Reading about the celebrations in Kenya over the election of Obama, I came across this reminder:
Mr Obama’s victory is being celebrated across the continent.
South African Archbishop Desmond Tutu said it showed “that for people of colour, the sky is the limit”.
The BBC’s world affairs correspondent Adam Mynott says Mr Obama will inherit a foreign policy legacy in Africa that has been one of the high points of the George Bush administration.
Earlier this year President Bush toured through five African nations and people greeted him in their thousands to applaud him for America’s huge contribution in the fight against HIV/Aids.
Since its launch five years ago, his Aids relief programme has spent more than $15bn dollars (£9.5bn) on the continent and saved many thousands of lives.
While Bush will leave office reviled in the United States and hated over much of the world, it will be an odd curiosity that his legacy in Africa will probably be a very good one, and more important, it was earned. Bush legitimately did a lot of good in Africa, and we can argue about specifics and argue there could be more done, but the fact that he did some good should be celebrated. The other thing that Bush did that I have mentioned several times but I think bears repeating was his address after 9/11 in which he defended Islam and more than likely stopped what could have been ugly recriminations against Arab-Americans dead in their tracks. When he did that, he did so immediately, forcefully, and with a clarity and honesty and display of leadership that was visibly absent from virtually every other action of his over the next seven years. It really is something worth applauding, and despite his dismal legacy in virtually every other area, these two actions deserve acknowledgment.
And really, in regards to Africa, it is such a small investment. Look at the good will Bush has earned for us with just 15 billion dollars, and compare it to what we spend in a month in Iraq. Can you imagine what we could do with 15 billion dollars in aid a year, a mere pittance when considering our current budget? It is part of Bush’s sad legacy that his incompetence and neglect leave us financially incapable of expanding his one act of legitimate good.
Great point. His legacy here is very strong and the right wingers will start in the next year or so to resurrect his image. Since this will be all they have, let’s try to remember George was right about this.
Now, if only someone can help calm the Congo down. What a miserable place to live.
I dont know John, the Africa thing, I agree with, but hatred against Arab Americans and condemnation of it was mostly lip service. What real leadership skills did Bush display far as as stopping ethnic hatred in the States went? He let the likes of Hewitt and Limbaugh and Malkin and Fox news (as well as CNN and NBC) screech and spew hatred against Arab Americans and Muslims. As leader of the Republican party, he never even once stopped members of Congress from denouncing Muslims, and allowed to permeate despicable stereotypes of Arabs and Muslims in to our Armed Forces. And he kept quiet when the Bible wing of the GOP party kept praying that Islam was evil and that Muslims should be destroyed so that they could be raptured into heaven.
Yes people didnt go out and lynch Arabs after 9/11 and we should commend Bush for showing leadership there, but anything after that was pure lip service
It sure is amazing what a President can do when he doesn’t have Jesse Helms or some other wingnut in the Senate placing holds on humanitarian assistance.
may I add that it took Colin Powell, 7 yrs after 9/11, to denounce members of his own party for spewing hatred against Muslims. That it took a decorated military man this long to denounce it speaks volumes of the atmosphere of intimidation within the Bush admin
Two good things in eight years.
I get it that you are looking at the silver lining in the monstrous storm of W, but most presidents could find two good things they did in one week.
I find it hard to look at anything he did without contempt. If that is me, you must forgive me for being human. $15billion for Africa? Great. A one-time call out to Arab Americans? Great.
And a huge turd pile left for all of us to clean up.
As Obama supporters, we should very careful before we claim the rantings of the crazies. Ours aren’t as loud, but there are plenty of them.
Look, I watch Olberman quite often, but Obama is not responsible for what he says or for what Greenwald muses (e.g. his column today on DOMA is a fine example of how to ruin an administration in the first hundred days).
George isn’t responsible for Limbaugh, any more than Obama is for what this campaign volunteer is typing on this blog.
The Other Steve
Ok, I grant him that.
I saw fewer attacks on arab-americans following 9/11 then I did during the First Gulf War.
The nation does change.
Thanks, Mr. Cole. I have often used Pres. Bush’s efforts in Africa as an example of how even the worst presidents can do some good. I had forgotten his statements regarding Islam after 9/11. I still despise him, but I’m sure that he did everything with the conviction that he was trying to do good. I’m glad he succeeded at that a few times. I just wish he’d managed to do something good more often.
Of course, inherent in what I wrote is another point about trying to do good. Nobody ever considers themself to be a villian. Even the most vile monster on the face of the Earth justified his actions in some fashion. It’s part of the dangerous errors in a Manichean worldview.
The Other Steve
There is a compelling argument to be made that to fight radicals, you have to pin the blame on the moderate sympathizers… As the moderates are in a better position to take out the radicals then people outside the structure.
This applies to party politics, religion, etc.
The Other Steve
you all do realize that Hitler also meant well.
And Obama is just like Hitler.
Bush did good there, but I will nitpick. Is it that hard to also hand out condoms and teach sex ed? I think Obama can take Bush’s lead and make an even stronger impression.
Mind you, Pepsi won’t be happy if Obama stops people from thinking that Mtn Dew works like a Day after pill.
Yeah, I really did miss that. In Houston alone, I think there were something like five different Mosques that got graffiti, not to mention the occasional drive by shooting or moltov cocktail. There was plenty of violence to go around. Although most of it was under reported.
And that’s just Texas.
Bush’s aid to Africa was a testament to the good our nation can do when it really wants to help. But, again, I think you underestimate the amount of harm he inflicted in exchange. Blackwater has a sizable presence in Sudan today. Islamic radicalism infects the continent. Poverty brought on by US and European companies exploiting the native workforce continue to oppress those that do receive aid – and this poverty is perpetuated by a Bush foreign affairs office that honestly couldn’t give half a shit about African lives if it meant De Bears or McDonalds could turn a buck.
Not to be too negative, but this faint silver lining that gives Bush a good reputation in Africa is almost a fluke. If we looked a little below the surface, I’m confident we would see a hotbed of corruption, graft, and incompetence. I’m happy to give credit where credit is due and it is heartening to know that not EVERYTHING Bush touches turns to shit, but if Africans sing Bush’s praise in the future, it will ultimately be undeserved.
Thanks for being surprisingly even-handed, Mr. Cole.
Despite the fact that you keep taking potshots at Sarah Palin with your Vault 101-issued BB gun (which is why you miss more than half the time and the hits have little impact), it’s still good to see that you’re able to acknowledge the positive efforts quietly endeavored on the other side of the political aisle.
– A Country Courting Disaster
I will agree, John, that the $15B for Africa was a good thing.
Unfortunately, it came with strings attached. ONE-THIRD of those funds were directed to faith-based groups whose sole mission was to preach the doctrine of abstinence to Africans as a way of preventing AIDS.
I have mixed feelings about George Bush’s AIDS initiatives in Africa. On one hand, yes…he did do a lot of good. On another hand, he attached some very strong moral strings to those initiatives, which really did a lot of damage. His insistence that recipient countries emphasize abstinence over condoms was inexcusable, because he was putting his own moral convictions over the lives of people in Africa.
So yes. He did well. But the strings he attached kept even more lives from being saved.
I hope that Obama will rectify this. He has a very real opportunity here. There is a dire need for AIDS education in Africa, and unfortunately, a lot of the education is not being heeded because it is coming from Western sources.
As the son of a Kenyan, Obama’s voice may very well be taken more seriously than that of his predecessors. They very well might listen to him, and if he can truly persuade even 1% of them that condoms really DO help prevent the transmission of AIDS, and that no, fucking a virgin will not cure you of AIDS (which is unfortunately a rather common belief and has led to instances of infant rape), then he’ll have made a very huge difference.
I agree with you that Obama cannot be held responsible for what Olbermann or Greenwald says. But the problem with GOP and Bush and his cronies was that they actively courted the blowhards to win elections. its no surprise that Fox news is the Pravda wing of the Bush admin and thats where Rove went to roose after he retired from being advisor.
And people like Rove relied on Fox and Limbaugh and Falwell and Pat to spew hatred against Muslims to win elections..remember Rove’s strategy was to rile up the extreme right wing base..which is why Mittens and McCain and Bible Spice pursued the same strategy
CIRCVS MAXIMVS MMVIII
I for one am glad we don’t have a complete void on good things we can say he did. It makes it a tiny less bitter pill to have swallowed.
Yes, its important to give props where props are due and Bush did some good in Africa. Also, even I liked him for five minutes during that 9/11 speech.
It’s important to remember that no one is all good or all bad. To put people in such simplistic categories is to miss huge chunks of the picture.
An additional thought. I think John Oliver nailed it when talking about Bush’s good works in Africa. It was a definitely a good thing. However, it proved that Bush was capable of doing good, but simply chose not most of the time. It made everything else that he did that much worse.
Atanarjuat: Vault 101, huh? I know what you’ve been spending your time on lately. :)
What you said. If we really do want a new kind of politics, we need to resist the urge to paint our opponents as cartoon characters with none of the fascinating and frustrating complexities of real human beings. Even though it’s not nearly as much fun.
The Grand Panjandrum
OT: Robert Gibbs will be Obama’s Press Secretary. The very same Robert Gibbs who bitch slapped Sean Hannity. (Video here)
The $3 billion a year we spend on PEPFAR is a bit less than the president originally promised, and it has been compromised somewhat by idiotic conditions regarding condoms and abortion, but it has certainly made a big difference, especially in Africa. PEPFAR has provided antiretroviral treatment to 1.45 million people, and is credited with preventing 10 million babies from being born with HIV.
However, as Colleen Denny and Ezekiel Emanuel point out in the Nov. 5 edition of JAMA, there are many other far less expensive interventions that we do not fund adequately, which could save even more lives and prevent more disability. For the $3 billion a year we spend on PEPFAR, providing antiretroviral therapy yields a benefit of somewhere in the range of 5 million Disability Adjusted Life Years. (I talked about that concept recently, and promised to get back to it. So here we are.)
But providing insecticide treated bed nets to prevent malaria, for the same money, would provide more like 200 million DALYs. Just providing the standard set of immunizations for kids would yield 429 million. A community based support program for pregnant women, using trained lay midwives and inexpensive supplies, gets us 333 million DALYs.
PEPFAR has support in the U.S. because we are familiar with HIV and its ravages, and there is a strong advocacy community in the U.S. for HIV prevention and treatment. But the many other deadly afflictions of poor countries, for which we could have an even greater impact at less cost, are comparatively neglected. Given the hard times we’ll be going through here — hard by our standards but not hard at all by the standards of the poor countries we’re talking about — it will be difficult for the new president to increase spending on foreign aid. Alas, Denny and Emanuel seem to argue for allocating funds away from PEPFAR and toward some of these other problems.
I can’t support that because the last thing we need to do right now is divide people who support assistance to the poor countries. But there are compelling reasons for us to do more. Yes, Africa does not need an increase in it’s human population. But we know that when infant mortality goes down, and the status of women improves, birth rates go down and population stabilizes. So the right strategy can work.
I think Sarah Palin would agree that Bush has done some great things for the country of Africa.
Didn’t the global gag rule harm African nations?
Ding Ding Ding, we have a winner. I give GW a D+ for this effort. It’s not an EPIC FAIL like everything else he’s done, but it’s hardly something to be commended, except in a soft bigotry of low expectations kind of way.
What Bush did is far better than what Limbaugh or Savage would have done, but it’s not even as good as what his father did and it’s worse than Clinton’s efforts. The lurch to the right of the GOP now means that US foreign aid is at best 1/3 "good things", 1/3 faith based hooey and 1/3 spending reduction because "it involves condoms, sex education, science education or acknowledging global warming".
To be fair, everything else Bush has tried "actively" to accomplish has ended up so much worse than if he had sat on his thumbs the entire time that it’s hard to see how we’ll climb out of the hole he dug faster than the sinkhole is opening under out feet.
From what I’ve read – bang for buck, programs that improve the education of women and provide for basic needs (water, shelter, food) would do far more for cutting disease, death, unwanted pregnancy than anything else (including necessary stuff like AIDS education).
The more educated a woman is, the fewer babies she has (true in pretty much every country, across every race). And while I’m not saying we need to depopulate the planet, people having only as many babies as they truly want and can support is a good goal.
Oh get real!
Lets see, an AIDS policy in Africa based nearly purely on post-infection medication and discussions of abstinence and prohibited from discussing the contraception benefits of condoms. So effective, so Christian….
@jcricket: Actually, I have a friend who did a stint as a missionary at a school in Malawi. His experience was that when AIDs education included handing out condoms at one school, rapes on campus began to the point the principal said they would teach abstinence only AIDs education. So it may have been a Bush policy, but it was probably supported by many Africans
My sentiments precisely. Then there’s Darfur.
And any good he might have started with Africa, he tooketh away by picking up innocent Muslims off the street for a little preventive torture, then dumping them in shitholes like Macedonia, and blocking any effort for redress in American courts. Fuck him. Net – 666 good.
Bush definitely did some good with respect to fighting AIDS in Africa (conditions or no) and also by extending and expanding Clinton’s Africa Growth Opportunities Act. I see his expansion of AGOA as even more important than his work on AIDS because it allowed African farmers of cotton (among other things) to export their goods to the USA. Even though labor costs are dirt cheap in Africa, American farmers are so heavily subsidized by the US government that African farmers can’t compete when it comes to certain exports. AGOA has allowed many to be self-sufficient — building a stable middle class in Africa is the key to progress and to ending conflicts there (just as it is in other parts of the world).
As much as i DESPISE Bush’s depredations I will agree that he made some reasonable effort to keep Joe the Plumber & Co. from burning down every mosque south of the Yukon. I often say that when some wingnut challenges me to say a nice thing about him.
Also, they LOVE him in Albania. I mean really, he could be a god there.
The one thing i dont think he is is a racist.
While we’re at it, his immigration policy when that controversy flared up in 2007 was basically the status quo, right? The status quo isn’t that great, but it’s better than Congressional Republicans were going for at the time.
What, no love for the "do not call" list? Bush signed that.
@liberatemeiexinfernis: I’m not sure it was Bush’s job alone to condemn the Malkins and Limbaughs. I was so relieved when Colin Powell finally made a point of chastising his party for sanctioning prejudice against Muslims, including American Muslims.
With respect to bias against Arabs, what’s surprised me the most is that prominent Americans of Arab (mostly Lebanese Christian) descent have said almost nothing about the Arab bashing. Not even those in the Republican party. There was James Zogby’s outburst after McCain’s correction of a supporter who labeled Obama an Arab, but he quickly bit his tongue. Haven’t heard much from Darrell Issa, Ralph Nader, John Sununu (senior and junior), or Jeanne Shaheen, whose husband is of Lebanese descent.
I guess it’s up to all of us to point out how much Arab Americans have contributed to the US when know-nothings start to spout rubbish.
The Moar You Know
@Xecky Gilchrist: Jesus, I forgot about that. That might be enough for me to sponsor him for canonization. Seriously.
Also, he signed the extension for Daylight Saving Time, which personally I’m a big fan of – don’t mind leaving for work in the dark, but hate coming home in the dark.
Hey! We’re up to four good things we can say about the George W. Bush legacy! How ’bout that?
Yeah, the decisions regarding condoms and abortions is really appalling. I think Obama will lift those restrictions.
And Cervantes was right about the education and empowerment of women, changing the landscape. That is very important. So…
I will take this opportunity to plug one of my favorite not-for-profits that help empower women with microloans:
They do very good work and, so far, the model has been successful.
As long as we’re being gracious winners, I would add that Dubya said publicly a few times- during one of the debates with Kerry, too, IIRC – that there was nothing wrong with being an atheist, that you were no less of a person or a citizen for not being religious, something that even his father wasn’t willing to do. In a country where more than half still think you can’t have any morals if you don’t fear being punished by Angry Sky God, I’m glad to hear that no matter who it comes from.
For the last two or three months bushwhack has authorized the US military to keep al Qaida & Bin Laden on the run with 24/7 drone attacks. Notice we not only didn’t have an attack but not even a tape or just a direct e-mail. Apparently, bush realized that Bin Laden might want to add his two cents to the election. Considering Bin Laden would want McCain o win, what bush did more than likely helped Obama.
@The Moar You Know: Jesus, I forgot about that. That might be enough for me to sponsor him for canonization. Seriously.
That was the single Bush action I can think of that had a direct positive effect on my own life. I agree with others above that the aid to Africa was nice but hamstrung by the abstinence-only crap, and I did applaud his speech about not lynching Muslims though I thought he could have gone much further with saying "no, really, knock that shit off, there’s nothing evil about being Muslim, and BTW not everyone who wears an exotic hat is a Muslim."
Before the do-not-call list, there was a while when we were getting six calls every evening about changing our long distance service. I was ready to strangle somebody.
How can everyone forget that W. Bush created the nation’s largest natural wilderness preserve off the coast of Hawaii? Remember that whole "mankind and fish can coexist in peace" thing? Bush means it. The man (and, possibly more importantly, his wife) really love ocean wildlife.
I always think of W. sitting in his office, dreams of colorful fish dancing in his head. Calming. Peaceful. Empty.
Of course, Dick Cheney does everything he can to kill as many fish as he can, but Georgie really did do good with that oceanic preserve.
Yeah, I remember Bush’s African AIDS/HIV announcement. A woman I was seeing at the time said to me: "See? Bush isn’t all that bad!". (We broke up a couple weeks later for, er, unrelated matters… yeeahhh.. unrelated) My reply was: "Let’s just wait & see. Bush’s words have a way of not always syncing up with his actions".
Well, a couple weeks later the details started to surface. I can’t remember all the details, but the rough outlines were:
– Bush didn’t create any new intiatives, rather just expanded or promised more money to already existing orgs.
– He ultimately gave less than he intially promised (hello, New York? N’Orleans?). Additionally, factoring in rising costs, inflation, etc., the Bush money wasn’t a whole lot more than what the orgs were in line to get through existing agreements anyway.
– Bush didn’t really introduce much ‘new money’ into his AIDS/HIV initiative. Most of the money was redirected from other similar programmes & orgs that supplied meds, supplies, healthcare, etc. to other impoverished areas. Bush borrowed from Peter to pay Paul in other words.
– & as people have mentioned, the christian-moralistic imperatives built into the aid package. Simply egregious.
At the end of the day I can’t, of course, condemn that good that has been done through these programmes, but the best that can be said of Bush’s involvement is that he didn’t make things worse. Hell, Bush even managed to inject a little bit more money into the cause… even if it was at the expense of other, equally worthy, causes.
15 bn spent on AIDS in Africa is surely a fine exercise in anthropology and is the only thing to come to My mind to recommend the Chimporer for.
As usual with this administration there is a hidden agenda,
Oil and Good-buddy no-bid contracts to consider
when it comes to building the military bases to defend
the precious oil.
The first was due to be finished and staffed last September though very little information has been passed along to us, the peon masses.
Darth Cheney seems overly excited about invading Iran,I think
that is a decoy though.
If America has to occupy any country in the foreseeable future
it will in all likelihood be Africa if only to keep the Muslims
from being the ones to sell Our not Their oil to the Chinese.
You just gotta love these Secular idiots on both sides of the
Religious issues but both of which have Their hands around Our throats when it comes to oil!
Haven’t read all of the comments, but first, Africans are gracious, always have been in general, especially wrt a head of state, second, Bush pushed ABC, more the A of that than anything else.
Look for it to be another failure of his administration when the numbers are tallied.
Another one, from early on (and, not coincidentally, pre-9/11): the decidedly non-crazy response to the spy plane that collided with a Chinese plane and ended up on a Chinese island. The US groveled and the crew was returned 11 days later. This despite war drums from the crazies here.
Here’s a thought experiment: imagine that a hugely unpopular Democratic president is nearing the end of two disastrous terms, and Republicans have swept back into power. Now imagine that a thoughtful RedState frontpage post takes the time to point out two laudable achievements from a record that is otherwise almost uniformly horrible. And then commenters take the time to point out other somewhat positive accomplishments, despite their disgust and loathing of the outgoing President.
Can’t imagine it? Me either.
Don’t you think Bush and Condee high-fived when Obama won? I do.
My impression is the Bush admin. funds were largely directed at only abstinence programs, not contraception. This has been overwhelmingly INEFFECTIVE for Africans and effective for state-side bible thumpers.
There’s plenty more where that link comes from. There are two sides to this, and given Bush’s overwhelming propensity for carelessness and an utter disregard for human life (except the fetal kind and, you know, someone who is palliative and at death’s door), I tend to believe the evidence of him sucking at this too.
I think you’re delusional. Seriously.
There’s this, too. FAIL.
About Bush’s post-9/11 speech: I acknowledge that it did probably help to reduce violence and discrimination, compared to what might have happened… but at the same time, I can’t forgive him for the actual violence and discrimination that his government was committing within the US at the same time. People were arrested secretly, locked up illegally, beaten up, and deported, because they were Muslim or someone thought they might be. I attended demonstrations for months outside the detention center in Brooklyn, when they wouldn’t even release the names of the prisoners, and was sickened to learn later that our worst fears about abuses inside the place were true.
This is also why I couldn’t join in the chorus of "Ashcroft was a fundie asshole but at least he had principles", when the story came out about his opposition to Bush on surveillance. It was Ashcroft’s DOJ that carried out official racial profiling and abuse, even as Bush was urging ordinary Americans not to go there.
What can I say? We are one fucking seriously classy bunch.
Fuckin’ A right, we are.
Maybe I am, Les. But I think they both must hate McCain with the searing force of a million suns. Cheney, on the other hand, shot himself in the face.
It would have been interesting to see the ‘what ifs’ 9/11 hadnt happened.
I always knew that, on balance, I would never think of Bush as a positive influence in the US. Not necessarily for Bush himself (although I had enough personnaly against him from the get go as a pompous child of privilege and having a complete lack of intellectual curiosity and depth of character among other things), but for the string pullers of the modern day republican party (the circular firing squad of today is heartwarming, but I hope only the opening act of a long party self destruction).
But one area where I thought Bush had a real chance to do good was building our relations with Mexico. Ive always felt, maybe because of Bush’s transplant Texas heritage, that he had a relatively non-insane view of US / Mexican relations and had the chance, with Fox, to do some good. He seemed to really be focusing on that relationship hard in the beginning.
What that good would have been obviously got lost quickly in 9/11. He would have had to fight the crazies on the right to get said potentially sane policy through, and who knows how that could have ended. But he had his head in the right place with our southern neighbors.
As Will Ferrell as Bush put it, "I declared the office a bummer free zone 4 months ago". Dancing fish is just about right.
You assholes aren’t going to be satisfied until W gets convicted (and then executed) of various and sundry things in world court, so why bother with saying anything good about the last 8 years?
What would be more productive would be to speculate on what President Obama should be doing for at least the next 4 years. And since he’s got Congress, there should be no looking back.
@Dave_No_Longer_Laughing: there should be no looking back.
Nope. Moving forward means dealing with the past, including all its crimes, war crimes, and miscarriages of justice.
Executed, No. Most of us here are against the death penalty. Held accountable, absolutely. The party of law and order and accountability now wants to us to look the other way for Bush’s lawlessness. This after impeaching a dem president for lying about a blow job. Typical wingnut whining titty baby.
Bush has fucked the country up so bad, it is absolutely necessary to learn what happened for any chance of cleaning up the mess the GOP has made of things. Dave -No longer laughing, I guess the party is over for you wingnuts and now it’s time to take your medicine in the political wilderness. None of us has been laughing and won’t be for some time to come. Nothing at all funny about the disaster of the Bush presidency and it’s aftermath.
If you have something nice to say about George W. Bush, save it for the sentencing phase.
The man is a war criminal. Nothing he has done can atone for even a fraction of the evil he has perpetrated.
And if any group taught birth control, their funds were denied.
In addition to a very positive policy towards Africa, Bush needs to be credited for thinking big with regards to India. He de-linked America’s relationship with India from Pakistan, signed an ambitious nuclear deal, and increased military cooperation. Indonesia, the largest Muslim nation in the world, holds a more positive attitude towards the U.S. because of the help they got from the U.S. after the tsunami. And after an initial shaky start, China found it was treated as a far more serious player in the region by Bush than by any predecessor.
Does this all weigh more heavily than Iraq, Pakistan, and Afghanistan – no. But I would not judge Clinton solely on not taking Al Qaeda seriously, launching an illegal war against Serbia in 1999, signed a worthless deal with North Korea, and doing nothing to halt genocide in Rwanda.
Good Evening –
While I am a Republican, I can appreciate the History being made this week as Barack Obama was elected President. It’s been a magical moment for this country and to be living the pages of future history books is somewhat overwhelming. However, I was a citizen that voted for George W Bush both times. I believe that he is an honest man, a man of values and deep to his core, someone who believes in the love of his God and country. I feel though that his Presidency was doomed from the beginning. Think about it – within 9 months of his term – he was struck with the tragedy of 9/11. He came out championing 1 country for all of us and in that time he was a President FOR all of us. He had an 80% approval rating in 2002 and 92% of the country backed his decision to invade Iraq. History has proven that the further away from a tragic event one gets – the easier it is to handle – the feelings of revenge become less – and soon – people oppose the war completely. Then Hurricane Katrina happened. Nevermind that the levees had not been fixed for years before – the mishandling of that event in the eyes of the media was completely the Presidents fault. Nevermind that the Mayor of New Orleans and the Governor if Louisiana mishandled this – the problem fell into the hands of the Federal Government – and therefore the President, and how easy for the media it was – given there efforts to destroy the President. Then the slide of the economy – the housing crisis – all the Presidents fault in the eyes of the media. Never is he touted for the success he had early in his term for low unemployment and a growing economy. No one praises him for the record growth the DOW saw last October 2007 when it peaked at an all time high. However now – it’s all his fault when the DOW drops to its recent lows. All I’m saying – is the accomplishments of this President will not be validated until we look back at his term as President and the victories he envisioned come to fruition. Any President plagued with a term of multiple tragedies would’ve had the same outcome. They too would be sitting ducks – unable to push new policy because they are trying to fix all of the many tragedies they have been struck with. It’s unfortunate that we will never witness the true potential of what his time as president could’ve been. Instead – we will remember the biased media soundbites, the big mouthed celebrities, and the disrespectful talk show host that slaughter a good man’s name – when if they were in another country and disrespected their president, would be killed. I certainly hope President-Elect Obama gets the opportunity to achieve the promises he layed out to those who voted for him. Because if not, the honeymoon will be over and over quick.