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Bush: Worst U.S. President Ever ? (article)

Thu Apr 20, 2006 12:15 am

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The Worst President in History?

One of America's leading historians assesses George W. Bush

George W. Bush's presidency appears headed for colossal historical disgrace. Barring a cataclysmic event on the order of the terrorist attacks of September 11th, after which the public might rally around the White House once again, there seems to be little the administration can do to avoid being ranked on the lowest tier of U.S. presidents. And that may be the best-case scenario. Many historians are now wondering whether Bush, in fact, will be remembered as the very worst president in all of American history...


Complete article:

http://www.rollingstone.com/news/profil ... .0.12.1069

I know, consider the liberal-oriented source (Rolling Stone)
but then Sean Willentz is an acclaimed historian.
(His "Chantz Democratic" about 19th century New York is terrific.)


Your thoughts on the article subject?

Thu Apr 20, 2006 12:28 am

Worst ever? Certainly not. But he's probably knocking at the door of the bottom quintile, in my estimation.

To break into the Elite 8 of atrocious presidents is pretty tough. You've got to face off against Hoover, Andrew Johnson, McKinley, Buchanan, U.S. Grant, Harding, Coolidge and Nixon.

I don't think he's even made it into those ranks yet. But if he really pours it on and applies himself, he can still make it into the Hall of Fame.

Thu Apr 20, 2006 1:04 am

It's a bit premature to start slinging the historical mud just yet. Most historians agree that it takes several decades to really even begin to assess a president's full impact and legacy...it's certainly not something that can or should be done while he still occupies the oval office.

Consider Lyndon Johnson for example...for years he's gotten a rap as an awful president, primarily due to Vietnam. It's only been in the last year or two that people are starting to look at him more closely and objectively and realize the positive things he accomplished such as civil rights legislation.

Let's look back on Bush's presidency as a whole, not while we're in the middle of the thing...that's my take.

Thu Apr 20, 2006 1:07 am

Because we have to endure his reign, he gets my vote. If they drop nuclear weapons on Iran, he'll get everyone's vote. But then, it won't matter anymore.

DJC

Thu Apr 20, 2006 2:33 am

There have undoubtedly been presidents who have been just as incompetent and just as corrupt. However, Bush has the lead as the worst for the potential impact of his presidency in terms of destroying the US's international prestige, financial stability, political stability and for starting an unjust illegal war. The damage that he has done will be very hard to undo.

"Bush has blazed a radical new path as the first president in American History who is outwardly hostile to science." This is something I never put together but- global warming, stem cell research, intelligent design etc. It fits.

On the Clinton scandal versus Bush's misplay and condemnations from Tom Delay (who even outstrips the president in terms of bald faced corruption), Henry Hyde and Bill Frist. "In the face of Bush's more definitive dismissal... the silence of these three quarters has been deafening."

"Between 2001 and 2005, the Bush White House has borrowed 1.05 trillion dollars more than all of the previous presidencies combined." Wow! This does capture the main flaw of the piece. When Willentz cites numbers they aren't sourced. Perhaps this is because this is a mainstream publication and the numbers are easily obtainable. Still documentation only helps your case.

There are two points here though that deserve particular attention. One is the ridiculuous and senseless no child left behind laws which mandates all of these improvements that districts don't have any way to finance. Even more, it's chock full of non-educational special interest clauses like mandating access to military recruiters including the students' home phone numbers.

And on a very similar note, the devastation the Bush tax cuts have dealt to local taxes. New Jersey is a state that in particular that is heading in particular to a financial crisis. Part of that has been extensive spending but a larger part has been decreased aid from federal sources. The state's spending has largely been in the past four years to keep up with existing bills and local municipalities haven't received an increase in state aid in about five years exploding local property taxes. Meanwhile the expenses of school districts partly fueled by the no-child left behind mandate are rising with no money to pay for it.

Thu Apr 20, 2006 3:48 am

My prediction is that this is going to be another 15 page thread... can't wait to see who comes out of the woodwork for this one. :roll:

JEFF d
EP fan

Thu Apr 20, 2006 5:26 am

I prefer the woodwork to the hysterical blathering I've seen thus far. :lol:

Thu Apr 20, 2006 6:11 am

Because you can't answer. There are no logical positions to support this presidency. Oh, I forgot it's all Bill Clinton's fault.

Thu Apr 20, 2006 6:35 am

No use arguing with conspiracy nuts........

Your seat on the Presley Commission awaits.Don't forget your tin foil hat :wink:

You may actually recall that Bush wasn't my choice as Prez..........we were just left with no choice by the looney left's alternative. I despise neo=con philosophies.......

It's just sad to see an intelligent poster reduced to such blather......most of which you would pick to pieces if such unfair and unsupported tripe was posted about Clinton.Sure, I could spend a couple of hours picking the drivel apart just in the short error-filled post you wrote here........but to what end??

You sound exactly like the rightwing nutjobs that had Bill killing dozens and running drugs in his spare time.

The sad part is that you don't even see that your sense of reason and reality have been subverted by blind hatred, and you reflect exactly the sort of extremism you spend the rest of your time here railing against.

PS.........the edits are from messing this up when I copied and pasted my final post below
Last edited by Scatter on Fri Apr 21, 2006 9:27 am, edited 3 times in total.

Thu Apr 20, 2006 12:28 pm

That's your response all the time when you have no position- it's either media conspiracy or blather. Sorry but you have to be called on it.

