Friday Bush Retrospective

Shaun Mullen takes on “the depressing task of comparing Bush’s words to his deeds.”

With an approval rating of 24%, and a disapproval rating of 76%, Pres. Bush is leaving office the most disliked president going back 56 years, to the end of the Truman presidency.

Some people are just in denial.

Glenn Greenwald sees a bright side to the Bush legacy: It can now be embraced by world leaders as a model of how not to behave.

John Hinderaker suggests that Barack Obama would be well-advised to take elocution lessons from Pres. Bush. (Yes, of course, he’s serious. This is Hinderaker we’re talking about.)

John Amato has living proof of George W. Bush’s speech-making skills.

Pres. Bush himself told CNN’s Alexandra Mooney that he “regret[s] saying some things [he] shouldn’t have said,” and that Laura “reminded” him that “as president of the United States, you better be careful what you say.”

On the other hand, quite a few things that should have been said much more often than they were — and acted upon — in Congress and by newspaper editorial boards and media pundits and Supreme Court justices, very much still bear repeating.

Suffice it to say, President-elect Obama has a lot of mess to clean up.

2 Responses to “Friday Bush Retrospective”

  1. Dean Esmay says:

    What is it I’m supposed to be in denial about exactly? I don’t deny that the President is disliked, and I don’t deny that he’s been the subject of some of the most vicious and hateful rhetoric in Presidential history. So by linking me as “in denial,” I have to ask, what is it that I’m denying? Since I don’t deny that he’s unpopular at the moment, what else would I be denying to note the vicious nastiness in how he was treated from the moment he stepped into office? Good grief.

    Although it is rather ironic that when you bring up the approval ratings, you mention Truman, since he also left office with incredibly low approval ratings. Guess what? Harry’s remembered as one of the 20th Century’s greatest Presidents, and is a beloved figure both in his own party and the opposition party. So who’s in denial about what here? Methinks you may be in denial about the vicious nasty irrationality of many of his critics–and might you just be one of the vicious nasty irrational ones yourself? I suppose time will tell. Still, take a good hard look in the mirror and consider the matter, I encourage you.

    Pax.

  2. Kathy says:

    Dean,

    Re your first paragraph: That’s such a disingenuous question, I’m surprised even you would pretend you don’t know what I am saying you are in denial about — whether you agree or not.

    Re your 2nd paragraph: The chart at Politico does go back as far as Truman, that is absolutely true. Which is why I mentioned that Bush will be leaving office the most unpopular president in 56 years, which is when the Truman presidency ended.

    I’ve certainly read the assertions that the Truman presidency is much more favorably regarded now than it was in 1952, but the places I’ve read those assertions are all either right-wing bloggers or media pundits. I haven’t seen any actual factual support, outside of right-wing sources (or inside right-wing sources for that matter) for the argument that Truman was “one of the 20th century’s greatest presidents.”

    I think it’s fair to say that Truman’s image improved over the years and is better now than it was when he left office, but that’s not saying much that’s positive for George W. Bush. It’s certainly possible, as I read one place today that I can’t now remember, that decades from now Bush will be viewed as merely incompetent, rather than as a lying, manipulative, amoral war criminal who shredded the Constitution and moved the U.S. closer to being like our enemies in terms of human rights as opposed to influencing other countries to move closer to being like the U.S. was before Bush. But that’s not saying much, is it?

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