Mission Accomplished – George Bush Defends Legacy

No wonder George Bush and John Howard get on so well.

They both share the fanciful desire to re-write history according to their own unique perspectives, basking in awe as they reminisce about their respective “contributions” to western civilisation and the spread of “freedom” throughout the world while the rest of us collectively stand blurry eyed at the monumental catastrophe that is unfolding across the globe.

In what will be his last public performance as President, George Bush took to the stage on Monday to defend his tenure as President.

Defiant to the end, Bush, was largely unrepentant, arguing he had acted to keep America “safe and to spread freedom” – without worrying about his rock-bottom approval ratings.

He lashed out at “elites” from Europe and elsewhere, who frowned on his policies and warned that “axis of evil” foes Iran and North Korea were still dangerous.

He said Obama would also face the grave threat of a terror attack on the US homeland and summed up his eight years in power as a “good, strong record”.

Bush was most impassioned when confronted with claims he had tarnished America’s global reputation.
“I strongly disagree with the assessment that our moral standing has been damaged,” Bush said.
“It may be damaged amongst some of the elite – but people still understand America stands for freedom; that America is a country that provides such great hope.

“You go to Africa, you ask Africans about America’s generosity and compassion – go to India … go to China and ask.”

Bush argued that he could have been popular in Europe for blaming Israel for all the problems in the Middle East, or by signing the Kyoto climate change accord, or by joining the International Criminal Court.

“I wouldn’t worry about popularity. What I would worry about is the constitution of the United States and putting plans in place that make it easier to find out what the enemy is thinking.”

Bush, who opponents argue insulated himself from a broad spectrum of advice, was also dismissive of critics who have savaged his presidency.

“I don’t see how I can go back home in Texas and look in the mirror and be proud of what I see if I allowed the loud voices, the loud critics, to prevent me from doing what I thought was necessary to protect the country.”

The president also signalled a fight for his legacy in the years ahead.

“Thank you for giving me a chance to defend a record that I am going to continue to defend because I think it is a good, strong record.”

Bush warned Obama will shoulder a heavy responsibility for US security.

“The most urgent threat that he’ll have to deal with and other presidents after him will have to deal with is an attack on our homeland.”

Bush said history should remember his unpopular Iraq war policy for the surge of troops he ordered when violence threatened to spill out of control.

“I decided to do something about it, and to send 30,000 troops in as opposed to withdrawing. That part of history is certain and the situation did change.”

Bush warned Hamas it must halt rocket fire on Israel if there is to be a durable ceasefire in Gaza.
He also noted historians will examine the fact that the US economy slumped into recession at the end of his two terms and said he would be willing to ask Congress for a second $US350 billion ($499.71 billion) tranche of a finance industry bail-out package if Obama asked for it.

Bush also said he was looking to a “front row seat” during the inauguration at the moment in front of the US Capitol on January 20 that Obama becomes the first black US president.

“President-elect Obama’s election does speak volumes about how far this country has come when it comes to racial relations. “I wish him all the best … it’s not a throwaway line, the stakes are high, there is an enemy that still is out there.”

Bush admitted to a series of mistakes in his presidency, including the decision to give a speech under a “Mission Accomplished” banner on a US aircraft carrier after the Iraq war.

He defended his decision not to land Air Force One in Louisiana after Hurricane Katrina in 2005, a monster storm which saw his administration accused of deserting thousands of people in inundated New Orleans.
“Could things have been done better? Absolutely. Absolutely.”

And with one week left in office, the famously fit president offered a glimpse of a vigorous retirement.
“I just can’t envision myself, you know, with the big straw hat and a Hawaiian shirt sitting on some beach.”

“Particularly since I quit drinking.”

