The Sunday November 2nd
New York Times included in its editorial supplement
a collection of short essays titled “What
I Will Miss About President Bush.”
Journalist Robert Draper, who
interviewed Bush six times, wrote of Bush`s human
Two former Bush press secretaries, Ari
Fleischer and Scott McClellan, spoke of his “moral
clarity” and “sincere concern for promoting human
These insights from people who have
worked closely with Bush comfort those like me who have
had little good to say about the President since he took
office in 2001.
fifty or so columns I have written for the Lodi
News-Sentinel since Bush`s inauguration, I have not
written about his high moral standards or kindliness.
I have instead
criticized Bush`s policies from the beginning to the
end of his administration, calling him the worst
two-term president in American history. And, although it
doesn`t make me happy to say it, I believe my evaluation
One of Bush`s major pieces of
The No Child Left Behind Act, is a disaster. Bush`s
War was ill conceived and it, as well his bloated
government spending, has driven the country into a
debt hole so deep it may be impossible to climb out.
But since we can`t really be sure
if Bush`s former inner circle truly believe their
flattering remarks about their former boss or are merely
being generous during his last days, let`s move onto
more solid ground—Bush`s legacy.
Bush has, without a doubt, killed
off the Republican Party. You can say good-bye forever
to the Grand Old Party.
The choice of
John McCain to represent Republicans in the
presidential race was a bad one. But Bush`s eight-year
record dealt McCain a hand no one could win with.
forty-five states, McCain received fewer votes than
Bush did in 2004. In
way off, getting only 37 percent of the total versus
Bush`s 44 percent four years ago.
So tiny were the gains in the
remaining five states where McCain outperformed Bush
that they are no comfort to the GOP.
long time Republican strongholds, each produced less
than a 0.1 percent increase.
Another sober note for the Republicans
is that new voters, especially those under 25 in key
register as Democrats. This may represent a repudiation
of Bush`s policies or perhaps an Obama infatuation. But
the bottom line is the same: more Democrats.
Another journalist asked by the
Times to comment explained the reason for Bush`s
failures that led to the Republican Party`s subsequent
Paul Burka, senior editor of Texas
Monthly, noted that while Bush was governor, he was
“the best politician” he had ever seen. Bush,
recalled Burka, worked with Democrats to improve
education, filled Texas Supreme Court vacancies with
moderates, and ran his administration without scandal.
But Burka wrote that when “he
reached the White House, Governor Bush vanished to be
replaced by President George W. Bush—a person I didn`t
recognize. He was never to return.”
Without question, Bush`s failures
cleared the path for
President-elect Barack Obama.
Now I have a few words about
Although it`s too late now, he
should have been more careful about what he wished for.
After Obama`s two-year campaign and
countless stump speeches, he`s reached his goal. In some
But now, and this is a tall order,
Obama must deliver.
honeymoon with the American people, traditionally
the first 100 days of a nascent administration, will be
much shorter. In what could possibly represent a vote of
no confidence and an ominous sign, since Obama`s
stock market has continued its steep decline.
And, tellingly, in his first
post-election speech, Obama hedged his bets remarking
that it may take more than one single term to fulfill
Sorry, that won`t cut it.
Obama promised everything to
everyone. If he can`t make good, he`ll never get a
is a California native who recently fled the state
because of over-immigration, over-population and a
rapidly deteriorating quality of life. He has moved to
Pittsburgh, PA where the air is clean and the growth
A long-time instructor in English at the Lodi Adult School,
Guzzardi has been writing a weekly column since 1988. It
currently appears in the