December 17, 2009

What the Democrats really need right now...

... George Bush.
His presidency was a tonic for Democrats and led to a blossoming of political creativity on the center-left not seen since the 1930s. No tactic, no program, no leader ever did more to catalyze the party than the rage Bush inspired.
Without him, they are the rage-inspiration. Power hurts. And no one sympathizes. So lonely!

74 comments:

AllenS said...

Obama, the Democrats and the MSM will continue to blame Bush, or the last administration, until the 4th year of Obama's presidency, then they will be calling everyone a racist because everything has gotten worse.

AJ Lynch said...

"blossoming of political creativity".

LOL - that Dionne is quite the comedian.

traditionalguy said...

They ain't seen nothing yet. Bush merely stole back the Presidency (after 8 years of Clinton/Gore manipulations) by 400 votes in one state. When Palin steals the World Government schemes cooking today back from Obama, Chavez and associates the entire world will be furious.

Seven Machos said...

Responsibility is a real motherfucker.

Expat(ish) said...

As my 14 year old said, after complaining about his mid-term exams for approximately an hour (!):
Of course it's easy for me to criticize as long as you go to work to feed me.

10 years of private school has cost a lot of money, but I think he's fully inoculated against liberalism.

-XC

wv - imopsaw: what my kids say when I ask them to clean up after the puppy

MadisonMan said...

Be careful what you wish for.

Tycho said...

Creativity? What creativity? Everything they came up with while in the opposition could be boiled down to one thing - blame Bush, its Bush's fault and America should do everything that Bush is against. For instance, Obama's entire campaign was centered around doing everything the opposite of Bush.

Sure, it galvanized them and united them - but that is different.

Democrats did nothing of real signifigance during the Bush years. Sure, they acted as a foil to Bush's policies - but how hard is that? What great programs did they come up with? How did they creatively make government better? People keep forgetting, they had majorities for the last 2 years of his presidency, yet they did nothing of signifigance.

The real problem with Democrats now is that they have no clear leader. No matter if you are Democrat or Republican, you have to admit that Obama is a campaigner and not a leader. If he were a leader he would not have left every major policy initiative up to Pelosi/Reid. He lets them do the policy work and - surprise -it gets bogged down with G-d awful pork, special interests and just plain bad compromises.

Take health care - he could have easily said: "Here is my plan" or had a bill ready to go. Instead, he left it up to Pelosi/Reid and the congressional democrats on how to do health reform. Then, he spent weeks out trying to drum up support for a bill that did not yet exists.

If you were an opponent to health care reform, you could easily make up whatever you wanted to about the bill and no one could prove you wrong as a bill had not yet been presented. So, even before the bill is formally introduced, there is a large amount of public opposition to the bill (some warranted, some not).

Democrats spent 8 years running against Bush. They were good at turning public opposition to Bush, Republicans and their policies. All of a sudden - once he was out of office - they had to develop their own policies and programs. Yet, they were a tad out of practice...

Look at Obama. First year of his presidency and all he knows how to do is (a) blame Bush for all of our problemsn, (b) cash in on his fame and celebrity and (c) campaign for a bill he has likely never read and is probably contrary to what he would do if he actually took the time to craft the policy.

Seven Machos said...

Gitmo North is my favorite part. Yeah, let's still not give these guys any rights but move them to Illinois.

That's a lot more fair. And it'll be so popular. And it'll solve the problem so well.

bearbee said...

Responsibility is a real motherfucker.

I think Newt Gingrich said that as a backbencher he was a good 'bomb thrower.'

I guess it's always easier to sit back and lob.

Henry said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
vbspurs said...

Democrats are a tremendous opposition Party. They seem to tighten their views, objectives and message to the American people in a way that inspires respect even from Republicans like me. But they're an horrendous Party in power (at the White House, especially).

Then you can see the bickering and lack of focus, as well as having to screw their more outré members' views into something more palatable so that the American public doesn't balk at accepting their goals.

