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Location: San Diego, California, United States

Monday, January 19, 2009

George Will comments on the Bush Presidency

Will's comments also summarize his view of the cost to the Republican Party of the Bush Presidency. A very good summary paragraph of things that leave problems:

  • By grafting a prescription-drug entitlement on to Medicare, just as the demographic deluge of the baby boomers' retirements was beginning, the president expanded the welfare state more than any president since Lyndon Johnson created Medicare in 1965. By signing every grotesque spending measure that arrived on his desk with the support of a majority of congressional Republicans—e.g., the 2002 farm bill that increased corporate welfare for agriculture at a time of record farm profits —the president committed his party to a situational ethic of governance that amounts to no ethic at all. By signing the McCain-Feingold speech-rationing (a.k.a. "campaign reform") legislation, the president violated his oath to defend the Constitution. By federalizing the family tragedy of Terri Schiavo, the president and some congressional allies made risible their stock of rhetoric in praise of limited government. By enacting the No Child Left Behind law, which is the thin end of a potentially enormous wedge, the administration licensed potentially unlimited federal supervision of the quintessentially local responsibility of education in grades K through 12, thereby further weakening federalism. And by presiding, in its last four months, over more and more flamboyant government intervention in the economy than at any time in 75 years, the administration completed the GOP's intellectual disarmament.

Read the column here:




Blogger Curt said...

Yes, this listing does make obvious the gap between traditional conservative principles and many of the actions taken during the Bush years.

It will be interesting to see what lessons the GOP takes away from this; there seems to be some movement back toward arguing for 'financial discipline' as a tactic against the stimulus, but it's pretty hard to take seriously given the recent track record. The 'discipline' is a whole lot harder to practice when you actually hold the purse strings!

12:39 PM  
Blogger Owen Thomas said...

And the sad part is that those of us on the right didn't have anyone better than that to vote for in the last presidential election.

Yes indeed, hopefully the GOP will wake up and raise up a true conservative and actually reduce the size of government. Although that would be like trying to put toothpaste back in the tube.

9:44 PM  

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