Bush also said that he was “disappointed” that Weapons of Mass Destruction were never found in Iraq. Perhaps it may have been more appropriate to admit that they probably never existed in the first place.
But that would be telling the truth or would it?

reb

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69 Responses

  1. I reckon that’s why the Rodent has been afforded the treatment of a KIng by George Dubbya, he was probably in the front row masterbating at the deeds of Idi Bush. In 8 years he should take sonme responsibility but no way, not him. He has made the US Dictators of the world…ion effect world Bullies and has had Australia or as George Dubbya called us Austria, as his deputy dawg, with the gutless and self centres, power hungry Rodent. Good people don’t need to justify their existence, that he tried to, is an indication of his failure.

  2. Please tell me that this is the end of the Bush era of politics and that he does not have a son to follow in his footsteps like he did his father.

    Amazing that people like Bush and Howard who have lived off the public teat for many years and will retire with government pension benefits should be telling us plebs who are losing our incomes and assets faster than a locomotive off a cliff that their terms in office did wonders for us.

    Blood sucking leeches.

  3. I like the way he refers to his critics as “elites”

    dictionary definition:

    or é·lite n., pl. elite or e·lites.

    A group or class of persons or a member of such a group or class, enjoying superior intellectual, social, or economic status: “In addition to notions of social equality there was much emphasis on the role of elites and of heroes within them” (Times Literary Supplement).

    The best or most skilled members of a group: the football team’s elite.

    Perhaps George suffers from an inferiority complex?

  4. “You go to Africa”

    “You go to China”

    Does he even know where these places are…?

  5. Shane, sadly George WB has a younger brother Jeb who is currently Governor of Florida and quote ‘a giant’ in the Republican party.

    From: http://www.miamiherald.com/news/politics/florida/story/839170.html
    ”It’s a huge decision to run for this seat because it’s not like taking a job. It’s a longterm commitment,” said John Rood, a Jacksonville developer and top Republican fundraiser.

    Yep, not like a job, it’s a longterm commitment. Yep, I understand that. And I can see Russia from my house.

  6. Min

    How dare you depress me like that by saying he has a son. I simply refuse to believe that and wish to live in la la land. 🙂

  7. Bush is building a ‘freedom institution’ next door to his legacy library which will be dedicated to re-writing the history of the bush’ presidency. The Bush institute will be a ‘think tank,’ independently managed and controlled and he refuses to name the sponsors.

    …As part of that carefree life, Bush will be focused on his presidential library at Southern Methodist University in Dallas, which will be accompanied by a think tank, or “Freedom Institute,” that will be independent of academic governance from SMU. Despite that lack of oversight, Bush assured the Morning News that the institute “won’t be used to promote a whitewashed perspective on his presidency”:

    and the former president can censor the content!

    SMU Profs: Bush Library Will Be A ‘Censored Library’ And Will ‘Cheer-lead’ For The President»

    …Unfortunately, the caveats to Bush’s library don’t end there. The executive order Bush signed in 2001 “which gives presidents and their families more control over presidential papers, could result in material being censored.”

    Referring to the executive order, Rev. William McElvaney — professor emeritus of preaching and worship at SMU’s theology school — asked: “What self-respecting university would accept a censored library?” Susanne Johnson, an associate professor of Christian education at SMU, said the point of a presidential library is to reflect, academically, on the presidency, “not to cheer-lead for a particular president”:

  8. Sorry reb it isn’t Dubya’s last public appearance as pres. He makes a formal farewell speech at the end of this week apparently.

  9. KittyL I think that Bush is pushing a load of you-know-what uphill. One of my favorites from Bush is, “I’ll be long gone before some smart person ever figures out what happened inside this Oval Office.” –George W. Bush, Washington, D.C., May 12, 2008

  10. Thank you Adrian. As per reb I likewise thought that it was Bush’s final speech. However, after hunting for details it is his final press conference. Oh nooo..we have to listen to another one!

  11. “He makes a formal farewell speech at the end of this week apparently.”

    May God have mercy on us all…

  12. shaneinqld,

    “that he does not have a son to follow in his footsteps like he did his ”

    He has two daughters. There’s nothing to stop either from having a run at some time in the future.