Unfortunately, for them, America is a classical liberal country economically, with a meritocratic ethos and a conservative patriotic agenda. It's been that way since its inception.

This kind of country is difficult to run if your politics are left of centre.

Cheers,
Victoria

AJ Lynch said...

Bearbee said:

"I guess it's always easier to sit back and lob."

We all love to be Monday morning quarterbacks. Obama and the liberal Dems make that so simple that even us dumb conservatives can do it.

Henry said...

My take on the continued anger and frustration on the left is that many thought that electing Obama would turn back time. They thought that the Bush administration could be made to never have happened.

The invention of this fantasy chronology dates back to 9/11, when the same idealists decided that the Clinton administration had never happened. Somehow the country lurched from Bush I to Bush II with nothing in between (it was the end of history, after all).

At the same time, in a parallel universe, FDR unselfishly lead the country through the 21st century, only declining to run for a 19th term when his true successor was ready to ascend to the office.

Why can't both of these things be true? How cruel the universe is.

Scott said...

The main difference between the left and the right: The right defines itself based on the values it articulates. The left defines itself as not being the right.

When the left has no meaningful opposition, it can't figure out what it is. That's what we're seeing now.

For several generations, the left's lack of vision has in effect handed the right the keys to the left's own destruction. The right hasn't known what to do with this advantage until recently; when we find them stepping back from the public policy fray to let the left overreach and destroy itself.

vbspurs said...

That's a lot more fair. And it'll be so popular. And it'll solve the problem so well.

It's a disaster waiting to happen.

I cannot think of anything more of a red flag to impressionable young Muslim-Americans (like those Iraqi emigrés in Michigan, or those similar to the "Pakistani 5"), than to read online a barrage of propaganda against American "Islamic oppression", and then realise your co-religionists are being imprisoned a few miles away from you.

Cheers,
Victoria

master cylinder said...

Private school made me a liberal so....you never know.
I didnt think Obama would erase GWB, I thought he would work hard, and he does.

rdkraus said...

Victoria

"Democrats are a tremendous opposition Party"

Well yeah, but same about the Rep's. When in office they conducted "Wars for fun and profit," spent like drunken sailors, gave us a new gigantic drug entitlement, pissed all over the first amendment (with campaign "reform"), etc.

We have two effective opposition parties. Great.

edutcher said...

The problem for the Demos is Dubya actually got a couple of things right. The economy did come back after 9/11, the surge in Iraq worked, and he kept the terrorists at bay.

The current administration, for all its Haavahd degrees, has yet to see a real success, and passing ObambiCare, at this point, won't qualify.

Cash for Clunkers and the stimulus and bailouts have only made things worse economically. Resetting foreign policy has been a disaster - witness the fact Bambi was counting on NATO to make up the shortfall when he gave McChrystal 30,000 of the 40,000 troops he needed.

This is the gang that couldn't govern - much less rule, as they threatened to do - straight.

Richard Fagin said...

Political creativity? You mean rehashing every New Deal scheme from the 1930s is creative? What's next, reregulating airlines and having a telephone monopoly? 17 percent unemployment?

John Lynch said...

Of course being in opposition was easier! There was no responsibility to perform.

Creativity? To do what? To implement a bunch of programs dreamt up in the 1960s?

I'm sorry, nothing the current government is doing is novel or surprising.

One reason that I'm happy Obama won the election is that it forces Democrats to deal with reality. Instead of fantasizing about fighting dictatorship or thousand other mythical demons, they have to govern.

There's something about the Left that yearns to be oppressed. They aren't very comfortable in power.

rdkraus said...

edutcher

The economy did not come back under Bush. It was cheap interest, loans to people who couldn't pay, etc. It was a phantom recovery bubble which popped. No credit for Bush there.

He did prevent further attacks on US soil. Perhaps his biggest achievement.

vbspurs said...

