History will judge Bush a great President?

December 11th, 2007 at 3:51 pm by David Farrar

Scott Adams puts the case for placing George W Bush on Mount Rushmore one of the great Presidents ever.  The rationale:

President Bush famously promised to do something about the Axis of Evil: Iraq, Iran, and North Korea. That was a top priority. How’s he doing so far?

Iraq didn’t have any weapons of mass destruction, but by restricting inspectors, it acted as if it did. That is almost as dangerous as having a nuclear weapon because it causes your neighbor (Iran) to build its own nukes, just to be safe. It turns out they were doing just that.

Recently we learned that Iran stopped its nuclear bomb program in 2003. That’s about the same time the U.S. was disemboweling its next door neighbor based on the suspicion of having a nuclear weapons program. Iran probably noticed. History will credit President Bush for removing the threat of nuclear war from the Middle East.

North Korea has also discontinued its nuke program, thanks in part, history might acknowledge, because when the U.S. invaded Iraq, it went after the leadership first, including sons. That’s the sort of thing that gets your attention if you are a dictator. As with Reagan’s Star Wars defense plan, the U.S. under President Bush seemed crazy enough to attack North Korea. The threat was entirely credible. That, plus China’s pressure, neutralized North Korea.

Meanwhile, Libya surrendered its nuclear ambitions without even being asked. Credit President Bush for that one too.

Terrorism was a priority during the Bush administration. History won’t blame him for the first attack on 9/11, but it certainly might credit him for the fact no other attacks happened during his two terms. That’s a perfect record on homeland security.

Discuss: Is the theory correct?

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126 Responses to “History will judge Bush a great President?”

  1. krazykiwi (9,189 comments) says:

    Oh no… Sonic will appear like magic on this one !

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  2. Wycroft (873 comments) says:

    If he gets through two terms without a second attack!

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  3. Kimble (4,412 comments) says:

    This is why Scott Adams is great.

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  4. Johnboy (15,586 comments) says:

    If they have the equivalent of the RMA in the States by the time Mt.Rushmore gets the carving no one will remember who he was!

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  5. Bevan (3,965 comments) says:

    Nah, give the Democrats an anurism and put Reagan up there.

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  6. Kimble (4,412 comments) says:

    Thatcher too

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  7. Lindsay Addie (1,182 comments) says:

    I reckon Adams is trolling, Dubya is easily in the bottom half of the US Presidents when measuring their abilities. I’d put Reagan up there before silly old Dubya. He’s good part ofthe reason why the Democrats hold the Congress and the Senate.

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  8. Ben Wilson (523 comments) says:

    Technically Bush 1 is the founding father of the dynastic series. They need a new mountain – the old one can stand for the Republic, and the new one the Empire.

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  9. hinamanu (2,352 comments) says:

    Adam’s has hit the nail on the head!

    Get known for something great so everything else becomes obscure, including civil rights, privacy, voting rights, body bags, veterans rights and pensions, health care. The only other thing that seems to be coming to the fore in the US is school and mall shootings. Can hardly blame the govt for those, but it does take the camera’s off them. A bogus shooter, unidentified or captured was also seen by students at the virginia tech shootings. Police or media failed to comment on him.

    Planted ? I believe in conspiracies yet I find it hard to believe a state sanctioned shooter could have got to a random school shooting so quickly.
    But,, he WAS seen.

    But DPF, put up a prediction post for 2008 and lets see how many got there’s right at the end of the year.

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  10. Andrew W (1,629 comments) says:

    You did notice that Adams made it clear that he was advancing an argument opposite to his own view, and that it’s filed under general nonsense

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  11. Bevan (3,965 comments) says:

    Technically Bush 1 is the founding father of the dynastic series.

    Yeah but he only got one term

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  12. poneke (280 comments) says:

    As Lindsay said, Reagan was far and away a more successful president than Bush.

    Reagan brought down the Soviet empire and the Iron Curtain without firing a shot, a monumental achievement that freed hundreds of millions of people from the communist yoke.

    Bush’s major record is the appalling number of executions he presided over while governor of Texas.

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  13. Rocket Boy (163 comments) says:

    Scott Adams has set the bar too low, any idiot can start a war, greatness comes from actually winning them and George W doesn’t look even close to achieving that.

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  14. Bevan (3,965 comments) says:

    Well Rocket Boy, that takes out Kennedy and Johnson then.

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  15. GPT1 (2,106 comments) says:

    It is a theory and has merit (if for no other reason than it winds up the left) but if the Iraq invasion had been handled better with more troops and a post-war doctrinal focus (rather than a kick the shit out of Saddam and his loyalist turkeys and worry about the rest later) it would have a great deal more weight. Certainly there have been flow on effects within the middle east – not all negative but many of the high risk gains have been offset by the instability in Iraq. A couple of other issues – it will take the US military (particularly Army and Marine Corp) years to recover in terms of personnel and Iraq has left Afghanistan badly uncovered causing its own set of problems (eg: having to use aircraft as a first strike option – more likely to kill civilians and more likely to create resentment).

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  16. Bevan (3,965 comments) says:

    And to add, does that make Nixon a contender then Rocket Boy? Considering the Vietnam War was ended under his watch…….

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  17. Adolf Fiinkensein (2,833 comments) says:

    Yes , he will be judged a Great President. In spite of the malevolent lies of the Democrat Party, the leftists of the world and their compliant media fellow travelers, Bush has put up with all the bullshit these people could muster and has quietly got on with the job. Denuked the middle east, slaughtered Al Qaeda in a killing field of his own choosing and now is setting the scene for a genuinely democratic and wealthy Iraq, amidst the old feudal dictatorships who are shitting themselves at the prospect.

    So what did Clinton do? Fired a couple of tomahawk missiles up a camel;s arse and fired his dick into anything female which moved. Apart from Hillary, so it seems. (He was too busy elsewhere.)

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  18. Captain Crab (351 comments) says:

    Wrong Rocket Boy, It appears the “surge” has merit and is working. Note this article is written by long term Bush critics.

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/12/07/AR2007120701772.html?hpid%3Dopinionsbox1&sub=AR

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  19. hinamanu (2,352 comments) says:

    “Scott Adams has set the bar too low, any idiot can start a war, greatness comes from actually winning..”

    Good statement.

    People know greatness. Greatness is distinctive. You don’t have to be told you’ve seen it. Only a martian being on Earth an hour and told this argument would think it plausible. You only have to look at “the great speeches’ segments on Letterman to know Bush is not great, in fact quite the opposite.

