Thursday, May 03, 2007

We Support President Bush, A Gentleman and a Leader

I suppose some of you will be surprised to learn how many out there strongly support this president and believe he has done a fantastic job in the face of incredible obstacles. We believe he will be seen as the Truman of his time, a man who rose to fill huge shoes, saw what had to be done and did it. I am more conservative than President Bush is, so I disagree with some things, but today’s Democrats, except for Senator Lieberman, are just a total disgrace to the memories of Presidents Wilson, Roosevelt, Truman and Kennedy and Senators Nunn and Jackson.

Why I Still Support President Bush
By Mark Noonan on President Bush
Blogs for Bush April 27, 2007

That question gets asked a lot of me these days on the blog - either directly or by allusion. It is late in the weary part of a long Presidency: everyone gets tired, everyone is ready for a change. Except me, and those like me who, I believe, take a longer view of things. Perhaps, also, I'm learning to be charitable as I get older. For all and sundry who have expressed an interest in an answer to this question, here goes:

The War on Terrorism
Unlike some of my conservative friends, I'm not just supportive of the general idea of fighting terrorism, I'm actually convinced that the way we are fighting it today is the best means available. As regards the left, arguing with them has become pointless - they are so imbued with an unreal view of the war that a meeting of the minds between right and left is impossible. But for the conservative critics, there is still the ability to reach out and explain.

We could stay on the defensive and build up Fortress America - but a defensive war is always a lost war in the long run. We could become insanely aggressive and just bomb the heck out of anyone who looks crossways at us - but that would be an immoral application of far more power than is necessary to attain our just goal. I believe that President Bush has struck the right balance between aggressiveness and caution and has kept before his mind the need for humility and charity as we go on with this war. We are not in this war for revenge and not in it just for the sake of America (though looking after the bulwark of liberty on earth is a vital task); we are in this war in order to save our enemies from themselves, and rescue our brothers and sisters in the Arab/Moslem world from cruel oppression. The side benefit, as it were, of doing this is, of course, our own safety. We dare not falter in this task, lest the enemy gain time to plot and carry out a more horrific attack than 9/11, thus setting off the insanely aggressive option for American policy.

This war is a long one and it is proving quite difficult - and the plain fact these days is that President Bush is carrying most of the load by himself. His Administration, naturally, backs him up, but he gets little help from his own Party, and nothing but grief from the Democrats. Upon President Bush's strong shoulders rests the safety of the United States and the hope of a tired world, even if that world has grown too tired and cold to really understand the peril it’s in, and the hope President Bush has offered to it.

Social Security Reform
This has been a marked failure - but the failure isn't President Bush's. The President campaigned on the issue, twice and thus showed that it isn't politically fatal to suggest far-reaching changes in a venerable American entitlement program. President Bush didn't get much chance to press the issue in his first term, and when he did go to a full court press early in his second term, he found that the Congressional GOP had no appetite for sweeping reform...the Congressional GOPers convinced themselves that backing the President on Social Security reform would put the GOP Congressional majority at risk. We can see how safe it was after the GOP left President Bush in the lurch.

Still, President Bush has shown sublime courage and great political foresight in his attempt to force this issue. We only hope that a future President will have this sort of courage, because Social Security reform must come in the by and by.

Immigration and Border Security
What a contentious issue this is! I think that I and President Bush constitute about a minority of two (well, I guess that Laura would be on board, too) on this issue.
Leftwing critics make cynical play over the issue of border security, but their real goal is open borders and amnesty/citizenship for the illegals in the United States. Meanwhile, rightwing critics are blowing a gasket because President Bush hasn't ordered the Army to the border....I guess with orders to shoot to kill any group of Mexicans attempting to cross the border.

What President Bush has done is suggest a balanced approach to the issue - increase border security, but undercut the whole problem of illegal crossings by putting together a guest worker program which would greatly incentivise legal crossing. The right, on the whole, hates this - seeing in a guest worker program a back door to amnesty. The flaw in the rightwing critique is that by blocking President Bush's proposals they have created the worst of all worlds: no guest worker program, only partial border security and now Democrats in charge of crafting immigration/border security reform.

In this issue, as in most issues we contend with today, it is President Bush's humanity and charity which draws me close - the mercilessness of the right and the left on this issue is astounding, and there sits President Bush, trying to do right by everyone, and getting no help anywhere. The right wing critics are merciless in their desire to just boot out all illegals and severely punish anyone who comes back...the left wing critics are merciless in that they just don't care about the baleful effects 11 million illegals are having in the United States, and the absolute disaster it is brewing in Mexico as their best, brightest and most enterprising head north, leaving Mexico ever more impoverished in the most profound sense of the word.

Give me a magic wand where I can fully implement No Child Left Behind or entirely scrap the public school system in favor of school choice and I'd be waving that wand in favor of school choice in a minute. Unfortunately, I lack that magic wand - and so does President Bush.

There is a need for deep and comprehensive reform of our education system. Unfortunately, all attempts at reform are vociferously opposed by the teachers union bosses who like things just as they are, thanks very much; and these union bosses no problem with gutter politics where anything about education which is opposed to what they want is slandered as being "anti-teacher." So, we take what we can get - in this case, No Child Left Behind which at least starts to bring some improvement to education.

Contrast this with the cruelty of our leftwing critics who propose to merely throw more money at education (and that means, of course, throwing it at the union bosses...who will then donate part of it back for Democratic political campaigns) with no thought to what might help the children...who are real people, with real needs and who will be running our country when we're all old and gray.

Life Issues
The Culture of LIfe has never had a better friend than President Bush. When given a choice between siding with the Culture of Life or the Culture of Death, President Bush always comes down hard on the side of life. He has, once again, no magic wand to take care of the issue, but the pro-life cause has never had a stronger friend - never had a President who has so consistently stymied the Culture of Death.

I Could Go On and On
But I won't - you should get the picture by now: President Bush is doing a great job limited, naturally, by the way of the world. If sweet reason ruled us all, then everyone would clearly see what the President has been trying to do, and they'd pitch in to help rather than issue an endless series of self-satisfied second-guessing of each move the President makes.

It is my view that President Bush -firm in his faith - stands so far above his critics that they can't, in their muddy dreams, really comprehend him. This is especially true of President Bush leftwing critics, but even his rightwing critics fail on this point - that of not being able to grasp what is happening. President Bush is akin in this to Winston Churchill - but not the Winston Churchill of world-wide fame after Britain's finest hour - no, the Churchill who thought deeply and with great foresight during the First World War, and got for his trouble monumental unpopularity and, eventually, ejection from office in disgrace - everyone thinking he was finished and could no longer have a bearing on events. Unfortunately, we won't have the opportunity - as the Brits did - to crawl back to Churchill once they figured out he was right all along. President Bush leaves office on January 20th, 2009 and he can't ever hold the office of the Presidency ever again. It will be up to President Bush successors to complete what he has begun - or drop the ball and condemn us all to some rather horrific events in the not-too-distant future.

Meanwhile, President Bush's place in my affections and in my respect is firmly fixed. He's done what he said he would do, and he's done it with mercy and charity foremost in his thoughts. He is one of our greatest Presidents, and I'm backing him all the way.


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At 9:31 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I enjoyed this article and I agree. I remember now why I'm a republican....and why I like Bush.

My continued criticism of Bush is that he has not sold the non-believers better on the importance and longterm impacts of the war on terrorism and Iraq's small but meaningful role in that. But, I think the past few weeks he has been trying harder to make this case. He should have been doing that 7-8 years ago.


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