Wednesday, October 12, 2005

Accusations Against President Bush

Below are the major accusations against President Bush that I have heard from the left in recent years.
I have grouped them into categories of Ridiculous, Somewhat Fair, and I Agree - then I will comment where appropriate.

Ridiculous - No Merit
War on Iraq diverted attention from war on terror - The whole war on terror thing is a silly concept to begin with

Campaigns on fear, not on hope - almost all politicians do this

Lied about service in National Guard - Has no relevance at this point

Lost 1 million jobs - any time a liberal cites a large number, it is purely for dramatic purposes. Like if spending goes up 1% you can say it more dramatically as "spending increased by 48.995 billion dollars"

Did not provide base level of national health care - Not his fault, majority of the country does not seem to want this yet

Weakened environmental regulations - He only supports corporations at the expense of the environment at the level that we knew he would when we voted for him

Did not fund No Child Left Behind - I'm not sure about this one, but seems to be a talking point I hear a lot from liberals that is probably without much truth

Used homeland security as excuse to erode civil liberties - I think the unfortunate reality is that Al Qaeda took away some of our civil liberties. Not Bush's fault.

Waged campaigns to personally attack / destroy political opponents - virtually all politicians do this. Doesn't make it right, but not something peculiar to Bush.

Failed to act on nuclear threats in North Korea and Iran - These are complicated issues, can't just blame Bush

Failed to make peace between Israel and Palestine - complicated issue, can't just blame Bush

Approinted arch-conservatives to federal judiciary - No one should be overly surprised by this

Favored Halliburton and personal friends with government accounts - This is a blowhard mantra that the liberals need to drop in favor of more pressing issues. Saying Bush started a war to get money for his corporate friends is silly - he's the President, there are plenty of easier ways for him to accomplish this if he chose to.

Encouraged xenophobia among US citizens - Not sure where this came from, I haven't seen much evidence of this

Somewhat Fair
Elected by the Supreme Court - This is primarily ridiculous, the only reason I put it here is that the Supreme Court let a lot of people down when they made this decision in a 5-4 "party line" vote

Falsely elected on compassionate conservative agenda; not compassionate toward lower classes - I think this is somewhat fair, not because he lacks compassion but because I think it is disingenuous for him to claim that he is any more compassionate than the typical Republican politician when he is not.

Declared unjust war on Iraq; false grounds for invasion - I think there were some legitimate reasons for the invasion, but the Colin Powell speech to the UN was disastrously wrong and convincing.

Exploited 911 for political gain - Yes, as many politicians have done. They have been conditioned their entire lives to take advantage of any situation

Said he would unite Washington, but has further divided it - This is fair because it was absurd for him to make a silly claim that he can do what no one else has been able to do.

Market decline / recession - President does not control the economy, but I do blame him for invading Iraq at a human and economic cost that we can not afford.

Allowed expiration of assault weapons ban - But people who voted for him do not seem to be worried about gun control.

Unprecedented secrecy of government activities - This is overblown, but does seem to have some truth to it.

Lowered taxes on top 1% - His tax cuts have been somewhat irresponsible. However, this is a tired liberal mantra that is unlikely to ever go away.

Failed to fix solvency of Social Security; focused on irrelevant personal accounts - I am disappointed that he wasted the opportunity for shoring up the system by diluting the argument with irrelevant and unpopular personal accounts .

I Agree
Rapidly turned government surplus into deficit - This is his weakest point, in my opinion. He has turned out to be a huge spender. I think this may be from never having to balance his own checkbook. It was irresponsible to make tax cuts when we were in a good surplus position.

Hired personal cronies to key government positions - True of many politicians, but the Brown/FEMA and Miers/Supreme Court situations have really not been good.

Damaged reputation of US around the world - I do think invading Iraq, along with the way we have handled other things such as the Kyoto treaty, have led to this deterioration with Bush at the helm.

Imposed personal religion/values on public policy - The whole stem cell decision, along with subtle comments in favor of creationism, are very troubling to me. I think this could be the one issues that spells the eventual collapse of the Republican party, especially as the center region of the country becomes better educated.

Failed to admit personal mistakes/responsibility - This is Bush's biggest character flaw, but to be fair in Washington he almost has no alternative.

Katrina rebuild - First, I think razing and rebuilding a city below Sea level is of questionable value. After being pressured politically into committing to this, he went way overboard in his commitment but never put forth any reasonable plan for paying for it.

Wants to repeal the estate tax - It is absurd and very expensive to completely repeal this tax. There is no reason we can't just move it up to, say, no tax on the first $5 million.

4 Comments:

At 1:48 PM, Blogger Nevada News said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

 
At 6:26 AM, Blogger BrianM said...

One commenet on funding of No Child Left Behind. This is according to a friend of mine who is a teacher. According to her, under NCLB, she is no longer allowed to require students to bring paper and pencils to school. This would be considered a hardship for students who couldn't afford paper and pencils. However, the school has no money to purchase paper and pencils for her classroom. So she has been purchasing these items out of her own pocket.

Any teachers out there want to confirm/refute this?

 
At 8:41 AM, Blogger eagle_fan said...

I would say the whole Haliburton mantra ranges from the unlikely to the ridiculous. Especially the "he pursued the war to make his friends rich", which I have heard on more than one occasion. This is riduclous at its face. Why would the president start a war, which has the potential of being very unpopular, to make his friends rich? He's the freakin' president, he doesn't need a war to give his cronies money!

 
At 11:58 PM, Blogger shoshanamom said...

The NCLB is just awful It is great for the slow, below avergae kids, but what it does is it forces the schools to now focus on the slower kids so that their test scores go up. since the bright kids are not an issue and don't need help- all the efforts go to the slow kids. who suffers? guess who, the smart kids. ask anyone in the gifted & talented program and they will tell you how awful NCLB is for gifted & talented.

I am probably not explaining this perfectly but hopefully you get the idea.

also- teahcers are so busy teaching just what is needed to know for testing they can't be creative anymore and stopped teaching anything not tested...thus the focus is 99.99% on main skills. for example they do no extras here in the local public school..just a bare minimum of science & soc. studies and nothing else.

as for the supplies, they have a supply list but they call is a "RECOMMENDED" supply list.

NCLB has made the schools worse and thus enrollment has decreased..here a LOT of kids go to either catholic/christian/private schools.

what they need to do instead is get rid of NCLB and come up with a federal mandatory curriculum that is fair- so kids in one district or state don't get a better education. why should the kid living in haverford get a better public school then my kid in bensalem?

 

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