Miss Him Yet?!

There’s something terribly shocking taking place and I must admit a failure to anticipate it this soon: The creeping rehabilitation of George W. Bush. He was a uniquely failed president. So miserable was he, his popularity collapsed (not over anything huge, except the negligent loss of an iconic American city) less than a year into his second term. And his crushing unpopularity never relented. Quite the contrary—on January 20, 2009, minutes after his successor had been sworn in, millions of his erstwhile subjects treated the 43rd president to an iconic farewell.

As testament to our collective amnesia, many are now insisting the semi-retarded ersatz cowboy doesn’t look like such an ogre in the rearview mirror. Apparently this includes polite company like Peter Beinart, Mo Dowd, and Eugene Robinson.

Byron York had the story in the Washington Examiner a couple of days ago:

"It's time for W. to weigh in," writes the New York Times' Maureen Dowd. Bush, Dowd explains, understands that "you can't have an effective war against the terrorists if it is a war on Islam." Dowd finds it "odd" that Obama seems less sure on that matter. But to set things back on the right course, she says, "W. needs to get his bullhorn back out" -- a reference to Bush's famous "the people who knocked these buildings down will hear all of us soon!" speech at Ground Zero on September 14, 2001.

Washington Post columnist Eugene Robinson is also looking for an assist from Bush. "I…would love to hear from former President Bush on this issue," Robinson wrote Tuesday in a Post chat session. "He held Ramadan iftar dinners in the White House as part of a much broader effort to show that our fight against the al-Qaeda murderers who attacked us on 9/11 was not a crusade against Islam. He was absolutely right on this point, and it would be helpful to hear his views."

And Peter Beinart, a former editor of the New Republic, is also feeling some nostalgia for the former president. "Words I never thought I'd write: I pine for George W. Bush," Beinart wrote Tuesday in The Daily Beast. "Whatever his flaws, the man respected religion, all religion." Beinart longs for the days when Bush "used to say that the 'war on terror' was a struggle on behalf of Muslims, decent folks who wanted nothing more than to live free like you and me…"

Karl Rove even relinquished his butterscotch scone long enough to chime in:

For the moment, with Obama failing to live up to expectations, Bush-bashing is over. It's all a little amusing -- and perhaps a little maddening -- for some members of the Bush circle. When I asked Karl Rove to comment, he responded that it means "redemption is always available for liberals and time causes even the most stubborn of ideologues to revisit mistaken judgments." But won't these Bush critics shortly return to criticizing Bush? "This Bush swoon by selected members of the left commentariat is temporary," Rove answered. "Their swamp fevers will return momentarily."

The conservative movement has been having a blast in the Obama era. Out of power and free of the Bush albatross, they’re content with gleefully firing away at the current failed crew. Watch Charles Krauthammer the next time he’s on television snarking Obama; at times he looks like he’s going to burst out of his clothes with smug self-satisfaction.

In terms of Bush’s performance after 9/11, the Bullhorn Speech was admittedly a brisk, brilliant moment, but the conciliatory tone Bush struck otherwise was perfunctory decency.

Beinart, Dowd and Robinson can’t be serious. An imagination as foggy and paranoiac as mine shouldn’t be necessary to envisage President Bush lending his shit-eatin’ certitude to the Cordoba Initiative opposition. (In terms of opposition to the mosque, I’m aligned with Dr. Dean; although I’ve resisted the temptation to be truly frightened by any of this.) This was a particularly nasty and desperate president who once described his opponents this way: “However they put it, the Democrat [sic] approach in Iraq comes down to this: The terrorists win and America loses.” Lincoln-esque, isn’t it? It was Bush’s tendency to become unhinged in uncertain electoral situations or in handling combustible cultural issues; like the one the 44th president stupidly meandered into here recently.

All of this is relevant to the drama surrounding the upcoming midterm elections. Apparently voters aren’t much swayed by promises to improve upon all the unprecedented legislation we’ve achieved for bankrupt financiers, insurance companies, and so forth. This is a recipe for debacle and Democrats can expect an unlikely, super-undeserved Bush recovery to persist thereafter. Rather than clinging to O’s oil-soaked coattails, a case has to be made that there’s no zero-sum calculation in assessing the current boss and the old one; that some of us Democrats are actually opposed to bailouts and corporate servitude.

