A Republican's View of George Bush, Compassionate Conservative
January 5, 2003 12:51 PM   Subscribe

It's thoughtful, not angry or insulting. It appears to make sense and it doesn't upset me. Is this really how they think of themselves? Required reading for the liberal opposition: A Republican's View of George Bush, Compassionate Conservative. (NYTimes, free registration required)
posted by alms (30 comments total)

 
Frum is quite excellent. He has a blog which is part of my weekly diet. Unfortunately - for blog readers - he'll be off promoting a book on Bush and postings will be light for some weeks.
posted by mojohand at 1:19 PM on January 5, 2003


Ah, the sweet breath of Karl Rove falls upon is all.

with benefits meant to encourage government-preferred activities like installing solar heating or attending community college.

1. Bush has proposed cutting federal spending for student loans, education, despite what Frum tells of "solar panels and community college." Bush has a dismal record on the environment, with education not very much higher.

In the fight against government growth, he makes no promises to do more than hold the line.

2. The Bush Administration is not keeping the line on big government spending. Spending has has seen it's largest increase in 40 years under the Bush Administration.

3. For extra points, supply side economics has never worked.
posted by the fire you left me at 1:51 PM on January 5, 2003


i caught one of bush's mouthpieces on the sunday morning talk shows this morning stating "its not up to the US to prove that iraq HAS weapons of mass destruction, its up to saddam to prove that he doesn't...." spoken like a certain texan "new republican" were he ever to make himself available for questions from the public, media or anyone else. unfortunately the weak kneed talking head neglected to ask "how would mr.saddam prove such a thing?"
posted by specialk420 at 1:53 PM on January 5, 2003


David Frum, of course, it the author of Bush's "axis of evil" line in his State of the Union speech. Looks like he has now delivered an early valentine to Bush.

How about a new line: I have finally brought an end to the long nation nightmare of peace and prosperity.
posted by JackFlash at 1:54 PM on January 5, 2003


In the 19th century, the Republican Party was defined by region. It was the North against the South. In the 20th century, it became a party defined by class — the white-collar middle class as opposed to the poor and the metropolitan rich. Under George W. Bush, the party in the 21st century is on its way to becoming a party defined by faith.

Unfortunately the Christians of all social classes are being deceived. They are still a party for class, they have only tapped into a broader base of support. One that, because of their faith, can be easily manipulated. Christians have to say christianity is the most important thing in their lives, and as such will vote according to who says they are the most aligned with christianity, but the similarities between the Bush administration agenda and the teachings of Jesus are extreme to say the least.

The Republican party takes advantage of people's faith in order to promote an agenda that has nothing to do with christianity.
posted by rhyax at 1:54 PM on January 5, 2003


Dumb article written by the right-wing apologista front. Bush doesn't seem to compassionate to anyone except the wealthy donors who put him in power. Has he even muttered the phrase since his election? Or did it disappear with the phrase "education candidate"?
gee, I am in a grumpy mood. Time for a walk.
posted by elwoodwiles at 1:59 PM on January 5, 2003


The Republican party takes advantage of people's faith in order to promote an agenda that has nothing to do with christianity.

Except for anti-abortion legislation and more federal funding to churches, which Christian or not seem to have the support of people of Christian faith.
posted by the fire you left me at 2:00 PM on January 5, 2003


"In the 19th century, the Republican Party was defined by region. It was the North against the South. In the 20th century, it became a party defined by class"

let's forget about the wilson election switch.
in addition to jesus, dubya doesn't follow lincoln much, either.
posted by the aloha at 2:21 PM on January 5, 2003


I lost track of David Frum - I didn't know he had a blog on NRO - after he left the White House, but seeing this article in this morning's Times was a big surprise. Though he was allowed to resign, the apparent real story was that the administration canned him after his wife, Danielle Chrittenden, sent out an email to a host of friends bragging on her husband for thinking up the phrase "axis of evil." His own politics aside, it's strange to see him feeding the hand that bit him.
posted by risenc at 2:32 PM on January 5, 2003


Mr. Bush has been accepted by all important Republican factions without so much as a squeak of public dissent.

i.e., any Republican "faction" that dissented from him is by definition not an important one.

In the fight against government growth, he makes no promises to do more than hold the line.

Except this?

It's not just Mr. Bush's party that is changing. It is Mr. Bush himself.

(so just bag those campaign promises, then.)

oh, and nice metaphor, risenc.
posted by Vidiot at 2:49 PM on January 5, 2003


For a speech writer, this line doesn't seem to portray the right message of tolerance and good intentions:

And so the president who once talked of scaling back America's overseas commitments now finds himself crusading for democracy not only in Iraq, but also for the entire Arab world.

The Bush administration's crusade will face defeat unless it's able to change the minds of an entire region using force. It doesn't take much thought to realize this will align more people against the US. Although it will certainly be lucrative.

