Final Bush File: I didn’t mean to break it, Ma!

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George W. Bush took to the airwaves last night to apologize defend his two terms as leader of the free world. Leaving office with the lowest approval since Nixon, Bush embraced understatement when he said, “You may not agree with some tough decisions I have made.” Which would those be? The ones that led to two wars, the flooding of New Orleans, economic freefall? Oh, those decisions. Thanks for clarifying. But give the man some credit—he was doing the best he could! No really. He reminded us, again, that there hasn’t been another attack on US Soil since 9/11. No matter what you think of Bush, this is a good thing.

Eight years ago, Clinton gave a similar address in which he reminded us that he had presided over “a time of dramatic transformation [and] great American renewal,” in spite of that whole Monica thing. I guess it’s just the nature of these things that they’re an exercise in selective memory—it’s maybe the last time these guys can talk about themselves on national TV while we all wait patiently for Ugly Betty to start 15 minutes late.

But Clinton had an ace in the hole—yesterday, when I read his speech describing an America “on track to be debt-free by the end of the decade,” I died a little inside thinking of all the new debt we have instead. All Bush could do was offer this weak tea: “we will restore our economy to the path of growth.” In twenty billion years.

It’s hard not to feel sorry for the guy, blinking constantly and trying to remember to smile. “I have followed my conscience and done what I thought was right.” Um, yes. It’s just too freaking bad that he turned out so often to be wrong.

Some reporters struck a note of empathy, with the New York Times describing the speech as “somber” while the Wall Street Journal sensed “a touch of humility.”

  • On the other hand, Chris Matthews was not nearly so kind—he saw a Bush playing a game “with a scorecard that only he could design, and of course he did well on it. It’s like a game where every kid gets a trophy who participates.” Even if they ruined it for everyone else.
  • Bush Will Ferrell imagines a different Bush farewell in which he plans to tear Dallas a new party hole. Bonus trivia: gonna miss Ferrell-as-Bush now that we’re stuck with Fred Armisen’s lame Obama? Never fear, Ferrell’s taking his act to Broadway!
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One Response to “Final Bush File: I didn’t mean to break it, Ma!”

  1. coffee Says:

    it seemed like Bush was trying to justify making the wrong decisions by calling them “tough”… but this is silly. Every president has to make “tough” desicions… the main issue is, were they the RIGHT decisions?

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