Shitboy’s nascent redemption guarantees the possibility of anything despite the bleak electoral outlook of August 2010. The Recovery Summer never materialized, but a Recovery Winter next year may be in the cards... and it runs right through Des Moines.

Miss Him Yet?! Part II.

Tags: George W. Bush, Howard Dean, Barack Obama, Maureen Dowd, Byron York, Eugene Robinson, Peter Beinart, Ground Zero Mosque (all tags)

Comments

39 Comments

DNC & Bush

The DNC came out with the lamest of lame ad to day. Now, I was all for "Bush's Third Term" in '08, even used is with running the DSCC's IE website, and teh DNC adopted it. Kaine, brilliant replay that he is, decided that the DNC slogan this year would be "Move America Forward", afterall, his '05 slogan for Virginia was "Move Virginia Forward". How in the hell they think tarring Bush for '10 is going to work is beyond belief.

The Obama team has lost all touch and are wandering in the wilderness with message control. They've become mere liars.

You can't bailout the corporate class, call for the middleclass to have mandates to pump money into the corps, and think people are going to buy it. You can't rename the goal from leaving Iraq to renaming the troops as non-combat, when there are 56,000 troops ready for combat and doubling the private contractors in Iraq.

The other note, on Bush, his mouthpiece Karen Hughes came out calling out Rauf today to back down on the GZM locality; so Bush's isn't going to bailout Obama on his debacle.

I'm still puzzled as to why Obama chose to dive in on an empty pool with the GZM issue. What really was the angle?

by Jerome Armstrong 2010-08-20 09:15PM | 0 recs
Well standing up for people's Constitutional rights

in a room of full of people under fire, that's a pretty good angle if you ask me.

 

It's so funny to see people who complain he too afraid to take a stand, criticize him for taking a stand.

 

Actually no, not funny, just telling.

by DTOzone 2010-08-21 01:46AM | 0 recs
RE: Well standing up for people's Constitutional rights

If what you believe that's true, he really failed to do it correctly.

The AP consensus is that he didn't take a stand at all:

2. Here is a succinct summary of President Obama’s position:

Obama has said he believes Muslims have the right to build an Islamic center in New York as a matter of religious freedom, though he's also said he won't take a position on whether they should actually build it.

http://www.gallup.com/poll/113980/Gallup-Daily-Obama-Job-Approval.aspx

I'm sure they polled quite a bit on the issue for the week previous, but what a disaster.

Of a list of 50 things for a President to take a stand on, this local issue doesn't cut it.

by Jerome Armstrong 2010-08-21 07:05AM | 0 recs
He should take a position of whether or not they should build it
they have a right to, that's where this should end. He stood up for their right, he didn't sink into the ridiculous argument of whether or not it's "wise" to invoke that right. I would think someone like you would know that, but no one expects you to be fair. If he had said nothing, you'd bitch he was running away from standing up again. You think I was born yesterday Jerome?
by DTOzone 2010-08-21 12:10PM | 0 recs
RE: He should take a position of whether or not they should build it

Wow, you sound real pragmatic in your dogmatism, regardless of the political costs? 

I couldn't care less about the GZM, or where it is placed.

Obama screwed up, its obvious.

by Jerome Armstrong 2010-08-21 12:40PM | 0 recs
He "screwed up"

for standing up for people's rights?

Really?

go fuck yourself Jerome, nice and hard, with you faux progressive ego.

by DTOzone 2010-08-21 04:00PM | 0 recs
Obama was for the mosque before he was against it

As usual, Obama was incoherent and spineless. There is nothing remotely Presidential about the current White House occupant.

 

by BJJ Fighter 2010-08-21 06:51PM | 0 recs
RE: He "screwed up"

Yep, when the argument fails, resort to language & bizzare sexual abuse projections. You are a mightly hot.