The main difference between the left and the right: The right defines itself based on the values it articulates. The left defines itself as not being the right.

IN AMERICA, though, Scott.

In other parts of the world, the Left is outright socialist which the American Left cannot afford to call itself, nor to intimate that it is, because in the minds of many, that would be too close to the communism which America just fought and won. Instead, you have this farce of being an "umbrella" or "big tent" Party, which they like to imagine Americans view as inclusive, but in reality, it sends all kinds of contradictory messages which Conservatives avoid.

America is a funny country. Other conservative politicians in the world accept even champion socialist programmes. This makes it impossible to ever have true Libertarians within their ranks.

Winston Churchill, my hero, was not opposed at all to the creation of the NHS in Britain after the war. UNTHINKABLE if you were Robert Taft back in the day, and of course, now! The Right also contains far more mainstream reactionary groups and leaders in Europe, like the BNP in Britain, Le Pen in France, and Jörg Haider in Austria. Can you imagine a national KKK Party led by David Duke gaining office not just in Louisiana, but in California and New Jersey too? That's what we're talking about.

Americans are political centrists, by definition, and this is why the rest of the world simply cannot relate to you guys.

(I agree with everything you wrote though!)

ricpic said...

Democrats have no interest in what most Americans still ask about anything, be it a tool or a behavior or a plan: does it work?

Bushman of the Kohlrabi said...

Come one, don't be so hard on Bambi. He's worth at least a B+. He said so himself!

AprilApple said...

2010/2012 Republican slogan:

"Now we REALLY need to clean things up... What a mess"

Montagne Montaigne said...

YES! Let's get George Bush back!

President Obama Largely Inherited Today’s Huge Deficits;
Economic Downturn, Financial Rescues, and Bush-Era Policies Drive the Numbers


We live in alternate realities, I'm afraid. But of course I believe my reality is actually real.

Scott said...

@Sweet Victoria,

Point given. And being an insular isolationist libertarian American, I really don't care much about the politics of other countries, as long as those countries don't send us refugees.

The prospect of the Democrats becoming a socialist left party that DOES have a clearly-articulated vision does scare me a bit; but that is unlikely to happen. We're a country of fifty semi-autonomous states (and a few territories), and that is a comforting thing. If New Jersey sucks too much, I can "vote with my feet" and move to Texas, which has a flavor of tyranny that is more agreeable to me. Such a governmental structure militates against the kind of unified statist vision that the left so adores.

Tyrone Slothrop said...

Back in the seventies I wrote a college paper on the Spanish Civil War. As an erstwhile lefty I was dismayed to learn that the Republic pretty much collapsed in an orgy of factionalism. There was a full-scale battle between anarchists and Republicans in Barcelona, both of them ostensibly enemies of the Fascists. The lesson I learned is that leftist coalitions almost always break down over questions of orthodoxy. I have great faith that this will continue here for the next three years.

On another topic, I have never understood the antipathy to Bush. Sure you can disagree with his policies, but he always seemed to me to be a nice guy, funny and straightforward, the kind of guy you could hang out with. This contrasted with the oily, duplicitous Bill Clinton, an obvious egomaniac. I don't hate Obama the man although I don't respect him very much. What was it about Bush that caused such personal animus, not just among lefties but among the majority of Americans?

wv:manoloti--those pasta shells stuffed with cabbage.

Alex said...

Yeah the Democrats have been so creative the last 9 years - "GOP are Nazis, etc...". More like regurgitating the late 60s.

vbspurs said...

"Now we REALLY need to clean things up... What a mess"

Totally winning slogan.

Anything can happen in the next three years, but with midterms almost assuredly going to Republicans, I don't see Obama coming back as easily to 1600 as Clinton did because he's not a centrist.

The parallels to the 70s are amazing.