There is no hysteria here. When the federal government cuts taxes and increases expenses that money has to come from somewhere. No one made up this stuff about the deficits, it's a 100 percent documented fact. When the federal government cuts outlays to states and municipalities where do you think that money to pay for state and local program comes from? It doesn't drop from the sky. The local municipalities have to raise property taxes or cut services and the states either have to raise taxes cut services or borrow which eventually results in raising taxes or cuts services. And because the president cuts revenues to the state and municipalities do you think that suddenly means they need less police officers and less teachers or that the roof on a school will fix itself or a road will overlay itself? How in your supposedly pragmatic worldview do you implement a mandated educational program like say a foreign language at the elementary level? Your math teacher doesn't suddenly grow a degree in Spanish. There has to be money for that program coming somewhere. While you're cutting income tax, that's a tax increase for the people who have to fill that mandate. I see this happening from the front lines every day.

There's no blather in the point about the no-child-left behind act including non-education clauses like allowing military recruiters access to children's information. It's right in the act.

That's not conspiracy nuts. You can only get by on this marginalizing dissenting opinions of the president for so long. A Harris poll taken just yesterday found the president's approval rating at a staggering 35 percent and found only 27 percent believe that the country is headed in the right direction. The president's supporters are the fringe party not the other way around.

There is no unsupported tripe here. The problem is that the evidence is too well supported.

Bush's misuse of prewar information has been incredibly well documented. How many documents do you need? How many witnesses do you need? The supposed recently revelation that the lost WMD were air lifted in Syria turned out to be a big nothing supported by nothing but second hand rumor information.

The war strategy was just recently criticized by a group of retired generals and the fact that we're still there three years later billions of dollars in the hole pretty much supports their opinion.

The government's own statistics support the fact that Bush came into office with a surplus and spent the country into the largest deficit in history. Check the OMB.

Bush himself publicly admitted that he tapped wires without warrants. This is despite the fact that he can seek a warrant up to 72 hours after the tap. The FISA act in its entirety is again easily available on line.

The Bush administration admitted that it kept prisoners in Guantanamo Bay without charges for a period of nearly four years. The names of hundreds of those prisoners were just released yesterday. Check Yahoo news.

I didn't make up the fact the number of people under the poverty line increased during the Bush administration again use a consultation of the government's own websites for proof. That's not conspiracy that's fact.

I didn't make up the fact that Bush was president on 9/11 or that he didn't hold a cabinet level meeting on a terrorism until days before the attack.

It wasn't any conspiracy speculation that Bush threatened to veto a congressional ban on torture. He said it openly many times.

It wasn't any conspiracy theory that posited that Bush knew nothing about the Dubai ports take over. He admitted it himself and he still threatened to veto a congressional block of the deal.

Is it my imagination that Osama Bin Laden has not been caught nearly five years after the 9/11 attacks?

Is it a conspiracy that conservative pundits like William F. Buckley and Pat Buchanan have disavowed the Iraqi war? Is it a conspiracy that some of the Bush administration's harshest critics have come from former members of the administration like Christie Todd Whitman who took the job as head of the EPA only to find out they wanted a figure head and weren't interested in enforcement.

Was it a conspiracy that the federal government mucked up much of its response to Katrina largely because the president placed political cronies with little experience in high powered positions?

And on and on and on. The president's record is indefensible. To muster a mere 35 percent (some polls as low as 32) approval rating you really have to muck up.

Thu Apr 20, 2006 2:32 pm

Well, yeah, but history might show Bush in a different light, mightn't it ?

The knight in shining armour on a white steed who single-handedly saved the world from corruption, pollution, hunger and war !

Or perhaps not.

Thu Apr 20, 2006 3:34 pm

I think Colin (maybe) sees the point I was trying to make.

In his own time, Lincoln was villified by many... including many in the northern states for the way he handled the Civil War and other domestic policies...including what some regarded as misuse of presidential power...suspending habeas corpus, etc.

Today he is regarded as our finest president. I'm not comparing Bush to Lincoln, but you can see where I'm going with this.

History may be kinder to Bush through the advantage of distance and objectivity than we may ever be.

Thu Apr 20, 2006 4:29 pm

That's it for this week's edition of Crossfire folks. Be sure to tune in next week when LTB and I will debate whether women should be allowed to display Rastafarian dreadlocks from their pubic hairs at public beaches.

Thu Apr 20, 2006 5:18 pm

Pete Dube wrote:....display Rastafarian dreadlocks from their pubic hairs at public beaches.


I'm not sure that would be physically possible.

The 1969 Masters & Johnson study into female pubic hair arranging strongly suggested that Rastafarian dreadlocks were a style not to be attempted without proper professional guidance and advice, and even then only with extreme caution.

Thu Apr 20, 2006 5:34 pm

Colin, had I known you were an authority on the subject I would've booked you for the show! :)

Thu Apr 20, 2006 11:27 pm

I don't think history will be kinder to Bush because of his method of decision and his abuse of presidential powers among other things. This is not saving the Union. The slack I will give him is not what he is done but on what he could do in the next few years. If he arrives at some kind of detente with Iran and the Middle East like Nixon did with Russia and China then I think that he will escape the bottom rungs of infamy.

Fri Apr 21, 2006 12:02 am

LTB wrote:
I don't think history will be kinder to Bush because of his method of decision and his abuse of presidential powers among other things. This is not saving the Union.


You're correct. In fact, today's issues are far more important than just saving the union. Lincoln could have let the south go in peace (as many northerners suggested he should) and we would probably be happily co-existing with the CSA today.

Bush faces the task of preserving the entire country from a foreign enemy that won't rest until we're obliterated. Say what you will about his means to prevent that end, but he's got a sh*tload more on his plate than the vast majority of his predecessors.

I'm not a Bush apologist, but I'll reserve final judgement on his presidency at least until his successor is sworn in, and even then perhaps a few years longer so we can fully appreciate the impact of his terms in office.

Fri Apr 21, 2006 12:50 am

Well, it is a parlor game, after all, as historian Willentz freely admits.

This is a rather sober-minded bunch that do this privately to pass the time
and certainly know that only time will allow the full history to be told.

