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Sunday, February 3, 2008

Inferior blend

One more note involving a certain former president, even though I tend to agree with David Frum that looking forward is better than harkening back to the Reagan years. I've now read (except for some parts I skipped) Reagan's Disciple: George W. Bush's Troubled Quest for a Presidential Legacy, and it's a fair-minded attempt to grasp the positive and negative in both presidencies. The authors, Lou and Carl M. Cannon, find considerably more that's negative in the current presidency, and it's hard to disagree with that. Excerpt:
Bush was Reagan's disciple, to be sure, but he did not face the seminal crises of his administration--especially the Iraq War--with the blend of principle and pragmatism that was the hallmark of Reagan's dealings with the Soviet Union. We do not fault Bush's intentions, but noble intentions do not excuse his performance in Iraq or the domestic failures of his second term. Nor do they explain his refusal to learn from his mistakes.

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