I didn’t watch last night’s Republican debate, and if you did you have my condolences, but there are enough recaps floating around that the stomach-churning, mind-numbing, soul-killing essence of the event is fairly evident. The one statement from the debate that jumped out at me wasn’t from the Donald oddly enough, but from Jeb Bush. In response to a Trump jab about brother George’s disastrous presidency, Jeb huffed and puffed and told the billionaire huckster that his older sibling “kept America safe.”
George Bush kept America safe. Okay. On what planet is that true? Certainly not this one. As I remember, and let me know if I have this wrong, the worst terrorist attack in America’s history happened during George Bush’s watch. His administration ignored numerous warnings that an attack against us was likely, and then lied about that after the fact. He then used the attack as a pretext to set the Middle East on fire and attack a country that had nothing to do with 9/11. In addition to all of this, his lackadaisical response to hurricane Katrina was a disaster on top of a disaster.
Whether historians place GW at, or a name or two away from, the top of the “Worst American Presidents” list, no one other than immediate family will ever say or believe that George Bush kept this country safe. His wars in the Middle East greatly intensified anti-American feelings in that region and around the world, placing us at a much greater risk of another attack. His invasion of Iraq is considered an 8.0 on the Richter Scale of international policy blunders by virtually everyone on the planet except Dick Cheney and brother Jeb. Bush’s presidency was a disaster for America, and its ramifications – the creation of a totally unconstitutional police/surveillance state – live on like a monster that can’t be destroyed.
Let’s be honest, the problem isn’t just with George W. The entire Bush clan, from Prescott to George H. W. to GW to Jeb to the lesser known Marvin, have consistently pushed an undemocratic, elitist agenda that is in stark contrast to the democratic ideals on which this country was founded. Prescott Bush was a member of a group of elitists during the thirties who wanted to overthrow the government and institute a fascist state, and the Bush apples haven’t fallen very far from the tree.