Still, as they say about newspapers, they are the first draft of history.
We do have a lot of facts at our disposal and it's not looking good.

Given what Willentz lays out (and LTB as well), it's going to be an uphill battle for him extricate himself from these obstacles and challenges that have either come his way or that he's helped bring on.

Make no mistake, it's our battle too and I'd love to see him turn it around.
The nation and probably much of the world cannot withstand such failures.

Personally, it's time's like this that make me wish the U.S. system allowed for the callling of new elections...

January 2009 is still a long way off :!:

Fri Apr 21, 2006 2:20 am

Conceding that the war on terror is as important as preserving the Union (I don't agree but agree to let the long run of history decide), Lincoln did not preserve the Union by invading Mexico, a move that would be equivalent to GW's invasion of Iraq.

I think what GW will pay for historically is his haphazard method of decision making. From the cronyism to the manipulation of facts to achieve an ideological end to the dismissal of expert input to the lack of research. There's an "Oh what the hell" attitude to this presidency that results in disaster after disaster and approval ratings in the 1930s.

Fri Apr 21, 2006 9:28 am

Bike, to be honest I wasn't even planning on looking at this thread again, but curiosity got the best of me.

And I wouldn't have responded, except you so completely whiffed at the point I was making that I felt compelled to.

Let me put my post here with some clarifying commentary.......




No use arguing with conspiracy nuts........

Now, mark the words I use. CONSPIRACY NUT.........

Your seat on the Presley Commission awaits.Don't forget your tin foil hat :wink:

Tin foil hat..........Presley Commission. Are these allusions to policy positions?? No........they are CONSPIRACY references. Aliens. Elvis is alive. Pharmaceutical companies hiding the cure for cancer.500 MPG carbeurators. So far so good???



You may actually recall that Bush wasn't my choice as Prez..........we were just left with no choice by the looney left's alternative. I despise neo=con philosophies.......

My only reference to policy/philosophy noted the disagreement I have philosophically

It's just sad to see an intelligent poster reduced to such blather......most of which you would pick to pieces if such unfair and unsupported tripe was posted about Clinton.Sure, I could spend a couple of hours picking the drivel apart just in the short error-filled post you wrote here........but to what end??

You sound exactly like the rightwing nutjobs that had Bill killing dozens and running drugs in his spare time.

Last two paragraphs again reference the conspiracy thrust of the post .Note these words carefully.Blather......unfair.......unsupported tripe.......nutjobs.....Clinton the murderer........Clinton the Mena airport drugrunner.

I am not referencing policy differences. I don't even broach the subject.I'm comparing (as I explicitly wrote) your treatment of Bush with the nutjobs who believe to this day that Clinton had dozens murdered for him.

Vince Foster......Ron Brown......his former investigator in Arkansas.......basically anyone who died and hated Clinton was believed murdered by him. NUTJOBS.

Clinton ran drugs out of the Mena, Ark airport. Clinton was working with the U.N. to undermine National sovreignty. Clinton never released his full medical records because he is really sterile, therefore Chelsea isn't his daughter........NUTJOBS


So far so good???

The sad part is that you don't even see that your sense of reason and reality have been subverted by blind hatred

Again......lost reason......reality.......HATRED. Just like the anti-Clintonite nutjobs.

, and you reflect exactly the sort of extremism you spend the rest of your time here railing against.

EXTREMISM........none of these are policy points, yet you respond with a policy paper.

No, it's the use of terms such as "corrupt"......"deceitful".......illegal warrior.........on and on and on in post after post after post.

The implications are clear, and if they are not clear enough all one needs to do is look up the many threads you've spewed your vitriol upon.

Let me see if I can encapsulate what you repeatedly assert or slyly imply.........

BUSH STOLE 2 elections.........he had Diebold rig all the machines ......he hired poll workers to keep the "darkies" away (still haven't been able to find any evidence, though for 5 years the media has been digging)........just so he could get into the White House and avenge his daddy upon Saddam for the assassination plot and the unfinished business of Iraq.........he deviously manipulated the evidence from Iraq (which Clinton apparently manipulated as well, since he reached the same conclusions along with the entire political left wing, the UN, and the rest of the world)..........He rammed through the Patriot Act so he could make himself a virtual dictator.........he hired Haliburton to enrich Cheney (though Cheney was divested from Haliburton, and there was only Haliburton and a problematic French firm capable of doing the job)...........he has manipulated oil prices to enrich his oil buddies..........he has Elvis hiding in the West Wing..........aliens are developing our weaponry.........Jeb is an android......did I miss anything?? :wink: :lol:

You make Bush the target of your hatred and the object of all evil, exactly as the looney Right do to Bubba. Your sense of reason abandons you here......or vice versa.

As I said, you sound exactly like the right wing nutjobs you despise, and your extremism here is somehow allowable even as you decry the "extremists" who sound exactly as you do from the other side of the fence.

Just thought you would like to know the sort of company you appear to keep on this subject. Maybe you can begin to assert that Laura Bush is a lesbian so the Clinton corrollary will be complete. :D



Sun Apr 23, 2006 10:56 am

I have no doubt that's you what you see but it is wishful thinking on your part. Because there is no theory anywhere in my post.

Bush manipulating evidence to go to war was not my or anyone's theory. There were no WMD. The press and other prominent Americans went to find out why; This was why. Everyone has conceded it except Bush's cult of personality. Time, Newsweek, the New Yorker, the major network news shows. This isn't far left wing scrawls printed on a computer print out.

There's no speculation that Bush threatened to veto a torture ban. It doesn't rely on anyone speculation or backgroud rumors. He stated his policy clearly on television and through press conferences.

There's no speculation that he tapped wires without warrants despite the ridiculous easy FISA regulations. He admitted it. There's no speculation.

There's no speculation on the budget which is by far the highest in American history.

