It seems that the worst approbation the Liberals can confer on a nominal Conservative is that he is too much like George W. Bush.
This is common campaign rhetoric, as the common theme of the "Outs" is always to describe how execrable was the administration of the "Ins".
Currently the Liberals are "Out", and their theme is to "Throw The Rascals Out". We've seen this through the decades, and it is not necessarily a bad idea.
The problem is that their identification of the Rascals is not necessarily universally agreed.
For example, witness the current imbroglio over the Mortgage Industry Bailout. Never mind the details, the documentation shows that the Liberals were very happy with the Sub-Prime Mortgage (aka: The Consumer Rehabilitation Act of 1977), conceived and executed in the primacy of the Carter Democrats, and exacerbated by re-interpretation by the Clinton Democrats. The recent Republican calls for Regulation (including by the Bush Administration) are conveniently ignored by the Liberals.
It's all W's fault. That's what we here, because GW Bush was notionally in charge, disregarding the dominance of the Democratic Congress in the critical era.
W - The Early Years
The fact is, from the moment he was first elected in 2000, Bush II made a conscious effort to be Everybody's President.
You may recall that when the Clinton Administration vacated office, there were sufficient news stories to lend credence to the facts that:
- Members of the outgoing Clinton Administration stole silverware, and other trinkets, from Air Force One.
- Members of the outgoing Clinton Administration stole other trinkets from the White House; painted grafiti on the walls; stole "W" keys from the computer keyboards; and generally acted like a pack of Vandals during their exodus from the seat of power.
- News sources reported that the Clintons left the White House in possession of Objects (Crystal table-ware, furniture, etc.) which had been given as Gifts to the President of the United States; but which had been treated as Personal Property by Bill and Hillary Clinton when they evacuated the premises.
This forgiveness is not the mark of an Imperial Bush. Rather, it is the actions of a newly elected President who went to extreme lengths to provided the smoothest, least comdemnatory approach to the transfer of power.
W and 911
When the Terrorist attacks demolished the Twin Towers in New York, the Pentagon, and a fourth airplane (assumed to be targeting Federal Buildings ... either the White House or Congress in Washington, D.C.) was crashed into the wilds of Pennsylvania, George W. Bush was widely criticized for his immediate actions.
First, he was notified of the terrorist acts while visiting a child care facility outside of the immediate D.C. area. Rather than react immediately, W continued with the story reading in which he was currently involved, and then left earlier than was scheduled. Then he boarded an airplane, which was routed to "an undisclosed location" where it loitered until it was clear that no further attacks were likely to occur. He then landed, and was eventually returned to D.C. to regain control of the government (which had never left his hands ... Air Force One is designated as the President's appropriate station during times of National Emergency, in order to insure continuance of the Chain of Command.)
The Main Stream Media decided, and reported, that Bush's refusal to leave his current location was indicative of indecisiveness. The implication is that he didn't know what to do, so he did nothing. The truth is that he was already in an 'undisclosed location" and was probably less likely to become a target ... which would have threatened the National Chain of Command during what could only be considered a attack on the National Infrastructure. Also, by remaining where he was, he provided an atmosphere of safety to the small group of children who would have been upset by a disruptive unscheduled early departure.
That he remained 'safely' in the air for several hours after his gentle departure has been described as cowardly by the Liberal MSM. In fact, this is where The President of the United States should properly be positioned ... in the most difficult possible to target location. (Vice President Cheney as also in "an undisclosed location", similarly described by the MSM as "hiding out". Where, pray, should the National Leadership be during those terrify hours of attack by unidentified aggressors? In Ground Zero? That would only have served to reward a follow-up attack by the self-described enemies of America.
War in Afghanistan and Iraq
When President Bush sent troops into Afghanistan, it was generally assumed that he was seeking the Author of 911, Osama Bin Laden. Support was high, as the world had long been outraged by the excesses of The Taliban usurpers of that country's national policy.
When Bush sent troops to Iraq to depose the despotic Saddam Hussein, most Americans (myself among them) were reluctant to support this new aggressive national military policy. American leadership had historically not enjoyed the support of the average American in wars of aggression, and this was seen as such.
True, Saddam had been a terroristic factor in the Middle East for decades, and America had supported the Iraqi attacks on a self-declared foe of America, Iran.