We had two terms of a President who the media and intelligentsia loathed, but who won two elections with strong popular numbers, followed by one term of a very Leftist, and most importantly, totally ineffective President. America got weaker domestically and internationally because of it. Americans were disheartened and exhausted. Enter a strong Republican candidate, one who was considered washed up after the debacle of the previous election, and swims into the White House on a tide of raising American morale.

Am I talking about Palin? I don't know. I don't think so. But the script seems to be a harbinger.

Brent said...

The main difference between the left and the right: The right defines itself based on the values it articulates. The left defines itself as not being the right.


The main moral ethos of the left:

Whatever.

Geoff Matthews said...

Regarding Gitmo north, who thought it was better, for the prisoners, to be kept in Illinois rather than Cuba?

The first winter will see a spike in suicide attempts.

Big Mike said...

Refresh my memory, please. When did E.J. Dionne get his lobotomy? Nothing else can explain today's column.

vbspurs said...

If New Jersey sucks too much, I can "vote with my feet" and move to Texas, which has a flavor of tyranny that is more agreeable to me.

One of the best responses I've ever seen on Althouse, and so true, Scott.

I cannot emphasise enough to foreigners when I talk to them, that America is 50 countries in one. They don't understand, even if they themselves come from highly differing regional countries (like Britain, Spain or France). You see, for them, it means cultural differences. They cannot understand how there isn't one central government which tells everyone else what to do, and they must.

Tyrone Slothrop said...

Montagne--

Are you aware that Obama's deficits will be five times Bush's deficits? Does this distinction mean anything to you?

vbspurs said...

wv: PALIN!!! That's the first word verification I've ever gotten with her name (or Todd's).

This one: tandogea. Heh.

vbspurs said...

Are you aware that Obama's deficits will be five times Bush's deficits? Does this distinction mean anything to you?

Tyrone, of course it doesn't mean anything to the Left.

This is where being the un-Republicans gets murky and ridiculous, because not only do they bill themselves as not being Republicans, but then they turn around and say, what we're doing the Republicans did too! You can't complain!

Oh yes we can, mes amis.

John Lynch said...

There's an old joke about leaving New York (or California) and moving to America.

I am constitutionally not a city person. I freak out going through Denver International Airport. I saw more people in the terminal than live in my town.

Montagne Montaigne said...

Tyrone and brainless acolytes-- can you read a chart? Can you get it through your skulls that the deficit today and the deficit projected tomorrow has something to do with Bush era policies? Such as

enormous tax cuts to the wealthy not paid for

wars not paid for

entitlements not paid for

and that Obama's POLICIES have not significantly added to that huge deficit? CAN YOU READ A CHART?

President Obama Largely Inherited Today’s Huge Deficits;
Economic Downturn, Financial Rescues, and Bush-Era Policies Drive the Numbers

Pogo said...

Montagne, you're a moron.

No, it's not worth posting something substantive; you completely lack the capacity to comprehend it.

Arturius said...

Perhaps what the Democrat Party requires is a bit of introspection and by that I mean for them to ask themselves why the only time they can be unified is when they have a GOP whipping boy (or girl) to beat up on. Absent that, it’s like watching a domestic dispute. The leadership which resembles the workers of the world unite party is obviously at odds with the Truman/JFK/Blue Dog contingent. If this bothers the more liberal commenter’s, perhaps you should think about forming a new party that more accurately reflects your ideology, or if not, quit extolling the virtues of your party’s ‘big tent’ and ‘diversity’.

It’s quite easy to see why the Democrats are fast approaching the sewer level of approval that the GOP is currently wallowing in but I’ll take a moment to present the picture which should be obvious. The Congressional Democrats rushed into power in 2006, largely on war weariness and promises to end the war in Iraq. In 2008, Democrats achieved massive majorities in both House and Senate amid, war weariness and a tanking economy. We’re now going into 2010 and we’re still in Iraq, escalating in Afghanistan, unemployment is 10%, home foreclosures are still rising and all that has been accomplished is, well let’s see, a display of internecine warfare among the Democratic party to provide government health care to 30 some million uninsured out of a nation of 300 million.