And as far as corruption it's hard to not to call him corrupt. He's classifying golf courses as part of the nation's wetlands because he sincerely believes they are right? His decisions on global warming are based on the best available science.

There's no speculation about the botched job on Katrina or the fact that he employed cronies instead of competents to run valuable departments.

Guantanamo Bay is also no theory. It's supported by Supreme Court cases, news reports and reports from third parties like the Red Cross. (Those pinkos.)

The Patriot Act did get rammed through as many congressmen and women, in an act worthy of their president, voted on it without even reading it. They deserve condemnation just as much as their president. Still, it's bad law.

I actually don't recall ever mentioning the 2000 election on the board. As for the 2004 election my only thoughts were my dismay at people placing bigotry above their well being and about Vice President Cheney running around the nation claiming that everyone was going to be blown to smithereens if they didn't vote for Bush despite the fact that September 11 had occurred on Bush's watch.

I also don't recall ever using the term "illegal war" as it is very abstract concept though I may as a inappropriate synonym for immoral war. Again even the idea is not illogical thinking. A country attacks another country who has not attacked it and there is no immediate threat to provoke the attack. It's hard for anyone to call that a just war. Even if the President didn't cherry pick his evidence that is still reason to give him the boot. You can't have oops in matters of life and death.

Finally I don't think I've mentioned Halliburton as well, maybe once. The intricacies of that large a contract are beyond my expertise. The Administration's claim that Halliburton is the only firm or one of the firm's large enough to handle that big a contract might very well be true. However, most politicians realize that the appearance of impropriety can be nearly as bad as the thing itself. Really what are people supposed to think when the Vice President's company or ex-company lands these mega million dollar contracts? The burden of proof has to be on the administration or you would have politicians rob the country blind.

There is nothing in my dismissal of the president that is not based on his job performance. The only left wing papers these theories came from were the news papers, magazines and television news. (Outside of Keith Olberman, who spends more time on celebrities than anything else, try and find a liberal on TV news.)

Mon Apr 24, 2006 8:50 am

likethebike wrote:I have no doubt that's you what you see but it is wishful thinking on your part. Because there is no theory anywhere in my post.

REALLY???Hmmmmmmm.......
Bush manipulating evidence to go to war was not my or anyone's theory. There were no WMD. The press and other prominent Americans went to find out why; This was why. Everyone has conceded it except Bush's cult of personality. Time, Newsweek, the New Yorker, the major network news shows. This isn't far left wing scrawls printed on a computer print out.

Put on your thigh-high waders........the above BS is pretty high :lol:


LISTEN TO THEM NOW AND SEE WHAT THEY SAID THEN

"One way or the other, we are determined to deny Iraq the capacity to develop weapons of mass destruction and the missiles to deliver them. That is our bottom line."
-President Clinton, Feb. 4, 1998

"If Saddam rejects peace and we have to use force, our purpose is clear. We want to seriously diminish the threat posed by Iraq's weapons of mass destruction program."
-President Clinton, Feb. 17, 1998

"Iraq is a long way from [here], but what happens there matters a great deal here. For the risks that the leaders of a rogue state will use nuclear, chemical or biological weapons against us or our allies is the greatest security threat we face."
-Madeline Albright, Feb 18, 1998

"He will use those weapons of mass destruction again, as he has ten times since 1983."
-Sandy Berger, Clinton National Security Adviser, Feb, 18, 1998

"[W]e urge you, after consulting with Congress, and consistent with the U.S. Constitution and laws, to take necessary actions (including, if appropriate, air and missile strikes on suspect Iraqi sites) to respond effectively to the threat posed by Iraq's refusal to end its weapons of mass destruction programs." Letter to President Clinton, signed by:
-Sens. Carl Levin, Tom Daschle, John Kerry, and others Oct. 9, 1998

"Saddam Hussein has been engaged in the development of weapons of mass destruction technology which is a threat to countries in the region and he has made a mockery of the weapons inspection process."
-Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D! , CA), Dec. 16, 1998

"Hussein has ... chosen to spend his money on building weapons of mass destruction and palaces for his cronies."
-Madeline Albright, Clinton Secretary of State, Nov. 10, 1999

"There is no doubt that ... Saddam Hussein has reinvigorated his weapons programs. Reports indicate that biological, chemical and nuclear programs continue apace and may be back to pre-Gulf War status. In addition, Saddam continues to redefine delivery systems and is doubtless using the cover of a licit missile program to develop longer-range missiles that will threaten the United States and our allies."
Letter to President Bush, Signed by:
-Sen. Bob Graham (D, FL,) and others, Dec 5, 2001

"We begin with the common belief that Saddam Hussein is a tyrant and a threat to the peace and stability of the region. He has ignored the mandate of the United Nations and is building weapons of mass destruction and th! e means of delivering them."
-Sen. Carl Levin (d, MI), Sept. 19, 2002

"We know that he has stored secret supplies of biological and chemical weapons throughout his country."
-Al Gore, Sept. 23, 2002

"Iraq's search for weapons of mass destruction has proven impossible to deter and we should assume that it will continue for as long as Saddam is in power."
-Al Gore, Sept. 23, 2002

"We have known for many years that Saddam Hussein is seeking and developing weapons of mass destruction."
-Sen. Ted Kennedy (D, MA), Sept. 27, 2002

"The last UN weapons inspectors left Iraq in October of 1998. We are confident that Saddam Hussein retains some stockpiles of chemical and biological weapons, and that he has since embarked on a crash course to build up his chemical and biological warfare capabilities. Intelligence reports indicate that he is seeking nuclear weapons..."
-Sen. Robert Byrd (D, WV), Oct. 3, 2002

"I will be voting to give the President of the United States the authority to use force-- if necessary-- to disarm Saddam Hussein because I believe that a deadly arsenal of weapons of mass destruction in his hands is a real and grave threat to our security."
-Sen. John F. Kerry (D, MA), Oct. 9, 2002

