In my opinion, that honor belongs to George W. Bush, surpassing the previous holder of that dubious honor, James Buchanan. Hardly a day passes without someone on the web stating that Barack Obama is the worst president ever. Their posts are usually a laundry list of some of the false assertions made against the President. In other words, a pack of lies.
Those false assertions started me thinking about all the ways in which Bush contributed to the present sorry state of the US and the world. Let me count the ways:
- The housing bubble and the aftermath could have been decreased in magnitude and the severity of the aftereffects if Bush and Alan Greenspan had taken action sooner or at all. All homeowners or those who want to be are poorer because they did not act.
- The Global War on Terror could have ended at Tora Bora, Afghanistan in late 2001 if Bush had pursued bin Laden and al-Qaeda with greater vigor when most of them were surrounded. Instead al-Qaeda still exists, and their existence is used to justify all sorts of intrusions in our daily lives. Such as airport screenings, monitoring of electronic communication in all forms and unjustified wars in Iraq and elsewhere.
- The Bush tax cuts were designed to reward the 1% and at the same time make Grover Norquist‘s goal of a small government a reality. Ronald Reagan tried to accomplish this in the 1980s using the Heritage Foundation‘s blueprint, but he failed because he lacked the current GOP’s ruthlessness. Those of us who rely on the government safety net are going to find that it no longer exists.
- Bush used a record number of signing statements to enlarge the powers of the presidency at the expense of the other two branches of government. In 1776, we declared our independence of King George 3. In his reign, George W. Bush attempted to reinstate monarchy in the US.
Barack Obama has the unenviable task of fixing what Bush damaged or destroyed. His task reminds me of Sisyphus rolling a rock uphill during the day and watching it roll downhill at night, only to repeat the uphill push the next day. Barack’s task is even more difficult because he has the current GOP on the uphill side pushing against the rock to make the task even harder. Rather than criticizing Barack for his limited success, those of us who support him should be helping him by putting our shoulders to the rock and aiding in the uphill push. We can succeed if we join in his efforts.
- The Great and Powerful George W. Bush Presidency: 2009-2012 (constitutionclub.org)
- Barbara Bush on 2012: ‘The worst campaign I’ve ever seen’ (thehill.com)
- Harris Poll Presidential Rankings: Reagan Best President Since World War II, Nixon Worst (themoderatevoice.com)
- How Out There Is Grover Norquist? (andrewsullivan.thedailybeast.com)
- Norquist: Reagan tax hikes OK because ‘he didn’t sign the pledge’ (dontmesswithtaxes.typepad.com)
- Andrew Sullivan: How Obama’s Long Game Will Outsmart His Critics – The Daily Beast (tribuneofthepeople.com)