Tag Archives: George W. Bush

You’ll have to forgive me Mr. President. I’m a Jew and I’ve been hurt before

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I know as a Jew and a Zionist I am supposed to feel all warm and fuzzy today.  After all the President of the United States did greet the Israeli Prime Minister with great respect and they expressed their long lasting friendship.  To make it even better, President Trump went as far as saying that he would move the U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem.  That’s never been said before. Oh wait. It has been said before. By just about everyone else to run or step into the office since at least the mid 90s.  So although I appreciate the nice words, right now they are nothing more than that, and as a Jew I am yet to be convinced.

For example, outgoing President Barack Obama, a disappointment to so much of the Jewish community started off by making the following comments.

“Let me be clear,“Israel’s security is sacrosanct. It is non-negotiable. … Any agreement with the Palestinian people must preserve Israel’s identity as a Jewish state with secure, recognized, defensible borders.”

“Jerusalem will remain the capital of Israel and it must remain undivided.”

Go back to recently defeated candidate Hillary Clinton who wrote the following in a letter, dated July 2, 1999 to Dr. Mandell Ganchrow of the Orthodox Union in New York.

“If I am chosen by New Yorkers to be their senator, or in whatever position I find myself in the years to come, you can be sure that I will be an active, committed advocate for a strong and secure Israel, able to live in peace with its neighbors, with the United States Embassy located in its capital, Jerusalem.”

Her husband, former President Bill Clinton declared in February 1992, at the height of the Democratic primaries, that he supported recognizing Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, a step that would alter U.S. policy, but never signed the 1995 congressional mandate to move the embassy.

Senator John McCain pledged to move the U.S. embassy in Israel “right away” from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem as did Senator Robert Dole and George W. Bush who actually did become president.  Candidate Bush made the pledge to move the embassy on his first day in office. Once in office he said he went from doing it on the first day to saying he would begin the process on his first day.  Instead he signed a waiver every 6 months delaying the same 1995 congressional mandate and in the end never did it.

Enter President Donald J. Trump.  Yes he has said some very nice things. He too promised to move the embassy to Jerusalem.  But now he is looking into it. He promised to rip of the Iran deal on his first day.  We must have missed it. And he publicly stated the following at a press conference with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu

“I would like you to hold back on settlements for a little bit.”

Donald Trump may end up being the best friend Israel ever had in the Oval Office.  I certainly hope so.  But forgive me if I’m not ready to throw a party yet. I’ve heard this song before.

 

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And my Vote goes to…

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MY CHOICE FOR PRESIDENT IS…

As the Democratic National Convention gets underway, we know one thing for sure. November will be historic.  The citizens of America will either elect a businessman from New York, a man with no formal experience in politics or, for the first time in the nation’s history, a woman as President of the United States.  There have been times in the past when the candidates of one of the parties was somewhat more obscure, or at the very least less high-profile, but this year without question, name recognition is not an issue. Everyone knows who Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump are?  Or do they?

I don’t want to use this forum as a means of showing my support for one candidate by trashing the other, but in this election the majority of voters are at least somewhat impacted by that which they do not like about the other.  It’s very much about spin.  Take the most extreme supporter on either side and there is nothing the opposing candidate can do that will be seen as OK.  However, there is one glaring difference in my estimation. We can at least claim to know the worst there is to know about Hillary.  But what about Trump?  Somehow people have come to believe that a millionaire businessman, the owner of hotels, private jets and helicopters, is somehow a regular guy, a man of the people. They look at me with a straight face and say they won’t vote for Hillary because she is a liar or corrupt.They actually allow themselves to believe that Donald Trump has gotten to where he is out of sheer brilliance and hard work.  I won’t sit here and prosecute the case against him, but really?  If you believe that I have a great university you should attend. It will make you rich.

I know the criticisms against Hillary and I will openly admit that I don’t like everything about her, but do I have a far greater amount of confidence in her ability to lead this country in the right direction than Donald Trump?  Without question I do.  Was Benghazi a tragedy?  Of course it was.  Could things have been handled better? Maybe, probably, I don’t know. But I do know that under George W. Bush 13 embassies were attacked and 60 people were killed.  We’re America. We are hated by those who want to take what we have or change who we are.  We are targets and will remain targets as long as there is evil in the world.

