Bush in Rehab

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  1. Jonathan G says:

    Wait– what?! “Bush seems so placid, so serene, so well-rested”? The way he ended his presidency so meekly and faded so quickly off into the sunset, and with what I see when I look in his eyes, the word that I would use to describe him is broken. He carries himself with the air of a man who’s humble because everything he believed in so passionately fell apart so completely. The Freudian gold-mine that are his paintings (as leaked to the public) bear this out.

    I am certainly no fan of the man, but I have to give him proper respect for quashing the neo-con drive within his administration to attack Iran. From all the accounts I’ve read, a picture emerges of a man who realized the failure of his ideologies and had the gumption, in the waning days of his Presidency, to flatly block the war plans so he wouldn’t be responsible for another, ever-more-epic fail. For willingness to recognize failure and change course, respect.

    P.S. “The Surge” did not work. Iraq was an ethnically-integrated society, and the roiling violence was the result of fighting between ethnic and religious factions. By the time of the Surge, that sectarian conflict had mostly ended because the physical segregation of the factions was mostly complete. But it was very convenient to spin the finale of the disaster as a success.

  2. PursuitAce says:

    When, oh when will the ideologues of the world wake up some day, look in the mirror, and say I am the problem. The rest of us are waiting, but less and less patiently.

  3. wellokaythen says:

    I’m very superstitious when it comes to saying that someone was the “worst ever” at something. It feels like tempting fate. If Bush 43 really was the worst president ever, then it’s a good thing to continue that fact as long as possible. My larger fear is that no matter how bad you think a President was, there’s always a chance of a worse one in the future.

    Realistically, there is no such thing as “History” in the sense that “History will judge him as ____.” For the next few generations, the main interpretation of his presidency will probably change over time. The general rule has been that 30 years later a lot of the secret materials are made public. Look for a major re-evaluation starting in 2031.

    I hope for all our sakes that the people in the White House after him don’t make him look great by comparison.

    Already in terms of foreign policy, I’m having a hard time seeing a huge difference between him and his successor. Maybe later revelations will change that, I don’t know. Americans have a way of exaggerating the contrast between presidents, especially Presidents from different parties.

  4. wellokaythen says:

    When Eisenhower left office, the main interpretation of his presidency was that he was sort of a well-meaning bungler who spent the whole time playing golf and didn’t do anything. Now, especially compared to later presidents, he looks like a very wise, solid leader who avoided a lot of horrible mistakes and why can’t we have more people like him? In 1961 he was ranked towards the bottom of all presidents in terms of importance. Over the last 50 years he’s climbed into the top ten. I doubt Bush 43 will get that same revision, but stranger things have happened.

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