Consider this your only warning to mind the rules around here lest you be deleted for good.

by Jerome Armstrong 2010-08-22 07:55AM | 0 recs
RE: DNC & Bush

Oh Jeez. What a f*#K up Kaine is. The DNC just pulled the ad.

by Jerome Armstrong 2010-08-21 07:17AM | 0 recs
RE: DNC & Bush

It's ridiculous, and was perfectly predictable. The Obama movement was pure personality and image-making. Now that he's governing and his shit doesn't work, they're--we're!--left literally with nothing. As far as I'm concerned, the supposed brilliance of Team Obama is political myth crafted with the help of sympathizers in the press. The Obamas are a lot like the old Bush crew: their toughness and smarts doesn't extend beyond their handling of political opponents. And by political opponents, I'm talking about brutal internecine battles, in the case of the Democrats. 

As far as the rest of that, you've given me some awesome update material, and I'll answer in an edited post!

by Jack Landsman 2010-08-21 08:22AM | 0 recs
RE: DNC & Bush

What we are seeing is a President who is clearly in over his head. When his primary opponents said he was to inexperienced to serve in the White House, they have been proven correctly. He is neither decisive nor correct in pretty much everything he does. To make matters worse as was pointed out in a recent article, he not only speaks like a College Professor lecturing to his students, the entire administration has a "we are much smarter than the rest of you , so just shut up " attitude. I have talked with more and more people who voted for him who now say they feel completely duped. He was hype and little substance. I can guarantee I wont be voting for him. If I need to vote for some 3rd party candidate I will. This guy is clueless....

by BuckeyeBlogger 2010-08-21 11:32AM | 0 recs
RE: DNC & Bush

I think we are all hoping for a 3rd party candidate that's the better alternative than this crap and the old crap-- they both stink.

by Jerome Armstrong 2010-08-21 11:57AM | 0 recs
RE: DNC & Bush

Im sick of all them. Lying, theiving frauds. They have bankrupted our country and continue to find ways to piss our money away. There is no way that Obama is getting my vote and no way any rank and file politician is getting my vote. We need someone who bascially doesnt give a crap about the politics, just wanst to do what is right. Say, Michael Bloomberg for example?

by BuckeyeBlogger 2010-08-21 02:13PM | 0 recs
What's right

meaning robbing more from the workign class and giving it to the undeserving rich? Which is pretty much what Bloomberg has and wants to do.

But, hey, at least he supports marriage equality, so that's something. I'm totally cool with a Bloomberg if he continues the isolation and political irrelevancy of the Christian Taliban.

by DTOzone 2010-08-21 04:07PM | 0 recs
RE: What's right

Hilarious that you embrace the Islamic ignorance with unfettered freedom yet shackle the Christian Taliban.

by Jerome Armstrong 2010-08-22 07:51AM | 0 recs
Well

his administration is a hell of a lot smarter than the rest of the country. That's part of why I voted for him, because I want someone to say "I'm smarter than you, so just shut up"

The American people have proven they vote against their own interests for decades. We need a college professor lecturing his students.

I'm sorry you don't like it. I'm sorry you need some lapdog who makes you feel like you know what you're talking about, but I've been reading your comments for over a year now and I can say...you're a complete moron and I'm not sure what the hell you're looking for in a politician or what you even stand for.

by DTOzone 2010-08-21 04:10PM | 0 recs
RE: Well

If they are so smart, how come they have screwed the pooch on every decision they have made? He is smarter becuase he went to Harvard? If he is so smart why hasnt he figured out that the way to stimulate the economy isnt goign to come from increasing taxes, nor from increasing the size of government. Here is a lesson he should learn. When business is bad, good companies cut costs and operate lean. What has the government done? Grown. How about we cut the government employee payroll by 10-15% to start. Than we stop spending money on all this bs stimulus garbage. Than we offer tax incentives to small business that really create jobs instead of constant giveways to the financial industry? Obama hasnt a friggin clue and he keeps proving that over and over again. He can keep blaming Bush all he wants, that ship has sailed. Fact is he doesnt know what he is doing. Jimmy Carter part II.