"There is unmistakable evidence that Saddam Hussein is working aggressively to develop nuclear weapons and will likely have nuclear weapons within the next five years ... We also should remember we have always underestimated the progress Saddam has made in development of weapons of mass destruction."
-Sen. Jay Rockefeller (D, WV), Oct 10, 2002

"He has systematically violated, over the course of the past 11 years, every significant UN resolution that has demanded that he disarm and destroy his chemical and biological weapons, and any nuclear capacity. This he has refused to do"
-Rep. Henry Waxman (D, CA), Oct. 10, 2002

"In the four years since the inspectors left, intelligence reports show that Saddam Hussein has worked to rebuild his chemical and biological weapons stock, his missile delivery capability, and his nuclear program. He has also given aid, comfort, and sanctuary to terrorists, including al Qaeda members ... It is clear, however, that if left unchecked, Saddam Hussein will continue to increase his capacity to wage biological and chemical warfare, and will keep trying to develop nuclear weapons."
-Sen. Hillary Clinton (D, NY), Oct 10, 2002

"We are in possession of what I think to be compelling evidence that Saddam Hussein has, and has had for a number of years, a developing capacity for the production and storage of weapons of mass destruction."
-Sen. Bob Graham (D, FL), Dec. 8, 2002


"[W]ithout question, we need to disarm Saddam Hussein. He is a brutal, murderous dictator, leading an oppressive regime ... He presents a particularly grievous threat because he is so consistently prone to miscalculation ... And now he is miscalculating America's response to his continued deceit and his consistent grasp for weapons of mass destruction ... So the threat of Saddam Hussein with weapons of mass destruction is real ..."
-Sen. John F. Kerry (D, MA), Jan. 23. 2003



NY Times and Washington Post Commit Huge Flip-Flop on Iraq WMD
Posted by Noel Sheppard on November 16, 2005 - 12:13.
It’s become almost too commonplace of late – an article by a major, mainstream newspaper suggesting that President Bush misled the American people, as well as Congress, concerning the existence of WMD in Iraq, and the threat Iraq represented to America. For instance, just yesterday, the New York Times published an editorial with such a premise:

“To avoid having to account for his administration's misleading statements before the war with Iraq, President Bush has tried denial, saying he did not skew the intelligence. He's tried to share the blame, claiming that Congress had the same intelligence he had, as well as President Bill Clinton. He's tried to pass the buck and blame the C.I.A.”

And, a front-page Washington Post article this past Saturday by Dana Milbank and Walter Pincus asserted this same theme:

“President Bush and his national security adviser have answered critics of the Iraq war in recent days with a two-pronged argument: that Congress saw the same intelligence the administration did before the war, and that independent commissions have determined that the administration did not misrepresent the intelligence.”

Yet, neither of these two publications was so convinced about this issue before Bush was first inaugurated in January 2001, and both took rather strong positions about the existence of such WMD in Iraq, and the threat that country represented to America. In fact, as our friend at EU Rota masterfully pointed out yesterday, the New York Times had been publishing editorials for at least two years concerning the presence of WMD in Iraq, and why the United States, to protect America’s national security interests, must do something about it:

“The past few years have been discouraging ones for efforts to check the spread of nuclear weapons. India and Pakistan have abruptly pushed their way into the club of states possessing such arms. North Korea, Iraq and Iran are pressing against the door.” 4/24/00
“More than eight years after American-led military forces triumphed in the Persian Gulf war, Saddam Hussein still rules Iraq and continues to cheat on the surrender terms that require him to eliminate all biological, chemical and nuclear weapons and missiles capable of delivering them. His galling defiance and America's frustrations in dealing with him have again made Iraq an issue in a United States presidential campaign.” 10/12/99
“Saddam Hussein would clearly prefer to have no U.N. arms inspectors snooping around as he tries to rebuild his biological and chemical arsenals and continues his pursuit of nuclear weapons. He has already had more than 13 months to work on these programs unobserved.” 12/25/99
“When Richard Holbrooke takes over as America's representative to the United Nations, one of the most important issues he will face is the stalemate over Iraq. The Security Council has been in disarray on Iraq, and Saddam Hussein has been taking advantage. With no international arms inspectors present, he has been free to rebuild his purchasing networks and resume production of toxic and nuclear weapons and missiles to deliver them.” 8/15/99
“If the United Nations were to end sanctions against Iraqi oil exports and let the proceeds flow through the hands of Saddam Hussein, there is little doubt what would happen. He would use the oil money to rebuild his arsenal of biological, chemical and nuclear weapons and extended-range missiles.” 1/15/99
“If Saddam Hussein were not such a recidivist, it might be possible to fashion a less confrontational approach to restrain Iraq and prevent it from producing and using weapons of mass destruction.” 12/27/98
“Initial Pentagon assessments of the four-day air campaign against Iraq suggest that Saddam Hussein suffered heavy but not irretrievable losses. It may take Iraq as long as a year to restore its ability to deliver biological and chemical weapons against potential targets in the Middle East.” 12/21/98
“The Security Council must also insist on unhindered access to all sites that Iraq promised to provide. Washington can quickly renew the threat of military force. Additional American troops and equipment are continuing to arrive in the Persian Gulf region. Inspections, if they can proceed freely, are still the most effective way to track down and eliminate Iraq's terror weapons. But if Iraq will not permit the inspectors to do their jobs, Washington will have no choice but to reduce Iraq's arsenal of deadly germs and chemicals by military force.” 11/24/98
“After Iraq's defeat in the Persian Gulf war, Baghdad accepted peace terms that required it to identify and destroy all elements of its biological, chemical and nuclear weapons programs and all but its shortest-range missiles. Iraq never fully complied with these obligations.” 11/10/98
“With an American strike against Iraq seemingly imminent, the Clinton Administration must clearly define its goals and the best military tactics for achieving them. Although diplomacy now seems exhausted, there is a faint hope that Saddam Hussein will blink at the last minute and start honoring his international obligations. But if Baghdad remains defiant, President Clinton would be fully justified in ordering an attack. The world cannot leave Mr. Hussein free to manufacture horrific germs and nerve gases and use them to terrorize neighboring countries. The primary purpose of military action should be to compel the return of United Nations weapons inspectors and assure their access to all locations suspected of harboring evidence of biological, chemical or nuclear weapons or missiles.” 11/13/98
“Emboldened by its past successes in curtailing United Nations arms inspections, Iraq has now virtually banned all monitoring efforts. Before Saddam Hussein will let this vital work resume, he unreasonably demands that the Security Council guarantee an early end to international economic sanctions against Iraq
"Such a commitment would relieve Baghdad of its obligation to prove it has eliminated all illegal biological, chemical and nuclear weapons and missiles that can deliver them.

"The threat of Iraqi chemical and biological weapons is too grave to treat exclusively as a diplomatic matter, as the White House now seems belatedly to recognize. If diplomacy backed by the threat of force does not budge Mr. Hussein, military action itself may be needed.” 11/3/98

And, the Washington Post published the following on November 3, 1998:

“In the end, though, sources here say, no one really has much faith that any
of these expedients will deter Iraq from its present course. In that case,
the sources add, it no longer would be possible to avoid choosing between
allowing Iraq's defiance to go unchallenged or turning to the threat and, if
necessary, the reality of air and missile strikes to compel its compliance."

"The latest Iraqi move is the second stage of a confrontation that began on
Aug. 5 when Baghdad blocked U.N. field inspections. At the time, the United
States, in contrast to its responses in earlier showdowns, did not threaten
force because of awareness that military strikes would get no international
support and would prove controversial domestically. This time, many
diplomats here believe, Washington would have to act, with or without
support, or forfeit its credibility in dealing with Iraq.”

“Saddam Hussein now has taken the final step in breaking his promises
of cooperation with the United Nations. He had for three months been
blocking surprise inspections by U.N. arms experts trying to ferret out
his clandestine nuclear- biological- and chemical-weapons programs. Now
he has said he will block even the regular, announced visits by U.N.
monitors whose work had been continuing. Absent a response from the
Clinton administration and the United Nations, nothing now will impede
Saddam Hussein's ambitions to maintain and rebuild the weapons of mass
destruction he promised to give up."
“The United States must respond with force if Iraq does not allow U.N.
teams -- passive monitors and surprise inspectors alike -- to resume
their work. It should respond as part of a U.N.-backed alliance if
possible, alone if necessary. Its bombing campaign should not be
symbolic but designed to destroy as much of Saddam Hussein's capability
to make and use weapons of mass destruction as possible. Yes, even such
a serious military effort might end with Saddam Hussein still in and
U.N. inspectors still out. That is why a serious strategy to deal with
Iraq must include a willingness to bomb more than once, if Saddam
Hussein again tries to reconstitute his weapons of mass destruction.”
These articles all raise an important question: If the New York Times and the Washington Post believed before Bush was inaugurated in January 2001 that Iraq had WMD and posed such a serious threat to America that military attacks were warranted, what has changed their minds now? If the president was guilty of misleading America, aren’t they? Maybe more important, aren’t they just Monday morning quarterbacking, and changing their view now that it appears that they, too, might have been wrong?



Soooooooo........was Bush manipulating evidence and influencing editorials for the Post and NY Times during the Clinton Admin too??? Dirty bastards, those sneaky Bush's :lol:



There's no speculation that Bush threatened to veto a torture ban. It doesn't rely on anyone speculation or backgroud rumors. He stated his policy clearly on television and through press conferences.

Well, why would you remove the option in case there is an imminent attack and someone has the knowledge but won't release it??

Thousands of Americans dead, but at least Abdullah the Terrorist wasn't hurt :roll:


There's no speculation that he tapped wires without warrants despite the ridiculous easy FISA regulations. He admitted it. There's no speculation.

Here are the relevant passages of the FISA regs (which you have obviously never read).

Case closed......


Under Section 4 of USSID 18, communications which are known to be to or from U.S. persons can't be intentionally intercepted without: (a) the approval of the FISA court…; OR (b) the approval of the Attorney General of the United States with respect to "communications to or from U.S. PERSONS outside the United States...international communications" and other categories of communications including for the purpose of collecting "significant foreign intelligence information."

USSID 18 goes on to allow NSA to gather intelligence about a U.S. person outside the United States even without Attorney General sanction in emergencies "when securing the approval of the Attorney General is not practical because...the time required to obtain such approval would result in the loss of significant foreign intelligence and would cause substantial harm to national security.”



There's no speculation on the budget which is by far the highest in American history.

Agreed........but war is costly.And I also disagree with the huge uptick in domestic spending.

But the hypocrisy evident here is staggering, because everytime a budget cut is mentioned, you and your lib cohorts go screaming into the night.

So........which is it?? Do you WANT more Govt spending (which you obviously have always loved before) only if enacted by Dems??


And as far as corruption it's hard to not to call him corrupt. He's classifying golf courses as part of the nation's wetlands because he sincerely believes they are right? His decisions on global warming are based on the best available science.

Here is a link for you. It contains actual scientific data, so don't be surprised if it gives you a headache.

http://www.aim.org/publications/aim_report/2002/15.html

Here's another relegating to the trash heap the notion that there is a consensus over human-caused global warming among respected scientists.

http://www.oism.org/pproject/s33p334.htm


There's no speculation about the botched job on Katrina or the fact that he employed cronies instead of competents to run valuable departments.