If I had been in a position to offer Obama some advice, I would have suggested that he use the stimulus money to guarantee those mortgages on primary residences in threat of foreclosure and then focus solely on job creation through the use of stimulus money and tax incentives. Now let’s take a look at what that might have accomplished; a good chunk of homeowners who didn’t lose their homes and perhaps unemployment around 7-8% instead of 10% and rising. That would at least give people the Hope he was preaching about and then with the political capital he had could then work on the Change, as in health care. But then that was probably asking a lot for someone who basically just started his first job.

Sofa King said...

MM: A graph that mixes revenues and liabilities as "causes" of the deficit like that is simply propaganda. I think you know that.

John Lynch said...

MM-

So fix it! You don't get elected to complain, but to produce results.

The American people agreed with you when they elected Obama and the Congress. We didn't do that so we can hear Democrats complain.

holdfast said...

led to a blossoming of political creativity

I assume this is a reference to those giant papier mache puppets?

Henry said...

John Lynch wrote, "So fix it!"

According to the chart, Democrats are powerless to undo Bush's tax cuts or end his wars. How sad for them!

Montagne Montaigne said...

It's not that complicated. Bush pushed a huge tax cut package without cutting spending. The tax cut was supposed to generate growth to compensate. Well, guess what-- it didn't-- it stimulated a massive credit bubble economy that pretty much exploded, as the coda to the great Bush era of governance.

Obama entered office during a period of negative growth. The spending package has arrested that (the recession is over). Of course the budget is out of whack. It will take time to fix.

If nothing can be blamed on Bush, then everything must be blamed on Obama, in office for less than a year? You're not serious. Get the F*** out of town.

Tyrone Slothrop said...

Montaigne--

Touche! Obama's deficits are Bush's fault! Which means Bush's deficits were Clinton's fault. Moron.

traditionalguy said...

Monty...I actually agree with your Bush years facts, except that you said the recession is arrested now. The recession has only begun to fight for an end to all economic activity in the USA, and Obama seems to be quite happy to hide and watch.Why?

John Lynch said...

I'm not interested in blame. I'm interested in a functioning government that can solve problems.

Show me I was right to vote for the President. The public agreed that the Republicans shouldn't govern anymore, so the Democrats need to show that that judgment was the correct one. I don't give a damn about decisions taken years ago, I care about what is being done now to fix our problems.

Trying to deflect criticism of today's decisions by blaming yesterday's does not accomplish anything. I don't care. Democrats need to show that their policies will solve the problems they were elected to fix. We Americans agreed that the Republicans got us in this mess-- that's why most of us voted Democrat. That's not the issue.

Rich B said...

MM-

Thanks for the hilarious chart. According to the CBPP, almost the entire deficit is due to the economic downturn (continuing to 2019 and beyond) and the Bush tax cuts.

Based on what I found on OMB website, revenues after 2003 Bush tax weren't far off from pre-tax cut estimates. The 2003 tax rate cuts were the first real supply side cuts.

I had forgotten about EJ - his overheated very fact-free pieces are real side-splitters.

WV: balski - is this Polish for BS?

Arturius said...

The tax cut was supposed to generate growth to compensate. Well, guess what-- it didn't-- it stimulated a massive credit bubble economy that pretty much exploded, as the coda to the great Bush era of governance.

Um, no. Cutting taxes and increasing spending ballooned the federal debt. The credit bubble had nothing to do with tax cuts but rather keeping interest rates artificially low which in turn was the lifeblood of the housing debacle.

Bush can be blamed for a lot of things but the credit crisis was long in the making and just happened to blow on his watch. Perhaps Obama can take some time off from speech making and actually exert some leadership, on some issue rather than continually remind us how lousy the previous administration was. Most of us figured that out a long time ago.

Montagne Montaigne said...

