That journey was filled with peril for our country. President Bush stood up to the threats we faced and never wavered. He showed strength and courage, yet so many vilified him.
Through all the bitter opposition he faced, he stood strong for the American people. And he did keep us safe. He endured with dignity and grace eight years of near-constant Bush bashing. Bush Derangement Syndrome is real and it is vicious. More from the President's speech:
There are many tonight who do agree. And say Thank You.
Gateway Pundit: He Liberated Millions...He Kept Us Safe
The Anchoress: Thank you, President Bush
Lorie Byrd: Farewell
Conservatism With Heart: Bush Thank-a-thon Continues
Lisa Fabrizio: George W. Bush, Winner
To change the subject a bit. From a developing story at Drudge, did Barack Obama skip the speech?:
(via Kim Priestap on Twitter)
An announcement could be made by Wednesday:
Todd Zywicki debunks this mantra and offers a reasonable explanation why some in Congress are refusing to consider bankruptcy as a solution to the (self-inflicted) mess the automakers are in. Bankruptcy Is the Perfect Remedy for Detroit:
While Washington tries to arrange a bailout, the Detroit Three auto makers and their union, the United Auto Workers, keep insisting that bankruptcy would be the kiss of death. Not so: a Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing will likely result in a stronger domestic industry.
To understand why, consider that the fundamental question to ask of any firm facing bankruptcy is whether it is "economically failed" or simply "financially failed."
General Motors looks like a financially failed rather than an economically failed enterprise -- in need of reorganization not liquidation. It needs to shed labor contracts, retirement contracts, and modernize its distribution systems by closing many dealerships. This will give rise to many current and future liabilities that may be worked out in bankruptcy. It may need new management as well. Bankruptcy provides an opportunity to do all that. Consumers have little to fear. Reorganization will pare the weakest dealers while strengthening those who remain.
So why do the Detroit Three managements and the UAW insist that "bankruptcy is not an option"? Perhaps because of the pain that would be inflicted upon both.
The UAW doesn't want to take the strong medicine that would be required under bankruptcy. Its leaders know that Congress is not inclined to force major concessions on the union or to scrutinize it too closely. Management has more to fear from Congressional oversight but it would still be considerably more pleasant than facing a bankruptcy judge:
Those Washington politicians who repeat the mantra that "bankruptcy is not an option" probably do so because they want to use free taxpayer money to bribe Detroit into manufacturing the green cars favored by Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid, rather than those cars American consumers want to buy. A Chapter 11 filing would remove these politicians' leverage, thus explaining their desperation to avoid a bankruptcy.
In short, Detroit and the public has little to fear from a bankruptcy filing, but much to fear from the corrupt bargain that is emerging among incumbent management, the UAW and Capitol Hill to spend our money to avoid their reality check.
Management might be in for a few surprises, however. Congressional Democrats are notorious for mandating burdensome regulations on employers. As Zywicki points out, by handing over "free taxpayer money" they will dramatically increase their leverage. To the detriment of us all.
This bailout will give more power to self-interested politicians in Washington. The hammer will be aimed at management, UAW will operate pretty much as ususal, and the Big Three will continue losing market-share to those dastardly foreign automakers in the South.
And this is just the beginning. In the not so distant future we'll be hearing how we must give the Big Three another loan, and another. "Taxpayers have too much money invested to let the automakers fail" will be the story line. A nationalized automobile industry will be the result. It's starting now.
Magnificent and well deserved. Both the honor President Bush has given to our troops and the honor they have given him.
Here is a little gem from a Washington Post column, President Remains A Skilled Fundraiser:
...Since the start of 2007, Bush alone is responsible for raising more money than the entire Democratic National Committee.
President Bush has answered Bush Derangement Syndrome with class and dignity. He has remained true to his convictions despite repeated, and often vicious, attacks on his integrity, his intelligence, and his motivations. It is no wonder millions of Americans still regard him as a great President, even those of us who disagree with some of his positions. His presidency has not been perfect, the war in Iraq has not been perfect. But as my friend, who is
teaching attempting to teach me to play golf, would say, perfection is unattainable. (He obviously stole the line from Tin Cup).
If you can keep your head when all about you
Are losing theirs and blaming it on you,
If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you
But make allowance for their doubting too,
If you can wait and not be tired by waiting,
Or being lied about, don't deal in lies,
Or being hated, don't give way to hating,
And yet don't look too good, nor talk too wise...
I believe Kipling's poem describes President Bush (almost) perfectly.
