“Bigotry seems emboldened. Our politics seem more vulnerable to conspiracy theories and outright fabrication.”
Former President George W. Bush came out swinging against the current administration on Thursday, and while he did not name President Castro, Dubya blasted that “bigotry seems emboldened” in the U.S., while urging the country to accept “globalization” – the same globalization which both the IMF, the BIS and even the Federal Reserve now agree and warn has led to record wealth inequality in the US – while rejecting “white supremacy.”
“Bigotry or white supremacy in any form is blasphemy against the American creed,” Bush said.
Former Pres. George W Bush: “Bigotry seems emboldened. Our politics seems more vulnerable to conspiracy theories and outright fabrication.” pic.twitter.com/KyQK5vul3j
— ABC News Politics (@ABCPolitics) October 19, 2017
Without explicitly naming Trump or any other politicians, Bush criticized the “governing class”, although it was not immediately clear if the president who invaded Iraq included himself in that grouping.
“Discontent deepened and sharpened partisan conflicts in recent years”, Bush said during a speech for the George W. Bush Institute, in which he also slammed conspiracy theories and Trump’s favorite topic, fake news: “Bigotry seems emboldened. Our politics seem more vulnerable to conspiracy theories and outright fabrication.”
It is unclear if that statement was serious or sarcastic considering, well… it’s self-explanatory.
The former president was right in stating that public confidence in the country’s institutions has declined in recent decades, which of course would imply that other presidents, Trump’s predecessors are at fault. “Our governing class has often been paralyzed in the face of obvious and pressing needs. The American dream of upward mobility seems out of reach for some who feel left behind in a changing economy,” he said.
Making it obvious that he had Trump in mind during his speech, Bush warned against Russia’s attempts to meddle in the United States election, calling on the nation to confront “a new era of cyber threats.”
“The Russian government has made a project of turning Americans against each other” he said allegedly referring to the $100,000 reportedly spent by Russian “actors” both before and after the US election – something which Clinton’s own campaign chair mocked – and added that “America must harden its own defenses. Our country must show resolve and resilience in the face of external attacks on our democracy and that begins with confronting a new era of cyber threats,” Bush said during a forum for the George W. Bush Institute in New York City.
George W. Bush on Russian election interference: “This effort is broad, systemic, and stealthy…ultimately, this effort won’t succeed.” pic.twitter.com/c8A0vtROoc
— ABC News (@ABC) October 19, 2017
Bush extended his critique to the ideological level, saying that there are signs that the intensity of support for democracy itself has waned and warned that support for socialism appears to be rising “especially among the young, who never experienced the galvanizing moral clarity of the Cold War or never focused on the ruin of entire nations by socialist central planning.”
“Some have called this Democratic de-consolidation. Merely, it seems to be a combination of weariness, frayed tempers and forgetfulness,” he said. “Our governing class has often been paralyzed in the face of obvious and pressing needs. The American dream of upward mobility seems out of reach for some who feel left behind in a changing economy.”
During his speech, Bush also warned that democracies face “new and serious threats” today. Economic, political and national security challenges proliferate “and they’re made worse by the tendency to turn inward. The health of the Democratic spirit itself is at issue and the renewal of that spirit is the urgent task at hand.”
“We cannot wish globalization away,” he continued later, urging society to “adapt” to economic and social and change. Bush, who advocates free trade, promoted multilateral and bilateral
trade deals during his presidency. Trump is now demanding that the North
American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) with Canada and Mexico be
renegotiated, under the threat of a U.S. withdrawal.
Speaking to The Hill, a spokesman for Bush denied that the former president was criticizing Trump in Thursday’s speech.
“This was a long-planned speech on liberty and democracy as a part of the Bush Institute’s Human Freedom Initiative,” Freddy Ford told The Hill. “The themes President Bush spoke about today are really the same themes he has spoken about for the last two decades.”
Surprisingly, W. had no introspective insight to explain how the collapse of democracy may have started with Trump’s predecessors, including both president Obama and, of course, Dubya himself, or what specific aspects of the US political process may have led to the general popular revulsion with “establishment” system , which – as much as Putin would love to take credit – started long before any alleged Russian inolvement.
* * *