Thursday, January 01, 2009

Happy New Year

Another one come and gone, and now, the proverbial clean slate.

Local paper's editorial today muses about whether George Bush is the worst President ever. They make a case that there might have been a couple along the way who were worse. Buchanan, say, and Andrew Johnson, just before and after Lincoln -- one who allowed the War Between the States to fester, and the other who vetoed Civil Rights legislation after the worst conflict in American history ended.

Hardly a legacy for Bush to be proud of, is it? Making it into the Worst Three ...

But there's a new hand at the tiller, and maybe the ship of state might be steered onto a better course. Time will tell, but even if Obama aimed it at an iceberg and tried to hit it, I don't think he could screw things up as bad as Bush did.

For all who drop round here, and those who don't, my best wishes for a safe, prosperous, and happy new year. Every day, the ten thousand paths loom; I hope your choices put you on the one that is right for you.


Mike said...

Bush wins hands-down in my book; neither Buchanan nor Johnson had the power to project their screw-ups around the world, and neither had the opportunity to corrupt various Federal agencies to the extent that Bush has done: agencies like the SEC, EPA, etc. didn't exist at the time. And Bush also has a real "dream team", with people like Cheney to help him make things even worse; not to mention a Congress that for the most part happily gave him loads of cash to pursue his path toward disaster. A perfect storm indeed! And here's hoping the worst president ever is followed by one of the best ones ever. We certainly need a good 'un now.

Nataraj Hauser said...

It's possible that Woodrow Wilson is in contention for worst ever. It's funny: I work in an office of Bush supporters (that 23% has to come from somewhere!) and have had to really curb my glee. I do have a countdown on my white board to keep me buoyed. I share Mike's hope that Obama is among the best ever, because we surely need it.

Steve Perry said...

Yeah, Wilson was mentioned, too.

Bush wins it, for my money.

Worg said...

Keep in mind that both Buchanan and Johnson are many years gone.

In other words, we're comparing Bush to people of whom we know the full extent of their fuckups. With Bush, we won't know the extent of his mistakes for a decade or more.

Bush is in a WHOLE NOTHER LEAGUE from those fellows. He was essentially a murderous dictator who went 100% aganist all decent moral values. There is not only one single thing he did that I agreed with, but I can't think of any single decision he made that I didn't think was the worst possible alternative, except in the last few months of his reich when he seemed to be taking some face-saving measures.

I think that to really find good comparisons to Bush, you have to start bringing up people like Milosevic, Pol Pot, Pinochet and Adolf Hitler. That's the company the son of a bitch is in as far as I'm concerned.

Fuck you and the horse you rode in on, Georgie Boy.

Steve Perry said...

C'mon, Worg, don't sugar-coat it that way. Tell us how you really feel ...

I have posted on Current Occupant of the White House more than a few times, and my opinion of him would need an industrial crane to get it up to ground level -- if somebody could find a steel cable long enough to get deep enough to snag it ...

Worg said...

He made Nixon look like a great statesman and diplomat.

At least under Hitler the trains ran on time. No, seriously. Bush combined dictatorial ambitions and aggressive warfare with bumbling inefficiency and rampant graft. The man was the worst of both worlds.

Steve Perry said...

The trains-on-time quote is usually linked to Mussolini, and in fact, they didn't run on time there or in Germany. It's one of those "Yes, but --" things to show that even a bad guy can have good side. Hitler liked cats, Stalin liked children, Bush likes dogs, etc.

Comes from, I think the notion that it's an ill wind that blows no good -- even in a terrible disaster, almost always there will be somebody who benefits.

If you are big on conspiracy theory, a lot of what seems to be ineptitude is deliberate -- the goverment didn't rush to help the folks in New Orleans after Katrina because they wanted to clean out the bad part of town and start over.

There are good ole boys and rich folks who conspire, to be sure, but I suspect that if there was a secret cabal that ruled the world -- if it was adept enough to pull that off -- it would also be adept enough so that nobody would have a clue who it was.

Occam's Razor points to the saying, "Never attribute to malice that which can be attributed to stupidity."

The perfect crime is not the one in which the police can't figure out who did it; it's the one that nobody knows ever happened.

Anonymous said...

Dont think it ever does any good to demonize people even though its tempting. Bush will go down in history as a miserable president. He did however spend a lot to fight aids in Africa. Thats one good thing his administration did.. about the only thing i can think of.. Also worth remembering that Clinton was all for the deregulation that got us into this financial mess. For my money Bush's greatest failure is one of leadership after 911 he had the country in the palm of his hand. too bad he was really too small of a man for the shoes he had to fill. langdon

Steve Perry said...

Oh, I dunno. If they are demons, then calling them that is appropriate. Bush was responsible for a lot of evil as I see it. That it was done self-righteously doesn't make it any less so.

Demons are as demons do.

Worg said...

Langdon, yeah, you are right about the HIV money. And then there was one other thing that I thought was as high as OK. Other than that he was a complete and utter failure.

I think you're wrong about demonizing him, or perhaps more accurately I don't think it's possible to demonize that which has already demonized itself.

The man was a pocket dictator, pure and simple. In my opinion he's directly responsible for a genocide in Iraq that totaled 1.5 million dead, countless wounded, millions of refugees.

It was just one Katrina after another with him. There's only one way you could get much worse than he was as a president and that's to walk further into the woods than he got.

"For my money Bush's greatest failure is one of leadership after 911"

Ask yourself if his actions were a failure or a success. Keep in mind that all of the things he did served one single agenda.