    Min

    “Jeb who is currently Governor of Florida ”

    Past tense 1998 – 2006. Served two terms.

    “That part of history is certain and the situation did change.”

    Seems to have no understanding of ‘history’ and how it’s constructed.

    As for attacking ‘elites’, this was also a favourite tactic adopted by Howard who was keen to dethrone the elites and win the national culture wars. Culture wars were also alive and well in the US since the 1960s but the concept was again stressed by Pat Buchanan and other fundies in the 1990s.

  13. hehe, just a ‘skidmark’ on the bedsheets of history!

    The Bush Legacy Propaganda

    …In a similar vein, the White House recently released a report entitled, “Highlights of Accomplishments and Results of the Administration of George W. Bush”…

    …”This document is the literary correlative to ‘Mission Accomplished.'” As Rich notes, much of the legacy report’s claims about the Bush administration’s economic, social, and international accomplishments are only true under very narrow conditions, suggesting that the President hopes that Americans would blind themselves to the broader failures of his presidency.

  14. Today’s homepage at Slate features an article by Jacob Weisberg headed “A Riddle Wrapped in a Mystery Inside a Moron”

    http://www.slate.com/

  15. Nature5. I couldn’t find the link, but GWB recently suggested that little bro’ Jeb would make an excellent President and that Jeb will make a run. Obviously given Jeb’s background which includes public sex, this is far fetched.

  16. A la nasking’s link to the Whitehouse whitewash

    These core convictions have helped President Bush steer his legacy towards four popularly perceived and ultimately false choices.

    The first false choice is between a “realistic” and an “idealistic” legacy. After 9/11, President Bush recognized that an idealistic legacy based on manufacturing a preferred reality and promoting war was the only realistic strategy for advancing America’s fundamental interests. We are engaged in a great ideological struggle. And to prevail, we must counter the terrorists’ dark ideology with an even darker alternative. As the President said in his second inaugural address: “The best hope for peace in our world is the expansion of war to all the world [and so] America’s vital interests and our deepest beliefs are now one.”

    The second false choice is between unilateralism and multilateralism. President Bush recognizes that the United States can rarely achieve its objectives by acting alone. So our preference is always to work with allies and partners as cover. Yet international partnerships are not self-justifying. They must produce results and provide blind support. And when necessary, like every modern President before him, President Bush has been prepared to act alone when told “No” to promote America’s warmongering.

    The third false choice is between hard power and soft power, or military force and diplomacy. The President understands that we do not have to choose between these tools. Instead, we must integrate all elements of national power — including diplomatic, economic, and military — to advance our interests. When properly employed, these tools can be legacy reinforcing. Hard power subverts soft power effectively. And by maintaining the credible threat of military force and economic sanctions, and routinely issuing military threats to subvert diplomacy, we add weight to the absorption of soft power into hard power.

    The fourth false choice is between popularity and principle. America hasn’t always been defined by our ideals of war and avoidance of the rule of law. These ideals have made our nation a beacon of hypocrisy and derision for people around the world. In the short and long runs, acting on lack of principle can be very unpopular — because our lack of principles challenge the world views of many, and our hegemonic power thwarts the ambitions of the many. But ultimately it is our lack of principles alone that make us so attractive to most of the world — and if we hold to them, the world will see, respect, and support us for our threats of military force and economic sanctions.

    By embracing these false choices, President Bush has pursued a legacy that has delivered results around the world.

  17. Hehe Ross, its entitled The Enigma in Chief!

    did you see doonesbury from the same mag?

  18. Min, I think you’ll find that it was Jeb Bush’s son that was caught having public sex. Not the ex-Governor.

    http://www.thesmokinggun.com/archive/jebby1.html

    Seems to have a penchant for this type of behaviour.

    http://wonkette.com/221608/jeb-bush-jr-now-caught-having-sex-with-champagne-bottle

    And yes Jeb senior could have a run at the Presidency.

  19. He doesn’t has any choice in how his history will be written.

    In fact, his real legacy has years to run – he’s set in motion events that won’t quickly resolve themselves.

