. . . is here. Mulhern is particularly apt when describing the actual (as opposed to the mythical) failures of Bush. A taste:
When President Bush cast the war in Iraq as a war for the benefit of Iraqis with vital collateral benefits for the U.S., sensible people recognized his argument for the nonsense it was and tuned him out. By choosing to cast it that way, President Bush guaranteed that the war would have shallow support at best. He also guaranteed that it would drag on long after that shallow support dried up entirely . . .Maybe we need to find an Iraqi version of Pervez Musharraf. Maybe we need martial law and an American military governor. Maybe we need a partition that rewards the Kurds and disappoints both the Sunnis and the Shiites. Maybe we need some combination of the above. In any case, we need to stop talking about how the war can serve Iraqi purposes and start talking about how it can serve ours. Republicans had their chance to do that and they squandered it.
I would only add, by way of softening Mulherns blows and perhaps reminding us that politics is never simple, that the real failures of Bush became ever more difficult to condemn because he was under constant assault for imagined failures. Defending him against those imagined failures and character attacks (e.g., Bush lied, Bush is arrogant) made it difficult to spend much time on the real problems. Besides, he was the belle we brought to the ball. I do hope we fill our dance card better next time.