Quote: Originally Posted by Tecumsehsbones
That you hate the Americans with Disabilities Act, the fall of the Soviet Union, the ouster of Iraq from Kuwait, the deposition and arrest of Manuel Noriega, NAFTA, and noble if unsuccessful balanced budget legislation comes as no surprise.
I suppose he had some successes. I view him more in terms the CIA Operation Condor; Iran Contra guns and drugs; globalization; NAFTA has been an absolute disaster (although it was initiated by Reagan and fully implemented by Clinton); all those stacks of civilian bodies that had to be clambered over to get to Noriega, admittedly, a punk dictator.
The Soviet Union collapsed of its own accord through loss of all economic and ideological integrity & vitality. Reagan and Bush were spectators not instigators of such. I still remember the Highway of Death where a beaten and retreating Iraqi Army was cutoff and slaughtered as an example for others. Maybe not Bush's direct order but on his Watch.
I never figured out George H.W. Bush. He was fixed somewhere between the Calvinist libertarian ethic of Ronald Reagan, and, old style hierarchical, dirigiste, conservative Catholicism. He was a true Establishment Episcopalian I guess. He was pro abortion and population control but appointed the most reliable social conservative to the USSC in Clarence Thomas as well as the notoriously unreliable David Souter.
His management of the economy seemed a step up from the Trickledown Reaganomics; notably by imposing taxes on the rich. But a balanced budget is a NeoCon idol (and a corollary of monetarism) that would be a disaster in a faltering economy and locking it in by Constitution Amendment was potentially catastrophic. It was the legacy of NeoCon/Lib Free Trade, laissez-faire, monetarist, privatized, deregulated economic principles that drove him from office but which didn't start with him and only got worse after he left under the leadership of both parties.
I honestly don't think he had solid policy beliefs of any sort. He just kind of floated in the political zeitgeist of the Republican Party. He was a consummate administrator and not a visionary. Seems to me I remember him supporting outlawing flag burning in the Constitution as well (even though burning a flag is the prescribed method of disposing of a worn out flag according to the Boy Scouts. Hence he was for outlawing political expression).
He seemed like a nice enough guy, unless, you got in the way of something he wanted. Willie Horton, the flag, oil.. then could play rougher and dirtier rather than kinder and gentler. It's likely unfair to judge him outside the economic and cultural paradigm of the last 50 years. He part of a lineage, certainly not to blame, but someone who offered nothing different.
Last edited by coldstream; Dec 6th, 2018 at 02:35 PM..