The cronyism charge is laughable, since it is part and parcel of politics, Republican and Democrat. Katrina was an unprecedented disaster........but the blame must be shared by the State and local officials who egregiously botched all attempts to aid them

Guantanamo Bay is also no theory. It's supported by Supreme Court cases, news reports and reports from third parties like the Red Cross. (Those pinkos.)

Don't be so hasty.All the Supreme Court decision held was that the petitioners could apply for Habeas Corpus hearings before U.S. courts. It said nothing about the legitimacy of the claims. That waits to be seen.

I guess Gitmo still beats beats being decapitated . A little perspective here.....


The Patriot Act did get rammed through as many congressmen and women, in an act worthy of their president, voted on it without even reading it. They deserve condemnation just as much as their president. Still, it's bad law.

That "bad law" has been upheld by the same Supreme Court that you lovingly cite in support of your Gitmo condemnation. Make up your mind.There's a word that describes your inconsistency here :lol:

I actually don't recall ever mentioning the 2000 election on the board. As for the 2004 election my only thoughts were my dismay at people placing bigotry above their well being and about Vice President Cheney running around the nation claiming that everyone was going to be blown to smithereens if they didn't vote for Bush despite the fact that September 11 had occurred on Bush's watch.

More name calling........ now it's bigotry to hold Islamist terrorists accountable for Islamist terror. :lol:

9/11 did indeed happen on Bush's watch........shielded from view and abetted by the moronic policies implemented under Clinton that prevented intelligence agencies from sharing info.

That issue was also addressed under the Patriot Act you cite as "bad law". Again......make up your mind.


I also don't recall ever using the term "illegal war" as it is very abstract concept though I may as a inappropriate synonym for immoral war. Again even the idea is not illogical thinking. A country attacks another country who has not attacked it and there is no immediate threat to provoke the attack. It's hard for anyone to call that a just war. Even if the President didn't cherry pick his evidence that is still reason to give him the boot. You can't have oops in matters of life and death.

Again......read the comments from the Times, Post, your lib heroes etc atop this post. Apparently, when it was the libs and Clinton threatening to go in and implement the duly passed UN resolutions, it wasn't immoral. Once more........make up your mind.

Finally I don't think I've mentioned Halliburton as well, maybe once. The intricacies of that large a contract are beyond my expertise. The Administration's claim that Halliburton is the only firm or one of the firm's large enough to handle that big a contract might very well be true. However, most politicians realize that the appearance of impropriety can be nearly as bad as the thing itself. Really what are people supposed to think when the Vice President's company or ex-company lands these mega million dollar contracts? The burden of proof has to be on the administration or you would have politicians rob the country blind.

The proof that there was no other company capable of doing the work is out there for the time it takes to run a Google search. You just won't find it on MoveOn.org, I guess.

There is nothing in my dismissal of the president that is not based on his job performance. The only left wing papers these theories came from were the news papers, magazines and television news.

Ummmmmm........PRECISELY :shock: :lol:

(Outside of Keith Olberman, who spends more time on celebrities than anything else, try and find a liberal on TV news.)

Well, you have to turn the TV on........aside from that, it's not too challenging.

Tue Apr 25, 2006 5:23 am

I don't care what you write in terms of dismissing the mass of the media and the mass of science or your disingenous arguments about the Patriot Act. No one is objecting to the Patriot Act because it allows the government agencies to share information (something Patriot Act or not is not happening.) What next I hate the troops because I oppose the war. But please no more intentionally misleading half fragments of information.

This is the SECOND time you have posted about the FISA and deliberately took a single passage out of context. As I have indeed read the FISA act and read all of it. Immediately after the line you cite comes this line A) the electronic surveillance is solely directed at i) The Acquisition of fhe contents of communications transmitted by means of communications used exclusively between or among foreign powers as defined in section 1801

B) There is no substantial likelihood that the surveillance will acquire the contents of any communication to which a United States person is a party.

Only the Limbaugh crowd would actually purport that the president draws power to perform an action from an act that EXPLICITLY prohibits that action. I hope you've been misinformed by media sources just as in your War Powers act post and that it is not blatant dishonesty.

As for the comments on Hussein. There is no question that he was an evil dictator and that he was problem with UN imposed inspectors and that he had WMD at one time. (We should know we sold them to him.) The question was was he an imminent threat in 2002 and did he have WMD in 2002 and would toppling Hussein be an effective move in battling terrorsim? You could say the same thing about 10 or 20 other dictators. The answer has clearly established at least in the 68 percent of the public's mind that think the president is doing a poor job, the answer is no. And military action designed to meet a limited goal to ensure access to inspectors is not a full scale invasion.

That anyone would even a backhanded defense of torture is mind boggling to me. The Bill of Rights is explicitly designed to prevent such actions. Is your loyalty to Bush or to your country and your own well being? The same thing about the comment being decapitated. Perhaps OJ should have plead when he killed his wife, it's not like I'm a serial killer.

I don't need the Supreme Court to prove anything about Gitmo. The statistics released by the Pentagon last week are enough. Something like 300 plus names and ten with charges.

Last I checked when a Democrat was in office there was a budget surplus not a deficit.

The bigotry I was speaking of in 2004 was the folks who placed issues like opposition to gay marriage near the top of their agenda for voting for Bush.

How exactly did Clinton shield Bush from view of Al Queda? He didn't hold a gun to Bush's head to keep from holding a meeting on a terrorism until days before the attack.

There's no use going on as clearly you regard any criticism of this administration as so much liberal conspiracy.

Please though from now on if you're going to present information make sure it is presented honestly.

Tue Apr 25, 2006 5:53 am

Scatter wrote:

More name calling........ now it's bigotry to hold Islamist terrorists accountable for Islamist terror. :lol:.



