While interviewing Condoleezza Rice on “The View” last week, Joy Behar told the erstwhile secretary of state that Trump, “Made me love George [W.] Bush, I’ll tell you that.”
A visibly shocked Rice responded, “I never thought I’d hear you say that. So thank you very, very much.”
Behar’s sentiment is not unique. I have seen tons of people now saying that Trump makes George W. Bush look like a good president. And while I understand they’re probably saying this with a good dose of hyperbole, and while I myself do admit Trump is even more worrisome than Bush was ― more extreme, more of a loose cannon ― I still cannot agree with this sentiment.
Saying that Donald Trump is making George W. Bush look good, to me, sugarcoats the corruption and evilness that was the Bush administration.
I’m not thumbing my nose at Behar or anybody who says Trump makes Bush look good. Heck, I might have even said it once or twice myself, in a fit of despair. However, after thinking about it, I really don’t think George W. Bush or his administration is deserving of any praise.
This is the same administration that leaked ― actually leaked! ― the identity of CIA operative Valerie Plame because her husband wouldn’t back up their flimsy rationale for going to war with Iraq. This is the same administration that lied to Americans about Saddam possessing WMD, constantly banging the war drum, incessantly capitalizing on the country’s fears, and proclaiming ― not long after the September 11th attacks ― that Saddam Hussein would be responsible for a “mushroom cloud” if the United States didn’t get involved militarily with Iraq. This is the same administration that is responsible for the deaths of 195,370 civilians in Iraq. This is the same administration that helped to destabilize the Middle East with another needless, unnecessary war.
George W. Bush and his cronies shouldn’t be praised at all. If anything, they set the stage for Trump. Conflicts of interest with with the Donald? Yes, a bunch. But what about Vice President Cheney’s connections with Haliburton?
Said John Kerry, during a campaign stop in Albuquerque, 2004:
“Dick Cheney’s old company Halliburton has profited from the mess in Iraq at the expense of American troops and taxpayers. While Halliburton has been engaging in massive overcharging and wasteful practices under this no-bid contract, Dick Cheney has continued to receive compensation from his former company.”
After witnessing eight years of the Bush administration and their highly criminal, impeachable, and utterly contemptible offenses, it takes zero stretch of the imagination to understand why Donald Trump is acting the way he has been acting — whether he’s firing the FBI director who is investigating his possible ties to Russia, or flagrantly lying about everything under the sun, or bilking millions of dollars of taxpayer money having Secret Service agents lodge at Trump Tower.
Let’s stop kidding ourselves: George W. Bush, Dick Cheney, Paul Wolfowitz, Condoleezza Rice and Donald Rumsfeld all helped pave the road for Donald Trump. They sent out the message: “Hey, it’s OK. We got away with it ― you can get away with it too.”
The Trump administration doesn’t make the Bush administration look good. The Bush administration, in many ways, gave birth to the Trump administration.