I have a visceral dislike for George W. Bush (me and a few million other people). I’ve been wondering why that is. Exactly what’s got me, a person who tries to see the best in others, in such a negative mood? And for that matter, why are there are few million other people who have a similar visceral dislike for John Kerry?
There is certainly a lot of strong language being used. Al Franken seems fond of “lies” and Bill O’Reily uses “dangerous”. Perhaps my strong feelings are a oppositing reaction to the nastiness of the folks who don’t agree with me (the O’Reilly, Hannity, Coulter, Swiftboat Veterans and Limbaugh). So mean-spirited unfairness gets my blood boiling. Hypocrisy is the other thing.
So given that background, why do I viscerally dislike George W. Bush?
- When Bush was governor of Texas, he said that there were no innocent people in Texas prisons. Obviously false.
- Again, when governor of Texas, DNA evidence proved that a man in jail for rape in was innocent. Bush refused to issue a pardon, saying something like “I’m not a judge.” Only after a public outcry, did he issue the pardon. So it seems hypocritical when Bush claims to be a “compassionate conservative” when he’s not compassionate at all.
- Bush, and conservatives in general, talk about hard work and personal responsibility. Nevertheless, Bush (and Ronald Reagan) got rich because of sweetheart deals. George Bush didn’t do well in the oil business, but some Saudis bailed him out. Then he made money on the Texas Rangers football team partly by a publically funded stadium and a sweetheart deal his cronies clued him into. George Bush is wealthy, but he didn’t work hard for it.
- Bush takes a lot more vacations than I can.
- Which is worse: “I did not have sex with that woman, Ms Lewinski” or telling the whole world that we are certain there are weapons of mass destruction in Iraq?
- When the Swiftboat Veterans for [damn lies] got so much play, George Bush denounced this ad specifically only after it had time to do its damage.
- Bush’s administration is keeping prisoners in Guantanamo without the prisoner’s being able to offer evidence that they shouldn’t be there. When any of them gets close to trial, the government makes a deal to let them go.
- The Bush administration authorized treatment of prisoners in Guantamo that is not in accord with the Geneva convention. This means that US soldiers will be treated worse when they are captured.
- By attacking Iraq and Afghanistan, Bush destroyed the world coalition against terrorism, and provided the best possible recruting aids to the terrorists–Iraqui prison abuse and soldiers occupying Arab territory.
- Bush can talk about the most terrible events and then look to the side and give a little grin as if to say “boy being president is fun.”