Instead, it's time to not only celebrate Bush leaving the Presidency, but to point out how much will not be leaving us: modern Republicanism. Bush is the distilled essence of Republicanism. (Even more than sainted Ronnie: Reagan raised taxes, for instance, and Bush held firm to his Republican roots and didn't.)
Bush will be soon be gone, thankfully. Republicans will blame him and not their philosopy for the stench he left over the country. But, in reality, he did mostly what they wanted, and got the country that we get from doing mostly what Republicans want.
- Shovel money to the rich.
- Do nothing to increase middle- and lower-class incomes.
- Continue to lower taxes even when the deficit explodes.
- Only worry about the deficit when the entire economy is on the line and we need to spend money to dig us out of the hole.
- Don't think through foreign crises with the brain: instead apply shibboleths about "toughness."
- Find some trivial culture war bullshit to yell about so you can whip up the base.
- Call a stupid person's stupidity "authenticity." Elevate that "authenticity" to a homespun instinct for dealing with big issues. (The fact that so many Republicans still revere Sarah Palin and Joe the Plumber shows how deep this strain runs).
Good riddance to bad rubbish, Bush. Republicanism: same tomorrow as it ever was.