I have yet to see coherent criticism of current policy. I see blanket opposition fueled by tribalism.

I'll take a corporate democrat in charge over the born-again, know-nothing ideologues in the Republican party ANY DAY.

Tyrone Slothrop said...

Montagne--

The credit bubble was caused almost exclusively by the "social justice" lending policies of FannieMae and FreddieMac, legacies of the Clinton Administration, which the Bush administration several times enjoined an admittedly Republican congress to rein in without success. The tax cuts in fact did encourage the economy, and federal revenues increased year after year in spite of them. You are correct that federal spending under Bush was ridiculous and wrong, but how you can use that as justification for vastly greater spending by Obama simply defies logic.

P.S. Are you really blaming Obama's spending on Bush? Are you really that stupid?

edutcher said...

rdkraus said...

The economy did not come back under Bush. It was cheap interest, loans to people who couldn't pay, etc. It was a phantom recovery bubble which popped. No credit for Bush there.

You mean that bubble created by Bobby Rubin and Willie?

Montagne Montaigne said...

I have yet to see coherent criticism of current policy. I see blanket opposition fueled by tribalism.

Tribalism. where have I heard that word lately?

Oh, yes.

http://newsbusters.org/blogs/brad-wilmouth/2009/12/13/matthews-frets-over-idiots-america-riling-white-tribalism-shows-anti-

WV "nousn" What Army says before their last football game of the year.

Arturius said...

I have yet to see coherent criticism of current policy.

That would require the coherent ability for critical thinking.

Put another way, those know-nothing ideologues in the Republican party aren't the ones holding up health care reform. As a matter of fact, it just so happens to be more than a few corporate democrats you appear to have an affinity for.

This is what happens when one becomes ideologically blinded; they tend to ignore that their worst enemy tends to be themselves.

c3 said...

Dionne quote:
Democrats must govern in one of the most difficult periods in American history

Based on what; says who?

Is it the economy? If so it so far seems that much less was needed from the central government for recovery..BUT..we must press on with more spending

Is it two wars? If so it seems we're continuing on the wind down path established under the Bush admin and now we working on the easy and necessary war in Afghanistan.

Is it healthcare? Well the urgency was self-imposed

It seems a key reason for the most difficult period viewpoint is this pervasive need to undo all things "Bush" (or Republican or not progressive)

My suggestions for the Dems:
-do less
-lower expectations
-complain less (try speaking an entire paragraph without using the words "Bush" and/or "inherit")
-recognize that your legislative majorities come from pulling the center away from the Republicans. Therefore, govern with their concerns in mind. (psst: I doubt the independent/center really gives a sh*t about a "show trial" in NYC)

Jim said...

My favorite criticism of the Bush years yet: Spending wasn't cut!

Ummm....conveniently leaving out the part where the DEMOCRATS controlled Congress since 2006.

Let's look at every single economic measure of 2005 - when the Republicans last controlled the Congress and Presidency - and compare them to today - when the Democrats have controlled Congress for 4 years and the Presidency for 1.

Let's compare and contrast the damage that the Democratically-controlled Congress has done by refusing to control spending, by introducing terminal uncertainty into the economy with unchecked spending and irresponsible Leftism.

Let's hail Obama who voted for the budgets during the Bush years, who thought that the best idea for creating jobs was taking money out of the pockets of business owners and handing it over to government bureaucrats in imaginary congressional districts, and whose "smart diplomacy" has managed to make him a laughingstock internationally.

By all means, let's laud the Democrats for the mess they created and their inability to take responsibility to take responsibility for either their past or their present culpability. And while we're at it, let's laud the mindless drones who continue to think "blame Bush" constitutes reality and don't realize just how out of touch with actual reality it shows them to be.

All hail the "reality-based community," and unreality in which they commune!

ABP said...

You misspelled "ronery".

Arturius said...

My favorite criticism of the Bush years yet: Spending wasn't cut!

