yielded any fruit in calming and stabilizing the region. Weaver's doing much better with his gold investment than you are with this investment in peace and stability.
I want the people in those countries to gain more democratic representation, even if it opposes us, in order to break the logjam in that part of the country. Democracy and having their voices heard has an inherent calming effect, longer term, and will help stabilize the region.
Seriously? You are serious about this claim?
This is like claiming that the world is too interconnected by trade links to ever go to war. That turned out not to be the case in 1914, 1939, and, oh, every other time it has been claimed.
The Arab countries have enormous, bulging population pyramids; they are teeming with young, single men. Adding political sparks to this population of dry timber is not a plan for stabilization.