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Wall Street Journal: Treatment of Bush Has Been a Disgrace

bush2.jpgThe following is an article appearing in today’s Wall Street Journal:

Earlier this year, 12,000 people in San Francisco signed a petition in support of a proposition on a local ballot to rename an Oceanside sewage plant after George W. Bush. The proposition is only one example of the classless disrespect many Americans have shown the president.

According to recent Gallup polls, the president’s average approval rating is below 30% — down from his 90% approval in the wake of 9/11. Mr. Bush has endured relentless attacks from the left while facing abandonment from the right.

This is the price Mr. Bush is paying for trying to work with both Democrats and Republicans. During his 2004 victory speech, the president reached out to voters who supported his opponent, John Kerry, and said, “Today, I want to speak to every person who voted for my opponent. To make this nation stronger and better, I will need your support, and I will work to earn it. I will do all I can do to deserve your trust.”

Those bipartisan efforts have been met with crushing resistance from both political parties.

The president’s original Supreme Court choice of Harriet Miers alarmed Republicans, while his final nomination of Samuel Alito angered Democrats. His solutions to reform the immigration system alienated traditional conservatives, while his refusal to retreat in Iraq has enraged liberals who have unrealistic expectations about the challenges we face there.

It seems that no matter what Mr. Bush does, he is blamed for everything. He remains despised by the left while continuously disappointing the right.

Yet it should seem obvious that many of our country’s current problems either existed long before Mr. Bush ever came to office, or are beyond his control. Perhaps if Americans stopped being so divisive, and congressional leaders came together to work with the president on some of these problems, he would actually have had a fighting chance of solving them.

Like the president said in his 2004 victory speech, “We have one country, one Constitution and one future that binds us. And when we come together and work together, there is no limit to the greatness of America.”

To be sure, Mr. Bush is not completely alone. His low approval ratings put him in the good company of former Democratic President Harry S. Truman, whose own approval rating sank to 22% shortly before he left office. Despite Mr. Truman’s low numbers, a 2005 Wall Street Journal poll found that he was ranked the seventh most popular president in history.

Just as Americans have gained perspective on how challenging Truman’s presidency was in the wake of World War II, our country will recognize the hardship President Bush faced these past eight years — and how extraordinary it was that he accomplished what he did in the wake of the September 11 attacks.

The treatment President Bush has received from this country is nothing less than a disgrace. The attacks launched against him have been cruel and slanderous, proving to the world what little character and resolve we have. The president is not to blame for all these problems. He never lost faith in America or her people, and has tried his hardest to continue leading our nation during a very difficult time.

Our failure to stand by the one person who continued to stand by us has not gone unnoticed by our enemies. It has shown to the world how disloyal we can be when our president needed loyalty — a shameful display of arrogance and weakness that will haunt this nation long after Mr. Bush has left the White House.

(LINK to Wall Street Journal)

27 Responses

  1. Mr GW Bush will get s’char in the next world and history books in the next generation will show that he was one of the best but the least effective

  2. Whether you agreed with him or not, he surely was a man of principles.

    It’s interesting that the economic slow-down is blamed on him when both houses were Democrat, and of course a lot of the state governors.

  3. It is saddening to see such disloyalty- but I hope Bush knows there are many Americans who do respect and appreciate the wonderful moral man he is

  4. The current President George W. Bush has been a very good commander in chief. In hindsight – give it a generation or 2, the history writers will change the current outlook to praise.
    Granted he is not a great speaker and occasionally will poke fun on himself, however, he did WIN the war in Iraq and made huge leaps in Afghanistan and on the war on terror. Has been a true friend to Acheinu Bnei Yisroel here and in Eretz Yisroel.
    I for one feel very sad that this CHANGE is for real and we have a lot to daven for and hope that the Geula is imminent and we shall be speared of the horrific nightmares my grandparents still have – did you see last night and this morning the videos and pictures of the Obama supporters…
    Imagine – Aloiys Hashucher!

