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Thread: George Bush will go down in history books as an incompetent moron

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    Elite Member Mariesoleil's Avatar
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    Default George Bush will go down in history books as an incompetent moron

    Historians: Bush presidency 'battered,' 'incompetent,' 'unlucky'

    Story Highlights
    -Presidential historians weigh in on how history will perceive President Bush
    -Zelizer: "There is not a lot of goodwill among historians" for Bush
    -Bush is often compared to Harry Truman, whose reputation improved over history
    -Kellerman: Bush will be remembered for his "incompetence"

    (CNN) -- With record low approval ratings and intense criticism for his handling of the Iraq war, Hurricane Katrina and the economy, the word most used to label George W. Bush's presidency will be "incompetent," historians say.

    President Bush makes remarks on the presidential transition November 6.

    "Right now there is not a lot of goodwill among historians. Most see him as a combination of many negative factors," said Julian Zelizer, a professor of history and public affairs at Princeton University's Woodrow Wilson School.

    "He is seen as incompetent in terms of how he handled domestic and foreign policy. He is seen as pushing for an agenda to the right of the nation and doing so through executive power that ignored the popular will," he added.

    But like so many presidents before him, Bush's reputation could change with time.

    Harvard University political history scholar Barbara Kellerman said when President-elect Barack Obama takes over in January, people may view Bush in a new light. Watch Bush address staff about transition of power

    "I think it's possible when people have stopped being as angry at the Bush administration as they are now ... that they will realize that some of this is just ... the luck of the draw."

    Kellerman, author of the book "Bad Leadership: What It Is, How It Happens, Why It Matters," noted that Bush has not had luck on his side for the past eight years.

    "He's [Bush] has been a quite unlucky president. Certain things happened on his watch that most people don't have to deal with -- a 9/11, a [Hurricane] Katrina, the financial crisis, being three obvious examples," she said.

    "And yet they happened on his watch. He is being blamed," she said.
    And that fact -- coupled with approval ratings around 27 percent, according to CNN's poll released October 21 -- is in large part why Obama and Democrats won big on November 4.

    Douglas Brinkley, a presidential historian and professor at Rice University, said the country is dealing with a "lame duck president" who will most likely face an uphill battle in getting anything passed through Congress before he leaves office.

    "We're dealing with an economic meltdown ... We're dealing with two wars. So everything Obama does now is going to be seen as he is the de facto president," Brinkley said Thursday. Read Zelizar's take on what Obama should avoid

    Historians, beginning to examine Bush's legacy, note that the 43rd president could end up with a better reputation down the road -- something that happened to Harry Truman.

    At different points in his presidency, Truman earned some of the highest and the lowest public approval ratings in history: 87 percent approval in June 1945 vs. 23 percent approval in January 1952, according to a CNN analysis of polling at the time.

    Truman, who is often noted for his upset victory over Thomas Dewey in 1948, faced several domestic and foreign policy problems throughout his term in office, which lasted from 1945-1953. Most notably: The Korean War, World War II and later, Cold War relations with an aggressive Soviet Union.

    "One of the things that has been conventionally done is to compared George W. Bush to Harry Truman. Both of whom had upon leaving office dismal approval ratings and of course as it is well known by now, Harry Truman's reputation has, by virtually every account, not only improved but I would say escalated nearly to the top of the list of greater American presidents," Kellerman added.

    Another president that Bush may be compared to down the road? Ronald Reagan.

    Prior to leaving office, Reagan faced strong backlash from Republicans and Democrats on opening negotiations with Soviet Premier Mikhail Gorbachev during the Cold War era as well as the handling of the Iran-Contra Affair.

    "He was seen as bumbling; he was seen as unintelligent; he was seen as a guy driven by his advisers," Zelizer added. "And now he's being talked about like FDR, one of the great presidents in American history and we have a new look at who he was."

    Reagan is often invoked by Republicans in presidential races -- most recently with the campaign of Sen. John McCain -- looking to shore up the conservative base.

    Bush, meanwhile, who has long defended his decision to invade Iraq as a way to spread democracy, could also see criticism dissipate over time if Iraq becomes a thriving, stable country.

    "If you imagine that an Iraq in 10,15 years is actually a vibrant, stable democracy and other countries neighboring it move in that direction ... I think you'd have a strong Bush revisionism," Zelizer said. "How things unfold in coming decades can help repair a battered presidency," he added.

    Kellerman said that while many will credit Bush for taking charge of democracy-spreading, his "incompetence" will still be noted.

    "The level of incompetence after the initial 'mission accomplished' was so acute that my guess is, even if the decision to invade might be historically justified, the incompetence that succeeded it ... I think that's going to be very difficult to ever alter our negative perception of that."

    Historians: Bush presidency 'battered,' 'incompetent,' 'unlucky' - CNN.com
    "Books are the quietest and most constant of friends; they are the most accessible and wisest of counsellors, and the most patient of teachers."

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    Elite Member Grimmlok's Avatar
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    unlucky? UNLUCKY!!?!!?1?!1?

    He caused almost all of it!!! What the hell!!

    Through action or inaction! Wtf, he didnt have to preside over a world war, he didn't have to go to war at all, but he did! Stupid shitbag! Bunch of apologist SHIT
    I am from the American CIA and I have a radio in my head. I am going to kill you.

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    He didn't cause it. Its funny because we turned him into a dictator by sot of stumbling around like a bunch of yahoos for the last 8 years. This country has been in a stupor. He didn't cause Katrina. It's not his job to clean up or save people in areas affected by disaster. He didn't cause 911. He's just totally incompetent and a gumbo dumbo. So he made everything worse. That's Bushe's legacy.