    Honestly, compared to Bush, Bill Clinton was a great US president.

    He was charismatic, well versed, an excellent speaker who didn’t need notes. He cut military spending and was compared to JFK. He signed and brokered many peace accords. Bush is not known as a president of peace but calls himself a war president. That with no battle experience and accusations he was a military dodger.

    In actual fact Bush is what his elections were. a total fraud.

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  20. Tina (687 comments) says:

    “(Clinton)….He was charismatic, well versed, an excellent speaker who didn’t need notes. He cut military spending and was compared to JFK. He signed and brokered many peace accords. Bush is not known as a president of peace but calls himself a war president. That with no battle experience and accusations he was a military dodger.”

    Rarely seen such a good Clinton mock, hin…nice.

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  21. Kimble (4,412 comments) says:

    “calls himself a war president. That with no battle experience and accusations he was a military dodger.”

    Because he is the President during a war, dummy. And those accusations were bunk.

    Clinton will go down in history as the President who swept everything under the carpet and left the real clean up work for the next guy.

    What happened to Clintons peace accords anyway? How did they work out?

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  22. Kimble (4,412 comments) says:

    Ah, I should have noticed who wrote it.

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  23. cha (3,856 comments) says:

    Tell us Bevan, which wars did Kennedy and Johnson win.

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  24. hinamanu (2,352 comments) says:

    “Rarely seen such a good Clinton mock, hin…nice.”

    actually, I also believe Clinton was involved in very dark thigs that will only be revealed at his final judgement.

    But Tina, even your condescension gives me the warm fuzzies.

    BTW, since I’ve gotten your attn again, is that drinks invite still on?

    No rush.

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  25. Andrew W (1,629 comments) says:

    Many of the so called “great” leaders of history, from Alexander to Napoleon, and probably a few more recently were blood thirsty SOB’s.
    As one commenter on Adams site said:” It’s the winners who write the history.”

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  26. Reg (544 comments) says:

    Clinton – Bush = Chamberlain – Churchill

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  27. Johnboy (15,586 comments) says:

    So when John Key wins in 2008 what will he write of Helen?

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  28. Johnboy (15,586 comments) says:

    Kimble Says:

    “Clinton will go down in history as the President who swept everything under the carpet and left the real clean up work for the next guy.”

    I think he left the cum stains ON the carpet for the next guy.

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  29. hinamanu (2,352 comments) says:

    We were’nt really going to go there were we John Boy.

    No ones going to mistake you for greatness.

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  30. Johnboy (15,586 comments) says:

    I am happy to be eclipsed by the shadow of one as great as you hinamanu.

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  31. Tina (687 comments) says:

    hin sweetness, Clinton is a direct political descendant of Teddy Kennedy. So we’re talking world’s best practice (1st world division).

    I’ll have a Stella for you in a minute.

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  32. hinamanu (2,352 comments) says:

    Thanks JB,, after all I did win the D4J war

    Have you seen the Cacofinix pic in NZ google images under Peter Burns some one posted…. I’m a legend!!

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  33. unaha-closp (1,140 comments) says:

    On Rushmore – Jefferson & Washington freed a nation from the might of the British Empire, Lincoln defeated the Confederates and freed the slaves and Roosevelt defeated the Japs and the Nazis.

    Off Rushmore – Bush named 3 of the weakest states on the planet as his enemies then beat one of them and has achieved a technical draw with the other two.

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  34. Castafiore (263 comments) says:

    President Bush is the to be remembered forever in history as the President with the guts and courage to take action against tyranny and terrorism.

    Look at the progress in Afganistan, Look at Iraq now, Look at Iran, look at the Taliban, Look at Muslim Extremism.

    Yes there have been many deaths from fine young American Troopers but how many more innocent lives would have been lost if radical extremists had been left unrestrained.

    Thank God for President Bush and the US !!

    The US is the bastion of free speech where people that oppose Bush are freely able to express their views unlike Clarkistan where freedom of expression is soon to be restricted 2/3rds of the time.
    Helen should been getting Xmas presents from Mugabe and Chavez and how many agree with whose side you would want to be on when a war finally did break out – Bush or Chavez, Mugabe, Putin, China ????

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  35. unaha-closp (1,140 comments) says:

    Bush – who promised to hunt down OBL to the ends of the earth, apparently he thinks Pakistan is on Mars.

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  36. unaha-closp (1,140 comments) says:

    Bush – who calls Saudi a great friend and ally.

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  37. Lindsay Addie (1,182 comments) says:

    unaha-closp,

    You’re talking about the wrong Roosevelt, that isn’t FDR at Rushmore it’s Theodore Roosevelt.

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  38. slightlyrighty (2,499 comments) says:

    Unaha-closp.

    Roosevelt? Franklin Roosevelt ain’t on rushmore.

    Teddy Roosevelt on the other hand was nowhere near the japs and the nazi’s didnt exist during his presidency.

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  39. Johnboy (15,586 comments) says:

    hinamanu Says:

    ” I’m a legend!!”

    In your on mind my dear, in your own mind. If you were an American President would nukeing poor old dad4 make you a “Great President”.

    Hint: Answer must fit on one side of an A4 sheet and not involve looking in mirrors like Winnie does.

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  40. hinamanu (2,352 comments) says:

    “I’ll have a Stella for you in a minute.”

    Ahh, virtual drinks… spose I can be happy with a virtual stella from you Tina. Be advised though, reality is better than virtual… in any womens language.

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  41. Johnboy (15,586 comments) says:

    Teddy nuked the dagoes at San Juan Hill. “”””Remember the Maine””””

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  42. hinamanu (2,352 comments) says:

    John boy,,

    No A4 needed.

    When you’re publicly offered a stellar from a sophisticated woman as I’ve just been, we can compare notes.

    Until then I’ll tell you what I told D4J,

    you have no licence to communicate equally with me.

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  43. Johnboy (15,586 comments) says:

    They named a famous bear after him too. I never heard of a “Hinamanu Bear” though!!!

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  44. Kimble (4,412 comments) says:

    How would history have viewed a President Gore? Or a President Kerry?

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  45. hinamanu (2,352 comments) says:

    “Thank God for President Bush and the US !!”

    Perhaps you should look closer at patriot act 2

    It does’nt agree with anything you say about freedoms and personal privacy for Americans.

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  46. hinamanu (2,352 comments) says:

    “How would history have viewed a President Gore? Or a President Kerry?”

    Histories already answered that for Gore; re Nobel prize.

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  47. Johnboy (15,586 comments) says:

    Kimble Says:

    “How would history have viewed a President Gore? Or a President Kerry?”

    Dumber than Dubya and not as handsome as Bill or JFK.

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  48. Johnboy (15,586 comments) says:

    That was a “stella” hinemanu not a “stellar”. I would have bought you a lion brown though if you were not too glorious to drink at my local watering hole. Were you born great or was it just thrust upon you like so many other stellar personalities?

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  49. Buggerlugs (1,609 comments) says:

    I heard someone compare Dubya with Reagan the other day (i.e. they thought they were both dimwits). History shows they aren’t right in the latter case…however the former…well.

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  50. hinamanu (2,352 comments) says:

    “I would have bought you a lion brown though if you were not too glorious to drink at my local watering hole.”

    And your water hole happens to be the Sth side of Timaru??

    Methinks you think yourself very great to expect a body to travel so far.

    I think I’ll go . I was polite to Tina and she disses me with false innuendo

    even a legend can only take so much.

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  51. Andrew W (1,629 comments) says:

    “The wicked leader is he who the people despise.
    The good leader is he who the people revere.
    The great leader is he who the people say,
    ‘We did it ourselves.’”

    Lao Tsu

    Bush must be half wicked and half good.

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  52. Johnboy (15,586 comments) says:

    Like all great people they need support. Dubya’s got Barbara. Reagan had Nancy. Helens got J (sorry Peter). Hell even old Henry’s got the fifth selector, Raewyn. Imagine the pillow talk—- “Do you think I should have rotated so much Raewyn? Maybe Deakers right——–?

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  53. Tina (687 comments) says:

    Disses? hin….heaven forbid.

    More…. horror at your Clinton assessment.
    A likeable zero integrity airhead. Ask Dick Morris.

    Some food for thought over the Lion brown….FDR and Nixon have one great link, together they assured the destruction of the US$.

    You’d get bored with the “how”.

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  54. kiwi in america (2,477 comments) says:

    Scott Adams makes a good case except there is considerable debate right now over the accuracy of the latest NIE on Iran. Even the Brits are agreeing with the Israelis in saying that the suspension of the Iranian weapons programme in 2004 is likely to be a smokescreen.

    That said, I believe history will be kinder to Bush 2 than the current pundocracy is. The American MSM and almost all the media of the rest of the world have been viciously anti the war in Iraq and have trumpeted loudly every bomb and set back and have studiously ignored reporting progress on the ground. However, the progress made since the full implimentation of the Petraeus strategy (of which the surge is but a part) has become so undeniable that a string of anti-war Democrat Congressmen have returned from recent visits to Iraq conceding (through clenched teeth) that the strategy is working and the war is being won. The number of stories from Iraq from the MSM here in the US have plummeted-another sure sign that there is far too much good news for them to be bothered.

    Sadly, Bush’s foreign policy successes that Scott details are somewhat offset by his failure to reign in Federal Government spending and his support for illegal immigrant amnesty bills. His record on higher court judges has been largely stellar despite the best efforts of the Democrats to throw out 100′s of years of precedent and block many of his nominees.

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  55. Thrash Cardiom (298 comments) says:

    Yes there have been many deaths from fine young American Troopers but how many more innocent lives would have been lost if radical extremists had been left unrestrained.

    How many dead innocent Iraqi lives?

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  56. bwakile (757 comments) says:

    Don’t pick on Clinton
    He was misunderstood
    He really said
    ” Sack my cook”

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  57. Johnboy (15,586 comments) says:

    I like this one better:

    Bill Clinton steps out onto the White House lawn in the dead of winter. Right in front of him, on the White House lawn, he sees “The President Must Die” written in urine across the snow. Well, old Bill is pretty pissed off.

    He storms into his security staff’s headquaters and yells, “Somebody wrote a death threat in the snow on the front damn lawn! And they wrote it in urine! Son-of-a-bitch had to be standing right on the porch when he did it! Where were you guys?”

    The security guys stay silent and stare ashamedly at the floor. Bill hollers, “Well dammit, don’t just sit there! Get out and FIND OUT WHO DID IT! I want an answer, and I want it TONIGHT!”

    The entire staff immediately jumped up and raced for the exits. Later that evening, his chief security officer approaches him and says, “Well Mr. President, we have some bad news, and we have some really bad news. Which do you want first?”

    Clinton says, “Oh Hell, give me the bad news first.” The officer says, “Well, we took a sample of the urine and tested it. The results just came back, and it was Al Gore’s urine.”

    Clinton says, “Oh my god, I feel so … so betrayed! My own vice president! Damn. Well, what’s the really bad news?”

    The officer replies, “Well, it’s Hillary’s handwriting.”

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  58. grumpyoldhori (2,416 comments) says:

    kiwi in america
    Are you young, under forty two, if so when are you enlisting for the great crusade?

    Not an American, not a problem, the Brits
    are looking for fine young men to take part
    in dubya’s crusade.

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  59. grumpyoldhori (2,416 comments) says:

    Some fine young Bush supporters, great
    future leaders here.

    http://nz.youtube.com/watch?v=gFGit_tZDqs

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  60. Lee C (4,516 comments) says:

    ‘And hold my calls’… yeah Bwakile I’ve heared it too.

    What have we learned from the Bush (minor) experience?

    That Democracy is a pliable concept, and that electorates defer to a well-repeated lie.

    Did he win the Presidency? Only according to the Supreme Court, not the number of votes cast in Florida (His brother happens to be Governor there)

    Could it happen here? Yes, even NZ has learned a lesson from that one (see EFB).

    What else have we learned?

    That terrorism justifies the erosion of democratic freedoms, and can be used to justify an increasing state presence in our lives.

    Could that happen here? Yes, even NZ has learned that. (see suppression of Terrorism Acts)

    My point is that the post 9-11 world has altered western democratic ideas, and empowered governments to do things they would have feared to do before in the name of ‘democracy’. Now, ‘the end justifies the means’ has once more become the cassus belli of so-called liberal democrats the world over.

    It is my belief that here in NZ, in ever-such-a-localised way, the EFB represents the mentality which accompanied that subtle paradigm shift.

    What we have learned from the Dubya Bush Era is that when governments say it is so, then people have to accept it, so all governments need to do is lie consistently, and they will stay in power.

    PS my theory on 9-11 – Bush and co knew an attack was imminent, but completely ‘misunderestimated’ the sheer horrific scale of the reality. They thought maybe a small bomb, maybe a small hostage situation, and then they might use the public’s anger to justify a greater presence in international affairs, after years of roll-back by Clinton. Look at Bush’s face in teh video when he was told about the attack. Was it a look suprize, outrage, or acceptance?

