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Bush's honor at Walter Reed - Elf M. Sternberg
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Bush's honor at Walter Reed
I believe George W. Bush is an honorable man.

That may seem like a shocking thing to say, but it's true. I believe George W. Bush is an honorable man. I don't think he's particularirly thoughtful or deep, I think he's way out of his depth in his current profession, but I believe that he has strong convinctions and holds to them to dignify and honor them. The problem is, his honor is as shallow as he is, thoughtless, inconsiderate, inflexible.

I believe that George W. Bush is frustrated and furious at the men who let Walter Reed and the other military medical centers and veterans care facilities fall into such terrible disrepute. But here's where things get sticky. Because two other points of honor with our president is that he believes government cannot operate as effectively as private corporations, and he believes that the people with whom he has surrounded himself are going to always tell him the truth.

Listening to the issues surrounding patient care at Walter Reed, I came to the conclusion that what we're looking at is not, as the Democrats have charged, a failure of leadership. Oh, I'm sure there's some of that going on as well: Rumsfeld didn't believe this would be nearly as hard as it turned out to be and didn't allocate the resources it needed. But there's more to it than that: the civilians in charge of Walter Reed did not honestly believe that medical care should be part of the military's role. That was for subcontractors. Government contractors for business outside of the military are notoriously inefficient because they know there's little competition for those who fill their jobs: those roles are filled either by those who survive off the government or they cease to exist.

Bush is shattered by his own shallowness. He is incapable of understanding that he wants two directly contradictory conditions: he wants people who loathe and revile government to run it, and he wants that government to run efficiently and well. It's okay when government doesn't run well for the forest service or welfare; it is a blight on his honor when it fails the men and women of the military. I believe that Bush honestly expected that the military medical system would "go well," just like the rest of the war. It is his inability to grasp that both the people he left in charge and the mindset he brings to the enterprise guarantee that it would not go well.

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Comments
kengr From: kengr Date: March 7th, 2007 05:01 am (UTC) (Link)
It's worse than that. He's signed and even *supported* bills that cut veterans benifits.

He can't have it both ways. Supporting the troops *ibcludes* providing the benefits they were promised when they signed up.
abostick59 From: abostick59 Date: March 7th, 2007 05:16 am (UTC) (Link)

"George Bush Is an Honorable Man"



The evidence says otherwise.
(Deleted comment)
From: (Anonymous) Date: March 8th, 2007 06:09 am (UTC) (Link)

Honorable Men

Of course he is.
"So are they all, all honorable men..."
-Wm. Shakespeare, Julius Caesar, Act 3, Scene 2.


-Malthus
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