Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Out of the Bush League

A little over a year ago, just a day or two before Inauguration Day, I unapologetically wrote a post entitled The Bush Legacy and an Ungrateful Nation. Even while pointing out my areas of disagreement and disappointment with the 43rd president, I maintained that he got a bum rap and that history would eventually vindicate him.

I found it amazing that within the course of six or seven years a president’s approval rating can drop from the stratospheric 90’s down to dismal 20’s. It’s not like he underwent a dramatic shift in policy (except, as I pointed out, his disappointing performance in fiscal policy, in which he allowed deficit spending to soar to levels that … seem pathetically mild compared to now.) But he otherwise stuck to his guns tenaciously (or stubbornly, depending on your point of view), despite the shifting and fickle political winds.

Anyway, no point in repeating here what I wrote a year ago. I was inspired to raise the issue again by news reports of a peculiar billboard sighting on I-35 in Wyoming, Minnesota. The picture here is courtesy of National Review Online.

It’s interesting that nobody knew initially who funded the billboard, leading some wishful thinkers on the left to wonder whether it was funded by someone of their ilk in hopes of reminding people how terrible things were under Bush. I would welcome the comparison. So how about it?

  • Are you happy with the $1.5 trillion budget deficit in 2010 and projected $1+ trillion deficits for years to come, as opposed to otherwise unacceptable annual deficits in the $200+ billion dollar range (Or the $482 billion dollar range in Bush’s last budget of 2009)?
  • Are you happy with government spending in the range of 45% of gross domestic product in the Obama years, as opposed to the otherwise unacceptable 35% rate during the Bush years?

  • Are you happy that terrorists who are again coming perilously close to successfully attacking our country are being given Miranda rights instead of being taken to Guantanamo for questioning and a military tribunal? Are you thrilled that Khalid Sheik Mohammed is going to get all the constitutional rights of a civil trial? Or maybe you are beginning to miss the alleged “torture”, “harsh interrogation methods” and “illegal detention” of enemy combatants during Bush’s war on terror (which by the way, repeatedly thwarted plans for additional attacks against the U.S.)
  • Do you miss the supposed divisiveness and polarizing effect of the Bush administration, despite his bending over backwards in dialoguing with the opposing party, often to his detriment? Or do you still prefer the way President Obama, Senate Majority Leader Reid, House Speaker Pelosi, Rahm Emmanuel and David Axelrod try to ramrod their agenda behind closed doors?
I could go on and on (I have barely scratched the surface), but let me sum it up in a simple question: How is that “hope and change” thing working out for you?

1 comment:

JD Curtis said...

I was wondering who put up that billboard myself. Bush was a faux conservative but yes, he was a small slice of Heaven compared to the Sage of Mombassa.