Thank you, Mr. President
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Especially during the past few weeks, friends, readers and
non-friends have “accused” me
of being (a) a flaming liberal, (b) an
ultra-conservative, (c) an
independent voter, (d) a guy who doesn’t know what he wants.
I must confess, that at various
times, each of the labels they’ve stuck on me is correct.
For clarity sake there should be a name for my beliefs.
I could be called a “Consiberal.”
Or a “Liberative.” Maybe a “Conservalib.” Or a “Conservaral.” How about a “Demican,” or a “Republicrat.”
Ah, what the heck, let’s stick with the old fashioned label. It comes
closest to my beliefs – I’m an “Independent voter.”
things are now I don’t want to belong to any political party. With our
struggling economy we find the two political parties
each other when they should be battling the problems we face and
correcting them with haste.
In one of his finest
moments, President George W. Bush offered the
country his final speech, a goodbye to all Americans and presumably,
Mr. Bush left office with the highest disapproval rating of
any president since
Richard Nixon. Mr. Bush mentioned in his farewell
speech, “You may not
agree with some of the tough decisions I have made, but I hope
you can agree that I was willing to make the
tough decisions.” Okay.
President Bush claimed
policy successes in Iraq and Afghanistan, seeing Democracy growing in those
two countries. Okay. Maybe.
I didn’t agree with some of President Bushes observations about his
eight years in office,
but I have come to understand him better.
He is not a great communicator in the line of Reagan or Obama. He
seems to be uneasy when
speaking to the American public. He rationalizes
a lot over his decisions. But, during this, his last speech, he seemed
to be enjoying
himself. He was obviously glad to be leaving
the office. I don’t blame him. He has had a devil of a time.
his final speech
I have changed somewhat my feelings towards the man.
Watching the ceremony earlier in the
his father, George H. W. Bush, attended the launching the
U.S. Navy’s new aircraft carrier, the “George H.W. Bush,” I thought
how closely the Bush family has been involved in our nation’s
recent history. Two presidents and two governors of states. In addition
to Bush senior being a decorated war hero.
A pretty nice contribution to the history of
the United States by one family.
Oh, they’ve gained some by holding
office, but they did give up a number of years to the service
of their country.
will be the benchmark for the appraisal of the Bush years
White House. The fighting has slowed down as have the deaths, but
find it hard to believe that Al Qaeda and the rest of the militant
Islamic terrorists in the Middle East have given up on the battle
control Iraq. A temporary peace may be found in the battle of
Gaza, but the hatred, fears and determination of the combatants
not stop polluting that portion of the world. The wars of the
area will continue for decades to come.
in office for the past eight years
would have the right to state that he has kept America from being attacked after the 9/11 tragedy.
Perhaps it was the actions that President Bush took that has kept
America from being attacked again. Maybe his leadership
in the absence of another assault on American soil. Maybe. To the
leader goes the credit as well as the blame.
As Charles Krauthammer stated, “Those are precisely the elements which
kept us safe and which have prevented a second attack.” Maybe.
President Bush has been vilified and abused regarding not only his ability to lead as well
as some of his decisions – Katrina,
Abu Ghraib, even the original decision to attack Iraq.
I’ve never been a fan of President Bush. I don’t hate him, he just
makes me uncomfortable. Always has.
Now, that he approaches life as a private citizen I wish him well. I
will leave it
to history to analyze his efforts. From now on
I will keep my feelings about his presidency to myself.
The man gave eight
years of his
life to this country. That is more than most of us will donate. I
offer him my thanks for his service as I offer his
sincere and profound best wishes.
Let’s all move on and let us hope that Democrats and
Republicans (and Independents)
can work together quickly to solve the
enormous problems facing our nation. The fashion of the future
of our country lies in the
balance. It is time to put aside the
labels, the selfish goals, the petty politics – it is time to solve
the problems and begin the
What’s done is done. Let us not look back.
Ahead lay the dangers we must face and in order to meet them
we must be united and be led with intelligence, understanding,
confidence and courage.
And so, Mr. Bush, we offer
you our thanks and our wishes for a
long, healthy and happy life. What good would it do to do otherwise?