True, Saddam and his ruling clique had made a slaughering ground of Iraq for decades, using chemical warfare upon Iraq's own citizens. But was it any of our business to depose a foreign despot? Shouldn't that be the business of the United Nations?
The U.N. was clearly loath to take actual military steps to enforce it's own injunctions and enforce its own policies. In 2003 the United States Congress ... noting that the ruling Iraqi government had refused to actually abide by U.N. demands to demonstrably and provably disarm and discontinue terroristic attacks on its on citizens ... voted to allow the President to attack Iraq. The defined objective was regime change and the restoration of peace and prosperity to a nation which was ruled by a barbaric tyrant.
Why should we care?
The justification given was that Iraq had demonstrated that it was in possession of Weapons of Mass Destruction (they had used poison gas on Iranni troops, and Iraqi citizens); they had been instrumental in supporting Terrorism (witness documents which stated that identifed Terrorists had been welcomed by the Iraqi government, and training camps for Terrorists had been identified by the National Security Agency); and they were attempting to acquire materials used in the construction of Nuclear Weapons.
This last justification was disputed by the report of
I don't believe that Bush was entirely justified on the stated grounds for invasion, but I don't agree that "Bush Lied, People Died" as the Liberals are fond of stating. During his State of the Union Address he only mentioned what was reported to him by British Security agencies, although it may have been disingenuous of him (George W. Bush, President of the United States) not to mention that his own security advisers had supposedly reported that the charges were not currently verifiable.
Personally, I don't think George W. Bush cared whether the charges were correct or not. He had determined in his own mind that Iraq needed to be attacked by military forces of the United States of America in the most aggressive possible manner, and that was what happened.
In retrospect, I believe that was the best course available. It was undertaken not to provide relief for the Iraqi citizenry, but for the American citizenry.
Here's why I believe it was available course of action for America.
My country, America, had been attacked by what can only be defined (in International Geopolitical terms) as a "Non-Governmental Organization" (NGO). You may recognize that term as being very popular in the United Nations.
That translates into "We know who attacked us, and they are not representative of an easily identified National Government".
Back up for a minute.
In 1941, we were attacked by Japan. We counter-attacked Japan.
Also, our allies (Britain, France, et al) were attacked by German and Italy. We attacked Germany and Italy.
We won World War II by defeating Germany, Italy and Japan.
But this new war had no readily identified National Government to hold responsible for attacks on us or our allies (England, Spain) and so we could not declare war on a Nation.
Instead, George W. Bush sought out the most despicable of National Regimes which supported Terrorists (no matter how tenuous the connection) and attacked that Regime. That included both Afghanistan ... which provided sanctuary to The Taliban and Osama Bin Laden's "Organization", and Iraq .. which may or may not have provided support to Al Queda ("The Base"), but could arguably be said to have been doing so. (Captured documents confirm this supposition, although they are controversial.)
By doing so, Bush provided a battleground against the Islamic Fundamentalists who were the authors of the Attack on America.
And the Islamic Fundamentalists who were the source of the 19 Terrorists who destroyed the Twin Towers, demolished portions of The Pentagon, and unsuccessfully hijacked Flight 93 -- were drawn to a new battlefield which was NOT located in the Continental United States Of America.
The new battlefield was not populated by innocent American civilians; it was populated by armed and armored military personnel. (Albeit insufficiently armored ... you go to war with the materials you have available, and an army always trains for the "Last War", not the "Next War".)
Yesterday I saw a Subaru (which is the Beige Volvo for 21st Century Liberals) here in Corvallis, with a bumper sticker which read:
Bush Is A Moron
And You Know It!
That made me wonder whether the Subaru owner actually thought before he paid good money for a bumper sticker which demonstrated his own ignorance.
By moving terrorist and military engagements from America to Iraq, George W. Bush kept random terrorist strikes OUT of America, and encouraged the terrorists to strike 'elsewhere'.
In the Vice Presidential Debate with John Edwards on October 5, 2004, Vice President Cheney said of Bush's moving the War on terrorism to Iraq:
"We need to battle them overseas so we don't have to battle them here at home."
Yes, the war in Iraq was started "ad hoc" and has continued on a similar basis. The Iraq war has encouraged potential participants to re-examine their roles. Many prior enemies of "The American Occupation" have decided that Al Queda in Iraq is their true enemy, and have begun to fight against Al Queda and the associated (often Irani funded and sponsored) terrorists.
The Iraqi aggressors have become allies, and Al Queda in Iraq has been on the run for several months.