My wife and kids and I discussed it - slightly in jest but also seriously - and for a next door neighbor, we'd rather have a mafia goodfella living next door than a muslim cleric.
We'd feel safer with the mob than a muslim!

If that's an unfair assessment of muslims, then that's THEIR fault and they should improve their image. But it's all too painfully clear they want to destroy all America.

Tue Apr 25, 2006 7:00 am

likethebike wrote:I don't care what you write in terms of dismissing the mass of the media and the mass of science or your disingenous arguments about the Patriot Act. No one is objecting to the Patriot Act because it allows the government agencies to share information (something Patriot Act or not is not happening.) What next I hate the troops because I oppose the war. But please no more intentionally misleading half fragments of information.

Shabby straw man. That's usually your strong point........tired tonight??

This is the SECOND time you have posted about the FISA and deliberately took a single passage out of context. As I have indeed read the FISA act and read all of it. Immediately after the line you cite comes this line A) the electronic surveillance is solely directed at i) The Acquisition of fhe contents of communications transmitted by means of communications used exclusively between or among foreign powers as defined in section 1801

B) There is no substantial likelihood that the surveillance will acquire the contents of any communication to which a United States person is a party.

And, immediately after the section you just cited, one would find this passage.......

(S-CCO) Incidental collection of a U.S. persons' communications in a foreign communication may be processed and reported if there is valid foreign intelligence, the report is focused on the foreign side of the communication, and USSID 18 guidelines are followed for reporting.

Pot........meet kettle.

Only the Limbaugh crowd would actually purport that the president draws power to perform an action from an act that EXPLICITLY prohibits that action. I hope you've been misinformed by media sources just as in your War Powers act post and that it is not blatant dishonesty.

You didn't read far enough as evidenced by the quote you deliberately omitted. What was that about blatant dishonesty??

As for the comments on Hussein. There is no question that he was an evil dictator and that he was problem with UN imposed inspectors and that he had WMD at one time. (We should know we sold them to him.) The question was was he an imminent threat in 2002 and did he have WMD in 2002 and would toppling Hussein be an effective move in battling terrorsim? You could say the same thing about 10 or 20 other dictators. The answer has clearly established at least in the 68 percent of the public's mind that think the president is doing a poor job, the answer is no. And military action designed to meet a limited goal to ensure access to inspectors is not a full scale invasion.

Well I notice you clumsily sidestep the accumulated quotes from your media of record and political assorted hacks. Whether 68% of the voters know the facts or not......you do. To deny it is to outright lie.

Do you deny the quotes and essays above??? Do you deny the revisionist crap you are spewing now about how the evidence was manipulated by Bush while he was still in Texas??

The undeniable fact remains that YOUR party was rattling swords for YEARS over Iraq complete with threats to militarily intervene under Clinton. But when Bush follows through on your empty threats and weakness, all of a sudden selective amnesia hits. Laughable.

Blatant dishonesty indeed.......


That anyone would even a backhanded defense of torture is mind boggling to me. The Bill of Rights is explicitly designed to prevent such actions.

Hey bike.......the Bill of Rights applies to U.S. citizens..........not terrorist combatants on a field of battle. Think..........

Is your loyalty to Bush or to your country and your own well being? The same thing about the comment being decapitated. Perhaps OJ should have plead when he killed his wife, it's not like I'm a serial killer.

Well.....that sounds like a typical lib defense. Is your loyalty to your Country or to Howard Dean and to the further debilitation of our ability to defend it from the enemy?? If we had people like you running policy during WWII, we'd all be speaking German right now.

I don't need the Supreme Court to prove anything about Gitmo. The statistics released by the Pentagon last week are enough. Something like 300 plus names and ten with charges.

Funny how you appeal to the Supreme Court when it suits your agenda, and dismiss it when it doesn't. The "H" word comes to mind again.

The Supreme Court is Godlike in its wisdom when it references Gitmo ( where you erroneously ascribed the decision as relating to detainees status) but dismiss it when it upholds the Patriot Act(which you decry as "bad law"). Make up your mind..........


Last I checked when a Democrat was in office there was a budget surplus not a deficit.

There wasn't a war either. And it's funny that you, who have never met a Govt handout or spending program you didn't love, suddenly get all fiscally conservative when it suits you. Exactly the way you selectively cite Supreme Court precedents.

I believe I'm seeing a pattern here


The bigotry I was speaking of in 2004 was the folks who placed issues like opposition to gay marriage near the top of their agenda for voting for Bush.

Really........I don't recall gay marriage being discussed here. We were discussing Islamo-fascist terrorists. That is clearly where your bigotry comment was pointed. Nice try though.

How exactly did Clinton shield Bush from view of Al Queda? He didn't hold a gun to Bush's head to keep from holding a meeting on a terrorism until days before the attack.

Under Clinton's wise oversight, a decision was made to treat foreign terrorists as a law enforcement issue rather than as attacks by foreigners upon a sovereign power.

Therefore,the FBI was used to spearhead the fight against FOREIGN terrorists, which should have been a CIA/military enterprise. By using the FBI (domestic law enforcement) Grand Jury testimony was elicited in an attempt to build criminal cases. Such information couldn't by law be shared with intelligence agencies such as the CIA which is concerned with external threats.

The libs love to bitch that we should have connected the dots, but it was the myopic policies they implemented which kept the dots segregated.


There's no use going on as clearly you regard any criticism of this administration as so much liberal conspiracy.

Please though from now on if you're going to present information make sure it is presented honestly.

What hypocrisy......As shown above by your selective sourcing of FISA and convenient support of the Supreme Court until it disagrees with you (along with your amazing reincarnation as a fiscal conservative when it serves your ends), may I say again.......

Mr Pot.........meet Mr Kettle. We're getting nowhere.

Whoever took the under on the 15 pages wins. Tin foil hats all around!!!! :wink: