Kerry said something very interesting during his
DNC speech: “I don't want to claim that God is on our side. As
Abraham Lincoln told us, I want to pray humbly that we are on God's side.”
That subtle distinction sums up the main problem I have with Bush, I think.
He's arrogant, and he throws around the name of God for his own political
purposes. Bush is human, he makes mistakes. But he refuses to recognize,
learn from, and correct his mistakes.
second presidential debate, someone asked, “President Bush,
during the last four years, you have made thousands of decisions that
have affected millions of lives. Please give three instances in which
you came to realize you had made a wrong decision, and what you did to
correct it.” Bush's response:
I have made a lot of decisions, and some of them little,
like appointments to boards you never heard of, and some of them big.
And in a war, there's a lot of - there's a lot of tactical decisions
that historians will look back and say: He shouldn't have done that.
He shouldn't have made that decision. And I'll take responsibility for
them. I'm human.
But on the big questions, about whether or not we should have gone
into Afghanistan, the big question about whether we should have removed
somebody in Iraq, I'll stand by those decisions, because I think
That's really what you're - when they ask about the mistakes, that's
what they're talking about. They're trying to say, “Did you make
a mistake going into Iraq?” And the answer is, “Absolutely
not.” It was the right decision.
The Duelfer report confirmed that decision today, because what Saddam
Hussein was doing was trying to get rid of sanctions so he could
reconstitute a weapons program. And the biggest threat facing America
is terrorists with weapons of mass destruction.
We knew he hated us. We knew he'd been - invaded other countries. We
knew he tortured his own people.
On the tax cut, it's a big decision. I did the right decision. Our
recession was one of the shallowest in modern history.
Now, you asked what mistakes. I made some mistakes in appointing people,
but I'm not going to name them. I don't want to hurt their feelings on
But history will look back, and I'm fully prepared to accept any
mistakes that history judges to my administration, because the
president makes the decisions, the president has to take the
Notice how Bush completely failed to answer the question. It appears
that he doesn't question his own judgment - he hasn't been able to
recognize a mistake that he has made, aside from hiring a few people
that turned out not to get along with him as well as he had expected.
If he can't admit his own mistakes, how can he learn from them, and
try to avoid making those same mistakes in the future? As he said,
historians will look back at this time - that doesn't mean he should
wait for them.
By the way, trying to get rid of sanctions doesn't quite justify a
preemptive military invasion.