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  61. bwakile (757 comments) says:

    Thanks lee I couldn’t remember the last line

    You are right in that 9/11 changed the world paradigm forever.

    What the long term outcome of that change is, will probably only be understood by our children.

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  62. ben (2,414 comments) says:

    I’ve had the same idea for about two years. If the Iraq experiment ultimately turns out to be a success, and that leads to transformation elsewhere in the Middle East, if only by luck, Bush may go down as a great president. Certainly one of the most influential.

    His greatness will depend on whether historians 50 years from now take note of the quality of the decisionmaking, which was, we now know, awful.

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  63. Rex Widerstrom (5,330 comments) says:

    It doesn’t just piss off lefties when people espouse the view that Bush II is “great” (in either sense of the word). It also pisses off people like me who admire intelligence and eloquence in a leader of any hue (thus I admire both Reagan and Clinton).

    I’ve seen Pet Rocks with more going on in their heads than George Dubya. And when he trys to express his ‘thoughts’ the results are laughable.

    Promoting a dunderhead just because he won an election (and to annoy your opponents) is just “we won, you lost, eat that” in a more palatable guise. The vast majority of Democrat and Republican candidates for the presidency this time have vastly more intelligence, thank heavens.

    Some of them might mke an almighty mess of it because they have some crackpot ideas, but at least they’ll be doing it for a reason, not like this moron, who simply stumbles ignorantly from one blunder to the next.

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  64. ben (2,414 comments) says:

    Kiwi in America

    Actually the budget deficit since 2004 has shrunk considerably. See graph here.

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  65. Johnboy (15,586 comments) says:

    The reason 9/11 changed things forever was that America had never been attacked on its own soil before. After they gained independance they did not want to know about the sad little nations of Europe and their endless rivalry. That changed in 1917 when they could stand back no longer and irrevocably in 1941. After WW2 they realised that they could not sit back and watch the world being consumed by communism. They became the worlds policeman because no other free country could do the job. They admittedly did not do a very good job because they did not have the centuries of duplicity behind them that the Europeans had. They also suffered the same attacks that all policemen get when they shag some pissant, loudmouth, asshole off. But I for one am happy to call them my friends and am disgusted when I see pathetic little New Zealand reject the nation that stopped us speaking Japanese (that is if we still had heads on our shoulders). All you smart arsed bastards out there should have a compulsory course of watching the history channel “War in the Pacific” before you make your puerile comments and if you dont like what the US is doing in Iraq etc. I hope you are either prepared to stop filling your cars with gas or go over there yourselves to finish the job when the Yanks once more decide they don’t really give a shit about you all. You can take Helen with you I am sure that her recent conversion from antiwar protester to medal ceremony junkie will go down a treat with the muslim fanatics.

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  66. bwakile (757 comments) says:

    Well said Johnboy

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  67. Johnboy (15,586 comments) says:

    Thanks bwakile. I just get really pissed when I have to listen to our shitbag pollies like Helen the VC junkie and hear endlessly how that pair of neurotic freaks Kirk and Lange were the saviours of the world. Pissant sadarsed windbag freaks the both of them. But I guess the winners do write history and the socialist school teachers are winning at the moment. Helen should not have told the nappy wearing journalists to learn their history they may take her up on her offer.

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  68. Sean (299 comments) says:

    hinamanu said

    “Histories already answered that for Gore; re Nobel prize.”

    Yes, but (to paraphrase Doonesbury), they give those out for powerpoint presentations now…

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  69. Kimble (4,412 comments) says:

    Sean, but Ronnie Reagan never won an oscar.

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  70. grumpyoldhori (2,416 comments) says:

    Johnboy, what soil is Pearl Harbour and it’s
    buildings etc located on?

    The yanks came rushing to our aid at the
    start of WW2 , a bit late for the scrap were they not?

    You will find that the Aussies not the yanks
    stopped the Japs on the Kokoda Trail, as
    much as Mc Arthur called them American troops.

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  71. PaulL (5,983 comments) says:

    Lee, tin foil hat time?

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  72. Johnboy (15,586 comments) says:

    Well grumpy I guess in your estimation none of the following happened: Operation Torch. Overlord. Salerno. Iwo Jima. Okinawa. Battle of the Coral Sea. Leyte Gulf. Midway. Firebombing Tokyo. Nuking Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Not to mention all the other battles and the industrial production that kept all the free world and the soviets in the war. I bow to your superior judgement. I guess the yanks are just filthy capitalist swine.

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  73. kehua (225 comments) says:

    Rex Widedrstrom: in George Bush`s home state you would probably still be in Jail. As for intelligence he would leave you for dead. Bush for President? Damn straight!!!

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  74. ben (2,414 comments) says:

    The reason 9/11 changed things forever was that America had never been attacked on its own soil before.

    That’s not quite true either. They fought the British in 1812 in America and the US was hammered.

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  75. kehua (225 comments) says:

    Hey Johnboy you have got it right there, Kirk was just a big fatarsed pigeon killer and Lange was just a big fat blowarse. Between them they were a pair of bigfat blowarsed pigeon killers.

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  76. reid (16,111 comments) says:

    Johnboy if you want to be accurate you really should distinguish between people who criticise the current President (worst ever), his corrupt Administration and this and the last do-nothing Congress vs. people who hate America. There are plenty of people myself included who respect and love America and its people, but who see most of its current federal politicians as an anathema in that they fail time and again to act in the best interests of the American people.

    If history ever gets the chance to fully judge (potentially doubtful since Bush’s Administration has destroyed millions of emails he’s required by law to retain) , hopefully those who have continued to support him and his administration will come to realise they’re amongst the same ilk as those who fell for the appeasement argument in the 30′s or who are what Stalin once called the useful idiots.

    I mean it’s so obvious. Let’s take just the most recent example, the NIE that KIA mentioned above. Now just why, d’ya think, would the CIA and 23 other agencies want the world to know that Iran doesn’t have a nuclear program, which goes completely against the WH Iran propaganda that it’s been building up for what, a few years now? Is it possible they wanted to prevent a pre-emptive strike with devastating military, political and economic ramifactions? These agencies all report to the President, and they’re basically saying to him, we don’t trust you to tell the truth. That’s huge, and an indictment not only of the man who holds that office but also of the people who’ve been pushing this policy since day one, Cheney and his neocons.

