Monday, May 21, 2007

Here's How I Got There

This week is Finals week for my son. We're on an early dismissal schedule, with school letting out at noon. Two finals a day, last day is Thursday. Then summer. I'm ready.

Did you see Venus rising along side of the moon over the weekend? It was a spectacular sight from our viewing area.

I've been lucky in my life to live in different states, different parts of the country, with the most time concentrated in areas of the South. I'm first generation Southern. My parents were both from southern Indiana, though my father was born in St. Louis. Solid Midwestern stock. So, I have a lot of that old fashioned common sense attitude towards life. My thought process is governed by a strong sense of right and wrong.

In my lifetime I have lived in two states that have seen their governors rise to the position of President of the United States. So, during two periods of time in my life I have seen two men govern the state in which I lived, then my country. One Democrat and one Republican. Both huge disappointments, but consistent with their past histories. I can't really say it has been a shock.

Jimma Carter was the governor of the state of Georgia when I moved there as a teenager in my senior year of high school and then into my college years. I am a student of political science so I was an interested observer of state government. Jimma was not a good governor. Taxes were raised regularly, nanny state laws being passed at the state level, all standard issue Democrat strategies.

I was astounded when Jimma became the Democrat nominee for President. I kept thinking, how could the people of this country be so clueless? Did they just find his southern accent charming? Did they like his big toothed country boy grin? It certainly couldn't be on any kind of intellectual level. Jimma's no scholar. His way of governing is to micromanage every issue.

I moved to the state of Texas in 1998. George W. Bush was governor of the state at that time. I moved to Houston. The first President Bush and his wife Barbara live here. I thought the first President Bush an honorable man, a good man. Sure, he made some mistakes, he's human and I'll never find a politician to agree with 100%, but I had respect for him. His son was ok as governor of this state. Our governorship is not very strong. Our state legislature only meets every other year so they don't have a chance to do a whole lot of damage at any one given session. George W. Bush holds a degree from Yale and an MBA from Harvard. He governs like a CEO, keeping a core group around himself and delegating tasks for others to oversee.

Well, as we all know from news accounts, particularly since the onset of the war in Iraq, Jimma hates George. I think Jimma hates George almost as much as he hates the Jews. Both are well documented. For a man who claims to have such strong Christian faith, he sure does feel entitled to publicly announce his hateful thoughts.

This weekend brought a fresh batch of Jimma quotes. In a BBC radio interview Jimma said Tony Blair's support of Bush is "abominable. Loyal, blind, apparently subservient". It's all about the "unwarranted invasion" of Iraq.

If Jimma had a clue while in the White House, there would have been no need for the Iraq War today.

In Little Rock, Arkansas, Jimma told the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, "I think as far as the adverse impact on the nation around the world, this administration has been the worst in history." "The overt reversal of America's basic values as expressed by previous administrations, including those of George HW Bush and Ronald Reagan and Richard Nixon and others, has been the most disturbing to me."

Hardly worthy talk, especially on an international level, from a former president.

You may remember Jimma challenging Ronald Reagan's strategy for the Cold War. How many millions were killed during the Cold War? I love it when the Dems bring up former Republican presidents to make their case seem stronger to a larger audience, when, in fact, at the time of these former presidents' terms Jimma and the others in the opposition party did nothing but speak without respect and with incivility. I guess Jimma thinks we forgot. And, don't even start me up on his corrupt administration. Burt Lance was just the beginning.

So, I ponder the differences of these two former governors, now one current, one former president. As I stated before, both disappointments. In the end, I'll stick with President Bush. Here's how I got there:

Under Jimma Carter, off the top of my head, I remember unbelievably high interest rates, an economy in the tank, an energy policy that focused on lowering home and office thermostats (you remember Jimma in his cardigan encouraging us all to just throw on a sweater, don't you?) and gas lines at the pumps due to rationing and then high prices, and of course the ushering in of the current war on terror with the Iranian hostage situation he completely botched. His Camp David summit he still claims as a shining moment dissolved in short order but he got his Nobel Peace Prize out of it.

Under George W. Bush, off the top of my head, I've seen over 50 million Muslims have a shot at a level of freedom they dared not dream of before 9/11, our economy not only recovered from the ravages of 9/11 but has come back stronger than ever in the history of this country, our country has not suffered another attack on our soil since 9/11 and the policy of playing offense not defense on the world stage, more aid and support to the continent of Africa than ever before which will reap long term benefits for our country. He has shown the courage to look at the big picture into the future of the world, not just the easy way of kicking it down the road for the next administration. He gets it. Like it or not, the events of 9/11 changed our lives forever as a people and a country. Refusing to face up to that fact puts this country in peril.

"I think it's sad that President Carter's reckless personal criticism is out there," deputy press secretary Fratto told reporters. "I think it's unfortunate. And I think he is proving to be increasingly irrelevant with these kinds of comments." Indeed.

This morning comes a bit of a softening of Jimma's remarks. He told an early morning talk show he "may have been careless" with his remarks.

I don't for a moment think Jimma is experiencing an enlightening moment, however. He's on a book tour promoting his new audio book series so I think it's all about making headlines. Just like the times before. The American and international press laps it up. Any excuse for some president bashing at the expense the regular folks here and abroad.

Words have meaning.


Beverly said...

I honestly believe that Jimma has left whatever Christian faith he ever had. Most "born again" Christians, and I consider myself one, support Israel.

And you say "If he had a clue..." absolutely. The mess we're in today did not start with Dubya.

This is one of yoru best posts, Karen. And thanks for your visit. I'll be updating on Tucker.

Basil said...

That's a lot better'n what I had.

Anonymous said...

Well done!

srp said...

I have been so disappointed in Jimmy Carter. Like Beverly, I wonder if he has truly lost his faith, though I know the Baptist creed is "eternal security", what will he say and how can he look at Christ who was born Jewish... I am speechless. Is he ill? Could Carter have Alzheimer's like President Reagan? Ronald Reagan had the good sense to keep his failing health and the ravages of the disease private... he never made nonsense remarks to betray his country. It makes one wonder about Carter's judgment.