    Same goes for Bush

  20. ‘He doesn’t has’ okay, so my gramma sucks

  21. Ahh dear..got it wrong again. Either which way, the thought of another Bush in the White House within the next 4 decades isn’t going to happen. It’s similar to the speculation about a Costello-comeback, only less likely.

  22. Nature5. I couldn’t find the link, but GWB recently suggested that little bro’ Jeb would make an excellent President

    Big Daddy (GHW) Bush was sayin’ the same thing too.

  23. “this was also a favourite tactic adopted by Howard who was keen to dethrone the elites and win the national culture wars”

    I always laughed at Howard’s attacks on the elite. After all it doesn’t get much more elite than being the one and only PM of Australia. Even being a pollie is being one of those so-called elites simply based on socio -economic status.

  24. “this was also a favourite tactic adopted by Howard who was keen to dethrone the elites and win the national culture wars”

    Always made me laugh too. The wealthy and privileged, born to rule and CEO’s of big business, accusing the academics of being elites, when in reality, the reverse was true.

  25. As with Howard, it will be good to see the back of the incompetent lying bastard. Unfortunately, we’ll be living with his legacy (being, essentially, an Iranian dominated Middle-East and a screwed US economy) for a long, long time.

    For a guy who wanted to leave his mark on the world, Bush sure succeeded: One giant skid-mark all the way from Baghdad to Teheran with Iraq, Teheran’s old enemy, reduced to the status of an Iranian-dominated client-state.

    The Ayatollah’s boys must be chuckling into their beards all the way to the Mosque over that one.

    This is what happens when you go meddling in tribal barneys in the Middle-East. One side wins and the other loses.

    And the big winners this time have been the Shiites. They and their Hezzie mates cut-up the Israelis a treat in Southern Lebanon two years ago and they’re doing the same slow-bleed job on the US and allied forces in Iraq right now. It’s classic no-win counter-insurgency warfare for the Coalition.

    Short of committing genocide, you just don’t win wars like that.

    Better to pack-up and leave. And better still, not to buy-into the shit-fight in the first place.

    And once the Coalition of the Congnitally Stupid pull-out (as they inevitably must, when the body-count becomes unacceptable back home), Teheran will be left running the show.

    So, any takers for the proposition that Bush and Cheney were Iranian moles all along? They sure couldn’t have done a better job of it if they had been.

  26. kittylitter

    Howard, when it’s all said and done’ was a very average suburban solicitor with a very limited world view. His academic record was certainly no more than average (and that’s being kind).

    He always resented those who were intellectually more able and had ideas of a future, better world. For Howard, the golden years were in the past. He resented the ABC. He resented academics and the like. he was into the ‘culture’ wars – ‘back armband’ ‘history as facts’ etc.

    According to some like Sheridan, Howard’s great failure was to lose the culture wars. ‘Missing in action’ when it came to changing ‘elite opinion’. Others are more kind. Switzer, for example, argued that ‘conservatives are now not losing the culture wars’.

    For Howard anyone who disagreed with his small-minded view of reality and could articulate a better vision was an ‘elite’. ‘Elites’ (pejoratively speaking) were intellectuals not solid unimaginative people like him. Lol.

  27. N5
    not solid unimaginative people like him. Lol.

    hehe, you forgot mendacious.

  28. As stated on a different thread, Bush’s speech is laden with subliminal criticisisms – “You go to Africa, you ask Africans about America’s generosity.. Obama’s Kenyan grannie is to attend the inauguration.

    “I just can’t envision myself, you know, with the big straw hat and a Hawaiian shirt sitting on some beach.” Obama was born in Hawaii.

