Last night as I sat with some friends after playing tennis the often taboo subject of politics came up and I found myself in a sea of vitriol and venom focused on George Walker Bush. The table had six people at it including myself and instead of contributing to the opinions being bantered about I decided to hold back and listen. After 15 minutes I asked one simple question to the group that was decidedly anti-Bush.
"Did Bush do anything right?" No one offered an answer.
Isn't that a great question? Given all the gaffes and folly that many people mindlessly repeat regardless of its basis in reality I really want to know if he did anything right. For being in office for 8 years he must have! Even Barack Obama himself said, "the President made the best decisions he could at times under very difficult circumstances". Granted he later qualified his statement generically mentioning "bad decisions", but it seems Obama himself realizes the gravity and potential consequences of the Presidential role.
I personally don't buy into the rhetoric and posturing of the Bush myrmidons that follow the party line or parrot Hannity and Limbaugh, trying to justify the war in Iraq as some masterful strategic move and I too must admit that the items Bush did right are faint in my recollection, but there still has to be one - just one and there is - protect America since September 11th.
Since September 11th there has not been a single terrorist attack on the United States. We are now in our eighth year and there is simply no way there has not been a concerted effort. I don't know how they've done it, and I expect no one will for 50 years until some old CIA spook writes his final manuscript.
I suspect Obama knows the secrets and hope that his tenure as President is not marred by terrorist attack either. Hopefully he will only fix what needs fixing and not what is working so that at the end of his term we have addressed the challenges that face our nation today and continue the period of solitude and safety we have experienced since 2001, because if we are attacked on his watch the public is fickle and the compassion and change he offers today may be rebuffed by the people he serves.