George W. Bush

Somewhere in my closet I still have a Buck Fush sweatshirt from circa 2004. I had enormous disdain for Bush because of the pointless and unnecessary war in Iraq. I am reading some history on our involvement in Afghanistan. Because of Iraq we had a grave insufficiency of troops and equipment in Afghanistan, including essential aircraft. People died because of it.

In further reading, Bush visited Walter Reed Medical Center. He took the time to console the wife of Army Captain Robert Yllescas, an immigrant from Guatemala who was in critical condition from an enemy RPG in Afghanistan. Bush was reportedly crying. Yllescas died a few days later.

Donald Trump hasn’t killed anyone — yet. At least I do not think so. If Trump visited Walter Reed it would be for a photo op or a personal medical problem more important than a round of golf. The only thing that the narcissistic sociopath might cry over would have something to do with money not in his pocket. Trump might have also launched inquiries into the immigration status of the captain which would have been more important than the fact that he was dying from having honorably served our country in time of war.

Bush might have been foolish but at least he was a human being. In recent history, Eisenhower, Ford and Carter were very decent people but they were ineffective. Obama as president was a class act and a very decent person. He was also extremely effective in spite of deliberate sabotage by Republicans who prioritized damaging Obama’s presidency over the best interests of the country.

Obama’s reelection in 2012 was a very sweet victory. I thought to myself that our citizenry finally gets it. I could not have been more incorrect. In 2016 we elected a man who was obviously indecent and a pathological liar. Trump was obviously too lazy to understand the issues and never offered specifics concerning what he would do in office except to build that damned wall which Mexico will never pay for — if it ever gets built.

The new tax plan is one of the most idiotic things that we have ever done. We are going to incur a mountain of new debt unless you believe that lower taxes will stimulate the economy. It never has. Eventually the bill is going to come due and we will all pay. Debt caused by government spending is a good thing. When the government spends money, businesses reap the benefits. They hire more people at all levels. Debt created by tax cuts, on the other hand, is going to create a spiral because of the interest expense without any economic stimulus.

At the same time, Obamacare is now officially dead. It cannot be sustained without the individual mandate which means that people will attempt to buy insurance when they need it. Preexisting condition coverage cannot exist without the mandate. We are going back to the ER as the nation’s primary care physician.

GOPers and Trump might have put a few dollars in everyone’s pocket. The question is whether or not, as a society, we will do the right thing. I honestly do not know. Getting back to Mr. Bush, he managed to get reelected in spite of the catastrophe he created in Iraq and, thus, throughout the region. That hardly provides reassurance with regard to our collective IQ. We really are idiots.

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By David Cary Hart

Retired CEO. Formerly a W.E. Deming-trained quality-management consultant. Now just a cranky Jewish queer. Gay cis. He/Him/His.