I don’t like the Iran deal.  Never have, likely never will.  But even if I am to see it as a total attack on Israel, which I don’t necessarily do, I see it as President Obama’s deal not Hillary Clinton’s.  To say a Secretary of State is wrong for working towards the goals of her boss doesn’t make him or her complicit in the outcome of the goal, good or bad.  It makes them a loyal servant to the Commander in Chief.  I am also comfortable to go on record and say that in areas I disagree with the president, I believe him to be more someone trying to save the world, sometimes naively, rather than someone trying to bring anyone, including Israel, destruction.

Emails? Sorry. I am not even going to make a case as to why this is not enough reason for me to vote for Donald Trump over Hillary.

People say that Donald Trump is preying on the fears of the people.  That is partially true. Sadly I believe he is also exposing the stupidity of many.  I would never say that all people voting for Trump are stupid, many are highly intelligent, but I do believe he is counting on the vote of those that are stupid. If Hollywood made a movie, and the day after the Democratic National Convention started the Republican nominee’s best response to what he saw was calling the Democratic nominee Hillary “ROTTEN” Clinton, people would have assumed we were watching a Mel Brooks satire.  But no, this really happened, and it happened from someone people still take seriously.  Someone who made fun of Carly Fiorina’s face, likened Ben Carson to a child molester, called his opponents names like Little Marco and Lyin Ted, mocked a handicapped person, called Mexicans rapists, called for a ban of an entire religion, said John Mccain wasn’t a war  hero because he got caught, and yes, even spoke about the size of his penis. This man is somehow considered to be more qualified than Hillary Clinton?  Really?

As a Jewish man and a Zionist I say this.  Many reading this see history and see Roosevelt and Churchill as great men.  I won’t sit here and necessarily challenge that.  Had they not led the world to victory against Adolph Hitler it is possible that western civilization as we know it would not exist and all we know as Jews would be gone.  But before we judge people on a standard of perfection, or even good or bad, ask yourself how many Jews might have been saved had they destroyed the railroad tracks leading to Auschwitz and other concentration camps.  If FOX News were around then, FDR might have been held accountable to the point of prosecution, Thomas Dewey might have been elected, and Harry Truman would never have become president.  Who knows how World War II would have ended?  I am not saying FDR and Churchill were perfect or the biggest fans of the Jewish people, but their jobs were to be leaders of the US and Great Britain, and that they were, in exceptional manners.  We have every right to demand our leaders don’t hurt our cause, but we also must realize we are electing a President of the United States, not a president of the Jewish people, and we must therefore expect that president to do what they deem best for the country.  Furthermore, before Jewish supporters get all excited about a Trump presidency merely because his daughter converted and he speaks harshly about Muslims, keep these 2 things in mind.  When Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu criticized Trump for his anti-Muslim rhetoric Trump punished him by cancelling his trip to Israel.  Also keep in mind how Trump plans to reconsider aide to our allies, including Israel.

The point is, no matter who you are or where you come from, whatever good you believe you are hearing about Donald Trump, he’s only telling you to get your vote.  Yes, you can say that about all politicians, but don’t tell me how different Donald Trump is from the establishment.  He funded the establishment, including the Clintons, for decades.

I don’t buy into the fact that a Hillary Clinton presidency will be 4 more years of an Obama presidency.  If anything I believe it is more likely to be closer to being 4 more years of a Bill Clinton presidency, and that would be just fine by me.  I honestly don’t know how good of a president Hillary would be, but I feel that her demeanor, her experience and her intellect is enough to make me very comfortable in giving her my vote.  I think her choice of Tim Kaine already shows she is making choices based on her agenda as opposed to the demands of others.  I think she is ready to be president today, as opposed to her candidate who will never be ready to be president.  Besides the fact that I’ve always been offended by the implication that America isn’t great, merely for the benefit of a slogan, I also know that Donald Trump couldn’t even make Atlantic City great again.

I know that many reading this find it hard to believe that I, someone who has always been so outspoken about the security of Israel could support Clinton over Trump, but guess what?  I find it hard to believe that you don’t.  You might be able to legitimately raise questions about her, but to me that doesn’t mean voting for Trump, someone who repeatedly shows signs of being a global menace.  I’ve seen and heard enough bad from Trump to not vote for him while seeing enough good to vote for Hillary, and that is what I intend to do.  What good you ask?  In this political climate don’t count on answer, because most people asking won’t accept my answer anyway.  You vote your conscience and I’ll vote mine and I’ll accept you for your choice whether you return the favor or not.  After all, that’s the American way.