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  77. Johnboy (15,586 comments) says:

    ben Says:

    “That’s not quite true either. They fought the British in 1812 in America and the US was hammered.”

    That was more a stoush amongst cousins Ben and I seem to remember that the Poms were the ones who got done. Lonnie Donegan I think wrote a song about it called “The Battle of New Orleans”

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  78. Michael E (274 comments) says:

    The comparison fo Bush vs Clinton is interesting. Clinton also lost the Congress and Senate, and kept using his veto against their budgets so all non-essential Government Services kept closing. And then the republicans thought they’d waste everyones time by having the impeachment and trial in the Senate over what was a trivial matter. In the end, he could qualify as the lamest ‘lame duck’ President.

    Bush, on the other hand, screwed up the occupation of Iraq by allowing extremist militias to form in the absence of the army/police (and allowing mass unemployment to create an angry population to feed them). The troop surge has helped, but America has to be prepared to stay the course (probably another decade) to fix that mistake – a price that most Americans think is too high.

    If you had to name the worst US President, I think William Harrison would universially be regarded as the least sucessful.

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  79. ben (2,414 comments) says:

    Johnboy, I am definitely not equipped to argue the point, and my original comment was off your point anyway, so my apologies. My comment on was based on a doco I saw about a year ago in which one person expressed the opinion that America had struggled in that conflict. It was more serious than a stoush I think. Canada was expected to fall to the invaders, there were multiple fronts on which fighting occurred, and the White House did burn.

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  80. Johnboy (15,586 comments) says:

    I dont think there is anything new in current politicians working against the best interests of their people Reid. Witness Helen and the EFB. I am not protecting Dubya in fact I tend to think he is a bit of a dickhead but I would rather have him as my friend than Putin or Hu. The problem I see in NZ is we are confused who our friends really are. We hear so much anti- American crap from the losers like the Green Party and half the Labour Caucus that we are confused. If the other political philosophys are so good well lets lets just go down the road of communism. If you like freedom then treat what the communists fellow travellers say with the contempt it deserves but for gods sake don’t pick on the people who value freedom even more than we do America.

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  81. reid (16,111 comments) says:

    According to this analysis Michael: Andrew Johnson, Franklin Pierce, James Buchanan, Warren G. Harding, Calvin Coolidge and Richard M. Nixon were the worst.

    For the first three it lists traits like being stubborn, narrow-minded, unwilling to listen to criticism or to consider alternatives to disastrous mistakes, surrounding themselves with sycophants, ignoring major currents of public opinion and clinging to flawed policies. But wait there’s more.

    For the next two it talks about corruption and channeling money and favors to big business.

    Then it discusses Nixon’s disdain for the Constitution and abuse of presidential power. “Obsessed with secrecy and media leaks, he viewed every critic as a threat to national security and illegally spied on U.S. citizens. Nixon considered himself above the law.”

    Does any of this sound familiar? Bush has managed to combine all of these traits. Worst ever.

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2006/12/01/AR2006120101509.html

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  82. Falafulu Fisi (2,177 comments) says:

    War in the Pacific

    The Tongan troops fought along with the US Marines in the Solomon Islands, which the Japs already occupied. My grand-dad was in that small Tongan contingent that attached to the US Marines at the time in the Solomon Islands.

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  83. reid (16,111 comments) says:

    Johnboy I would like to have America as my friend, Dubya I can do without. Putin and Hu are both bad news I agree. Personally I was depressed over the ANZUS withdrawel and what I consider to be our naive and worthless anti-nuclear policy (what did it ever achieve). I think that was a regrettable turning point in our relationship that has never and will never recover until its dumped. Unfortunately the Nats didn’t have the balls.

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  84. Johnboy (15,586 comments) says:

    Yeah Ben I am not to flash on that history either. It was probably fortunate for the Yanks that the Poms were busy with Napolean and it was a sideshow to the main fight. I think it was where the US stayed independant and Canada stayed with Britain as the final result and neither of them (Canada or US) adopted cricket as the national sport.

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  85. Tina (687 comments) says:

    hin…tell me it isn’t so…there is a foul libel claiming you said…

    “Histories already answered that for Gore; re Nobel prize.”

    Restore your rep.

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  86. Michael E (274 comments) says:

    William Harrison made a 2 hour inauguration speech on a freezing cold day, called congress into an extraordinary session to deal with an economic crisis, and died of pnuemonia under a month into his term.

    Not much of an achievement as President of the USA – However, you could say he didn’t do any harm!

    But seriously, Warren G. Harding is probably the worst President ever – even he himself admitted being elected President was a mistake.

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  87. Johnboy (15,586 comments) says:

    Hope you are proud of him Fala when you see what they went thru even on the TV stuff it makes you understand why freedom is so important. We have lost sight of those days. I think unfortunately it would take another war to bring it back to us and no one wants that. I just dont like pricks who take the piss out of those yanks in Iraq. We are lucky they are doing the dying for us.

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  88. Johnboy (15,586 comments) says:

    Trouble is Reid that it is taught in our schools that Kirk and Lange were heroes who saved us from filthy old Uncle Sam and his warmongering. Our present sad sack Helen is only too proud to let us know she was an antiwar protester until that is the oppertunity to pose with a VC winner comes up then she manages to squeeze in between mother and son. Disgusting bloody hypocrites are the liars party.

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  89. Reg (544 comments) says:

    Those that mock the intelligence of Bush should explain how a person as dumb as they think he is could become the leader of the most powerful nation the earth has ever seen.
    Bush may be a lot of things but he definitely isn’t thick.
    What we witnessed over the last 4 or 5 years is anti American socialists suffering from acute tall poppy syndrome utilising the difficulties the US faced in Iraq to their own advantage.
    No PM of NZ will ever have to make the type of decision that fall on the shoulders of the US President.
    We will never know what state the world would be in if Saddam wasn’t taken out, like we will never know never know what type of country NZ would now be if the Yanks didn’t stymie the Japanese advance at the Coral Sea or what world order we would face if Roosevelt hadn’t intervened in Europe.
    But we do know that then as now American Blood flowed along with that of NZ soldiers to preserve the Culture and democratic institutions we take for granted.
    And the greatest thing about America and that which sets it apart from every other Hyper-Power in world history is that its citizens are free to call their President stupid and if they don’t like him they can vote him out.

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  90. simo (150 comments) says:

    Thrash Cardiom Says:

    December 11th, 2007 at 7:01 pm
    Yes there have been many deaths from fine young American Troopers but how many more innocent lives would have been lost if radical extremists had been left unrestrained.