In the meantime, the few planned attacks against the Heartland of America have been stopped before the actual occurrence of the attack, which means that American citizens have not been killed.
It seems to me that The American President has been successful in his primary duty, which is to secure and protect Americans against enemies Foreign and Domestic.
In the meantime:
President Bush has made several attempts to provide leadership to both the Conservative and the Liberal bases in America.
When an Education Bill was proposed, President Bush (against the wishes of his Conservative supporters) signed a bill which included the largest increase in federal funding in the history of America. It provided more money toward the Education effort than had been proposed by Democrats.
Democratic Senator Ted Kennedy denigrated the Bush increases in funding, on the basis that HIS bill would have increased Educational funding 'more'.
When the Assault Weapons Ban reached its Sunset Date, President Bush declared that he would NOT veto a bill which made the temporary law permanent even though it has been proven that the law provided no decrease in Gun Crimes. In the actual event, Congress voted NOT to make the law permanent.
Democratic congressmen, and the MSM, have ignored the President's good-faith determination and have instead charged Bush with having "ignored the wishes of The People".
When the question of Illegal Immigrants was brought to a vote in Congress, President Bush (ignoring the wishes of his Conservative Constituency) declared that he would support an "Amnesty Clause" for 12 million Illegal Aliens who had violated our nation's Border Control policy. John ("Just Another Bush") McCain supported that position ... but the bill was defeated by Congress.
McCain vs Bush
It seems to me that George W. Bush has been trying as hard as he could to accomodate Liberal positions on domestic policy, but the Liberals are entirely unwilling to give credit to his attempts.
John McCain has similarly been more than wiling to ignore his Conservative base in catering to the Liberal faction.
I note specifically his "Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act" of 2002 (McCain-Feingold Act). This bill .. now Law, although it is unconstitutional in view of the First Amendment ... disallows ads in favor or against individual political candidates under certain conditions. For example, as a blogger I can't say "Vote for McCain!" (or, alternatively, "Defeat Obama") within x-number of days of the Presidential Election if I have spend more than y-number of somebody else's dollars to establish the (internet) forum under which I deliver this message.
Sixty day, $200 support, if I read it right. But the numbers don't matter. The thing that matters is that McCain-Feingold could conceivably make me legally liable to restrictions on political speech if I exhorted you not to vote for Obama (or McCain) during a period near Election Day.
That is, I can say anything I want until close to Election Day, and if I have not received contributions to my blog.
I think there is sufficient reason why I would not gladly support McCain over Obama, other than that Obama is so terribly lame and divisive.
Also, I might be considered a "one-issue" voter, considering that Obama is so clearly anti-Second Amendment.
It doesn't matter, really, that McCain-Feingold might restrict my right to political speech, because I sit far below the financial support horizon. I'm not sponsored, so I can say anything I want to.
Still, the point remains that calling John McCain "Just Another Bush" is facetious, because the areas where Bush and McCain agree are those areas where both politicians are reaching out to the Liberal/Democratic policies. And here they are counter to Conservatie political positions.
If the Liberals continue to label McCain "Bush-like" in these areas, they are admitting that they don't dislike McCain because he is like Bush, but because they are anti-Bush, even when Bush (and McCain) agree with Liberal Policy.
That is , they aren't against Bush/McClain because they are too "Bush-like"; they are against Bush/McClain because they are not espoused Liberals.
It's all just politics.
Again in the words of Bugs Bunny: "What A Bunch Of Maroons!"
Corrected most spelling errors and style inconsistencies.
Added link and context to V.P. Cheney's statement regarding the Bush insistence that "... we have to battle them [the terrorists] overseas so we don't have to battle them here at home." Go back to the original quote, and read the whole transcript of the debate.
Also, I corrected the error in naming Charlie instead of Joe Wilson as a Liberal Fink. (Sorry about that, Charlie.)
Background: Joe Wilson had been sent to investigate the 'rumor' that Iraq had attempted to buy "Yellowcake', a Uranium Ore which could be "... used for making fuel for nuclear power plants and for making nuclear weapons".
Joe Wilson visited Niger and took at face value the assertions of various local coffee-klatch partners that the very idea was preposterous. He returned to America after an extended paid vacation and publically announced that Bush was a liar. And he then wrote a book to expand on the theme.
Recent developments suggest that Joe Wilson was wrong, and George W. Bush was right.