The President is clearly not going to fade away just yet:
"I don't know about you, but my energy is up and my spirits are high, and I'm going to finish my job with a sprint to the finish line."
Leaving the DNC in the dust.
And Democrats can't handle it. What the President said:
"Some seem to believe we should negotiate with terrorists and radicals, as if some ingenious argument will persuade them they have been wrong all along," the President said to the country's legislative body, "We have heard this foolish delusion before. As Nazi tanks crossed into Poland in 1939, an American senator declared: 'Lord, if only I could have talked to Hitler, all of this might have been avoided.' We have an obligation to call this what it is –- the false comfort of appeasement, which has been repeatedly discredited by history."
And the hit dog hollers, or as Confederate Yankee puts it "it's the bit dog that barks loudest.":
"It is sad that President Bush would use a speech to the Knesset on the 6Oth anniversary of Israel's independence to launch a false political attack. It is time to turn the page on eight years of policies that have strengthened Iran and failed to secure America or our ally Israel. Instead of tough talk and no action, we need to do what Kennedy, Nixon and Reagan did and use all elements of American power -- including tough, principled, and direct diplomacy - to pressure countries like Iran and Syria. George Bush knows that I have never supported engagement with terrorists, and the President's extraordinary politicization of foreign policy and the politics of fear do nothing to secure the American people or our stalwart ally Israel."
Never supported engagement with terrorists? I guess it depends on the meaning of the word "engagement".
President Bush simply stated a fact. Obama, instead of defending his own position, which is on the record, is outraged. (Even though President Bush never mentioned Obama's name. Curious Obama would get so worked up). But the good news is that Obama is now agreeing with President Bush.
...said Thursday that Bush's remarks were "beneath the dignity of the office of the president and unworthy of our representation" at the celebration of Israel's 60th anniversary.
Maybe the President should have just gone to Syria instead. Pelosi's little message of peace has worked out so well, peace is just breaking out all over. How dignified. Will Bunch says the President has committed treason:
President Bush went on foreign soil today, and committed what I consider an act of political treason: Comparing the candidate of the U.S. opposition party to appeasers of Nazi Germany -- in the very nation that was carved out from the horrific calamity of the Holocaust. Bush's bizarre and beyond-appropriate detour into American presidential politics took place in the middle of what should have been an occasion for joy: A speech to Israeli's Knesset to honor that nation's 60th birthday.
Maybe I'll finish this post when I stop laughing.
Could be, according to this Washington Post column:
Shortly after Pope Benedict XVI's election in 2005, President Bush met with a small circle of advisers in the Oval Office. As some mentioned their own religious backgrounds, the president remarked that he had read one of the new pontiff's books about faith and culture in Western Europe.
Save for one other soul, Bush was the only non-Catholic in the room. But his interest in the pope's writings was no surprise to those around him. As the White House prepares to welcome Benedict on Tuesday, many in Bush's inner circle expect the pontiff to find a kindred spirit in the president. Because if Bill Clinton can be called America's first black president, some say, then George W. Bush could well be the nation's first Catholic president.
This isn't as strange a notion as it sounds. Yes, there was John F. Kennedy. But where Kennedy sought to divorce his religion from his office, Bush has welcomed Roman Catholic doctrine and teachings into the White House and based many important domestic policy decisions on them.
"I don't think there's any question about it," says Rick Santorum, former U.S. senator from Pennsylvania and a devout Catholic, who was the first to give Bush the "Catholic president" label. "He's certainly much more Catholic than Kennedy."
I think it would be mighty fine if President Bush joined the Catholic Church. In case he's reading this blog (stranger things have happened), I highly recommend Scott and Kimberly Hahn's Rome Sweet Home: Our Journey to Catholicism.
The President could follow in the footsteps of his friend Tony Blair:
Paul Weyrich, an architect of the religious right, detects in Bush shades of former British prime minister Tony Blair , who converted to Catholicism last year. "I think he is a secret believer," Weyrich says of Bush. Similarly, John DiIulio, Bush's first director of faith-based initiatives, has called the president a "closet Catholic." And he was only half-kidding.
Pope Benedict will be in Washington on Tuesday. Maybe President Bush will have a chat with him about the Catholic Church.
I just hope the Pope isn't too bitter. He does seem to cling to his religion.
Great speech. Now I must listen to the Democratic response given by Governor Kathleen Sebelius of Kansas. I can tell already it's going to be a downer. Time is running out, families can't pay their bills, blah, blah, blah. Think I'll just skip it.
President and Mrs. Bush brought honor and dignity back to our White House. They will definitely leave it a much better place than they found it.