    How many dead innocent Iraqi lives?

    Just remember all you Liarbour suckholes, globally, the Americans have always been patrolling the perimeter, so when your stacking zzzzzzz’s, there’s a good chance you will see another day, and have the freedom to spout all your drivel to a diminishing audience.

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  91. reid (16,111 comments) says:

    Johnboy, you would have noticed Clark from day one has been assiduous in her support for war veterans. That’s right out of the Alistair Campbell playbook, how to turn a weakness into a strength. What gets me about it is the media have not once ever called her on it, even though as you rightly say the hypocrisy screams out to those of us who see it.

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  92. Johnboy (15,586 comments) says:

    I wish I had said what you just did Reg. I am beginning to think we are becoming a nation of sad little losers. It is the result I guess of taking heed of snivelling little commie prats for too long. I hope the insult of the EFB forced on us by the liars party scum will finally awaken the sleeping giant. ONCE WERE WARRIORS!

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  93. Johnboy (15,586 comments) says:

    The media are starting to get the picture Reid. I think they are reading these blogs, witness the hags lecture to them yesterday. She is starting to panic. Maybe even Campbell will get his balls back for being called “A Little Creep”.

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  94. toby1845 (193 comments) says:

    Lindsay: “I’d put Reagan up there before silly old Dubya. He’s good part ofthe reason why the Democrats hold the Congress and the Senate.”

    Actually, Lindsay, I recall that in 2000, 1000 US historians (a notoriously left wing discipline) rated Reagan the fourth-best US President of all time. FDR came in first, and from memory the next nine were all either Republicans or Independents (from the pre-party era) with what would now be considered Republican leanings. Kennedy was about 17th.

    I can’t really be bothered trying to find the list, but from memory it went something along the lines of:

    1. FDR
    2. Thomas Jefferson
    3. Quincy Adams
    4. Ronald Reagan

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  95. reid (16,111 comments) says:

    Reg, ever seen the photo of Bush trying to open the locked door as he exited stage right in China?

    He’s a genuine genius alrighty.

    Pity I can’t paste it in.
    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/asia-pacific/4454738.stm

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  96. Johnboy (15,586 comments) says:

    Shit oh dear and his old man flew a Dauntless in the great Marianas turkey shoot shit oh dear. Still I prefer him over Putin or Hu they would have shot the bastards who did not tell them how to open the door!

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  97. reid (16,111 comments) says:

    Seriously Reg, maybe Bush isn’t completely thick, but he’s intellectually incurious. He reportedly doesn’t read newspapers for example, and he’s been known to try reading books like “My pet goat” while holding it upside down! For you the jury may be out, for me, case closed.

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  98. John Ansell (874 comments) says:

    Well said Reg.

    It’s so easy to bag America when you’re a dagger pointing at the heart of Antarctica.

    Bush has his downside, but lack of steel isn’t one of them. (His opponents might say lack of oil isn’t either.)

    The right time to attack Iraq was either during the Gulf War, or when Saddam kicked out the weapons inspectors in – when was it? – ’98?

    The UN spinelessly refused to follow through on its own threat, and the US would have had the moral right to step in where the other nations feared to tread.

    As it was they left it a bit late to justify, and their shock and awe wasn’t quite as shocking or as awesome as it could have been.

    But doing nothing was hardly an option.

    Going after the dictator’s sons was a great deterrent.

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  99. grumpyoldhori (2,416 comments) says:

    How did Corporal Apiata get awarded the VC
    if NZ was not helping the Americans in
    Afghanistan?

    Should NZ have given as many combat troops as say the Germans, who gave sod all,
    but who are members of NATO.

    Send our infantry to Iraq, best to check the
    percentage of Americans who are in favour
    of that crusade now.

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  100. Andrew W (1,629 comments) says:

    “The right time to attack Iraq was either during the Gulf War, or when Saddam kicked out the weapons inspectors in – when was it? – ‘98?”

    Except Saddam didn’t kick them out, Butler complained that his inspectors were being barred from some facilities, those facilities were Bathist party offices, it was never agreed in the inspection agreement that political premises were included, needless to say that there were plenty of people in the inspection teams who were working for the CIA rather than the UN.

    The inspection teams were pulled out at the insistance of the US in response.
    Remember that the US demanded that UN teams that had returned to Iraq, who had had no problems with access, had to be ordered out by the Bush administration before they could invade.

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  101. Nigel (516 comments) says:

    President Petraeus will be a great President, Bush will be in the Carter category ( The triple legacy of Cheney/Rumsfeld/Guantanamo will ensure that ).

    Petraeus has real potential to do an Eisenhower IMO, without Petraeus rescuing Iraq this post would not even have been contemplated.

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  102. PaulL (5,983 comments) says:

    I agree that we need to separate the president from the country. America can be a difficult friend to love, but they are always a friend. Kind of like that guy you went to school with, went through thick and thin, and is always there when you need him. But isn’t exactly the best guy to invite out in polite company. Problem is, you are a friend or you aren’t – if you only call when you need help then what sort of friend are you being?

    Bush has some problems with reading speeches well – which gives him a reputation as being thick. He isn’t thick, equally he isn’t the smartest guy who’s ever been in the White House. We should judge him against the alternatives – Gore was a fruitbat, Kerry not much better. Sure, I’d have loved Colin Powell (heard him speak once, he would have been a great president), but that wasn’t an option.

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  103. barry (1,317 comments) says:

    One thing society lacks is a test for stupidity. There are inteligence tests, driving tests, flying tests and all sorts of other tests, but there has never been a test to see how stupid someone is.

    Someone I heard recently talking about this regarded Bush as the typical example of someone who was without doubt – stupid.

    I tend to agree.

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  104. kehua (225 comments) says:

    Barry- that makes 2 stupid fuckwits. Well done vote Labour.

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  105. natural party of govt (461 comments) says:

    “Iraq didn’t have any weapons of mass destruction, but by restricting inspectors, it acted as if it did.”

    It didnt restrict inspectors. Hans Blick was quite clear that his inspectors were allowed to go everywhere they asked.

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  106. Kimble (4,412 comments) says:

    “Hans Blick was quite clear that his inspectors were allowed to go everywhere they asked.”

    “Butler complained that his inspectors were being barred from some facilities”

    Which of you is wrong?

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  107. natural party of govt (461 comments) says:

    ““Hans Blick was quite clear that his inspectors were allowed to go everywhere they asked.”

    “Butler complained that his inspectors were being barred from some facilities”

    Which of you is wrong?