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Establishment or Dissent. Which one is it?

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I’m struck by the hypocrisy coming out of the Trump camp.  In fairness, the “camp” I am referring to is not so much Donald himself but those who support him and seemingly gravitate to the term of surrogate.  Having spent an entire year hearing how Trump is anti-establishment, and following his success among voters sick and tired of the usual ways of Washington, I wonder by what right do Trump’s people insist that all Republicans should back their candidate?

I’m not questioning the legitimacy of his candidacy, solely based on the fact that he got to where he is through a Democratic process, but to aggressively demand that the likes of Romney, Ryan and the Bush’s have some sort of obligation to support him now that he is the presumptive nominee is opportunistic hypocrisy at its worst.  It’s almost like Trump’s surrogates are saying, “we won, now fall in line whether you like it or not”.

This issue does a lot to crystallize the major issues people have with the specter of a President Trump.  As one who is not convinced he is actually a racist demagogue but still potentially very dangerous, I see this issue as a very clear indication of what we might be looking at should he ascend to the position of leader of the Free World.  A presidential candidate’s benefits and dangers are not merely based on their words or actions but very much based on the impact those words and actions have on their supporters.  Trump’s responses to those who choose to not support him are very much what they’ve been throughout his campaign, mocking ridicule and name calling.  As non-presidential as that might be it’s not dangerous per se.  But his surrogates grab the torch from him and then take a different approach.  They go on the attack against those who choose not to support him, taking the approach of almost bullying them into changing their positions. It’s just a matter of time till the names of those Republicans not supporting him will be spoken of by Trump’s surrogates with the same venom they have when speaking of the Clintons or President Obama.  But what is the deal here?  If they are so anti-establishment, how does it make any sense for these surrogates to claim wrongdoing on the part of the establishment types unwilling to support their candidate?  If you are anti-establishment how can you demand the establishment concede? It’s one or the other, make your pick.

I know it’s a free country, for now at least, and that no laws are being broken when Trump’s followers go on the attack against his opponents, but the climate being created is a volatile one at best, and just like in international conflicts that are deemed powder kegs, the slightest misstep or out of the ordinary event could cause a disaster.  Trump might really love Hispanics, not just Tacos, but the danger in his candidacy remains, not just because of him but because of those who follow him.

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Why are America’s Major Political Parties so Surprised? They are Reaping what they Sowed

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With Donald Trump all over the media and the crisis facing the Republican Party taking center stage, it’s easy for people to overlook the issues the Democrats are dealing with almost simultaneously.  On the surface the two  most significant differences are the number of candidates remaining, and more importantly, the fact that the front runner for the Republicans is the candidate making the most noise and getting the most attention.  This does not necessarily mean he is the most controversial.  Objectively speaking, that distinction could at least as easily be given to the Democratic front runner Hillary Clinton.  What both parties do have in common is that neither have any right to be surprised about where they are today.  In essence, both parties are reaping what they sowed.

It’s far easier to see this when looking at the Republican primaries.  Ultra conservatives and the Republican establishment have been attacking everything Democrat at least since the days of Bill Clinton.  Even before he got started Barack Obama’s opponents were attacking him from day one.  Whether you believe he’s been a great president or a failing president, his opponents assumed, almost immediately that he would be wrong on every policy move he ever made.  However, in reality it’s always been at least as much about his party as it was about his policies.

In fairness, the Republicans had just finished facing the same thing with George W. Bush.  After 9/11, and the subsequent invasion of Afghanistan, there was a short period of time, maybe the only time in decades  that the nation actually stood together as one. But as soon as things got a little better, the unity fell apart.  Nothing represented it more than the war in Iraq.   Very few people reading this will likely take an objective stance on that issue.  There are stances that Republicans and Democrats have taken that are clearly the party line.  Democrats generally say they opposed the war in Iraq. Ironically, even many of the ones that voted in favor of it now prefer to say they made a mistake than breaking away from the party rhetoric.  Republicans say the war was the correct move but it turned into a disaster once the Obama administration came into power.  I challenge people reading this to come up with an original thought on this issue possibly even in breaking with their party affiliation.  Why?  Because when you don’t look at things objectively and avoid telling people the truth, guess what you get? Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders.

America is facing something far more complicated than a country divided.  This is actually a country with its two main parties divided before we even get to the growing division between Conservatives and Liberals, Democrats and Republicans.  The big question is, why is anyone surprised?  After years of vitriolic criticism from both sides, the 2 men that represent the subsequent backlash on both sides are a Socialist touting a political revolution and a Reality TV star and businessman with such extreme views he is garnishing support of the country’s worst racists and bigots. But what did people expect?  If you spend enough time telling people how evil everyone on the other side of the political aisle is, do you expect a happy populous?  Do you expect tranquil political discussion?  Or do you stop and realize that what’s been created is  an environment fertile to the growth of far left or far right extremism.

Sadly it never ends.  Even with the issue of Donald Trump’s rallies, supporters of Trump say one thing, detractors say the other.  People don’t seem to realize that this is part of what people are fed up with.  Not every “expert” on TV has to always sound like a paid representative of one side or the other.  Most people do some things wrong and some things right.  But when you listen to the pundits, their side does everything right, and the other side does everything wrong.  For once I would like to hear someone say something that both sides would disagree with.  At least then we would know they were being honest.

In an era when politics looks like wrestling, and I mean the fake kind, not the Olympic kind, and political nastiness and controversy is blown out of proportion for TV ratings-case in point the constant replay of the same punches from this past Friday night-we can hardly be surprised by what we are seeing in both parties.  After all, when true leadership is lacking, people are often left with strong expressions of anger and frustration.  What would really be surprising would be if it wasn’t happening.

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Open Letter to Michael Moore

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Dear Michael,

I originally debated whether or not I was going to spend my time writing to you, especially since I don’t feel particularly good about doing anything that gives you extra attention, but since I believe you once again have found a way to exemplify a problem in our society, you left me no choice.

Let me begin by making something very clear.  Finding you or your tactics distasteful in no way means that I am a supporter of Donald’s Trump’s proposal to ban Muslims from entering the United States. What it means is that just as a valid argument can be made for why his plan is impractical, dangerous and morally suspect, so too an argument can be made for why you Michael Moore posing for a picture with a sign saying “We are all Muslim” is equally difficult to come to terms with.  You and Trump are both extremists.  The difference between you and him is that you are not just an extremist, you are a hypocrite as well.

You pretend to care about humanity.  Show me a picture with you holding a sign saying “We are all Jews” or “We are all Christians” and I might believe your motives are pure.  When Jews get murdered regularly by terrorists in Israel and Christians get slaughtered in Iraq by the thousands where is your outcry?  Why didn’t I see you with a sign then?  Why is it more disagreeable to you that an American presidential candidate says something controversial than it is when people die?  Why do you feel it necessary to fight this fight but not to fight the fight against people who are actually killing people to promote their sick agendas?

I believe the answer to all these questions is that you are an opportunistic coward.  It’s not about being a Liberal or Conservative. Bill Maher is certainly not less of a Liberal than you are but when people are being killed he is not afraid to raise his voice against those responsible for the killings.  Yet somehow till now you have been nowhere to be found.  This is not about accepting anyone’s prejudice against one group of people.  I’ve always maintained that to truly show an attitude of equality you need to be willing to criticize everyone, regardless of religion, race, color, sexual preference or any other factor that distinguishes someone from other segments of society. Not you.  You look for ways to exploit the exploited by pretending to be on their side when in reality it is very obvious that all you are is an opportunistic publicity hound.

I believe just as many maintain that Trump’s words and proposal are dangerous, so too is your phony one-sided anti-establishment approach.  You shift things so far the other direction that you increase animosity among people and in turn you do even more damage to the liberal elements in society and even worse, you deflect attention from the real problems.  With Muslims of importance pushing for reform and fighting to destroy the negative elements within their own faith, someone like you who only chooses to take a stance against someone like Donald Trump hurts their efforts and subsequently puts more people in danger.  You want to help Michael, support Muslim reformists like Raheel Raza, Sohail Raza, or Zuhdi Jasser. That’s if you even know who they are. I assure you these individuals who actually are Muslim, would rather you use your celebrity to help put and end to a cycle of violence than hold up a stupid sign. Then maybe you might help a movement that will help save a lot more lives, including Muslim lives.  All you really care about now is what you always have cared about which is what you can do to promote Michael Moore.   But then again, you were the same guy who chose to blame Bush for 9/11 instead of Osama bin Laden so I guess none of us should be surprised.

