Saturday, November 11, 2017

President George W. Bush: The Last Republican President? - By Jack Kerwick

We can only hope
“I don’t like him. I don’t know much about him, but I know he’s a blowhard. And I’m not too excited about him being a leader.”
So says George H.W. Bush about President Donald J. Trump in Mark K. Updegrove’s soon-to-be-released, The Last Republicans. And Bush Senior admits to having voted for Hillary Clinton.
Neither is Bush Junior an admirer of his successor. “Wow, this guy doesn’t know what it means to be president.” W maintains that a president should not “exploit” and “incite” anger, but “come up with ideas to deal with it.”
Junior states that he voted for neither Trump nor Hillary Clinton.
Every American who ever desired to know the truth about our political system should thank God for Trump—regardless of whether or not they like him as a person or as a politician. Trump’s candidacy and presidency have exposed the System in all of its ugliness.
The Bushes are the proverbial textbook illustration of this ugliness.
It is now painfully obvious that the so-called “conservative movement” hadn’t been anything of the sort from at least the time of Reagan.  Rather, it has largely been a neoconservative movement, a species of soft or covert socialism and a cover for the Republican Party.
It is now painfully obvious that both the Democratic and Republican parties are corrupt organizations comprised of professional politicians that have labored indefatigably to deceive American voters into thinking that the parties presented voters with a genuine choice.
It is now painfully obvious that D.C., and, thus, the country, is in fact led by a Mono-Party. The idea of an “opposition party” is a politically-useful fiction that Democrats and Republicans, like the Bushes, have long exploited in order to advance their own interests, a fiction that proves especially handy during election season and, of course, for fundraising purposes.
It is now painfully obvious that there is but a single Regime, a sprawling Government-Academia-Media-Entertainment (GAME) complex, i.e. The Big GAME.
The Bushes typify the phenomenon now known as “NeverTrump.” NeverTrumpers are Republicans, whether politicians or pundits, who have stopped at nothing in their quest to sabotage Trump.
For decades, Republicans, like the Bushes, manipulated the unenthused and exacerbated among their base into thinking that unless they continued voting for Republican candidates, Armageddon would ensue: Don’t be an ideological purist! Don’t make the Perfect the enemy of the Good! Remember Reagan’s “eleventh commandment!” Remember “the [Bill] Buckley rule” about voting for the “most conservative” candidate when confronted with a choice between two unappealing alternatives!
And so on, and so on.
However, once it became clear that Donald Trump was a force with which to be reckoned, these very same Republican politicians and their propagandists in “conservative” media became “NeverTrumpers.” As such, they not only refused to vote for the GOP presidential nominee, but vowed to do everything and anything to insure that he did not win the election.
To be sure, NeverTrumpers are contemptible. But they are contemptible, it is crucial to note, not because they refrained from voting for Trump.  NeverTrumpers are contemptible for having refrained from voting for Trump after decades of deceiving the base of their party into thinking that it is was morally unacceptable for their constituents to refrain from voting for the Bushes, the McCains, the Romneys, i.e. neoconservative candidates.
NeverTrumpers are contemptible for their deceit, hypocrisy, and disloyalty to the millions of Americans who supported them and their party since forever.
And there is no one more eligible to be the posterchild for the Contemptible NeverTrumper than George W. Bush.
After his supporters spent eight years defending him against all manner of charges, but particularly the charge that he was “racist,” Bush came out of retirement last month and publicly impugned those very same folks of…“racism!”  Granted, he didn’t say this in so many words, but when he implicitly accused President Trump of “nativism,” “bullying,” “prejudice,” “cruelty,” and “bigotry,” Bush indeed implied that the over 60 million Americans who voted for Trump—many of whom doubtless voted for Bush too—were guilty of these charges as well.
Against Trump, Bush remarked: “Our identity as a nation…means that bigotry or white supremacy in any form is blasphemy against the American creed.”
Now Bush, who uttered not a peep during Barack Obama’s eight-year tenure in the White House, is criticizing Trump once again.
Bear in mind that this is the same President Bush who forced American taxpayers to spend trillions of dollars on wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, wars that continue to the present day.
These wars were never declared as such by Congress, and yet they have resulted in the loss of over a million lives.  Most of the dead consists of Middle Easterners, but thousands of Americans have died in action as well.  Thousands more have had their lives forever changed, maimed psychologically and physically.  When the loved ones of soldiers are taken into account, it becomes clear that many more thousands of Americans have been made to endure profound suffering courtesy of Bush’s war.
At least as many as 800,000 Iraqi children have been orphaned because of Bush’s war.  Ancient Christian communities have been destroyed and other religious minorities have been exposed to the predatory machinations of Islamic zealots.
It has been 14 years since we invaded Iraq and 16 years since the invasion of Afghanistan—and yet these wars drag on to the present day.
Let us not forget that the incalculable pain, suffering, death, and bloodshed that is the Iraq War was justified by Bush and his minions on the basis of a Big Lie, for there was absolutely zero evidence that Saddam Hussein had any plans to attack America with “Weapons of Mass Destruction” (the very notion is absurd on its face).
In fact, and contrary to what the war’s apologists in the Bush administration, the Deep State, Congress, and “conservative” media now claim, the intelligence that they presented in their case for war had its share of astute—now prescient—critics from the outset.  Yet it was these critics who they either ignored or ridiculed or, in at least one case, demonized as “unpatriotic.”
Bush’s domestic policies were just as destructive to America’s well-being as was his foreign policy of waging war against Third World countries.  The Patriot Act; No Child Left Behind; federal funding for embryonic stem-cell research; and bailouts for the banking and automobile industries were just some of the many lowlights of a presidency replete with lowlights.
We also mustn’t forget that the largest terrorist attack that had ever occurred on American soil, 9/11, as well as the worst financial crisis since the Depression both occurred on Bush’s watch.
In Mark Updegrove’s new book, Bush Junior laments that, as a result of Trump’s presidency, he may just be prove to be “the last Republican President.”
Lovers of peace and liberty the world over should pray without ceasing that Bush’s fear comes to pass.
If it does, they will have something else for which to thank President Trump.
Jack Kerwick [send him mail] received his doctoral degree in philosophy from Temple University. His area of specialization is ethics and political philosophy. He is a professor of philosophy at several colleges and universities in New Jersey and Pennsylvania. Jack blogs at At the Intersection of Faith & Culture.

Previous article by Jack Kerwick: Reason Is Whiteness