    You are. And Richard Butler was as well.

    First, Richard Butler left the inspection team in 1999, four years before the invasion.

    Second Richard Butler was compromised by his reliance on Intelligence agencies who fed him knowingly deceitful information. We now know – and Richard Butler knew all along but surpressed the information – that high ranking defectors had been telling the UN all along, correctly, that Saddam had destroyed all WMDs in line with the armistice. Cf Hussein Kamel

    To our lasting shame, Saddam Hussein turned out to be more honest and straightforward in this matter than our intelligence organisations…..to be expected…but even diplomats including but not limited to Richard Butler.

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  108. Danyl Mclauchlan (1,066 comments) says:

    From Andrew Sullivans site, a reader writes in:

    My son is an officer in the Army and he is part of the ongoing action over there. Here is what he wrote me some time ago.

    “No one ever mentions the fact that we have literally built walls around each neighborhood and along every highway as the reason the violence is down here. The place looks like an Orwell novel gone wrong. The people cannot shoot each other through walls and the insurgents cannot move around to plant their bombs. A society cannot function walled off form each other. We pay every bill, manage every facet of governance. The government at every level is a joke. The ministries are controlled by one faction (Shia). They have almost no experience or education. A bunch of guys walk around in suits and look important while they do nothing.

    The local governments (to use the term loosely) are a collection of gangsters and strong men concerned with consolidating power and lining their pockets with cash from kickbacks of U.S. construction projects. The people have no work ethic. (I offered two grubby starving men 20 dollars each to unload some grain bags… they asked for fifty and then refused to work for less. I unloaded it myself) They throw their trash in the street until it piles high enough for the kids to play on it, and get sick. So, in short, I don’t see a Capitalistic Democracy sprouting along the Tigris. I see the little boy (The U.S. Army) with his finger in the dike. If we remove our hand, it all goes away.”

    I later had the opportunity to discuss this with my son and he fleshed out the point about the neighborhoods being walled off. He told me that there are 17 feet high cement barriers at the end of every street separating manageable neighborhoods. There are checkpoints to control ingress and egress to each neighborhood. Citizens are not able to lead ordinary lives. The joke among officers over there is that in order to show further “progress” the troops will have to circle EVERY house.

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  109. Bevan (3,965 comments) says:

    Tell us Bevan, which wars did Kennedy and Johnson win.

    Ummmmmm, you didnt read the post did you?

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  110. NeilM (370 comments) says:

    “Saddam Hussein turned out to be more honest and straightforward”

    the reason Saddam paid lip service to the UN inpsections was because of thousands of US and British troops sitting on his doorstep. Some how the Left never got the message that Saddam was a dictator. The idea that he acted honestly is unbelievably stupid.

    The minute the US and British troops left he would have been back to his same old tricks. So how long were those troops suppose to saty there? And where were the offers from those countries who opposed the overthrwos of Saddam to take over the role?

    Most likely he was given all this benefit of a doubt by the Left because he was a left wing dictator and so didn’t desrve the forthright condemnaiton of people like Pinochet.

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  111. philu (13,393 comments) says:

    hey..!..brainstrusts..!

    adams is a feckin’ comedian..

    and how can this not be total confirmation that not only have righties..(as a species..)..have had a sense of humour bye-pass at birth..

    they are also unable to even recognise the humour-snake..when it bites them in the ankle..(!)

    (feckin’ priceless..!..)

    (mind you..in their defense..adams/comedian is an oxymoron..

    i mean..!..feckin’ ‘dilbert’..?

    oh..hang on..!..the basic (non-funny) simplicities of that character could well appeal to those from ‘the other side’..

    strange wee things..!..righties..!..(aren’t they..?)..

    phil(whoar.co.nz)

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  112. Fletch (6,150 comments) says:

    One way to think about things is, what if it were us that was under the reign of a cruel dictator who tortured your family and friends and channeled incoming funds into building palaces while you starved?
    Would you want to be left alone, or would you be looking to the US for help?

    Wouldn’t it be ironic if the US then said they didn’t do that sort of thing anymore because of the protests of countries like ours in the past? It’s different when you’re in the midst of it, I think.

    I think it tells you a lot about Saddam that he was tried, found guilty of Crimes Against Humanity, and executed.

    Bush isn’t perfect but he got his hands dirty and did the job.

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  113. Johnboy (15,586 comments) says:

    Danyl Mclauchlan Says:

    “—- A bunch of guys walk around in suits and look important while they do nothing. ”

    Sounds just like the public service here.

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  114. Andrew W (1,629 comments) says:

    I see your site is back to (relative) normal Phil. Did you catch the hacker, or are you going to admit that it was your cock-up from the start?

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  115. Waymad (136 comments) says:

    Bush will be regarded as a great president. Great, not perfect. As my old music teacher used to say, perfection is not achievable in This world. But consider Adams’ words (play the ball, not the man, chaps) and then think:

    1 – Placing troops in Iraq and Afghanistan simultaneously puts a geopoiltical squeeze on Syria, Iran, and Pakistan. As these are the most likely nucular (smile, everyone) loose cannons, it’s generally a Good Thing to keep a neighbourly eye on their doings.

    2 – The oft-derided GWOT is a serious if misnamed and ill-presented stand against those who would like the Third Caliphate to go global. For corroborating evidence that this would not be quite such a Good Thing, ask any person of the gay or female persuasion, who experienced the Taliban. Of course, to those for whom every culture is equally valid, those experiences were just part of the rich tapestry of diversity.

    3 – Having mobile weaponry roaming the oceans (particularly the Indian Ocean) in the shape of the Seventh Fleet and other assets, tends to reinforce point #1, and also leaves time to attend to little side trips such as the relief effort after the Boxing Day Tsunami. Remember that? The UN held a lot of meetings toi figure out where to hold the big committee meeting to ascertain needs, and to set out an agenda for long-term restoration and of course funding. The US and the Aussies just rocked up and started helping within 24 hours.

    I’d suggest to some of the commenters that they have a read of other sites, such as Asia Times Online (Spengler there is a personal favourite), to see what ‘Discuss’ really can do.

    OTOH, argumentum ad hominem is just soooo much morphun, in’t it?

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  116. hinamanu (2,352 comments) says:

    hin…tell me it isn’t so…there is a foul libel claiming you said…

    “Histories already answered that for Gore; re Nobel prize.”

    Restore your rep.

    I must say,,

    I shouldn’t take credit for giving Gore the Nobel prize. That was the vote of the Nobel Prize committee. History has judged Gore and proclaimed him great. How must I restore my rep about that?

