Perhaps Rick Wallace ought to be substituted in as the vice presidential candidate on the Republican ticket. His Public Forum essay shows he has learned as little as Governor Palin from Mr. Bush’s utterly failed presidency. Mr. Bush rushed headlong into a disastrous war with Iraq with either knowing mendacity or reckless disregard. The Bush-Cheney administration has gutted decades of hard-fought environmental gains and ignored climate change. Like Palin, it denied its principal causes are use of fossil fuels and deforestation, and drove the unregulated economy into the ditch. With inept, albeit confident, dogmatism, they have taken the high point of global sympathy for the United States in the wake of 9/11 and frittered it away for no reason at all.
Let’s put all that to one side and focus simply on Mr. Wallace’s central premise that the Bush-Cheney administration has “kept America safe.” The reverse is self-evidently true. Bin Laden has been forgotten. The Taliban, neglected in Mr. Bush’s haste to one-up his father in Iraq, are ascendant. Our reckless folly in Iraq has divided us from our friends and united our enemies, while planting the seeds for decades of Islamic fundamentalism, the breeding ground of terrorism.
Mr. Wallace simply repeats the errors of Mr. Bush’s empty-headed tough talk and sneering at the overwhelming evidence to the contrary as weak idealism. It is time to save our future by learning from the past, Mr. Wallace, not to repeat it.