Now I am I admit a bit of a ‘competency snob’. In my business career, in the military, in politics I do value competent leaders, even where I disagree with their direction, and I do believe in accountability. Nevertheless, again striving for better balance politically, I asked a bunch of folks what good things George W Bush did as President and they and I came up with:
- He did a good job in uniting the US post 9/11 before he blew it all on Iraq
- He made an honest attempt to reform immigration in the US, but the yahoos in his party blocked it and he did not deport 5 million Hispanics as Rick Santorum promises
- He increased the value of Food Stamps for the poor after a long lull
- He did not veto McCain-Feingold, the excellent bi-partisan attempt to reform campaign finance. Instead the conservative majority on the Supreme Court gutted it
- He eventually fired John Ashcroft and Donald Rumsfeld before they could do any more damage to the Constitution or US Security, and he seemed to stop listening to Dick ‘Voldemort’ Cheney in his second term
- He made a strong contribution to AIDs programs in Africa
- He introduced ‘Don’t Call.com’ to cut down on junk calls. This is my personal favorite.
- He enlarged the English Language with Bushisms like ‘mis-underestimate’
- He encouraged national optimism with speeches about ‘Mission Accomplished‘ perhaps a little prematurely.
- And above all else he was not Rick Santorum, Newt Gingrich, Ron Paul or Mitt Romney. Neither was he Sarah Palin.
Thanks to Nancy, Elizabeth, Kate and Richard for their input. And here’s one for old time sake: George in action and below another score card: