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What Bush Has Done Right???





bemapiu
President Bush has taken a well-deserved flogging on his civil liberties record, but he hasn't been all bad. Here are ten things the president has done to protect or advance American civil liberties.
Quote:

1. Transformed the immigration reform debate.
In 2006, there was a debate within the Republican-dominated Congress over the future of America's 12 million undocumented immigrants. The response of the House was mass deportation; the response of the Senate was comprehensive reform with a citizenship path. President Bush strongly and openly favored the latter approach, to the point of essentially ending the debate within his party over deportation. It cost him dearly among his base, but it moved the immigration reform debate to the center and provided political cover for other Republicans willing to entertain humane immigration reform proposals. Thanks in part to President Bush's position on this issue, real bipartisan immigration reform may be possible in 2009.

2. Declared the first federal ban on racial profiling.
During his first State of the Union address in early 2001, President Bush vowed to end racial profiling. In 2003, he acted on his promise by issuing an order to 70 federal law enforcement agencies calling for an end to most forms of racial and ethnic profiling. The ban was not airtight, but it was the first ban of its kind.

3. Did not appoint justices in the mold of Scalia and Thomas.
While the jury is still out on the new jurists, Chief Justice John Roberts and Justice Samuel Alito, neither are likely to be mistaken for Robert Bork. Roberts seems slightly less conservative than his predecessor, Chief Justice William Rehnquist, while Alito seems slightly more conservative than his, Justice Sandra Day O'Connor. While this represents an incremental shift in the 5-4 calculus on some narrowly-constructed rulings, it does not represent the bold rightward trajectory that many had expected--or at least not yet.

4. Accepted record numbers of refugees and asylum-seekers.
During the second term of the Clinton administration, the United States accepted an average of 60,000 refugees per year and 7,000 asylum-seekers per year. From 2001 to 2006, under the leadership of President Bush, the United States accepted more than four times as many asylum-seekers--some 32,000 per year--and an average of 87,000 refugees per year.

5. Used the bully pulpit to protect American Muslims.
In the immediate aftermath of the 9/11 attacks, anti-Muslim and anti-Arab sentiment was on the rise. Almost every other president in the history of the United States who had faced terrorist attacks from abroad ultimately gave in to xenophobia--President Woodrow Wilson being the most egregious example. President Bush did not, infuriating elements of his base by meeting with pro-Arab and pro-Muslim civil rights groups and holding Muslim events at the White House. When Democrats relied on anti-Arab sentiment while criticizing the transfer of several U.S. ports from British to UAE ownership, it became clear just how far this xenophobia had spread--and just how important it might have been that the president had made an effort to reject it.

6. Integrated the executive branch.
The top four positions in the executive branch are those of the president, the vice-president, the secretary of state, and the attorney general. Until President Bush came to power, none of these four offices had ever been occupied by a person of color. President Bush has appointed the first non-white attorney general (Alberto Gonzales), as well as both the first (Colin Powell) and second (Condoleezza Rice) non-white secretaries of state. There have been non-white legislators and two non-white Supreme Court justices, but prior to the Bush administration, the upper echelon of the executive branch had always been all-white. President Bush changed that.

7. Protected the right to bear arms.
When President Bush came into office, the Clinton-era "assault weapons" ban was still in effect. Even though he had supported the ban consistently during his 2000 campaign, President Bush made no serious effort to seek its renewal and it expired in 2004. Since that time, President Bush has also signed legislation preventing local law enforcement agencies from forcibly confiscating legally-owned firearms, as was done on a large scale in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.

8. Extended federal pension benefits to include same-sex couples.
Although President Bush's rhetoric has often been troubling, he has yet to change a single federal policy in a way that detrimentally affects LGBT Americans. Couple this with a 2006 bill he signed that gave non-spousal couples the same federal pension standards as married couples, his decision to appoint an openly gay man as U.S. ambassador to Romania, his refusal to turn lesbian and gay families away from the White House Easter egg hunt, his decision not to overturn President Clinton's executive order banning federal employment discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation, and his warm words about the vice-president's daughter and her family, and you have an administration that is not as homophobic as many had feared it would be.

9. Signed an executive order banning federal eminent domain seizures.
The Supreme Court's ruling in Kelo v. New London (2005) gave the government power to seize private property for commercial use if the local government deemed the commercial use helpful to the community as a whole, giving the government more power to seize private property than it had ever had before. While executive orders hold no legislative power, and the federal government has not historically made eminent domain claims, President Bush's executive order banning same would force any future president wishing to claim eminent domain powers to make the visible and unpopular move of rescinding the executive order. If the federal leadership wishes to claim broad Kelo eminent domain powers in the future, it will not be able to do so quietly.

10. Did not create "an America we won't recognize."
The greatest contribution President Bush has made to civil liberties has been his failure to live up to expectations. During the 2004 campaign, Senator Hillary Clinton warned us that re-electing Bush would radically transform our country, leaving us with what she called "an America we won't recognize." While President Bush has a horrible civil liberties record, it is only incrementally worse than that of his predecessor and certainly not so much worse as to pose a grave threat to the existence of our liberal democracy. His record on civil liberties has been, I am sad to say, quite normal for a president--perhaps better than I would have expected from a president responding to the worst terrorist attack in our country's history.

that's a bit great,but the things he had done to our world were so bad,(Iraq......)
Do you think about that??
[MOD - what I think about it is that you should use quote tags and give your source when posting extended quotes from third party sites]
Source - http://civilliberty.about.com/od/profiles/tp/What-Bush-Has-Done-Right.htm
liljp617
He tried.
handfleisch
Interesting list. A couple are things he gets credit for not doing, which is kind of funny. Summarize it as "not being even worse".

Number five I have always given him credit for.

You could add banning Gerry Adams of the IRA from the White House in 2005 as showing Bush was consistent in his policy against terrorists (or see it as a cynical favor to Britain as part of their support for the WOT, especially since they eventually let him enter in 2006).

Still, the list is mostly middling, bureaucratic stuff and non-starters against his WPE legacy.

And I would strongly argue against
Quote:
#10. Did not create "an America we won't recognize."
A USA using torture as official policy, overtly running a torture camp outside US law for anyone they want to designate an "illegal combatant" is a USA that I, and most others, would not have recognized in the year 2000. Hillary was spot-on.
lagoon
Do you agree with the right to bear arms? Do you consider that an achievement?

I certainly don't.
liljp617
lagoon wrote:
Do you agree with the right to bear arms? Do you consider that an achievement.


Sure.
RubySlasher
It's sort of surreal how people are suddenly popping out of the woodwork now, saying how Bush will be remembered favorably in history.

Why am I being told this? What's the point?

Even if I suddenly did think he was a great president, it wouldn't matter. I'm already disenchanted by the mechanics of the working world. What does it matter to hate or love or more person I'll never even meet?
I have no interest in becoming a politician or even an activist. Am I supposed to suddenly register as a Republican? Reform my ways and start a grassroots movement to change some sort of law or system that I may disagree with?

What's the meaning of this all, and what are you trying to make me do?! >:C
ocalhoun
RubySlasher wrote:

I have no interest in becoming a politician or even an activist. Am I supposed to suddenly register as a Republican?

No, but it would be a good idea to remain open to the proposition.
Quote:
Reform my ways and start a grassroots movement to change some sort of law or system that I may disagree with?

An excellent idea! Why not?
RubySlasher
I can't really think of anything I disagree with that isn't a necessary evil.

Although I would like my own political party. Its symbol will be a robot and its platform will be based on space exploration and eurobeat.
ocalhoun
RubySlasher wrote:
I can't really think of anything I disagree with that isn't a necessary evil.


Do some in-depth research about the relationship between the big drug companies and washington, and the effects of that relationship on election funding, FDA approval and testing, the medicare drug benefit, and patent rights.
That ought to give you something worth disagreeing about.
cornflake
he has did nothing right and we are in bad shape because of the war
deanhills
liljp617 wrote:
He tried.
Agreed with this statement.

I think where he has also made a great contribution is with the military at a great cost of course of going into serious debt. But the way of warfare viz a viz terrorism has completely changed, taking the United States from traditional warfare and fighting the terrorists where they are in Afghanistan and Pakistan. Completely changing the way the enemy is tracked down, the kind of weapons used, breaking down companies in smaller units. I am not an expert in the nitty gritty details, but Bush certainly helped the military to get with it in modern day warfare. It must be his single most meaningful contribution as it did come at a HUGE price in terms of his non-existent popularity.
ocalhoun
deanhills wrote:
liljp617 wrote:
He tried.
Agreed with this statement.

I think where he has also made a great contribution is with the military at a great cost of course of going into serious debt. But the way of warfare viz a viz terrorism has completely changed, taking the United States from traditional warfare and fighting the terrorists where they are in Afghanistan and Pakistan. Completely changing the way the enemy is tracked down, the kind of weapons used, breaking down companies in smaller units. I am not an expert in the nitty gritty details, but Bush certainly helped the military to get with it in modern day warfare. It must be his single most meaningful contribution as it did come at a HUGE price in terms of his non-existent popularity.

I don't know how much of that you can put to the president's credit though... Surely much (if not most) of it came from senior leadership in the Pentagon.
deanhills
Agreed. But with complete support by Bush. He put lots of energy into it. And it cost him dearly in terms of being unpopular as a consequence. Personally I do not like Bush and thought he had been a disaster as a Diplomat, but during his Presidency the United States made giant strides in the art of terrorism warfare.
handfleisch
deanhills wrote:
Personally I do not like Bush and thought he had been a disaster as a Diplomat, but during his Presidency the United States made giant strides in the art of terrorism warfare.


Excuse me while I retrieve my jaw from the floor...
deanhills
handfleisch wrote:
Excuse me while I retrieve my jaw from the floor...
Sorry for the jaw, must be pretty sore, but can you explain why my comment had such an effect on your poor jaw? Smile
handfleisch
deanhills wrote:
handfleisch wrote:
Excuse me while I retrieve my jaw from the floor...
Sorry for the jaw, must be pretty sore, but can you explain why my comment had such an effect on your poor jaw? Smile


Well maybe you meant there were some specific tactics or methods developed by the military or something. Then I guess that
Quote:
the United States made giant strides in the art of terrorism warfare
would be arguable. But given that the invasion and occupation of Iraq as well as the creation of detention/torture camps are seen as atrocities by human rights and international law standards and an epic failure that created long-lasting hatred of the US and thus potentially bred more terrorism on its own standards, such a statement is jaw-dropping indeed.

Unless you meant the strides were backwards.
ocalhoun
handfleisch wrote:
deanhills wrote:
handfleisch wrote:
Excuse me while I retrieve my jaw from the floor...
Sorry for the jaw, must be pretty sore, but can you explain why my comment had such an effect on your poor jaw? Smile


Well maybe you meant there were some specific tactics or methods developed by the military or something. Then I guess that
Quote:
the United States made giant strides in the art of terrorism warfare
would be arguable. But given that the invasion and occupation of Iraq as well as the creation of detention/torture camps are seen as atrocities by human rights and international law standards and an epic failure that created long-lasting hatred of the US and thus potentially bred more terrorism on its own standards, such a statement is jaw-dropping indeed.

Unless you meant the strides were backwards.

Has he bettered our strategy against them? Not so much, though there has been an interesting lack of stateside attacks. Has he bettered our tactics? Phenomenally.
(I assume you know the difference between tactics and strategy...)
lagoon
liljp617 wrote:
lagoon wrote:
Do you agree with the right to bear arms? Do you consider that an achievement.


Sure.


All I'm saying is that it is a contentious point, and so doesn't really have a place on a list of achievements.
deanhills
The method of warfare changed from large conventional attacks that are visible and out in the open to small companies that strike in blitz style and with surprise "in and out" quickly. Previously it used to be slowmoving and decisions were made carefully, slowing things down, but somehow it would appear decision making is now of the variety where they can be taken instantly and these surprise companies be activated on moment's notice. Compare Desert Storm with current warfare in Afghanistan, think there is a difference? Previously there used to be a delay in between terrorist attacks and the US counter attacks, but the US seems to be much more in the moment, and ready for decision and action. It has taken its study of the terrorists out from behind fortresses in the US into the field and where the action is.
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