  5. Ok. How did Obama just win the white house?
    The answer is George W. Bush. No, I am not going to tell you that Bush is a devil and deserves to be shot. On the contrary, I believe that the president is a great man. Still, however, Obama was elected to become president because of Bush. How you ask? Because for eight years……the MEDIA fed the American people Lies about this great man. Not that he has no faults. We all have faults. Even Ronald Reagan had faults (immigration for example). Our president was belittled, put down, disparaged, and demeaned by the Main Street Media (MSM) for over 7 ½ years. All because their pastor boy, Gore, lost the white house.
    I believe that in the MSM’s eyes, Obama can, and will, do no wrong. It is up to us, as Conservatives (some will call us Republicans) to treat the next president as Bush was treated.
    For all of you, who think we need to take the high road on this one, remember: the good man ends last.
    It is our duty as Americans to get this country back to her conservative roots.
    2010 is next.

  6. To all those leftists screaming we have to start respecting Obama because he is now President-elect, practice what you preach. Since you didn’t- we won’t. At least Bush did many things for our country like preventing any more terrorist attacks, but was has Obama done for anybody but himself in the short time he has been in office. Don’t tell me give him time -he hasn’t had the opportunity, so then he shouldn’t have ran for the highest office until he had some experience doing some good!

  7. In Britain, they have a Head of State who stays out of politics and specializes in being a beloved, neutral figure. They get to pillage the Prime Minister, who is merely (officially), the Queen’s first servant. If our President didn’t dabble in running the government and tried to act like a non-partisan senior statesman while in office (a few have, but most prefer to micromanage and be party leaders), he would get little criticism or ridicule (but would be ignored).

    The US (and Israel) are republics. We treat our politicians with the respect they deserve, and always have (okay, people were respectful to George Washington, but that’s it). In general, in order to be respected, it helps for the president to be dead (the longer the better), which works poorly for Mr. Bush since he is fairly young, healthy and in a family that tends to live long (look at his parents). Consider recent books and articles defending Herbert Hoover and John Adams, both of whom were “fired” by the electorate.

  8. Interesting to note some who the country thought of as ‘popular’ and ‘charismatic’ — kennedy, clinton — did not possess the morals expected of a Commander-In-Chief, and did not have as many contributions to America as did other past presidents

    Does America go for the glitz and the looks instead of the ability?

    The internet is definitely a conduit to air legitimate (or otherwise) dirty laundry of anyone, and admittedly many heartless disparaging remarks were aimed at our current commander in chief.

    I suspect that any failures or mistakes of the President-Elect will be quickly explained or swept under the rug with the explanation that he is just learning, give him a chance. I don’t believe that same chance was given to President Bush. Ever.

  9. The frum community had it right … we were supportive (and rightly respectful) of Pres. Bush; we voted solidly for Sen. McCain; we voted for conservative members of the Congress, etc. And as some have suggested, we should formally show our hakaras hatov to a President who has displayed great principle in supporting Israel — even at the risk of taking positions that would undermine his popularity both in the US and EU. So let’s all write or email the President and tell him directly that we admire his support and defense of Israel against the tyranny of its enemies.

  10. Bush was the most sneaky and deceiving president we ever had. Nixon at least has an excuse because he was mentally ill.

    For the people who hate Obama, the reason he is the President-elect, is because of Bush.

    Commentators have stated that McCain actually did very well because with what happened on Wall Street, there is no republican in the land who could have won this election. Wall Street is just one of the many disasters that happened on Bush’s watch.

  11. i think Yesterday’s landslide victory for Obama can be laid on George Bush’s doorstep. He tried to please everyone and he tried desperately to be popular but in the end he pleased no one. He was a terrible dissapointment to all who supported him in 2004. If he were a true leader of the free world then why did he allow a two bit madman Chavez to take over a bautiful country Venezuela. Why did he sit by and watch a madman in Iran to continue to threaten the entire free world? and so the questions go on and on. The bottom line is that for his lack of leadership in his second term he will be remembered as a cowardly do nothing leader and that is why the Republicans lost big last night.

  12. this should teach you all that the “blame game” is a terrible thing. President Bush is a good man and does not deserve the horrible things said about him. The failing economy is not GWB’s fault – it’s because of greed.

    And let’s not forget that because of GWB’s war in Iraq, Saddam Hussein is dead.

