Sun. May 26th, 2024

SHOCKING! Presidential Scholars Give Bush ‘Thumbs Down’ published an article on the latest Presidential performance survey from the Sierra College Research Institute (SRI), and here’s the headline: George W. Bush is among the five least accomplished U.S. presidents.  

Are we surprised?

According to the newest survey of the top 238 US presidential scholars, the Bush administration approach to foreign policy, health care and human rights was marginal to disastrous, and among the biggest foreign policy blunders are the Iraq and Afghanistan wars. 

In a sadly common pattern of behavior, Bush & Co. ignored recommendations and warnings from military and intelligence sources alike, embroiling us in these two conflicts that pushed us to the brink of breaking our military and our economy. 

Wow.  Stop the presses.

The failed oversight of government regulatory agencies, stuffed with ideological appointees, finished the job.  And while we’re in the throes of a delicate recovery, jobs are still vaporous, new safeguard regulations are being eviscerated in Congressional dealmaking, and Democrats have been woefully slow to understand that bi-partisanship is illusory. 

As noted in the article, “The presidential scholars ranked the U.S. Presidents on six personal attributes (background, imagination, integrity, intelligence, luck and willingness to take risks); five forms of ability (compromising, executive, leadership, communication and overall abilities); and eight areas of accomplishment including domestic affairs, economic, working with Congress and their party, appointing supreme court justices and members of the executive branch, avoiding mistakes and foreign policy.”

Whether you’d like to have a beer with them didn’t really make that list.

I think that one of the major “successes” of the Bush Administration was in the arena of Supreme Court and judicial and administrative appointments.  Those appointments clearly tilted the courts to the Right, and crippled the regulatory efforts of countless government agencies, including those tasked with oversight of the financial and environmental sectors.  While many of these took place behind the scenes, I often contemplated bashing my head against the wall while watching John Roberts and Samuel Alito in their confirmation hearings.  And I hold the Democrats responsible for giving these two Weapons of Legal Destruction to take lifetime appointments to the nation’s highest court.

This is not Barry Goldwater’s conservative movement.  It’s Karl Rove’s, Dick Army’s and Roger Ailes’ neoconocracy.  Reagan established the beach head, but George W. Bush supplied the shock troops.

It’s nice to be confirmed in a long-held judgement.  Unfortunately, it’s a little late for the rest of the world.

May the Higher Power of your choice guide you successfully through another day of this brave new world.