Some wisdom on Bush

One of the rules I have when I do my analysis of a person is what I call the “barbecue” test. In it, I try to determine whether or not I would invite someone to my house to share a meal with, have a drink or two, share good honest conversation. Val’s ManCamp is an embodiment of this. There are people who I would not invite to my house to clean my cat litter box, let alone my grill. President Bush is not one of those. I like him. Always did. I always thought he was a decent guy, who had lived a full life, full of victories and defeats and mistakes. And, he had received that most elusive gift of all: redemption.
I’ve been the first to criticize our current President when I thought he was not being true to the principles Ronald Reagan instilled in the Republican party. I think he is a good man, in a dirty business, led astray by his innate sense of decency. His decency and character are the prime reasons for the so-called “new tone” he wanted to bring to Washington. It was a dismal failure.

The Treatment of Bush Has Been a Disgrace: What must our enemies be thinking?
By Jeffrey Scott Shapiro
Earlier this year, 12,000 people in San Francisco signed a petition in support of a proposition on a local ballot to rename an Oceanside sewage plant after George W. Bush. The proposition is only one example of the classless disrespect many Americans have shown the president.
According to recent Gallup polls, the president’s average approval rating is below 30% — down from his 90% approval in the wake of 9/11. Mr. Bush has endured relentless attacks from the left while facing abandonment from the right.
This is the price Mr. Bush is paying for trying to work with both Democrats and Republicans. During his 2004 victory speech, the president reached out to voters who supported his opponent, John Kerry, and said, “Today, I want to speak to every person who voted for my opponent. To make this nation stronger and better, I will need your support, and I will work to earn it. I will do all I can do to deserve your trust.”
Those bipartisan efforts have been met with crushing resistance from both political parties.

The president’s original Supreme Court choice of Harriet Miers alarmed Republicans, while his final nomination of Samuel Alito angered Democrats. His solutions to reform the immigration system alienated traditional conservatives, while his refusal to retreat in Iraq has enraged liberals who have unrealistic expectations about the challenges we face there.
It seems that no matter what Mr. Bush does, he is blamed for everything. He remains despised by the left while continuously disappointing the right.
Yet it should seem obvious that many of our country’s current problems either existed long before Mr. Bush ever came to office, or are beyond his control. Perhaps if Americans stopped being so divisive, and congressional leaders came together to work with the president on some of these problems, he would actually have had a fighting chance of solving them.
Like the president said in his 2004 victory speech, “We have one country, one Constitution and one future that binds us. And when we come together and work together, there is no limit to the greatness of America.”
In Opinion Journal Today
To be sure, Mr. Bush is not completely alone. His low approval ratings put him in the good company of former Democratic President Harry S. Truman, whose own approval rating sank to 22% shortly before he left office. Despite Mr. Truman’s low numbers, a 2005 Wall Street Journal poll found that he was ranked the seventh most popular president in history.
Just as Americans have gained perspective on how challenging Truman’s presidency was in the wake of World War II, our country will recognize the hardship President Bush faced these past eight years — and how extraordinary it was that he accomplished what he did in the wake of the September 11 attacks.
The treatment President Bush has received from this country is nothing less than a disgrace. The attacks launched against him have been cruel and slanderous, proving to the world what little character and resolve we have. The president is not to blame for all these problems. He never lost faith in America or her people, and has tried his hardest to continue leading our nation during a very difficult time.
Our failure to stand by the one person who continued to stand by us has not gone unnoticed by our enemies. It has shown to the world how disloyal we can be when our president needed loyalty — a shameful display of arrogance and weakness that will haunt this nation long after Mr. Bush has left the White House.
Mr. Shapiro is an investigative reporter and lawyer who previously interned with John F. Kerry’s legal team during the presidential election in 2004.

13 thoughts on “Some wisdom on Bush”

  1. Finally, someone stands up for Bush. I believe W’s presidency will one day be viewed similar to the way we view Truman’s today.
    This article is exhibit A for why we must not resort to disgusting attack tactics toward Obama that many on the left have thrown at Bush.

  2. Robert, you missed the point of the article: YOU CAN’T BE BUDDIES WITH THESE MFs. They don’t respect us because we appear weak to them, that’s why they attack us like they do.

  3. Bush has been AWOL from the conservative leadership stage and he is mostly to blame for this election result. He never pushed conservative principles, if he had them, and perhaps distracted by Iraq, he failed to take the Congressional liberals to the woodshed when he had the chance. He folded. He’s a very decent and principled human being, but he should’ve learned something from history — you don’t play pattycake with liberals who are out to eat you alive. He turned his back on his own base, even here in his hometown state. He did nothing on immigration, he didn’t push the energy problems hard enough to a solution, and he shoved the bailout down our throats. His PR machine is rusty and outdated, and he just allowed the weeds to grow and the media and the country to blame him for everything he was and wasn’t responsible for.

  4. This reminds me of that joke of why honesty, intelligence and being a politician can only exist two at a time.
    I think W was the first two and the lack of the third worked against him. However I do think once history passes and people can see W as a human being out of the presidency, they’ll realize what a decent human being he is.
    I also believe he was tagged guilty by association for having Cheney as his vp. People really really hate Cheney – more so than they hate W.

  5. Obviously, I like Mr. Shapiro’s words. And I also wish our side would be doctrinaire and forget about being nice to the other side.
    However, we are a nation of whiners; I agree with Gramm. What he did wrong, we scolded the president for. But what a blizzard of hatred he had to work under. I wonder if those who are so discontented with the president have ever considered what it would be like to try to do a good job under those conditions. I applaud President Bush’s aplomb.
    Incidentally, for eight years I have listened as he was referred to as Mr. Bush. I wonder how many people will call him Mr. Obama, or Obama. And I wonder how long they will last in their jobs if they do so. Get ready for four years of “President Obama…”

  6. I’m not sure I understand the crux of this article.
    We should be ashamed because we disagreed with our leadership?
    Seriously, the hypocrisy is astounding…

  7. No Alfonso not because of disagreements. The shame comes in the lack of respect shown to the man and shown to the position.
    Disagreements are good; personal attacks are not.
    I’m sure your sarcasm aside, you are quite intelligent to figure this out on your own, but I figured I’d let you know just in case.

  8. No Alfonso, we should be ashamed we didn’t put little twerps like you in your place when we had the chance.

  9. As much as I disagreed with Bush, I agree with this article wholeheartedly. Anyone that can run the most free country in the world is in itself a respected person in my book. It’s one thing to disagree with him on his issues, but another to have lack of respect for him. I believe the rising of Al-Qaeda came from the lack of attention President Clinton gave to them, and by the time Bush came it was really too late. I believe Obama will have that lack of attention as Clinton did.

  10. Ventanita, I understand your point. Respect should be shown for the President of the United States.
    I was likely thrown off by charges of ‘disloyalty’ in the article and the suggestion that ‘we should have been loyal.’ But, that said, I completely agree with you.
    When a leader becomes unfavorable, be it Bush or perhaps Obama in the future, criticism will be leveled and it will be ugly. Encouraging disrespect rather than intelligent discourse benefits no one.
    As for George, you’re absolutely hopeless; you sound like a dictator.

  11. Robert, he was weak and ineffectual because he wanted to be friends with the Dems. Period, end of story.
    Alfonso, I may be a dictator, but you’re a dick.

  12. Those of you who voted Republican in the last three elections… please do some REAL good, and do 100 hours of community service. That will help reverse some of the last 8 years of disasters.
    — Al

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