  13. Our gedolim teach us that one must have respect for any “king”. During Watergate, Rav Avigdor Miller set an example by leading a letter writing campaign in support of President Nixon. In addition, at that time, Rav Miller allowed his name to be used in newspapers in support of President Nixon as well as reciting the Tefilah for the president, something he never did before or after, every Shabbos by Mussaf. I know because I was there. By contrast, President Bush was a truly great and moral man, whose core beliefs meshed well with the Torah community. He supported Eretz Yisroel on a level unmatched by any other president. His work against terrorism has prevented a reoccurance of 9/11 despite the fact that there have been attacks in other countries. While no one is perfect, he was unfairly maligned from DAY ONE!!!
    Now on the other hand, President-elect Obama is no where close to his high moral or Israel-friendly level. Yet, gedolim will tell you, if you bother to ask them, that we must respect him as President. Hopefully, we will see the fulfillment of “LEV MELOCHIM B’YAD HASHEM”.

  14. JOSH 31 (comment #7), I hope that you don’t live or vote in California. Prop 8 defines marriage for the state constitution as being between “ONE MAN AND ONE WOMAN”. While the State of California voted yes on Prop 8 (52%-48%), most of the NO votes (ie yes to shameful marriage) was from the SAN FRANCISCO AREA. I hope that you didn’t vote NO on prop 8, because if you did you were saying YES to shameful marriages.

    In reality, one of the main reasons why this prop did, b”h, pass is because of Obama. More than 70% of black voters in California, who voted for Obama, are family oriented and wanted marriage to remain “betweeb ONE MAN and ONE WOMAN” and voted YES on prop 8. Being that I live in California, this is the BIG silver lining in this election.

  15. k9hara, Josh31, was talking about a different ballot initiative in SF to rename an Oceanside sewage plant. He wasn’t talking about Prop 8.

  16. I agree with the title: Bush Has Been a Disgrace.

    #14: Amazing how in one sentence you can say “don’t blame Bush for the bad stuff” and then in the next tell us to give him credit for the Iraq war and killing Hussein. A, but not B? I’d also give him credit for causing a new President Hussein to be elected.

    I think that Obama is a big mistake for this country, but what choice did we have? McWar? A third party candidate? Don’t make me laugh. Elections are a sham.

    I think naming a sewage plant after him is insulting; I wouldn’t want someone to do that to me without my consent, but not undeserved. Even if the voters wanted it it should not have been allowed without W’s approval.

  17. Without intending to be rude,it’s pbvious that many commenters know little about politics. There are many things that need to work for a president to follow his preferrred agenda. For instance, to say that Bush is a weak president as he is allowing Iran to do as it pleases is naive. He started an extremely unpopular war (as Americans have no patience to wait out the long term benefits of this war and ignore the disastrous potential consequences if we walk out) that has lost much of its international support. And you expect him to try another war? He had absolutely no support whatsoever. I have no doubt that he is thinking, “the only thing that will work with Iran is a tough stance” but his hands are tied.

  18. As for the point of this article, whether you are a Mccain or Bush supporter or if you voted Obama and despise our president, there really should be no argument against this article. Politics aside, no one should EVER treat the president of his country with such depths of disrespect. That is amazingly unpatriotic. It doesn’t matter which party he is from, HE IS YOUR PRESIDENT AND TO SHAME HIM IS HARMFUL TO THE COUNTRY’S BEST INTERESTS!!!

  19. Where are the left wing congress’ approval ratings? Are they in the positive numbers again??

    The president was treated terribly by the drive bys. But then again the media showed their true colors over the last 10-15 years which is why we (until the evil Schumer has his way) we have conservative talkradio for us normal people to listen.

  20. G-D bless GW Bush a man of principle, a friend to Israel and to the Jewish people. Hate him if you want but since the disaster of 9/11 we have been safe because of GWB…will Obama have the guts to buck the popular and do what is right for America?
    I think not….hope I’m wrong!

