GWB The Elder Revisited

I know this won’t sway many on here, but I wanted to open a discussion on GWB The Older based on this video.

Right at the 3:53 mark, a reporter asks “Mr President, is this a lesson in democracy?”

And he shrewdly replies “This is a lesson in humanity…look at all the big chances these kids will have in life…”

In context, this is a video of GWB Elder working out then mingling with a contingent of “adoring” fans. I know many of you on here hate this guy, but I think he was actually a pretty good President as Republicans go and has gotten a bad rap over time.

I thought this video shed a little humanity on the guy, and wonder what you think.

Video here:

Bush the Elder? I can’t think of anyone who “hates” Bush the Elder.

Nitpick: His full name is George Herbert Walker Bush, so his initials are GHWB.

Who the hell hates Bush the elder? I am pretty liberal and I like him better than Obama; he had a much better civil libertarian record and did a better job of politicing.

It’s only Republicans that hate all the opposition.

Surely he should be referred to as GWB Sr, or senior… instead of ‘the elder’.

I must agree with LG Butts, though, although only because, The Bushes provided more entertainment value than Obama.
Being that I’m in / from South Africa, I look at the entertainment value, as weve ‘learned to deal with the crap were lumped with’ and try to look on the lighter side.
Either that, or cry, and I prefer to laugh.


I had issues with many of his policies (or the lack thereof) and there was that bizarre statement about atheists not being Americans or whatever it was and of course he picked Dan Quayle as Veep, but all in all he seemed like a nice enough guy.

Well, not everyone know that Herbert was his second name, but I’m sure most people would understand the difference between Bush senior and junior.

Sadly, the moment the story broke about him shaving his head in solidarity with the kid, and mentioning his own loss of a child at that same age, I just knew the hateful trolls would come wiggling out of the woodwork to shit all over him.

Which of course, said far more about them than it ever said about him.

For my own part, I voted for him the first time, but not the second time. I didn’t vote for him that second time only because his re-election campaign was pretty much “I don’t have anything left to do, but what the heck, let’s do another 4 years” and I don’t consider that sufficient reason to run for re-election.

Not to mention that the whole point of referring to #43 as “George W. Bush” or GWB is to distinguish him from his father; so this thread’s title really confused me.

And, more on topic: I bear GHWB no ill will, and nothing I’ve heard of him since his presidency has made me think any less of him. I think it’s kind of neat how close he and Bill Clinton became to each other.

Funny, I don’t see any of those hateful trolls in this thread.

I put him in the same pantheon with Gerald Ford - genial, experienced in government, bad at politics. On the whole not a bad president for his time.

I like Bush Senior, or GHWB, or 41 (but not “GWB Senior”). I think he is a thoughtful, intelligent, and decent politician, even though I didn’t agree with him on several important matters. He signed the American with Disabilities Act and raised taxes which helped pave the way for the balanced budgets in the late 1990s. His method of governing (though not all his positions, IMHO) should be looked back on with fondness, especially considering the partisanship and “my way or the highway” approaches that are too common today.

We often see what we look for, whether it’s there or not.

I didn’t vote for GHWB, but I hold him no ill will. Probably the best Republican POTUS since Eisenhower.

I always admired GHWB. It seemed like he was the last of the non-religious-lunatic Republicans to achieve high office (although he occasionally said idiotic stuff about atheists.) At least he didn’t wear his faith on his sleeve.

He handled the first Gulf War masterfully. There was a large contingent within the White House and the military who were pushing for an occupation and ouster of the Iraqi regime. It was Bush and his inner circle who realized what a bad idea that would be and that the purpose of the operation was restoring sovereignty to Kuwait. He was a strong supporter of the Powell Doctrine. Unfortunately his son didn’t get that memo.

I always viewed him as more thoughtful and introspective than most presidents. Sadly those are not often qualities that are sought after in politicians.

Dan Quayle wasn’t as stupid as everybody thought, though. He was just one of those guys who always fucked up in public.

I’ve got to echo the idea that although I disagreed with him with on a bunch of stuff, he was, overall, a pretty good president and he seems to be a good person in general.

The best Republican President of my lifetime. I voted for Dukakis, but I always vote for the Democratic candidate.

His worst act? Marrying Barbara and fathering that son of a bitch W. Oh, and his old man Prescott was a true wanker too. But those things aren’t really his fault. Yes, he could have warned us about W.

Biden is in much the same mold, although I continue to assume that Biden was picked for his foreign policy chops and Congressional connections rather than his public speaking (in)ability.

And not to pick too much on Bush Sr’s brood but let’s not forget Neil “Silverado” Bush either.

On another board I belong to the thread was probably 40% “BUSH IS EVIL!!!”, so hey, look for what you want to look for.

It seems to me that, for the most part, Bush Senior’s stock has gone up in recent years. I was fairly young during most of his presidency, but I do know that he got blamed for the poor economy and infamously his “Read my lips” quote, along with not running a particularly great campaign against a great campaigner like Clinton, it isn’t a shock that he lost the election and wasn’t looked at too fondly at the time.

Since then, I think people realized that though his backing out on his promise of no new taxes, it was ultimately the right move and boosted the economy resulting in the boom of the late 90s where, otherwise, it might have resulted in continued economic woes. I also think that though people may have seen the first Gulf War as a failure of conviction at the time, after seeing the more recent military misadvendures, it looks remarkably better in hindsight. So it seems to me that he was a man who had convictions, but he was also a pragmatist knew when to back down and take the compromise for the long term benefit. Further, compare his post-presidential charity work, comparing him to Bush 43 or Obama, I think people look back at his and Clinton’s presidencies a lot more fondly now.