Obama isnt smarter than anyone I know, myself included. Just because he is smarter than you doesnt mean the rest of us need his condescending attitude. When the party gets absolute slaughtered this November, perhaps he will wake up.

by BuckeyeBlogger 2010-08-21 05:25PM | 1 recs
RE: Well

Yea, he's smart. He figured out a way to go from 75 to 40 percent approval in 18 months, something that took GWB 5 years to achieve.

by Jerome Armstrong 2010-08-22 07:52AM | 0 recs
Rove's in Des Moines tonight

doing a closed-door fundraiser for the Iowa GOP at the State Fair. They didn't want the press anywhere near him.

by desmoinesdem 2010-08-20 09:24PM | 0 recs
my two cents on this

I've seen a few Miss Me Yet? billboards driving around in Texas, and I do agree that Obama should have kept his mouth shut on what really should be a moot issue, since the mosque isn't going to be built anyway due lack of funding.

As for running against Bush, I have mixed views.  On one hand, if that's all the Dems have, that's a sign of desperation.  Tom Jensen thinks differently, saying running against Bush could persuade undecideds, though his argument ins't totally convincing.

But weren't things more interesting under Dubya?  Part of me misses him.

 

by esconded 2010-08-20 10:05PM | 0 recs
If....

The party was smart, they would support a primary candidate against Obama. You mean to tell me that there arent better candidates out there? His election in part showed how weak the GOP ticket was. had McCain not chose Palin, the result might have been diffferent.

by BuckeyeBlogger 2010-08-21 11:34AM | 0 recs
RE: If....

Its not going to happen. Dean would probably like to, but Obama has loyalists that are ready to smear anyone that tries.

More likely is that the GOP party has a spliter libertarian side in the primary, and, hopefully, that could lead to a libertarian-progressive candidate emerging in the GE. It's slim odds, but that's the best possibility.

The odds favor Obama vs Romney.

by Jerome Armstrong 2010-08-21 12:00PM | 0 recs
RE: If....

you got off your ass and ran, Jerome, I'd give 2,000 dollars to watch that show. BONUS: if you were to win, the universe would be saved.

by QTG 2010-08-21 12:14PM | 0 recs
later troll, try again

 

nrafter530 2005-11-21 2010-04-03
dtozone 2009-02-05 Logged in
nd22 2009-11-01 2010-05-27
by Jerome Armstrong 2010-08-21 12:23PM | 0 recs
RE: If....

I would say if the election were held today, Obama versus Romney, Romney wins. I think voters are going to elect someone next time who has real executive experience. I have met Romney more than once and he a pretty likeable and in fact intelligent individual. The voters went for style and hype in 2008. It wont happen in 2012. And, at the rate things are going, Obama wont have anything but a negative record to speak of.

by BuckeyeBlogger 2010-08-21 05:28PM | 1 recs
RE: If....

If you're a liberal, you lost me there with the Romney endorsement. I often have nice things to say about conservative villians, too, but I'm also honest enough to admit how superficial and intellectually-dubious my affinity for them are. Like, I have this little crush on Sarah Palin. I'd never vote for her, and I'm pretty sure she'd have the lowest IQ of any president, but I still like her nonetheless. I think it's because she's very attractive, and the treatment of her by the left alone negates all the self-righteous whining liberals have engaged in over Hillary and the Republicans' hardball treatment of Obama.

Romney, btw, has no charm or appeal. He's a disgustingly cynical pol with no discernible personality or set of convictions. He's the sort of common manipulative creep you'd find in a used car dealership. wtf?

by Jack Landsman 2010-08-21 07:01PM | 0 recs
RE: If....

I am not a liberal, I am a conservative Democrat. I have met Romney as mentioned, on two seperate occassions. The first was brief, the second was with four other folks during the opportunity to have dinner with him via a close family friend. He is no used car salesman. He is an intelligent, thoughtful gentleman.

by BuckeyeBlogger 2010-08-21 10:33PM | 0 recs
RE: If....