Well it wasn't. Doesn't matter who controlled Congress, the President could veto any spending bills.

We've spent over $1 trillion on the wars yet the federal debt doubled under Bush; from $5 trillion to around $10 trillion. That means, in addition to the war, there was another $4 trillion spent which we had to borrow from China and friends. All that tells me is that a whole lot of extra spending was piled into those defense appropriation bills.

There is a reason the GOP was sent to the corner of the classroom the last two elections and the suffocating debt was a good part of it. Evidently the current ruling party isn't learning from that mistake.

hdhouse said...

Well kids we can pretend that there was no Bush and that the 8 years he was president (not counting the year and a half in vacations) just didn't happen...

but then ...how would we know the difference?...oh..what's that you say?

things only went to hell when he was in town doin' something?

Shit. Why not blame the little peckerhead. If I remember right he was pretty adept at blaming Clinton...you turdblossoms on the right remember that right? right?

Seven Machos said...

Is that really the best you can do, HD?

That's sad. Your heart isn't even in it. You are clearly just mailing it in at this point.

edutcher said...

If we want to talk spending - Bambi quadrupled in one year what Dubya spent in five. This doesn't let Bush off the hook, but The Zero and all his Minuses only can complain if they actually stopped the hemorrhaging.

Hoosier Daddy said...

Is that really the best you can do, HD?

Hell Machos, that's actually pretty good for hdhouse. He used
complete sentences, more or less proper punctucation and spelling (we can ignore the inconsistent capitalization) so over all I give it a 8.5 in terms of a legible comment.

It still doesn't mean he's not a complete flipping lunatic though.

Henry said...

I must say, MM and HD did a very good job proving Althouse's point.

Cedarford said...

Tycho - Democrats did nothing of real signifigance during the Bush years. Sure, they acted as a foil to Bush's policies - but how hard is that? What great programs did they come up with? How did they creatively make government better? People keep forgetting, they had majorities for the last 2 years of his presidency, yet they did nothing of signifigance.

The bigger thing is the Republicans were in charge and did nothing but spend, hype the glories of Neocon wars to rehabilitate soon to be grateful Muslims and help Israel in the process, create the largest untaxed entitlement expansion since LBJ (premium price drugs paid by Fed debt), handed out tax cuts for the rich amid record debts, and pump up a bubble economy.

It all came tumbling down for Bush around 2006, and just got worse.
As for Bush as the American Churchill who Kept Us All Safe From Evildoers.....well, we saw what he said against the reality of him extolling "the Heroes" confiscating toenail clippers at airports while daily on TV we saw hundreds of unknown people at any given point on our Border running in...while Bush did nothing...beyond saying he didn't know who they were but they were coming to take jobs Americans wouldn't do. (As corporatists kept shovelling the money at the Bushies).

It really wasn't the problem of how little the Dems did in opposition, but how little the Republicans did for America when they could have become a majority Party after 9/11. They focused on rewarding their rich benefactors and the odd bone tossed to religious right, spun the whole "heroes rescuing grateful Muslims rom themselves in endless war" narrative, refused to lead in fixing any of Americans growing out of control domestic problems, and extolled borrowing from China and each American buying mountains of stuff from China on credit - as the path to prosperity.

Blaming Democrats for the Bush years of America's decline and wreckage of finances, health care, and global clout - is like blaming Republicans for "doing nothing" when the Dems were in charge with a weak Ford caretaker then Carter, from Watergate up to Reagan...

Obama was correct in saying he inherited a supreme mess from the hapless, miscombobulated Dubya. Even Reagan's people went around the 1st two years or so saying don't blame us - blame that boob Carter. But I think by 1982, as a kid at the time..that the general feeling I saw was that Reagan was working digging us out of the mess his hapless failed predecessor and Party created...not creating new messes a la Obama, Pelosi, Waxman, Markey, Frank, Dodd, Goldman Sachs and Reid...

