When we hear the partisan whining and complaining that President Obama has exploded the Federal budget deficit, it’s important to understand the budget train wreck he inherited from the previous administration. At the beginning of Jan. 2009, the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office (CBO) released its report The Budget and Economic Outlook: Fiscal Years 2009 to 2019.
When asked about George W. Bush’s greatest achievement, Bush hagiographers are quick to claim that “He kept us safe.” And when we ponder that sentiment, we can only wonder at the human capacity for self-delusion, especially when it was on Bush’s watch that the U.S. suffered the worst attack on its soil since Pearl Harbor.
As the de facto head of his party, a U.S. president is said to have coattails upon which his (not yet her) fellow party members ride into office. For political aspirants, the support of a popular president opens doors and wallets. When things go right, a president gains political allies in Congress and in state capitols across the country. When things go wrong, you end up with today’s Republican Party under the failed leadership of George W. Bush.
Continue reading Coattails? Bush and the Republican Debacle
Two recessions occurred on George W. Bush’s watch, the current one (that began in December 2007) being of catastrophic proportions. Here are the facts…
When it comes to measuring and dating U.S. business cycles, the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) is the gold standard. Founded in 1920 and headquartered in Cambridge, Mass., the private, nonprofit, nonpartisan research organization tracks economic expansions and contractions (recessions), where contractions start at the peak of a business cycle and end at the trough.
Continue reading The Bush Recession(s) UPDATED
In the world of diplomacy, words matter (perhaps more than anything). That’s why when President Bush called for democracy in Palestine, he should have considered the consequences.
In the Jan. 25, 2006 Palestinian parliamentary elections, the terrorist group Hamas gained 76 of the Parliament’s 132 seats. The former ruling party Fatah finished with 43 seats. By comparison, in the previous election of 1996 Fatah held 55 seats and Hamas none.
These results have to be considered in light of the Bush Administration’s justification for the Iraq War. In toppling Saddam and installing the Iraq Provisional Authority, Bush claimed to be acting in the interests of democratizing the Middle East. The call for elections in Iraq became a political mantra, even as Iraq remained under the U.S. occupation.
Continue reading Middle East Bush Failure: Hamas