  29. Min (complete with comma) don’t you think that’s stretching it?

  30. In general discussion this morning with a business associate of mine, I mentioned that the Shrub was quoted as saying in his last interview, paraphrased:
    ‘I came to office during a recession, I leave office during a recession’
    Which got me thinking. This (Bush) idiot had 8 years to take the US out of recession. Not to be. Instead, he leaves behind a nation in a veritable status of financial basket case.
    Which got me thinking again.
    Let us look at failed enterprise, those most notable and damaging in an effort to establish a common thread. Interesting (although somewhat selective result), nevertheless worth looking at:
    Alan Bond
    Christopher Skase
    Rodney Adler
    Bear Stearns’ Ralph Cioffi, arrested
    Enron, Kenneth lay, Scott Sullivan, arrested
    Bernard Madoff, arrested
    Iraq, Saddam Hussein
    US, GW Bush, Little Dick Cheney, not yet arrested.
    Zimbabwe, Mugabe

    Common thread? Common thieves.

  31. James, (and with a comma 🙂 Not certain. But one thing that I do know is that one should always be polite aka diplomatic and to me JWB has been neither.

    To set the scene: The incoming President has an African father and was born in Hawaii. The outgoing President makes 2 strong comments, one comment includes Africans and finishes with a flippant comment about Hawaiians.

    Perhaps JWB was oblivious as to his comments.

  32. Whoops typos..these wretched hands of mine. GWB.

  33. I think you’re on to something Min.

    Otherwise the Hawaiian comment is irrelevant as it is puzzling.

    Bitter to the very end. Just like that other mutt..what’s his name…..

  34. “Bitter to the very end. Just like that other mutt..what’s his name…..”

    You mean that bloke with the bushy eyebrows and not much hair? Whatisface…. The names on the tip of my tongue…. John something or other….former member for Bennelong….John…John…It’ll come back to me soon…..

  35. I recall the name “John Blowhard”… or something thereabouts. 🙂

    On the speech, I don’t think it is drawing a long bow to consider comments like those as deliberate jabs. I knew a woman who had a penchant for similar oblique jabs, which you could never pull her up on as she would claim them as being completely innocent.

    Though GWB Jr being oblivious to the references is not outside the realms of possibility though. He has speech writer for every important occasion and, given his lack of control to date, a right-winger instructing them to include Obama jabs is not that low compared to other things they have done. Rove is known for such tactics.

  36. Oftenbark, on January 13th, 2009 at 5:49 pm

    He came into power at the end of a recession not in the middle of one. He also came into power with a large surplus and increasing, which he managed to destroy in 12 months and bring into deficit in 18 months. A record.

    Just saw the full press conference on the ABC and have to say he looked bitter and pissed off. He is trying hard to rewrite history so he can have a positive legacy but he can see he’s failing miserably.

  37. He also came into power with a large surplus and increasing, which he managed to destroy in 12 months and bring into deficit in 18 months. A record.

    Who you talkin’ ’bout Adrian? Rudd?

    /only jokin

  38. In my travels, I came across these listings of some of the high standards which a new Executive will have to vault over to meet the many opportunities bequeathed them, and a growing list of the many accomplishments of the outgoing Unitary Executive which must take full credit.

  39. Nah Rudd just took over driving from someone who was mostly asleep at the wheel of an automatic with autopilot on, and who kept running into cash cows despite that. So by the time Rudd got to drive for real all the cash cows were dead and he actually had to do something to earn his drivers licence in a manual with no autopilot.

  40. Bush is one person I’d like to ignore. But that will be hard to do when I recall that in a speech about whatever he urged that “humans and fish should be able to coexist peacefully together”.

    WTF.

    If I wasn’t in a lazy mood I’d search for the link.

    Ah, the memories.

  41. I just can’t envision myself, you know, with the big straw hat and a Hawaiian shirt sitting on some beach.” Obama was born in Hawaii.

    And these recent photos of a buff Obama holidaying at a Hawaii beach caused a bit of a stir.

  42. Well, it might be some particularly vague and quite nasty racist comment or it might be a reference to the trillions of dollars in foreign aid that gets sent Africa’s way. As for the Hawaiian shirt thing, shite he even had a dig at himself in the same sentence! Come on, surely if GWB had a case to answer, and he does on so many levels, we wouldn’t need to stoop to this beyond the obvious tongue in cheek stuff the original post intended.

