The latest Washington Post-ABC News poll found that 52 percent view Bush as ‘honest and trustworthy,’ down 7 points from the previous poll, 19 from his peak in the summer of 2002.
You may already have seen the story from Sunday’s New York Times that interviewed Bush voters in Ohio who plan to switch over. (‘Bill Flanagan a semiretired newspaper worker, happily voted for George W. Bush. But now, shaking his head, he vows, ‘Never again.’ ‘The combination of lies and boys coming home in body bags is just too awful,’ Mr. Flanagan said, drinking coffee and reading newspapers at the local mall.’)
Clearly, Bush was misleading us when, as a candidate, he looked into the camera and insisted, of his tax-cut proposal, that ‘by far, the vast majority of the help goes to the people at the bottom end of the economic ladder.’ This was a trillion dollar lie. By far the vast majority of the cuts have gone to the top few percent. (Why not just come out and tell us? ‘Vote for me, and I’m going to give a huge tax cut to the rich.’)
Clearly, he was misleading us when he promised a ‘humble foreign policy’ – yet was planning long before September 11 to ‘do’ Iraq. (Why not just tell us? ‘Vote for me and my very first National Security Council meeting will focus on Iraq. Just 11 days after my Inauguration, its agenda will include a ‘Political-Military Plan for Post-Saddam Iraq Crisis.”)
There have been so many instances of his saying one thing and doing another, one hardly knows where to start. Just one recent post from the Daily Mislead:
BUSH TALKS JOB TRAINING IN ADDRESS, BUT CUTS FUNDS
President Bush is visiting Ohio today to trumpet a $500 million job training/education proposal announced in his State of the Union address. But the president has recently proposed to cut almost $700 million out of the same job training and education programs he is now touting.
As part of his new proposal, Bush said last night “I propose increasing our support for America’s fine community colleges.” Last year, however, the president sought to cut $230 million out of vocational/community college education, along with “eliminating funding for technical education.” When lawmakers tried to restore the cuts in April, Bush was adamant that the cuts be preserved, and his allies in the Senate voted down the funding. The president also recently eliminated all $225 million in funding for youth job training grants.
The other key piece of Bush’s proposal involves college funding. The president said last night, “I propose larger Pell grants for students.” But he did not mention his recent decision to “cut the Pell Grant program by $270 million” — a move his own Education Department admits will cut off 84,000 students, and reduce grants for “an additional one million students.
Why not just tell us? ‘Don’t look to us for help in taxing the rich. Those days are over! Just go out, work hard, and make yourself rich, like I did.’
We were told during the last campaign that anything he did before the age of 40 (the first 75% of his life) was off-limits, and the so-called liberal press pretty much went along.
But this Alabama National Guard thing nags. Not so much on the substance – hey, I didn’t go to Vietnam, either. But the truthfulness of it. Which, based on this report, seems to be exactly how some of his fellow Alabama National Guardsmen feel:
Bush a No-Show at Alabama Base
FedEx pilot Bob Mintz, backed up by a Carolina colleague, recalls no Dubya at Dannelly AFB in 1972
by Jackson Baker – February 19, 2004
Two members of the Air National Guard unit that President George W. Bush allegedly served with as a young Guard flyer in 1972 had been told to expect him and were on the lookout for him. He never showed, however; of that both Bob Mintz and Paul Bishop are certain. . . .
“There’s no way we wouldn’t have noticed a strange rooster in the henhouse, especially since we were looking for him,” insists Mintz, who has pored over documents relating to the matter now making their way around the Internet. One of these is a piece of correspondence addressed to the 187th’s commanding officer, then Lt. Col. William Turnipseed, concerning Bush’s redeployment.
Mintz remembers a good deal of base scuttlebutt at the time about the letter, which clearly identifies Bush as the transferring party. “It couldn’t be anybody else. No one ever did that again, as far as I know.” In any case, he is certain that nobody else in that time frame, 1972-73, requested such a transfer into Dannelly.
Mintz, who at one time was a registered Republican and in recent years has cast votes in presidential elections for independent Ross Perot and Democrat Al Gore, confesses to “a negative reaction” to what he sees as out-and-out dissembling on President Bush’s part. “You don’t do that as an officer, you don’t do that as a pilot, you don’t do it as an important person, and you don’t do it as a citizen. This guy’s got a lot of nerve.”
Though some accounts reckon the total personnel component of the 187th as consisting of several hundred, the actual flying squadron — that to which Bush was reassigned — numbered only “25 to 30 pilots,” Mintz said. “There’s no doubt. I would have heard of him, seen him, whatever.” . . .
“I never saw hide nor hair of Mr. Bush,” confirms Bishop, who now lives in Goldsboro, N.C., is a veteran of Gulf War I and, as a Kalitta pilot, has himself flown frequent supply missions into military facilities at Kuwait. . . .
Bishop voted for Bush in 2000 and believes that the Iraq war has served some useful purposes — citing, as the White House does, disarmament actions since pursued by Libyan president Moammar Khadaffi — but he is disgruntled both about aspects of the war and about what he sees as Bush’s lack of truthfulness about his military record. . . .
“It bothered me that he wouldn’t ‘fess up and say, ‘Okay, guys, I cut out when the rest of you did your time.’ He shouldn’t have tried to dance around the subject. I take great exception to that. I spent 39 years defending my country.” . . .
Would he consider voting for the president’s reelection? “Naw, this goes to an integrity issue. I like either [John] Kerry or [John] Edwards better.” And who would Mintz be voting for? “Not for any Texas politicians,” was the Memphian’s sardonic answer.
Copyright 2004 The Memphis Flyer
(Here‘s one from the Dallas News that has a Retired National Guard Lieutenant Colonel charging that Bush’s 1997 chief of staff told the National Guard chief to make certain nothing would embarrass the governor – and that, days later, he saw documents from the Bush file discarded in a trash can.)
One older couple the New York Times interviewed for the story quoted above – a judge and a teacher – ‘reluctantly divulged their secret: though they are stalwarts in the local Republican Party, they are planning to vote Democratic this year. ‘I feel like a complete traitor, and if you’d asked me four months ago, the answer would have been different,’ said the judge, after assurances of anonymity. ‘But we are really disgusted. It’s the lies, the war, the economy. We have very good friends who are staunch Republicans, who don’t even want to hear the name George Bush anymore.”
‘I voted for him,’ says another of the interviewees, ‘but it seems like he’s just taking care of his rich buddies now.’
Quote of the Day
To be absolutely certain about something, one must know everything or nothing about it.~Henry Kissinger
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