George W. Bush is back. And he’s got a plan!
From the NYT:
Two months from now, he plans to publish a book outlining strategies for economic growth. And on Tuesday, he made a rare return to Washington to promote freedom overseas.
Freedom overseas? Yes — it would be nice to be free of George W. Bush’s destructive and costly neocon agenda (and I know many people overseas agree) but sadly the current White House occupant seems to be following the same authoritarian script; Bush hit Iraq and Afghanistan, and Obama seems intent to continue expanding the wars into Pakistan and Yemen.
On the economy, let’s judge him on his record:
That doesn’t suggest that Bush has anything much to add to the conversation. But that doesn’t mean I think he should shut up and go away.
Here are a few prominent questions that George W. Bush might want to consider answering before slinking off back to Crawford:
- Why did you ignore the CIA’s warnings in the summer of 2001 that al-Qaeda could strike “imminently”?
- Why did you pledge in the 2000 election debates that you were against nation-building, and then embark on not one but two nation-building programs in Iraq and Afghanistan?
- You increased the Federal debt by 86%; to what extent do you accept the blame for America’s debt troubles?
- You reappointed Alan Greenspan as the Fed Chairman; to what extent do you accept that his easy money policies caused the bubble that burst in 2008?
- Were the 2008 bailouts of well-connected banks and financial corporations engineered by your administration compatible with a supposedly “free-market” “capitalist” system? Doesn’t bailing out banks create dangerous moral hazard?
- How can a nation simultaneously claim to be a liberator while also practising torture?
- You swore to uphold the Constitution, yet passed the PATRIOT Act that authorised warrantless wiretapping, and mass surveillance in contravention of the Fourth Amendment. Do you realise that you violated your oath of office?
That would be a great start. There are, of course, swathes of other questions (including much, much darker ones) that many wish George W. Bush could be made to answer. But there is no real accountability in America today. He can go back to his ranch and his presidential library and act like a carpetbagging good old boy, while kids in the middle east continue to have their limbs blown off, and while the nation remains smothered under a mountain of debt and authoritarian creep.