Cedarford said...

rdkraus said...
edutcher

The economy did not come back under Bush. It was cheap interest, loans to people who couldn't pay, etc. It was a phantom recovery bubble which popped. No credit for Bush there.

He did prevent further attacks on US soil. Perhaps his biggest achievement.



Correct, and it would be interesting to see if Americans had a crystal ball and were given two choices about the future, which one they would take:

Option A. Support the American Churchill who will Keep Us All Safe and avoid another 3,000 people killed - mostly in the Wall Street financial services sector (most likely). Have Gov't pay for expensive prescription drugs funded by IOUs from Asia, Saudi Arabia. Tax cuts for the rich. Endless war with 35,000 casualties and 1 trillion spent to "save" Muslims from killing other Muslims.

Option B - Keep our powder dry and focus on not letting Iran or N Korea get nukes. Fix our infrastructure and the dangerously unstable and unregulated financial services sector. Recognize heathcare is failing and must be reformed. Do something about the trade deficit and loss of millions of good American jobs overseas.Stop growth of Fed Gov
t fueled by Bank of China. Or people will see America in rapid decline and the President as another LBJ. Do the minimum for rich people. They are like the Dems blacks..they don't shift Party.
Accept that as we fix the masive macro problems that Muslims will kill Muslims in some remote shitholes and we might even have a few evildoers do another (minor as real wars go...attack here)

My guess is people, if they had a crystal ball, would have gravitated to Option B.

MadisonMan said...

What the Democrats need now, is love, sweet love.

It's the only thing that there's just too little of.

Titus said...

Poor Bush.

I say more respect for Bush.

AJ Lynch said...

Infrastructure? Dems don't really want to fix that and they don't really want to fix public schools.

Dems always need some big woeful issue to rail about- it helps them to spend more and more of our money.

If Obamacare passes, do you think Dems will stfu? No they will complain and say we need some other new big bucks govt boondoggle like govt paid day care or all day pre-k.

Michael Hasenstab said...

Tyrone said in response to Monty's inane blathering:

Touche! Obama's deficits are Bush's fault! Which means Bush's deficits were Clinton's fault. Moron.

To which I add:
And Clinton's surpluses were Reagan's fault. And Reagan's deficits were Carter's fault.

Thanks Monty. You might have finally got something right for once.

EDH said...

Think Democrats are agitated now?

I'm awaiting the day George W. Bush rides back into D.C. on the back of a dinosaur in fulfillment of biblical scripture.

Bruce Hayden said...

I love how Montagne Montaigne states as a given that the Bush tax cuts hurt the economy and had nothing to do with coming out of the Clinton recession that he inherited. Never mind that numerous economists believe just the opposite, that cutting actual tax rates, as was done by Kennedy, Reagan, and Bush has repeatedly been shown effective in recovering from recessions.

I am sure that he believes in his heart of hearts that Obama really has no culpability for the current recession, and that the "stimulus" package passed last winter has kept the unemployment rate from hitting double digits. Oh, wait, it did. Sorry.

I, on the other hand, believe that Obama has done nothing right. Instead of cutting tax rates, esp. on those who run small businesses and would be the ones hiring those unemployed workers, Obama wants to raise them, in numerous and myriad ways, ranging from allowing the Bush tax cuts to expire, the Cap and Trade, to the millionaire taxes and taxes for no insurance, cosmetic devices, etc. His idea of "tax cuts" is for one time refundable tax credits primarily to those who don't pay income taxes - what most of us call redistribution. But much of the money went to pay off constituencies. Mark Penn for $6 million. Government workers for tens of billions. Indeed, there was almost nothing in that bill that could be considered really "stimulus".

What is great here is that President Obama is now in a race with Jimmy Carter for being the worst President in the last at least 75 years. I think it likely that Obama will win this one. We shall see.

Kirk Parker said...

MM,

Very clever the way you juxtapose "Bush" and "huge ... package" in the same comment.

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