Thursday, January 15, 2009

"Not all inheritences are good"

My friend Bob is a closet blogger, eschewing a website for emailing his essays instead. Here's one he sent today that I really liked. Thank God we've only got a week left of the jackass who seems to be taking forever to exit the White House.

Not All Inheritences Are Good

As President-elect Obama prepares to take office, he can review the many situations that he will inherit from President Bush. Although Bush promised in 2000 to create 20 million jobs, unemployment grew during 2008 to its highest rate since 1945. The present rate of 7.2% is the highest since--the last month of Bush’s father’s Presidential term. Bush assured us in 2000 that he would never allow a deficit, but he set many new records for creating the greatest deficits in our history. He stated that he believed in small government, then he increased the size of our government at a rate that was more than double the rate of any Democratic or Republican President in the past 40 years. Bush stated that he would “grow the economy,” but now we are in the worst economic situation since the Great Depression.

Obama will inherit the most complex international situation that any President has inherited in our history. Bush stated in 2003 that major military actions in Iraq were over, but that remark was followed by the deaths of tens of thousands of Iraqis and thousands of American soldiers and an unending war. Bush stated in 2000 that he would decrease our military presence in other nations and that our foreign policy would be a humble one. Then, he ordered our first attack on a sovereign nation; this was a war that he wanted to fight, it was not one we needed to fight. To avoid drawing attention to the massive funds that he was allocating for the Iraq war, he never identified the costs or placed funds into our budget. He ran the war as an overrun so that we could not see the expenditures in advance. In 2003, when he was questioned about the intelligence he had used to justify attacking Iraq he stated, “The intelligence I get is darn good intelligence.” Now, even Bush acknowledges that the “intelligence” was wrong.

Earlier this week, Bush stated that his plan to privatize Social Security failed, not because it was a bad idea, but because “legislature branches tend to be risk-averse.” If he had passed this bill, many Americans would not only have lost significant value in their personal retirement accounts, but also in their Social Security accounts. During the same press conference, he stated that there was constant job growth during most of his time in office. Job growth during his eight years was the lowest rate of growth of any eight-year period since the government began to collect records many decades ago.

Twice, Bush vetoed the children's’ health insurance plan, he eliminated a retraining program for workers who had been laid-off due after their companies took advantage of a Bush tax cut and moved overseas, he reduced home heating assistance for the elderly and disabled during a year when fuel prices were rising, he eliminated a college awareness program for high school students in poor areas who were trying to obtain a better education, he decreased the number of coal mine safety inspectors and the number of mining accidents increased, and many other programs.George W. Bush was the most out-of-touch President since Herbert Hoover, the most incompetent since Warren Harding, and many of his policies were the most mean-spirited since—well, I cannot think another of President like him.

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