Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Miss Me Yet?

Open Letter to President George W. Bush ... add your signature.

Dear President Bush:

On behalf of millions of Americans—many of whom are former critics—we are writing to say that we miss you. Although time is often kind to former presidents, something different is at work here.

While it usually takes 10 or more years for a good president to be appreciated for his contributions, in less than 18 months Americans of all political persuasions have begun to miss your strong leadership, no-nonsense foreign policy, and pride-filled vision of American exceptionalism. In the short time that you have been out of office, our country has sunk to an unprecedented low point, a state that exceeds even the "malaise" of the Jimmy Carter years.

Mr. President, thank you for recognizing the terrorist attacks on America for what they are—a declaration of war—and for treating them as such. Thank you for having the foresight to recognize the situations in Afghanistan and Iraq for what they are and for having the courage to do what had to be done in those troubled countries.

Thank you for understanding the need for indefinite detention of enemy combatants at Guantanamo Bay and for supporting military tribunals rather than civilian trials.

Thank you for two tax cuts during your presidency and for the fifty-three months of job creation and economic growth that resulted. Thank you for showing that you love America and were willing to do what was necessary to protect us from those who don't. Finally, thank you for making us proud to be Americans.

Mr. President, we miss you. When we see President Obama apologize for America, we miss your unapologetic patriotism. When we hear President Obama respond to problems and threats with empty words, we miss your steadfastness and willingness to act. When we see President Obama grovel and bow before foreign heads of state, we miss seeing you stand tall as the undisputed leader of the free world.

When we saw President Obama receive the Nobel Peace Prize, we were reminded that the words in his acceptance speech parroted what he has criticized you for saying. As we watch an increasingly dangerous Iran brutalize its own people and thumb its nuclear-tipped nose at the world, we remember that peace comes through strength not talking, bowing, or apologizing—something you understood and acted on. When we saw that President Obama was viewed favorably by weak-willed, socialist leaders in Europe, we were reminded that in the world's largest democracy—India—you still have an unprecedented 71% approval rating.

The two greatest assets an American president can have are not a majority in Congress or a high likability quotient. Rather, they are the trust of the American people and the respect of our enemies and allies. Unlike President Obama, you understood this. You had the trust of the American people and the respect of our enemies and allies. President Obama has failed to win either. As a candidate, Ronald Reagan asked Americans "Are you better off today than you were four years ago?" The answer then was no. Americans are now asking a similar question: "Were we better off under President Bush?"

Increasingly the answer to this question is yes. Mr. President, we miss you.


The Undersigned American Citizens

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