  21. Today, 11/05/08 is definitely the darkest, blackest (no pun intended) day in the history of the U.S.A.
    The American people have unfortunately chosen evil chicanery over decency, showmanship over strength, and a lowlife over a leader. The enemy has penetrated right in to the Oval Office itself. As they say: “the burglar is in the bedroom, and he’s armed!”.
    I have no doubt whatsoever that even in the (highly unlikely) event that Obama’s poeple are reading this it’ll make no difference anyway. He already has his convoluted mind made up – and it’s NOT tov la’yehudim.
    We have always been taught that one of the greatest character flaws is a lack of hakoras hatov. It is this terrible character flaw that the rotten American society of our times displays so blatantly towards President George W. Bush. For the record, I strongly maintain that he has done an outstandingly excellent job! Please consider the following:
    1) First of all, he is someone who we know in our gut is a morally decent man, a true family man, and a “mentsch” of the highest order. That itself should be taken as a great relief after the constant stream of shameful scandals that always were present with Bill Clinton. Didn’t anyone in this country feel that their kids had seen too much if they only read the news in 1998?
    2) Our country was viciously attacked on September 11, 2001. Here is the record of how it was with previous presidents in similar situations: A) Truman dropped 2 atomic bombs in order to help the Japanese in their decision to end the war; B) JFK brought the country to the brink of nuclear war because of the Cuban missile crisis; C) Clinton, however, when our in embasies in Africa were attacked, went in the opposite direction – did nothing at the time, and didn’t follow up with an all-out war to completely anihilate Al Quaida. GWB’s response to 9/11 was strong and very hard-hitting, without risking the whole ranch by “pushing the Button”.
    3) The War in Iraq. I just don’t seem to get it: please tell me, when was there ever a war in history before where an attacked and threatened nation invaded an evil dictator half-a-world away, who hunkered down with an entrenched “insurgency”, and pulled it off WITH LESS THAN 5,000 CASUALTIES!!!? This has been the greatest war America has ever engaged in! How many American lives were lost in the Civil War? In WWI & II? In Vietnam? And NOT ONE American dared to criticize the President or the Government during those times. However, in this Iraq war, there were ONLY LESS THAN 5,000 casualties. And yet the incessant bashing of this fine commander-in-chief.
    4) The Economy – What would YOU have done if YOU were the president? Would you have outlawed sub-prime mortgages at a time when they were “the rgae”? If Bush would have come out with any statement criticizing the banks for their reckless practices during the “high-rolling” time our coutry experienced in the last few years, he would have encountered unbearable opposition. When it all came crashing down he worked very hard to implement the $700 bilion Bailout Plan, although it was extremely unpopular. He could have decided to DO NOTHING, pointing a finger of blame on many others. However, this mentsch has more responsibility than that. He did the best thing humanly doable considering the bitter circumstances.
    5) Israel & the Jewish people. This president will definitely be recorded as one of the great “chasidei umos haolam” of all time regarding the above. We always felt that we have a true friend in the White House. True, I would have liked to see more action in freeing Pollard, and less action in pressuring Israel into senseless cocessions. But, having said that, he still deservers heaps of praise & praise & praise from the entire Jewish Community. So it hurts to no end when A) Bush got a small minority of the Jewish vote in both ’00 & ’04; B) Der Shvartzer Anti-Semite gets 77% of the Jewish vote! C) And also, to see so even so many of our own “heimishe” yidden, who write their comments to this chashuva website, express such negative views of Cain & Bush. It really hurts! I can’t imagine how so many people mishelonu should unfortunately have so badly lost their sense of right & wrong.

  22. While Mr. Bush has proved to be a seriously flawed president– albeit a well-intended one– I believe his unrelenting vilification by both the Democrat and Republican parties is primarily attributable to both parties having been gradually taken over by what had long been their fringe elements.

    The pragmatists of the center-right and center-left, whose philosophical differences did not prevent them from working together in a functionally cooperative (if usually deal-brokered) manner, have been replaced by dogmatic, tight-lipped, unyielding, uncompromising extremists who are firmly committed to the idea that their way is the ONLY way, and that anyone with a differing idea should probably have been put down at birth.

    The result is that while the Democrats have elected a president whose idea of a solid economy is one in which the results yielded by the effort, time, intelligence, creativity, and innovation of the hard-working are taken away and handed over to the shiftless and lazy, the Republicans’ answer is to busily plot the 2012 presidential nomination of Sarah Palin– perhaps the only individual whose presence on a ticket could make Barack Obama appear qualified to lead the free world.

    (The question is NOT why John McCain, in a bad-tempered fit of pique over the fanatics of the Religious Right denying him his preferred choice, Joe Lieberman, threw caution to the wind and picked the most unqualified choice imaginable, knowing that adding her to the ticket would send the Christian zealots into a state of orgasmic rapture; no, the question is why the GOP has allowed itself to be taken over by these refugees from “Deliverance”, who are determined to make the same mistake (with the same PTA cookies-and-punch committee chair) four years hence.)

    With the wild-eyed socialists in charge on the left, and the morality-legislating Puritans running the show on the right, is it any wonder that Mr. Bush, who has attempted to run the ship of state from the center, has had those on both sides working mightily to capsize the boat?

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