Agree or disagree with all or any part of his policies…
One thing is clear, and unforgivable…
George W (and likewise Cheney) does not deserve the irrational and pathetic hatred a vast portion of the American Population has for him. The only thing he seems to be able to respond back with, is love for them. He is certainly a bigger man than I am.
I suppose it is no more illogical than the exuberant irrational worship his half kenyan successor is receiving…
George W knew record high popularity too, when he had not done that much yet to deserve it, and when the soft and wrongheaded policies of the 90s (Clinton) bore fruit with Sept 11. He swore that day to keep his people safe. He did, for the next 7 years.
And if all a leader has to do is fail to prevent an attack to be extremely popular, and all he has to do is prevent all attacks to be extremely unpopular, then I say that popularity is no good measure at all (at least not a positive one), and Bush can be proud of what he’s done.
If Bin Laden was still bombing us every month, we would be amending the constitution to give Bush a third term.
People forget, and woe how quickly. They forget the almost unanimous support (including from Democrats like Hillary) for the Iraq invasion. They forget Powell (who is less but almost as worshipped as Obama with SLIGHTLY more reason) making the case at the UN for invasion. They forget the praise for Rumsefeld, Tommy Franks and Bush for the very different, creative and initially successful invasions in Afghanistan and Iraq.
Once it got a little tough, as war will tend to do, quickly were all the “supporters”, prophets of yesterday. With the wisdom of hardships already befallen, they predicted doom and gloom of tomorrow. “Surrender” they said, and surrender quick. The choir was led by those who would rather see their country lose a war, then see a political opponent praised. It was repeated by those who believed them and whose memory is extremely limited. With world wide condemnation, no domestic support, and increasing boldness of the enemy, even strong men cried “uncle”. As it has come out, by 2006 most of the Bush administration wanted out, and almost all of them ware against the surge. “A king stands alone” Phlip of Macedon told his son, Alexander the Great. And Bush really stood alone.
From depths in his soul, backed by the values he holds so dear because for sure nothing and no one else was backing him, he pulled one of what will be Western History’s defining moments. The Surge, against all wisdoms of the prophets of yesterday, worked well beyond expectations. The enemy, thanks to the weak public , had smelled victory close at hand, but war is hard, and at that point it became clear to the enemy that George W does not back down. America will not be defeated, and with constant losses, the enemy could take it no more and broke, not before America did, but before her President.
The president’s detractors loved to say Iraq was a Vietnam. They are not exactly right. Iraq COULD have been a Vietnam, the only war the US has ever lost, but it did not become one due to the president’s courage (and the soldier’s valor and sacrifice goes without saying ; for they are not hated like their commander in chief). All wars can be a Vietnam, all can be lost, and all can be won. Patriotic leaders find it difficult to see their country in defeat.
Saddam was found in a hole, Bin Laden and company are apparently in another. They cursed that day they decided America was weak and worth bombing. A terrorist bomb in Spain created an immediate change of government and withdrawal. Bombs in Israel are rewarded by tribute of land, money and weapons which only invite more bombs. There is a reason you cannot see Israel in a world map.
They invited a West Texas response from the 2001 White House which our enemies did not dream. From East Asia, to Africa and the whole of Europe the world is being engulfed by Islamic enemies, usually without a single bullet being fired. Then due to intimidation, the West pretends in their multiculturalism to embrace and love Islam pathetically trying to hide the fact they feel every day, the crusades are reversed today in Jihad. During this decade, America stood alone as the bastion of the West against the East, and in truth it was often Bush alone in America making that stand.
In spite of their power at the ballots across the globe, in spite of their oil, their wealth and their terror, Bush held with the true values of the West and America, he held strong against relativistic and immoral weakening sways engulfing the globe. He stood , rather than with the masses of the axis of evil, with small Israel though to abandon it would have brought much needed political breathing space. He was more pro Europe than Europeans, more pro Israel than Israelis and certainly more pro American than most Americans.
Like Roland left in the Vanguard, we let him be sacrificed to the Saracens as he blew his trumpet in warning.
Just as quickly as the people had forgotten how much they supported the Iraq invasion before it went badly, they apparently forgot that it had gone badly and completely ignored and forgot the incredible turnaround of the last year or so. Victory is so close at hand, the sacrifice of the young men honored, defeat at the hands of terrorists averted and no one could care less.
Oh, because new and improved catastrophes could the prophets of yesterday throw at our gallant president. You see, it rained quite hard in Louisiana, some real bad people even looted and killed each other. Obviously, that was Bush’s fault. I wondered however, why it was not Bush who was credited when the skies closed up and it stopped raining in New Orleans.
But I digress, because as quickly as the people forgot the rain, the war they wanted, then wanted to lose and then that was won, they listened again to the false prophets. Now it seems, they all had known the Banks were all about to collapse and a mortgage loan crisis was at hand. They had never wanted to share that prediction before, but that must be in their all knowing wisdom.