With the rest of the world and urban areas in America disagreeing with Bush, he has to rely on rural areas in America and the religious right -- the very areas that are growing the slowest, or are getting smaller.
posted by jragon at 2:53 PM on January 5, 2003


His own politics aside, it's strange to see him feeding the hand that bit him.

But kicking the White House in the teeth, especially now, wouldn't be very smart for a Republican speechwriter / National Review columnist / Conservative think tank employee
So he'd better be a good boy if he wants to work again and have Sean Hannity and the other FoxNews jocks _swoon_ over his new book.
He'll lay low for a while, there's a nice Presidential campaign next fall, the White House will need lots of speeches, TV's will need lots of Conservative commentators. I don't see Frum pulling a David Brock
posted by matteo at 3:06 PM on January 5, 2003


Caveat hostis humani generis.
posted by rushmc at 3:09 PM on January 5, 2003


Metafilter: feeding the hand that bit us
posted by azazello at 3:09 PM on January 5, 2003


Under George W. Bush, the party in the 21st century is on its way to becoming a party defined by faith.

Having faith in my God means then for me to faithrest. Rest that God can handle it, not a man.

The Republican party takes advantage of people's faith in order to promote an agenda that has nothing to do with christianity.

Then these people are mixing politics with religion. Which is like saying I voted for Bush because my Pastor did too. I hope not for anyone as your not using your freedom of choice or privacy of your vote.

separation is what this country is based on, agree?

And I do see how people have allowed others do their thinking, and will agree this is making America weak(Sigh).
posted by thomcatspike at 3:30 PM on January 5, 2003


I thought "compassionate conservative" was supposed to be an insult?
posted by mcsweetie at 3:32 PM on January 5, 2003


Not as insulting as this article.
posted by sparky at 3:46 PM on January 5, 2003


but! but! they crashed planes! planes into skyscrapers! all of this is neccessary! and if you keep snarking at my policies i'll declare you a terrorist and disappear your sorry ass to an undisclosed location. forever.
posted by quonsar at 4:32 PM on January 5, 2003


I apologize for starting this thread. I had no idea it would turn out this way. I actually thought the op ed piece was interesting, and helped me understand how the Bush administration may truly see itself and its place in history. This has generally been difficult for me to comprehend. But MeFi clearly does not need any more threads of reflexive anti-Bush flames. If I could self-delete, I would.
posted by alms at 4:55 PM on January 5, 2003


opedfilter it ain't.
posted by quonsar at 4:56 PM on January 5, 2003


I actually thought the op ed piece was interesting, and helped me understand how the Bush administration may truly see itself and its place in history.

I don't think it's how they see themselves. There is a difference between how they see themselves and how they would like to be seen. This may be how many people see them.
posted by rhyax at 5:04 PM on January 5, 2003


rhyax, looking at your earlier post about Christianity and voting, whatever happened to "Render unto Caesar the things which are Caesar's and unto God the things which are God's"?

I'm not arguing with you or your post, but I do perceive sometimes that politicians expect/demand/seek almost an official endorsement from Heaven, Inc.
posted by alumshubby at 5:16 PM on January 5, 2003


Good thing Davie's good mother aint around to see this bootlicking. Yeesh.
posted by lupus_yonderboy at 6:49 PM on January 5, 2003


Of vague relevance is the current lead headline on Drudge: WHITE HOUSE ANGER AT BOOK BY BUSH 'AXIS OF EVIL' SPEECHWRITER.... [note: I have no idea if this link is at all permanent]. Fluffy quotes inside.
posted by tingley at 8:35 PM on January 5, 2003


"One seldom heard an unexpected thought in the Bush White House or met someone who possessed unusual knowledge."

David Frum
posted by y2karl at 8:39 PM on January 5, 2003


FRUM DESCRIBES PRESIDENT AS 'TART'

georgie, you slut!
posted by quonsar at 8:54 PM on January 5, 2003


This op ed is typical political spin, you know sad, and delusional.
posted by jbou at 9:06 PM on January 5, 2003


As are most of the comments in this thread, sad and delusional.
posted by Recockulous at 9:17 PM on January 5, 2003


stolen from the oval office
posted by specialk420 at 9:39 PM on January 5, 2003


"Republicans returned to office in 2000 fed up with the random do-goodery of the Clinton years."

Yeah, instead of all that "let's stop the human rights infractions here," and "let's attempt to pacify these regions there," Bush has a strict focus from which he never strays.

Not oil, you paranoid conspiracy-freaks! Fighting terrorism, freeing the women of Afghanistan, liberating the people of Iraq, and strengthening Venezuela's economy. If you actually believe the rhetoric of the Bush administration, they have been crusading for a different issue every two weeks.
posted by zekinskia at 9:24 AM on January 6, 2003


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