Obama inherited mess from Bush
May 21, 2009
Some may have noticed the profound conflicts President Obama must be having about whether to let justice take its course regarding the Bush presidency, or to let alleged crimes slide in the name of political expediency.
This much is certain. Obama has inherited from Bush a generational economic crisis, an out-of-control budget, an awful jobs situation, two insane undeclared wars, an auto industry that’s falling apart, and this paragraph could go on.
The president has many other problems, including a 900-plus worldwide United States military base empire Bush did not create, but certainly did enable.
And on and on.
Swirling amid all this idiocy are the mostly unresolved questions of law and justice as they apply to problems of this scale, especially with universally recognized war crimes.
How is it a kid caught with crack can spend many years in prison, while top “leaders” can authorize torture and military adventures with many thousands of innocent people killed, with impunity from the reach of the law?
Part of the answer is our acceptance of institutional hypocrisy. That, too, is historical fact. Another part of the answer is the well-documented failure of the national press to reasonably cover important issues in real time, rather than in sad retrospect.
But I give Obama credit for talking with us as adults, rather than as uniformed mindless dittoheads. He is the most eloquent spokesman for generational reason I have ever seen in national politics.
Day to day, week to week, the president is working within our always imperfect political institutions on behalf of the common good.
That is the reason we elect presidents: to grapple with problems that can only be partially solved.
I think we have a good one, and wish him well.