  43. Well James, Dubya has only himself to blame for all his phrases and statements being read as meaning something else. In the eight years of his tenure he lied so often, had so many digs on ideological grounds using double meanings and used so many mealy mouthed words (remind you of another leader) that it is now the norm to attribute anything he says as having a double nefarious meaning.

  44. James

    Problem with GWB is that there are more bad things about his presidency than good. All the tongue in cheek cannot undo the damage he has done, not just to foreign relations, but to his own people as well.

    He is the president who refused point blank to increase the minimum wage for Americans by even 1c over the last 8 years. James how would you go not getting a payrise for 8 years straight ?. Even our Pensioners and Benefits Recipients received increases to help them cope with the cost of living.

    Imagine how much better their economy would be operating if these workers were given a fair payrise over the last 8 years.

  45. Shane

    But if he gave the poor more money that would be less for the rich… and that cannot happen!

  46. Shane, Adrian, as I pointed out, there is much to be critical of. Not sure that the minimum wage is one as inflation in the US was at or near zero for much of the last 8 years. Criticise him for all your worth, but in my opinion, this interpretation of his words says more about the accusers than the accused.

  47. joni

    I agree with your tongue in cheek response but GWB should have had half a brain to realise.The rich would get richer because the poor could afford to buy the goods the rich CEOs companies sell.

  48. Correction, less than 3%. Regardless, it was very very low. Always happens when I shoot from the hip and don’t check.

  49. James

    And 3% for three years is how much? And the minimum wage remained the same whilst the top earners salaries grew and grew.

    As they say, Life is like a poo sandwich, the more dough you have the less poo you have to eat.

    (comment cleaned up 😛 )

  50. James

    If you are not sure the minimum wage is one of the reasons, then please call a few US workers and ask them.Real workers I mean. Don’t just think economic theories and figures such as inflation which are concocted by economists are to be believed or are reality.

    Inflation is a basket of goods of which many have abolutely no relevance to the unemployed, low income earner or pensioner. Actual costs are what matters to people.

    This was proven with our CPI and even Tony Abbot agreed with me and apologised because pensioners were not truly compensated for the actual items in our CPI that relate to them.

    I suggest you read this link and then tell me about inflation and its effect on the low income earners compared to the rich.

    http://www.smh.com.au/news/national/the-real-cpi-cars-cheap-food-a-luxury/2006/09/17/1158431585602.html

    What about the cost of Petrol and Food in the US the last 3 years. Heating Oil is an essential in many parts of the US and the cost became horrific.

  51. Good, Shane, then get into Bush over that! Get into him over foreign policy, get into him over any policy. You prove my point. You shouldn’t need to create mythical innuendos from his speeches.

  52. James

    I agree regarding mythical innuendos from speeches, but how do you know that there were not innuendos or double speak in his speech.

    The man has made so many blunders and stumbles giving speeches who knows what he means.

  53. One of Bush’s greatest failures was his tax cuts that mostly went to the rich and that were supposed to be the saviour of the US economy. Even in his last press conference he again stated they were a good thing, yet all they did was make the rich extremely wealthy and put the country into massive debt whilst creating an army of working poor. (America’s invention of the working poor has been left out of this conversation so far).

    Trickle down economics never works, just ask New Zealand. Yet Howard wanted (and started) to follow the same path yet here is Malcolm Turnbull also advocating trickle down economics, not just advocating it but demanding it and for it to be implemented immediately.

    Can’t have the wealthy out of pocket during these hard times now can we, even if that means creating an army of working poor to keep the rich in the lifestyle to which they have become accustomed.

    Tax cuts can work as a stimulus but only if they are carefully framed and targeted, which they rarely are, which is why in every poll going back for decades the respondents always state they prefer the money to be spent on education, health and infrastructure rather than tax cuts.

