A theme for an era?

Jonah Goldberg couldn’t be more wrong about the defining theme of the Bush era. There are in fact several themes…

The disaster era

It didn’t start with 9/11/2001, it actually started with the Sea/Tac earthquake in Washington state. Oh really, there was actually a political issue involved with that? There was. GW in fact had decided to eliminate the federal programs that required earthquake proofing of homes and businesses as “too expensive” for one and “unworkable” for another.  Yet, in the above described earthquake, and only as a result of the federal requirements, was serious damage limited on those buildings that had indeed been earthquake proofed. February 2001 would define how the Bush era would really be.  I quite frankly don’t care to govern a country that elected me to serve.  It was after all, how GW felt about governing Texas!

Business special interests before all others

It was said by Sidney Blumenthal in a book of his what President Bill Clinton tried to do in his last term in office and that was to freeze the assets of purported terrorist groups. But in the anti-Bush screeds that Goldberg claims “fizzled,” one claimed that GW had proceeded to unfreeze those assets because the business groups and various investors argued that they should be able to invest anywhere in the world that they chose.  The question remains, did this active decision by GW to cater in the early months of his presidency to business interests aid terrorists in the attack against this nation?  A failure of his administration in particular to heed the warnings of the CIA about Al Qaeda in the months preceding 9/11/2001 make that tragedy a fact?

How about Enron? Until it became known that Enron was behind the power blackouts that rolled through California and forcing the closure of businesses in the state, envronmentalists were accused of being the people who had created this mess.  But not Enron.  Enron was of course invited by Veep Cheney to sit on a task force for energy development in this nation.  Only because Enron ultimately went bellyup (because they didn’t ultimately get federal grants from the failure of Congress to pass an energy bill so we are told) did federal investigators begin to discover the massive problems to include fraud that Enron had created.  Only after the fact, did the GW administration implement some sort of regulation of the marketplace to “cure” any more Enrons from happening.  But not really.  Not when by 2008 we find a financial crisis of world-wide proportions engulfing jobs—lost; businesses—closing, banks and other lending companies—merging, federal bailouts—for companies deemed too big to fail.  And among the final nail in the coffin of self-government in the marketplace, the investment fraud of Bernie Madoff and all that happened to the people who trusted the fellow with their money.

The wars

If anything could divide a nation more, not the invasion of Afghanistan, because the Taliban gvt was after all harboring a deadly international terrorist organization, Al Quada, but rather, Iraq.  Before you assure the stability of the country you have invaded and by force remove its gvt; the decision is made to enter another country and by force remove its gvt.  For reasons of course that ultimately get debunked for the most part in the years that follow.  We pour so much of our resources into Iraq that we are factually neglecting the needs of American citizens and even further, enabling the Taliban and Al Qaeda to re-organize.  How about that one?  We don’t want Iraq to be a “failed state.”  But we don’t invest just as heavily in Afghanistan and more than assure that it could indeed be a failed state.

The Dixie Chicks “imploded” according to Goldberg, never mind their anti-GW views re Iraq but rather that “red-blooded Americans” were prepared to more than boycott people who were brave enough to challenge our going to war for all the wrong reasons or even no reason at all.  Revenge was what drove a lot of reactions to the Dixie Chicks telling the world from the wrong stage what they thought of GW’s foreign policies, revenge against people “not like us” and those they thought might sympathize with “the enemy.”  Or fear.  I saw more embracing of “socialism” from the time the Dixie Chicks put democracy in action by the GW supporters themselves, how dare anyone criticize the “dear leader” syndrome.  “Freedom fries,” the pouring of fine French wines into the gutters were more elements of socialism being put into place.  Because after all, foreign gvts such as France, didn’t want to kowtow to the “dear leader’s” infinite wisdom about Iraq.  And if the argument then was that France and etc. had prior business arrangements with Saddam Hussein, well, we did too, as Haliburton and etc. stood to benefit by an invasion of that nation.

Homeland insecurity and the war on the middle class

Lou Dobbs of CNN does a lot of ranting and raving about illegal aliens crossing our borders and drug wars along our borders.  This is legitimately a cause for concern.  But an equal cause of concern that Dobbs did not choose to discuss was the presumption of GW that Americans were deemed such a threat that if they made a phone call to Aunt Emily vacationing in Spain, their calls could be monitored.  More time and resources could be spent on fearing Americans as to why they could be calling out of country than fearing what businesses hiring illegal immigrants for the cheap labor that they provide might just invite.  Well, from what Dobbs was to disclose, quite a lot of problems, to include Social Security fraud and violent crime.  On the other hand, cheap labor cost American jobs.  As did outsourcing for “cheap labor.”  The war on the middle class accelerated to the point that at the close of the GW era, we have businesses closing now, not just because of the hellbender the financial institutions went on, but also because the jobless spend no money.  The Bush era can ultimately be defined as an all out effort to

Cripple or destroy the great nation of the United States of America

As he did his own businesses in the years before he entered gvt.  If GW has low approval ratings now, in the final days of his never really existed administration, an administration after all that Goldberg now complains did not have much of an impact—actually it did, in the most negative manner possible, it is because of all of the above.  Any president’s gvt will have an impact, but we will remember better those who provided something positive to the nation; Reagan had of course.  Or who stood out as a beacon or a lightning rod, which credit most definitely is one to give to Clinton.  But if an administration actively fumbles and doesn’t correct the problems it creates unless dragged kicking and screaming into having to do so.  Actively retaliates against fellow governing bodies by deciding that it doesn’t have to abide by the rules that its oath establishes it must obey.  Applies a Nixonian concept that when you are prez, nothing you do is wrong.  Then we finally have a name for this era and it can be called the “National Nightmare.”  And it will take time to heal from this nightmare.

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3 Responses to “A theme for an era?”

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