'She had to be stopped, or she'd leave him forever'
Presidential scholars: Bush is the worst president of the modern era, bottom five of all time.
Today, just one year after leaving office, (George W. Bush) has
found himself in the bottom five at 39th rated especially poorly in handling the economy, communication, ability to compromise, foreign policy accomplishments and intelligence. Rounding out the bottom five are four presidents that have held that dubious distinction each time the survey has been conducted: Andrew Johnson, James Buchanan, Warren G. Harding, and Franklin Pierce.
He may well have been the worst president ever, but he was exactly what America deserved.
For decades now, the United States has suffered under the impediment of a self-declared 'American exceptionalism', this exceptionalism having its roots in a highly self-flattering reading of world history.
To wit, that having been the last major world power standing at the end of World War 2 with borders, military strength and industrial capacity intact...That America had a rightfully ordained destiny of permanent global pre-eminence.
The fact that fate could have just as easily upended this rosy paradigm in favor of her enemies had they fortune with them instead, or the enemies of those enemies who became temporary allies in a common cause (only to become nemeses again later) is often ignored or discounted by those with a vested interest in maintaining the mythology on behalf of those who write their checks.
In order to foster this fiction, massive amounts of propaganda (or reality conditioning, if one prefers) are required for constant injection into the public discourse, and in order for that propaganda to do its work the masses have to be rendered ignorant and complacent - Offering them the illusory baubles and trappings of minor life success within a purported 'middle class', and reducing the true development of their subjective and collective intellect through the dismantling of a dedicated education apparatus.
This allows for a successful indoctrination of the approved weltanschauung to be performed and for questions involving the logical inconsistencies of same to be marginalized.
Concurrently, certain expectations needed to be lowered or done away with altogether, and one of those expectations was quality levels of government service.
Government, or at least the model of a representative republic, has always been an impediment to those who wish to continue this myth of exceptionalism - In their ideal, capitalism runs utterly unchecked and government is the tightly scripted enforcement wing of its desires, keeping the little people in their place yet staying out of the way of growing ROIs.
Occasionally, some troublemaker might come along and threaten to upset the applecart (or even worse, actually hold the system to its stated values) but the machinery exists to curb that sort of impudence.
One of the fundamental tenets of modern conservative thinking is that government (usually but not always the large variant), along with taxation is irremediably bad - of course, as is usual with such ideologues their words and deeds don't exactly match up (see above regarding logical inconsistencies).
Over the years politicians of a certain stripe have made this sentiment a daily featured part of their rhetoric, and the complacently indoctrinated nod their uninformed heads and pull their levers accordingly. The rationale for someone deciding that electing a person or group who states they hate government to elected office is a good idea has always escaped me - Presumably no one 'likes' government in the affinitive sense, even a well-administered one, but nobody hired George Lincoln Rockwell to run a synagogue daycare, either.
And yet...this is exactly what happens.
The earlier model for the presidency of George W. Bush was his father's running mate and eventual vice-president, J. Danforth Quayle, and the similarities are striking. Most telling, however is that the American people accepted this individual as potentially Executive material.
In reality of course, he provided exactly what was needed for his masters in the situation - an incurious non-intellectual reactionary, one bought and paid for from birth who could be trusted with a dull pair of ribbon cutting scissors and very little else.
And in closing, that returns us to the 'star' of this screed...In the end, another ingrown toenail on the American Empire's feet of clay - now passed into history, yet leaving his legacy like a burning tire around the neck of the world.
It is unlikely that in my lifetime I will see a less competent American President...But never was one more appropriately groomed for the end of the American Dream.