George Bush & That Courage Thingie
Interviewer: George Bush is getting a lot of criticism for staying tough on
. Thirty years from now, will this be seen as courageous? Iraq
Beschloss: I think it will be definitely seen as courageous, no matter what happens, because you have a president who is willing to fly in the face of public opinion . . . and that is nothing but courage.
I don’t want to twist what Beschloss said because, like, he’s way smarter than me and pretty crafty at that: He cannily refuses to place the president in that spectrum between the sainted Washington and Lincoln and the reviled Harding even though he is more qualified than most people to do so.
(Then again, maybe that refusal has something to do with his Missus, who has close ties to the propaganda machine called the Carlyle Group and other Bush administration lapdogs. Or the fact that the interview was published in the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, which is owned by Republican right wingnut Richard Mellon Scaife.)
What tripped my trigger is the notion posited by Beschloss that Bush’s actions are courageous and whether the standard definition of that word (“Having courage, full of courage; brave, fearless, valiant”) is apropos.
This leads me to ask whether:
It is courageous to not listen to the advice of people who may know a tad more about things than you do?
It is courageous to not learn from your mistakes?
It is courageous to be obsessed with secrecy?
It is courageous to turn the Constitution on its ear?
It is courageous to put politics ahead of policy and name hacks to key posts?
It is courageous to run your once robust political party into the ground?
It is courageous to accuse people who dissent from your policies of being traitors?
Methinks Beschloss has confused being courageous with being reckless. As in the driver of the Corvette was courageous to do 140 miles an hour on a narrow country road before plowing into the back of a school bus filled with children.Me also thinks that in the process, Beschloss has committed calumny for an historian by putting politics ahead of being a dispassionate scholar.