    He was handed challenges and made them worse. That and the war.

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    Elite Member kingcap72's Avatar
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    Bush is seen as an incompetent moron now.

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    Elite Member Mariesoleil's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by flipstick View Post
    He didn't cause it. Its funny because we turned him into a dictator by sot of stumbling around like a bunch of yahoos for the last 8 years. This country has been in a stupor. He didn't cause Katrina. It's not his job to clean up or save people in areas affected by disaster. He didn't cause 911. He's just totally incompetent and a gumbo dumbo. So he made everything worse. That's Bushe's legacy.

    He was handed challenges and made them worse. That and the war.
    I disagree. How come reporters were able to get into New Orleans whereas the National Guard was told to wait. I'm sorry but if I was president of the US I would have done anything in my power to get those people out of there and send help. George Bush did not do that.
    "Books are the quietest and most constant of friends; they are the most accessible and wisest of counsellors, and the most patient of teachers."

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    I agree with you. I would have done the same. But that's not his job. There are agencies that over see this kind of stuff and Bush can't be held responsible for their incompetence. However as I said, he could have made the problem better by cutting through the red tape and he either waited for someone else to deal with it, or screwed it up even worse.

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    Elite Member Grimmlok's Avatar
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    Agencies.. like FEMA.. that was headed by a handpicked crony who had no experience in disaster mitigation
    I am from the American CIA and I have a radio in my head. I am going to kill you.

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    Elite Member kingcap72's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by flipstick View Post
    I agree with you. I would have done the same. But that's not his job. There are agencies that over see this kind of stuff and Bush can't be held responsible for their incompetence. However as I said, he could have made the problem better by cutting through the red tape and he either waited for someone else to deal with it, or screwed it up even worse.
    Who do you think places the people in charge of those agencies? The president. So, if those people are incompetent then it reflects his judgement. So, yeah, he can be held responsible.

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    He's the worst President in US history.

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    You can't hold him responsible for that. He's the worst president we've ever had, there's no reason at all to extend his responsibility beyond his duties, he screwed up those so badly as it is. I think the Blame Bush game is just frustration but honestly it doesn't wash.

    I know how you feel and I feel the same way. I see it more like this.

    He was unlucky and incompetent and especially since he had so many disasters he screwed everything up. Picture Mickey Mouse with the buckets and mops in fantasia. He's just a walking disaster.

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    Friend of Gossip Rocks! buttmunch's Avatar
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    Wait a sec! Didn't you all read the Wall Street Journal this week? It said he's been treated unfairly and is getting a bad rap! Come on, people! The WSJ is the paper of record!
    'Those who sacrifice liberty for security deserve neither.' Ben Franklin

    "When fascism comes to America, it will be wrapped in the flag and carrying the cross."
    --Sinclair Lewis

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    Elite Member RevellingInSane's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by flipstick View Post
    You can't hold him responsible for that. He's the worst president we've ever had, there's no reason at all to extend his responsibility beyond his duties, he screwed up those so badly as it is. I think the Blame Bush game is just frustration but honestly it doesn't wash.

    I know how you feel and I feel the same way. I see it more like this.

    He was unlucky and incompetent and especially since he had so many disasters he screwed everything up. Picture Mickey Mouse with the buckets and mops in fantasia. He's just a walking disaster.
    He can't be held responsible? Really?

    A company has a human resources director, who is told to fill five positions. The director fills the positions with idiots who are unqualified, but are his friends.

    That director shouldn't be held responsible? Bush's incompetency contributed to the mess known as his administration. His arrogance, leading him to refuse good advice and choose unqualified idiots for high-ranking roles drove the stake into the heart.

    He is ultimately to blame for the lackluster, at best, performance of the people he chose to run government agencies.

    Being unlucky is tripping on your way down the stairs, not repeating the same mistakes for eight years. That is stupidity.



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    Friend of Gossip Rocks! buttmunch's Avatar
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    You're doing a hell of a job, peeps...
    'Those who sacrifice liberty for security deserve neither.' Ben Franklin

    "When fascism comes to America, it will be wrapped in the flag and carrying the cross."
    --Sinclair Lewis

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    Elite Member kingcap72's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by flipstick View Post
    You can't hold him responsible for that. He's the worst president we've ever had, there's no reason at all to extend his responsibility beyond his duties, he screwed up those so badly as it is. I think the Blame Bush game is just frustration but honestly it doesn't wash.

    I know how you feel and I feel the same way. I see it more like this.

    He was unlucky and incompetent and especially since he had so many disasters he screwed everything up. Picture Mickey Mouse with the buckets and mops in fantasia. He's just a walking disaster.
    So you're saying that even though Bush hand picked idiots for key positions he gets no blame for their failures? Wow.

    Now, I don't think Bush should be blamed for everything that went wrong for the last 8 years. But he should be blamed for the things that he had a hand in creating. And that includes his hiring practices and the way he responded to a crisis, including natural disasters.

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    Friend of Gossip Rocks! buttmunch's Avatar
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    I might also include the ill-advised invasion of Iraq, which has changed from 'liberating those poor people' to 'winning the war against Iraq'. I'm still trying to figure out which Iraq we're supposed to be 'winning against'.
    'Those who sacrifice liberty for security deserve neither.' Ben Franklin

    "When fascism comes to America, it will be wrapped in the flag and carrying the cross."
    --Sinclair Lewis

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