    Another way of stimulating the economy is to sensibly increase wages for the workers.

    Today I saw a repeat of the National Press Club speech by Peter Taylor, Chief Executive, Engineers Australia where he mentioned the fact of US infrastructure being so run down because money had been diverted from it to tax cuts that it would take US$1.6 trillion just to get it to a basic condition.

    Howard wanted to go the same way in neglecting infrastructure and services whilst pumping more money to the top (and the policies he took to the last election were exactly that), and here is Turnbull apparently wanting to go down that path as well.

    What does it take to get these people to learn?

  54. Adrian

    Could not agree more, I have been championing this very issue for a long time.

  55. Yes I know Shane. Is it just us or isn’t this really blatantly obvious CDF, yet governments, especially conservative ones, continue down this road time and time again, and the policy fails every time?

  56. Adrian

    Socialist leaning parties seem to have moderated over the years and moved more to the centre realising that there does need to be some type of private enterprise as well alongside social aspects in the community. They also acknowledge that human beings by their very nature are greedy and as such regulations and taxation are two areas to keep this in check.

    Conservative parties seem to have drifted to the extreme right losing all social aspects for their citizens and look down a narrow band of total capitalism at all costs. They have formed the view that everyone can look after themselves and there needs to be no rules to keep greed and advantage taking of the weaker in our community. Ina ddition lower taxes for the rich will create jobs and jobs on unliveable wages is better than no job. Take WalMart in the US for example. All of their workers are paid salaries so low that they get government asistance. When they asked for a payrise Wal Mart told them to go to the government and ask for more welfare. And George Bush refused to allow the minimum wage to increase for 8 years, that is the biggest disgrace of his term in office, regarding the US side of it anyway.

  57. For anyone who watches Eli Stone you may have seen them comment regarding the lack of an increase in the minimum wage under George Bush.

  58. Take WalMart in the US for example. All of their workers are paid salaries so low that they get government asistance.

    I’m pretty sure that we heard the same argument from big business and HR Nicholls Society members when we had the minimum wage debate for WorkChoices. I really believe that this was a Liberal Party goal for future policy.

    At the moment the Employee Free Choice Act or Card Check Bill is being hotly debated with Walmart and the other minimum wage businesses screaming armageddon if teh evil socialist unions get a fair go at representing workers.

    ‘Card check’ bill would help prevent intimidation of employees

    “…research by the University of Illinois at Chicago’s Center for Urban Development found that:

    » 46 percent of workers report being pressured by management during union elections;

    » 49 percent of employers illegally threaten to close a worksite during union organizing drives if workers choose to form a union;

    » 91 percent of employers force employees to attend one-on-one anti-union meetings with their supervisors during union organizing drives; and

    » 30 percent of employers illegally fire pro-union workers during union organizing drives.”

  59. What does it take to get these people to learn?

    An engineering qualification. Or a set of building blocks the Gen Z children play with somewhere other than ABC Learning Factories. An eroding base (not) supporting an increasingly top-heavy edifice WILL collapse. Economies and pyramids built from wooden blocks are very similar in that respect. Allowing people at the base to be crushed is inexcusable, particularly as it’s a self-defeating dialectic. Hence unionisation is a public good, not least for keeping an eye on OH&S, in the absence of more holistic cooperations around the frontiers of control or *gasp* genuine workplace democracy.

  60. All you wet blankets are just MISUNDERESTIMATING the POTUS.

  61. Now George W Bush has finally made his final public speech as POTUS, thanks be.

    Nothing exciting, the usual rewriting of history and whilst America got back to relative normality after September 11 2001 he kept them all safe and snug.

    What a hero.

  62. Adrian, that’s our guy!

    I wonder if Johnny will recite the same speech when he gets home..