Even better, the President’s harshest detractors formed the backbone of the Subprime lending machine, creating the whole market and reason of existence for many of these loans. The “family” as they referred to the relationship between Freddie Mae, Mac and the Democratic Party was all about these unwise investments. They called them minority empowerment of course. It is obviously un-American they reasoned that poor people should not be able to get a loan to own a home simply because they cannot afford it! In 2004 and 2005 as the numbers got a little too scary, it was the White House that attempted to rein these Marxists in. An overseer was sent in. The outcry was fast and furious… not enough that he dragged us into Iraq, but now he is a racist against poor people owning homes! Political reality, did not allow Bush to go too far here. In the midst of a real estate boom it is hard to explain to what the possible consequences of this lending can be to the same people who don’t remember what they thought two weeks ago about something.
In any event, as the war went on close to victory, the sky dried over New Orleans, the Bush/America hating crowd was sent their final gift with the financial crisis. The timing could not be better for the election.
Yes, people again forgot Bush came into power in the midst of a recession and the “Dot com” Bubble bursting. This was bad enough when 9/11 hit, making the threat of a real financial meltdown a good possibility. They forget he then went on to preside over one of the great periods of economic growth in the US history. If it is somehow Bush’s fault that people’s homes are worth 25% less today than at the 2006 peak, I contend that it is his fault that they are worth 200 to 300% more than what they were when he came into office. The recession together with 9/11, along with increasing competition from abroad, rising oil and commodity prices, rising social costs in the budget and many other factors were a true challenge for America in 2001. It was Bush’s enduring optimism, his inability to allow defeatism to take hold, his belief in the American free market, the American worker and entrepreneur that carried the day then and moved America forward. Lowering business barriers and taxes, encouraging liquidity and investment, the near financial catastrophe at the end became no more than mild recession. At the end of his presidency, with this financial crisis, he reacted no differently. While the doom and gloomers yelled that the ship is sinking, Bush as usual faced the challenge head on, and assured the American people that they will overcome these hard times. Neither the constitution should be burned nor the Communist manifesto adopted because some banks collapsed. The US will prevail.
And that is his true quality and characteristic. He is no great speaker, he does not play bball, or the saxophone. He does no t like Hip hop or cocaine, you may not find him in sleezy affairs in the oval office or even taking a drink due to how seriously he takes his sacred office, but he is a patriot like there have been few. You cannot hear him speak 5 minutes without hearing “will not falter, will not fail, we will prevail, we will win, we will overcome… Victory”.
“yes we can” has been in office for 8 years.. the real “yes we can” Bush believes in his country and the American people in ways that I actually find hard to share. Unlike the new first lady who admitted that she had NEVER in her adult life been proud of her country until it decided to elect her husband president, George W has always been proud of his country.
This talk was taken for granted by the all forgetting people. People apparently think winning is what all leaders do. But to a soldier in the Israeli army, the refreshing language of Bush was like Beethoven. Our leaders in Israel do not speak like that. They speak of “painful compromise” “sacrifices for peace” (code for giving away land), “political reality” “unreachable dreams of the past”. Conviction for them means no more than what the CNN polls say in the morning. Victory is not in their lexicon, defeat and humiliation are, they call it pragmatism or realism. It is no more than lack of courage and vision.
I am not American. I am a friend, but no more, and it is even difficult for me to have witnessed this malignant parade. Disagree with him, fine, do so knowing you probably changed your mind (since he was re-elected twice and once reached 80% plus approval ratings). That is a freedom you have due to the likes of Bush who defend it so passionately around the world. And he was not perfect of course, no one is. But it is indisputable that Bush always put country first, and tried to act solely in its benefit. It is indisputable that he is a gentleman, a true American who upholds America’s basic values of freedom, liberty and democracy, he held the high office he was given with an almost sacred determination and honor. Just as he must disagree profoundly with everything his young and arrogant successor stands for, he still has wished him nothing more than success and treated him with the highest dignity.
It was incredible to hear that the American people could not return even that simple grace which comes from nothing more than respect for the nation and its institutions, as he was booed away during the inauguration.
I for one, in a public fashion, salute George W and Cheney, who kept the West safe on their watch, who love their country and families, who stood by their real allies around the world and chased down their enemies. They did not know political expediency during their time in office, they knew nothing but loyalty; to their staff, to their country, to their allies, to each other and to their own convictions. For this valor, they were repaid by hatred from those they wished to protect. I know history will repay this White House a visit, and recast it in a much better light, and I am happy that Bush Sr, along with his wife, is alive and well to know these things and to be proud of his son.
I know there are a great many Americans who appreciate his service and leadership, but there seems to be a great many more who detest him in an incomprehensible way, and such a people simply did not deserve to be led by such a man. Perhaps this time, they voted for someone they did deserve.