Michael, despite your holier than thou approach I am sure I am not alone in saying that not only are you not helping to provide a solution to the problem, you are actually part of the problem.   I am also sure that despite the attitude you are pretending to convey, you couldn’t care less.

Sincerely,

David Groen

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justpolitics@ bushpoliticalmachine.org

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I have not as of yet gone on record as a supporter of any of the current candidates for president.  I have however gone on record as saying I believe when there are 2 names left standing in the race it will be a familiar 2, the names of Bush and Clinton.  CLICK HERE.  That being said, after a Sunday of watching many news programs I have come to the personal conclusion that the force behind the so-called Hillary Clinton email scandal is a familiar force. That force, a previously and still underestimated Bush presidential machine.

Earlier today I listened to Michael Mukasey discuss the email scandal.  This is a smart man who has had important positions in American government.  He was introduced as one of the most vocal critics of Hillary Clinton and her email issues. He was also Attorney General under George W. Bush.  I listened carefully to what this well spoken man said, nevertheless nothing he said made any sense, and the only thing I heard that explained his viewpoint was his connection with the Bush family.  This made me personally conclude that the email discussion is the trump card, no pun intended, for the Bush machine in a general election that pits Bush against Clinton.

I really tried to assess this so-called scandal objectively.  As hard as I tried I came up with nothing.  At worst, it appears to be an attempt to micromanage the communications of the highest ranking diplomat in U.S. government, something I believe is far more dangerous than the Secretary of State deleting emails.

When a presidential candidate is struggling to generate excitement by his or her personality and oratory, what is left is getting their name in the discussion through a one on one conflict.  While Trump mania is hurting some candidates in the Republican Party, it is helping one candidate in particular.   That candidate is Jeb Bush.  Previously lost in the crowd, Bush is now being positioned as the Trump alternative.  When the novelty of Trump wears off, or the Donald offends the wrong base with an off-the-cuff insult, it is Jeb Bush who has the best chance of picking up the pieces.  Understanding the  big picture as the Bush machine always has, the fact that no one really cares who loses the general election, the Clinton email scandal has Bush ready to battle the presumed Democratic candidate for the big prize.

It’s political theater at its best, but in my estimation that is all it is, theater.  Until someone can prove to me otherwise I see it as nothing other than political positioning and manipulation.  Something we will see more of as we get closer to the Iowa caucuses.

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Open Letter to Michael Moore

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Dear Michael,

I must honestly say that I have never found you to be much use to anyone.  I consider you divisive, self-serving, hypocritical and actually quite boring.  Your latest attack on the wrong people exemplifies your narcissistic need to appear different and pious, when in fact what you have really continued to be is predictable and damaging.

I have not seen the movie American Sniper.  I do intend to see it because it appears to be an excellent movie, but for the purposes of this discussion the contents of the movie are irrelevant.  For you to even intimate on any level that a person who puts his life in danger, suffers emotional distress, and subsequently has to live with horrors for the rest of his life in order to preserve the freedoms that have provided you with a tremendous lifestyle, is nothing short of disgusting.  We all would rather you just say thank you.

I voted for Al Gore.  I was distraught when George W. Bush ended up as the President and through those years I was unquestionably a Democrat.  So this attack on you is not coming from a long time right-wing Conservative.  This attack is coming from someone who has never liked you.  I did not like you for attacking President George W. Bush at a time when supporting him was crucial.  The difference between you and me, is that you had the gall to attack him after the 9/11 attacks, while I voted to reelect him based on his performance after the 9/11 attacks.  Then again, I wasn’t trying to sell some crappy movie, you were.

So here you are once again spitting in the face of those who sacrifice so that you can live your luxurious life of hypocrisy and self-perceived glory.  I believe you are dangerous for the mere fact that you do so much damage to the more moderate side of the political spectrum that you increase the chances of one day seeing an extremist from the far right rising to power.

I am sure if that would happen, rather than feeling remorse or concern, you’ll just find another way to exploit it and attempt to add to that fortune you claim to be so irrelevant in the scheme of things. That would surprise very few people because after all, more and more of us are learning this is just how you roll.

Sincerely,
David Groen

 

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