    Probably took a photocopy just in case…

  63. You keep talking about this minimum wage thing, Shane, so I thought I’d have a look. Behold! It hadn’t increased federally since 1997, well before GWB took over, until 2007, during Bush’s presidency. Furthermore, each state has its own minimum wage laws, many of them administered by the Democrats, and BEHOLD!! not much in the way of increases there either. Could it be that there may have been factors beyond the evil POTUS that may have driven this anomoly? I mean it clearly started under his predecessor, a Democrat, as did this business of subprime lending, so why are you so keen to lay the blame at his feet? Yet again, criticise him for all you’re worth, and there is much to criticise, but let’s stop with the false implications and outright fabrications.

  64. James

    Will research and respond

  65. James

    Researching and will provide more figures on Monday however since 1981 this has happened. In those 27 years the Republican Party ruled for 20 of those years and the Democrats for 8 of those years.

    The wage was frozen from 1981-1989 the whole of Ronald Reagans presidency. At $3.35 per hour

    The wage was increased under George Bush senior as follows. 1990 $3.80 1991 $4.25 it was then frozen for his next 2 years.

    The wage increased under Bill Clinton as follows 1996 $4.75 1997 $5.15 the wage was frozen for the next 3 years.

    The wage was frozen for the whole 8 years of George Bush Jnr presidency except for the following.

    The wage has been frozen form 1997 to 2007 at $5.15.

    The wage increased on 24/7/2007 from $5.15 to $5.85 under a democrat prosped legislation that was intertwined in the Iraq War funding to ensure it was signed off by G W Bush, this leglislation allows for three increases to bring the minimum wage up from $5.15 to $7.25 in three steps. To $5.85 on 24/7/2008 then to $6.55 on 24/7/2008 and finally to $7.25 on 24/7/2009.

    In a nut shell

    Increase during 20 years of republican rule overall 20%

    Increase during democrats including the current legislation FORCED upon George Bush to fund his war after the democrats got control of the senate 57%

    AS for state minimum wages I will give more detail next week as it will take some time.

    Figures for each year taken from following site

    http://www.infoplease.com/ipa/A0774473.html

  66. James

    As for accusing me of fabrications I hope the above answers your accusations.

    I am the first to apologise if I am wrong. But I see no problem in criticising Georgw Bush and his party when all they could do is give the poor a 20% increase over a whole 20 years.

    While the democrats managed to give the poor a 57% over only 8 years.

    I reject outright your accusations of fabrications.

  67. Sorry, Shane, the accusation of fabrications should have been directed more generally rather than specifically at you. I don’t particularly like the wage suppression and more generally the social economic policy in the US, particularly when measured against the billions spent on presidential election campaigning. I haven’t the time to look but I think it’s important to look at why the minimum wage was frozen in 1997 in assessing whether it’s a phenomenon peculiar to GWB. Throughout that period, particularly after the tech stock crash, interest rates were at near zero as well so we are talking some pretty extreme economic circumstances. Technically, what you said was that GWB refused to increase the minimum wage by 1c over his 8 years, so technically that is a fabrication, not necessarily by you, but repeated by you. As I’ve said in another topic today, if too much space is taken up with bulldust accusations, like a deliberate slur about Hawaiians and Africans, the real issues kinda get lost.

  68. James

    George Bush did refuse, it was only legislation forced upon him by the democrats that he relented, otherwise they were going to block his Iraq war funding. It took a Democrat majority in the senate to make him give the poor anything so I certainly will not give him the benefit as you seem to be. Technical fabrication or not you are cluctching desperately at straws with that one James.

    James it is an ideology thing, Ronald Reagan froze the minimum wage for his whole term as well.

    In addition only two rises in the whole 20 years of republican rule were granted and these were in the first 2 years of G Bush seniors reign, maybe they needed to offer something to the voters who got nothing for 8 years under Reagan to get re elected, bearing in mind he only lasted 1 term.

  69. Just how insightful is this piece published in January 2001, or as one commentator stated, maybe not insightful at all but the signs of Bush as a failure were blatantly obvious from day one.

    Bush: ‘Our Long National Nightmare Of Peace And Prosperity Is Finally Over’

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