Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Bush Legacy

With his performance as president despised by so many, when it comes to his legacy George W. Bush reportedly is seeking perhaps his only available solace - that perhaps history will treat him more kindly.

Not likely.

What many people and present-day commentators such as the New York Times refer to as "the most disastrous presidency in modern times" is also viewed similarly by respected and reputable historians.

For example, Arthur Schlesinger Jr., the late historian, commented to Jane Mayer of the The New Yorker for her new book, "The Dark Side: The Inside Story of How the War on Terror Turned Into a War on American Ideals,” that “the Bush administration’s extralegal counterterrorism program presented the most dramatic, sustained and radical challenge to the rule of law in American history,” reports Bob Herbert in today's NYTimes.

Schlesinger concludes, after considering all of the breakdowns of law that occurred throughout American history in prior administrations, including Watergate, that "No position taken has done more damage to the American reputation in the world — ever.”

Not much solace there for Mr. Bush.