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The PJ Tatler

by
Bryan Preston

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September 6, 2013 - 8:38 am
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Compare and contrast the leadership styles of George W. Bush and Barack H. Obama.

Bush was derided as a “unilateralist” and a “cowboy” but he built a coalition of 37 nations to take out Saddam Hussein. That coalition included Japan, deploying troops on foreign soil for the first time since World War II, this time not to colonize, but to stop a madman. Dozens of nations supplied troops or paid for the war as part of the maligned Coalition of the Willing. The objectives in Iraq were clear: regime change, followed by a transition to better government and a better life for Iraqis.

Obama so far has built a coalition of just 10 nations, one of which is the United Kingdom. The UK parliament voted down military action in Syria, Obama’s war of choice. None of the nations in the 10 have committed to send troops or militarily assist the U.S. in Syria strikes so far. The objective in Syria is not clear: Punish Assad for his supposed use of chemical weapons, but not enough to make any real difference in Syria’s civil war. “Just muscular enough not to be mocked.”

Bush consulted Congress on going to war in Iraq from the beginning. He included Congress at every step, and built coalitions with members of the other party all along the way. The justifiably maligned “No Child Left Behind” was an effort to build a coalition even with the late Sen. Ted Kennedy. Congress’ deliberations took more than a year.

Obama declared that he has the authority to act without Congress, but will consult Congress anyway. As congressional resistance has not abated, Obama cannot resist slipping into his mock mode, as he did during comments in St. Petersburg today. Obama also took a swipe at Bush today, when he mentioned having to deal with “debts we have already racked up.” Bush has refrained from publicly criticizing Obama, despite Obama calling Bush “unpatriotic” during the 2008 campaign, and then running up far more debt than Bush did. Obama has not promised not to strike Syria without congressional or UN support, which candidate Obama would rip as “unilateral,” “irresponsible” and probably “unpatriotic.”

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Top Rated Comments   
Yes we have supper secret reasons for bombing Syria, they are kept in a secure place along with Obama's educational transcripts and birth certificate.
46 weeks ago
46 weeks ago Link To Comment
Kinda like the billboards that have Bush's picture on them with the caption "Miss me yet?"

Yep, we sure do sir.
46 weeks ago
46 weeks ago Link To Comment
Bush took a pounding from his opposition and didn't make a peep. They called him a war criminal and a dunce but he never lowered himself by taking critics on.

Obama lashes out at the slightest perceived slight or questioning of his policies. He publicly scolds the Supreme Court, the Tea Party, Repubs in general.

Yeah. Bush wasn't perfect, but he sure seems pretty perfect now compared this idiot.
46 weeks ago
46 weeks ago Link To Comment
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All Comments   (44)
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I have an even better comparison!


Nixon and Obama: Like brothers from another mother

Many pundits and journalists, including CBS' Bob Schieffer, have drawn parallels between the Obama White House's handling of scandals plaguing the administration and Former President Nixon's management of Watergate. We looked back in the archives to see just how close they were.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HlYZ2s_95gs&feature=player_embedded#!
46 weeks ago
46 weeks ago Link To Comment
No. I don't miss Bush.
He sat on his hands while the GOP took a dive in '08 with McCain as the nominee. And the Bush women are tiresome as well.
I'm enjoying the Obama presidency as the wheels on the bus are finally falling off, and his thralls in the media are becoming less enthralled.
46 weeks ago
46 weeks ago Link To Comment
Nope.
46 weeks ago
46 weeks ago Link To Comment
Our affirmative action president is out there on the ice all alone. He arrived there with overwhelming narcissism, mediocre intellectual abilities, ill prepared, and unsuited to lead a great nation A Shakespearean figure, though with big ears. It didn't end too well for Hamlet, either.

cc NSA
46 weeks ago
46 weeks ago Link To Comment
I prefer Obama. He is a dork and can''t go to war in the ME because he is not a leader. A great leader with the wrong plan, as Bush had in Iraq, is worse than a bad leader who does nothing when it comes to the ME.
46 weeks ago
46 weeks ago Link To Comment
President Bush was the last gasp of centrism of the center-right and was pretty much an honest man about it. The "Compassionate Conservative" thing was already a recognition of the free stuff constituency that the Democrats had and continue to have a firm grip on. Bill and Hill before him were in many ways just as radical as Comrade Obama but after their excess of the first two years provoked the Gingrich Counter-revolution in '94, Bill decided he liked the big chair, interns, and such and went centrist of the center-left variety while Hill retreated to the political shadows and stood by her man. Their retreat to centrism is, I believe, the reason she was pushed out by the Soros Cabal. Bush basically got elected because of money, name ID, and scandal fatigue; people were tired of a deeply unserious President but even so, it was a very close-run thing. I believe that had it not been for 9/11, the Country would have been close to ungovernable, GWB would not have won re-election, and the Democrat takeover of the Congress would have occurred in 2006. The gerrymandering and the VRA have made Democrat districts so staunchly Democrat that Democrat representatives and Blue State senators can do ANYTHING and still get re-elected. Democrat intransigence in Congress would have made it impossible for President Bush to govern because I don't think he had it in him to be the kind of man President Reagan was who'd laugh at the slings and arrows and veto the Democrats into submission. Did GWB ever use the veto? If he did it was so rarely I don't recall any instance. Reagan did everything short of letting federal contracts to tear down things in a recalcitrant member's district to bring the Democrats to heel.

Bush was, I think, the last of the "nice guy" Republicans who'll win the Presidency or be in Congressional leadership positions for a long time. The Democrats are so hard left and so ruthless that Rotary Club Republicans simply cannot compete with them. If we continue to nominate the nice guys to try to carry the Purple states, they only way we'll ever win is if the nice guy can actually make himself capitalize on any mistake the Democrat nominee might make. From 2008 the nice guy hasn't really had a chance at the Presidency and nice guys Boehner and McConnell have been beaten like rented mules in the Congress.

I think the nation-building stuff in Iraq and Afghanistan was the foreign policy version of compassionate conservatism; a concession to the left to try to thwart the accusations of Republicans just being mean, nasty people. Well, we all know how well that served him in dealing with the real mean, nasty people on the left. It was a mistake; it is better to lose being called names by the right people because you did the right thing than to lose while being called names by the same people because you did the wrong thing by trying to appease them. Not only did he not defend himself, he didn't defend anybody else. Republicans have to learn not to let the left mau-mau their people. If Democrat holdovers in GWB's DOJ hadn't mau-maued Ted Stevens, Mark Begich wouldn't have been elected to the Senate to give the Democrats a filibuster proof Senate for ObamaCare. Neither GWB nor any of his people had a damned clue how to actually make the bureaucracy do what it wanted or how to stop the thwarting, leaking, and sabotage from holdover Democrats and their sympatizers in the government. GWB joins a long succession of Republican Presidents and governors who've suffered from this because they could't or wouldn't reorganize the government so they could run it with loyal, competent Republicans and apolitical subject matter experts rather than just keeping the Democrats on below the most visible level.

So, yes I miss him because he was an honest man that tried to work for American interests, but I don't miss him because he was a good executive or policy maker.
46 weeks ago
46 weeks ago Link To Comment
Excellent analysis. Unfortunately though, the type of people who are attracted to run for office in the Republican Party are not of the shrewd & ruthless variety who are well-equipped to go toe-to-toe with the Dems. A few exceptions can be found, the most noteworthy, of course, being Gov. Christie of NJ. But who wants him at the helm of the WH?
46 weeks ago
46 weeks ago Link To Comment
NOT I!!!
46 weeks ago
46 weeks ago Link To Comment
At some point the self-styled "true conservatives" will have to figure out that they need somebody who can stop the communists from doing things TO them. They can't elect anybody who can do anything FOR them. This is especially true for the SoCon or SIVV voters; taking your football home elects communists.
46 weeks ago
46 weeks ago Link To Comment
I appreciate your assessment of Bush and his presidency and agree with you on most points. However, dislodging the holdover Democrats from their government bunkers is probably a lot easier to say than do because they don't reveal themselves as the ideological snakes they are until they've begun to do their dirty work - the careerists at the IRS being a prime example.

Right now I'm thinking that Rudy Giuliani has the intestinal fortitude for the job that needs to be done. He cleaned up the horrible mess Mayor David Dinkins had made of NYC and then successfully guided the city through the aftermath of 9/11. Before that he almost single-handedly decapitated the mob, excellent experience in a man going up against the current Democrat party which is really nothing but a vast criminal conspiracy. Chris Christie would be a very poor substitute for Giuliani, who's the real thing.
46 weeks ago
46 weeks ago Link To Comment
I've cleaned up a couple of Democrat messes in a State government; smells really bad at first, and done the plan for a cleanup of a city government but decided I'd paid my dues and didn't want to do it myself. It really isn't that hard. As the new executive, mayor, governor, President, takes his/her hand off The Bible, s/he fires everybody s/he has anything resembling a legal right to fire: every single political appointee in the government, every damned one of them! In the places where you have loyal, competent Republicans, appoint them. Fill the rest with "acting" appointments of merit system employees. Now some of them are going to be Democrat sympathizers and some even Democrat sleepers, but they are going to have a politically appointed Republican boss somewhere above them who is going to tell them to do things they don't want to do. When they leak, thwart, or sabotage, you begin the process of disciplining and dismissing them; you won't have to do it much. The political appointees have made some accomodation for the fact that they can get fired anytime and certainly after ever election or vote on a budget; they have landing spots. The career employees, even the $150K+ ones live from paycheck to paycheck since they don't have to save due to that nice retirement. They're a couple of missed paychecks from destitute and three months from homeless. To be that sort of employee, you have to have spent a long career in government and you'll be in your late-thirties or early forties at minimum; you may be worth $100K or more to the government, but you're just an entry level employee to anybody else. These people are NOT risk-takers. All you have to do is show them that there is some risk to getting crossthreaded with the administration.

When we took over after eight years of Democrats in '02, we went on a campaign against the activists, radicals, and loudmouths who'd been their natural a**hole selves with impunity for eight years. It is amazing what a salutory effect on morale comes from having a couple of suits from headquarters show up and march somebody out never to return. You can't be everywhere, so you make a lot of smoke and noise anywhere you go, and things become very quiet and peacefull very quickly. After the first six months, our grievances traffic dropped to alltime lows.

I like Giuliani, but he's anathema to the self-annointed "true conservatives" and the SoCons. They need to figure some things out; you can't run candidates that would only carry districts in the rural South and West and expect to win the Presidency.
46 weeks ago
46 weeks ago Link To Comment
You should create a manual to be handed to the next Republican president.
About Rudy, I'm thinking it may be the right time for the SoCons to compromise a bit because so much is at stake. I think Rudy is very electable at this point in time.
46 weeks ago
46 weeks ago Link To Comment
So true. The trouble with those types is they are blinded to the forest for wallowing in the midst of the trees of "principles." Purists they are but they are too stubborn to go for "what works" by supporting pols who will go to bat for them, but to hell with that if the pol supports gay marriage or is pro choice. Meantime they are perpetually on the losing end of the stick, along with the rest of us who get sucked in.......
46 weeks ago
46 weeks ago Link To Comment
During the last few years of the Bush presidency I jokingly referred to myself as "The Last Conservative In America Who Still Supports Bush". I bought a Miss Me Yet? tee-shirt about two minutes after Obama was sworn in. Bush was/is a man whose character is unassailable and he never spoke a dishonest word. He withstood the vile relentless invective from Democrats and the media and never lowered himself to their level in an effort to defend himself, and - though it frustrated me - I was glad he didn't. I think he figured that God and history will figure it all out and in the meantime he'd just keep on doing what he thought was right. When he compromised with the other side it was because of his natural compassion and his wish to help the country move ahead. There's not a selfish or narcissistic bone in his body and he respects all people equally. One Bush is worth 1000 Obamas.
46 weeks ago
46 weeks ago Link To Comment
I miss America and I want it back.
46 weeks ago
46 weeks ago Link To Comment
Do I miss bad because we got worse?
46 weeks ago
46 weeks ago Link To Comment
"Miss him yet?"

Not really. He was incredibly flawed as a leader but in different ways. He was cowed by criticism after the vicious media attacks beginning with the response to the tsunami in Indonesia and crescendoing to hysterical volume with Katrina. After that, he was sleepwalking thru most of his 2nd term. Nope. I don't miss him. Who I miss is Reagan.
46 weeks ago
46 weeks ago Link To Comment
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