    The most you can say about this situation is the final points don’t translate the game sufficiently. The Nobel committee may be corrupt and influenced. The prize money may have ran out years ago and Gore bought his accolades. You may call him a Milli Vanilli, but history will still record him as playing a game of two halves and the winner on the day.

    As Dear Leader would say, “That’s life.”

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  117. philu (13,393 comments) says:

    andrew w..

    the person who entered my website and deleted a comment in which a person claimed to be an ‘environmental lawyer..

    (two ‘crimes’ for the price of one..?)

    ..was not me..

    phil(whoar.co.nz)

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  118. unaha-closp (1,140 comments) says:

    “…Roosevelt defeated the Japs and the Nazis. ”

    D’oh

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  119. Reg (544 comments) says:

    Great posting waymad:

    Its about time NZers woke up to the fact that the fundamental reason they are free to criticise the US -in general- and George Bush -specifically- is because of the defence of the Free world by American might both historically and presently.
    If there is ever a serious threat to NZ’s sovereignty or territorial integrity from a foreign source it is the US we would turn to again.
    And if you want to deny it, explain the alternative!
    And if you think we actually do live in “an incredibly benign strategic environment” and that no threat is ever likely to occur, buy a history book and READ!

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  120. thehawkreturns (162 comments) says:

    I work with an Iranian.
    He asks “Who amongst you believes that Iran has abandoned its
    nuclear weapons programme? You are wrong”.

    There is an Iranian fable he quoted…

    The surviving mice were complaining that it was unfair the local cat had just killed nearly all their community. “After all” they said “we saw the cat repenting his evil ways in church only this morning”.

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  121. Waymad (136 comments) says:

    Thanks, Reg.

    Ah yes. The Benign Strategic Environment. BSE.

    I read a couple of blogs that, while they don’t help one sleep at night, do attempt to apply the lessons of history to the immediate future.

    John Robb – . And do recall that ‘guerilla’ is Spanish for ‘small war’. A recent Robb article: (advisory – contains small parts which may stick in the throats of reflexive Statists) is here.

    Coming Anarchy – inspired by one of the best commentators around – Robert D Kaplan.

    Forewarned is forearmed. The real precautionary principle, one might just say.

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  122. Waymad (136 comments) says:

    Oh, Toyota. Too clevver by ‘alf.

    Global Guerillas is (types slowly and with proper attention to HTML tags) here.

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  123. Rex Widerstrom (5,330 comments) says:

    yes, kehua “in George Bush`s home state [I] would probably still be in Jail”. Along with hundreds of other people who are innocent (I was found to be innocent after the complainant admitted lying, but by all means peddle your defamation here if that’s the best you can come up with). Some of the people in Bush’s Texas jails were even put to death, despite being mentally retarded, or minors when they committed the crime, or found (after the execution, unfortunately) to be innocent.

    As for intelligence he would leave you for dead. Bush for President? Damn straight!!!

    Yeah there’s just the small matter of the Constitution to get over, but I’m sure you and the genius in the White House have a cunning plan. I suggest you get out your crayons and draw him a picture.

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  124. PhilBest (5,120 comments) says:

    Waymad, nice to find someone ELSE that admires “Spengler” at Asia Times Online. One of the best global politics commentators in the world.

    It’s encouraging to see here just how many Kiwis have seen through the relentless anti-American crap we get dished up by our media, and its also amazing to note that Tane, Roger nome, sonic, and all the others who one would expect to be all over a thread like this with anti-Bush bile, are strangely absent. Maybe their WORST NIGHTMARE is coming to pass, maybe the Bush dream for Iraq is going to work after all.

    I’d just like to add a couple of comments. (Most of the best points already having been made – well done, guys).

    Firstly, someone talks about innocent Iraqi lives, and this becomes a very difficult thing to judge, considering SADDAM’S record for mass murder of his own citizens.

    Secondly, when compared with ANY SIMILAR “war” in the past, however one decries the loss of life there HAS been, one has to admit that the US has done amazingly well to keep the loss of life low. Their use of technology, and an ethical conduct of war that is absent when virtually every other major power goes to war, has to be admitted. Compare with the USSR in Afghanistan, for example.

    The question for the world is now becoming more and more like, if we’ve got large-scale killing and genocide going on anywhere, if it can be stopped and regimes changed this easily, why NOT do it? And if US might and resolve makes vicious rulers think to change their ways WITHOUT military action against them, the world is WAY, WAY ahead on balance.

    It is another fact that if we plot the global rate of death in conflicts everywhere, there has been a steady DECLINE since WW2 to an alltime LOW today, even though there is a lot of regions that could still be attended to. There have been conflicts that the Western world forgets about too easily, because it didn’t concern THEM, because it was Muslims killing Muslims, or Muslims and Hindus killing each other, or African tribes fighting each other. The death tolls from such conflicts went WAY beyond Vietnam, let alone Iraq. Actually, Iraq rates as similar to Columbia (FARC and drug barons) and our media doesn’t obsess about THAT ongoing conflict.

    Lastly, it is true that the US did a lot to rescue us in WW2, and there is some truth in the sour grapes comments from some that the US did nothing until THEY were attacked at Pearl Harbour. But isn’t the lesson from this clear? Do we WANT an isolationist USA, like in the 1930′s, again? Do we WANT a President Edwards or the like to just let things happen like Hitler overrunning Europe (and by the way, paralysing NZ’s supply lanes and coastal shipping with Q-ship activity), saying that it is none of their concern?

    If it was us next time, not Czechoslovakia, how would we like it?

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  125. PhilBest (5,120 comments) says:

    Of course, we do have political quislings all over the place that hate the US for preventing some commie power from taking us over.

    I forgot one more thing. It is ludicrous to talk about Bush turning the US into a “police state” and the like, because they have the greatest freedoms in the WORLD. All Bush has ever tried to do in getting surveillance done on terrorist suspects and the like, is long since the NORM in every other western nation, let alone the REAL totalitarian ones.

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  126. Rex Widerstrom (5,330 comments) says:

    PhilBest – just a small point,and one of which I’m sure you’re aware, but please don’t confuse “anti Bush” with “anti American”. One can be the former without in any way being the latter, just as one can oppose the present government in NZ and in no way be a quisling. I’d hate for my contempt for Bush (which has very little to do with Iraq, either) be confused with anti-Americanism. I (and I suspect many others who find Bush the Lesser to be a buffoon) would agree with your comments on the US and NZ’s relationship with it.

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