Then as a fellow conservative Democrat, who happens to be African-American, let me clue you in on this. The 'new' true base of the Democrat Party, (minorities, women, under-40 crowd) will never peel off from Obama in enough numbers to vote for Romney. He screams establishment, $$$$$, and comes across like "Bush 2.0" . Like many strong Republican candidates in the past, he  is a white  male that appeals strongly to other white males. Unfortunately,  that appeal will bode well for him in the primaries, but in a general election he has to move toward the center, and herein lies the problem. The Dems and the various advocate groups will make sure that everybody knows his flip-flop on Health care (as Mass. Gov , then as a candidate)  and  his  personal, on the stump interactions with minorities was a little wierd and out of touch  in 2008 . Depending on how bad it gets, I'm pretty sure with all the anti-Muslim hysteria in the U.S, a Mormon won't go over well either. As a side note, you can count on somebody bringing up the Mormons' core belief (held until at least 1977) that Black people are cursed cowards.

 

He might be a nice guy in person, but thanks to the Tea Baggers , he'll never make it out of the Primary because he 's not conservative enough. If he does, then thanks to the Mormons, becasue he'll never get away from that albatross.

by xodus1914 2010-08-25 12:11PM | 0 recs
Any Dem would have won

The party that controls the WH is guaranteed to lose during a recession. The last time they kept it was probably the 1870s. If the D nominee was a bobblehead doll it would have won.

by bay of arizona 2010-08-21 02:57PM | 0 recs
Don't bet on your "recovery winter"

I'm not sure what your thinking is in predicting the following:

The Recovery Summer never materialized, but a Recovery Winter next year may be in the cards... and it runs right through Des Moines.

President Reagan had a rough patch with the '82 midterms, but he had massive supply-side tax cuts already in the hopper. They soon ignited the economic boom of the '80's, creating prosperity and 21 million new jobs.

President Clinton---in a truly creative and gutsy move for a Democrat---had passed NAFTA prior to the disastrous '94 midterms, which helped launch the free trade boom of the 90's, aided later by his Capital Gains tax cuts. Clinton's prosperity helped create 18 million new jobs, and followed through on the Reagan economic miracle.

Obama has nothing going economically at this point; he has done nothing "bold and transformational", as originally advertised. He outsourced an $800 billion stimulus bill to the Congress.....wow, that's an innovative idea: getting Congressmen to spend money. The bill was poorly crafted, poorly implemented, and was basically just walk-around money for the appropriators. Despite Obama's periodic wailing that this has been the "greatest economic crisis since the Great Depression", his advisors routinely inform us that the stimulus funds have only been half-spent. Oh well....so much for a sense of urgency.

To your main theme, I don't think it's necessarily that people want to rehabilitate President Bush; it's just that they're sick of hearing Obama whine and blame all of his woes on his predecessor. It's time for the current White House occupant to man up and act like a real President...not the impostor that he is.

 

by BJJ Fighter 2010-08-21 07:16PM | 0 recs
RE: Don't bet on your "recovery winter"

No, Bush loyalists want to rehabilitate his reputation. That's the purpose of releasing "Decision Points" so close to the imminent Democratic massacre. They're subtly affixing George Bush to the new Republican ascendancy, and it'll work because of how simplistic and dickless the makers of conventional wisdom are.

by Jack Landsman 2010-08-21 07:42PM | 0 recs
RE: Don't bet on your "recovery winter"

absolutely wrong. It wasn't the tax cuts that engineered the upturn in the economy in the early 80's, it was that Volker stopped raising rates and instead started lowering them.

Unfortunately, we don't have that option right now, since we entered the recession with rates incredibly low already (thanks for nothing, Fed).

by jeopardy 2010-08-22 11:00PM | 0 recs
Prove it.

Wow, that's a fairly remarkable discovery you've made:

It wasn't the tax cuts that engineered the upturn in the economy in the early 80's, it was that Volker stopped raising rates and instead started lowering them.

Economists have debated the relative merits of fiscal vs. monetary policy for decades; I'm glad that you've finally arrived at the definitive answer. Since Nobel prizes are easy to come by these days, maybe you'll win this year's award for economics.

Seriously, there's really no way you (or anyone) can prove how much Reagan's tax cuts or Volker's monetary easing contributed to the economic boom of the 80's. But if Fed interest rate cuts were as powerful as you suggest, we'd be in a helluva recovery right about now.

For one thing, your history of Fed actions in the current economic recession is incorrect. Bernanke and company cut rates in three successive meetings during the Fall of 2007, by a full point to 4.25%; the recession didn't begin until Q4 of 2007. Contrary to what you suggest, there was plenty of add'l Fed easing that occurred during 2008 as the economy continued to weaken; it just didn't do any good.

