MSNBC's Al Sharpton took former President George W. Bush to task for the latest attempt to gloss over the disaster that was his two terms in office with the opening of his presidential library,
According to the library’s official website, it will be ”a results-oriented institute that will have an effect on our country and, we think, on the world,” focusing on areas including economic growth, human freedom, and education reform. But it’s tough to say what results can be gleaned from the legacy of the president who turned a budget surplus into a deficit, left us into a major recession, permitted the use of “enhanced interrogation” techniques, and instituted the “No Child Left Behind” education policy that is widely criticized even by Republicans today. [...]
“It looks like a theme park as much as it is a library,” according to Lou Dubose, co-author of “Bushwhacked: Life in George W. Bush’s America.” Dubose points out the library also includes a freedom tower, a freedom plaza, a decision points library, the bullhorn Bush used to talk to first responders from ground zero, and even Saddam Hussein’s pistol.
“It’s kind of a parentheses around one of the greatest foreign policy blunders in our country’s history and they’re pretty shameless about it.” [...]
Dubose describes the “triumphalist narrative” on display at the library as “a neo-con rehash of all the terms that were used to lead the country into war.”
“One would expect a little bit of a modesty from a president who has presided over that sort of failure,” he said. “And from a president who’s competing in the bottom ten in terms of presidential rankings that are done by legitimate historians.”
Dubose contrasts Bush’s airbrushed approach with President’s Johnson’s museum, which he describes as contrasting his great achievements like the civil rights movement, with his notable failure, the war in Vietnam. “There’s nothing on the other side for Bush.”
Any time I see Lou Dubose on television, it reminds me of how much I miss reading Molly Ivins (who died in 2007), his co-author of "Bushwhacked", in the op-ed section of our paper every week.