What you need to understand is that monetary policy creates the conditions necessary for capital expansion to occur, but it's limited in stimulating consumer demand. And given that our economy is 70% consumption-driven, tax cuts are key to getting consumers (and small businesses) to spend. The experience of both JFK's and President Reagan's tax cuts prove that aggressive fiscal policy is necessary to generate real economic growth.

Your fairly naive statement that the 80's expansion was due entirely to Fed policy is a pretty transparent attempt to denigrate President Reagan---the greatest President in modern history. And I suspect it has something to do with the fact that your own boy-President is failing so badly. Sorry, but bashing President Reagan (or George W. Bush) is not going to take Obama from being a failure to being successful. He's got to man up and do it on his own.

 

by BJJ Fighter 2010-08-23 12:46AM | 0 recs
RE: Prove it.

Reagan cut taxes in 1981, but he massively raised taxes a few times in 1982, including one tax hike that was the largest in US history in peacetime (%of GDP). so crediting the economy getting better in 1983-1984 for that 1981 cut and ignoring the 1982 and 1983-1988 hikes makes no sense and at the very least there's no good evidence for it.

On the other hand, GDP growth tracked interest rate changes very closely in 1979-1984

by jeopardy 2010-08-23 03:18PM | 0 recs
RE: Prove it.

oh, and by the formula the Fed usually uses for determining where interest rates should be, we should be at 5 or 6 points BELOW zero right now, which we obviously can't do (although we can use less accurate things like quantitative easing, and they are to some extent)

 

by jeopardy 2010-08-23 03:21PM | 0 recs
Who can't see that a cornerstone of the GOP election strategy is to hide George W. Bush.

And well hidden he is. Obama got him out of his hole during the Hiati crisis, but then just as quickly, he quietly slid back in.

Is this a GOP success or a Democratic failure?

by MainStreet 2010-08-22 03:12PM | 0 recs
You just don't get it.

Mid-term elections are generally referendums on the incumbent party.

What you just don't get is that people really don't give a rat's ass anymore about George W. Bush; he is not the President. Barak Obama is now President, and people are going to hold him---and the clown show in Congress---accountable for their mistakes.

 

by BJJ Fighter 2010-08-23 01:08AM | 0 recs
RE: You just don't get it.

Well said by any Republican understanding the mess Bush got us into economically. Keep Bush out of sight. Well, that's what I said they are doing. But slowly, we see Obama making mention of the Republican created mess, beginning with Bush's "tax cuts for the wealthy."

 

by MainStreet 2010-08-24 06:12PM | 0 recs
There's no question that the GOP believes it can pull this off and sway voters in Nov by pushing Islamophobic bigotry.
How a Lunatic, Racist Blogger Is Fanning Hate Against Muslims -- With the Help of Our Dumb Media Anti-Islam groups created by extremists like Pamela Geller are on a crusade against U.S. Muslims. Joshua Holland, Alternet August 22, 2010 

Pamela Geller, the once-obscure right-wing blogger known for peddling hateful, wildly over-the-top rhetoric (she once claimed that Barack Obama was the bastard stepchild of Malcom X) and for pulling stunts like taping a harangue against Muslims while clad in a bikini, has parlayed the anti-mosque hysteria sweeping across America into mainstream media attention just in time to promote her new book, The Post-American Presidency.

Geller and co-author Robert Spencer have been relentlessly promoting the “nontroversy” over the Park 51 project. According to a profile in the Guardian, the pair have “been at the forefront of drumming up opposition to the center, two blocks from Ground Zero, through an array” of organizations like the American Freedom Defense Initiative (AFDI) and Stop Islamisation of America (SIOA). The groups “have become increasingly influential as conservative politicians exploit anti-Muslim sentiment before November's congressional and state elections.” 

http://www.alternet.org/story/147927/how_a_lunatic%2C_racist_blogger_is_fanning_hate_against_muslims_--_with_the_help_of_our_dumb_media

by MainStreet 2010-08-23 10:31AM | 0 recs

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