I think it’s worthwhile to give credit where it’s due. Yes, I’m sure it was a calculated political move (everything is) but I appreciate the fact that Bush “took reponsibility” for the Katrina failures.
It’s a refreshing change from a policy of “we make no mistakes, we’re always correct.” That policy is very frustrating, arrogant and scary. Plus the fact that I really believe it’s unnecessary. I really think there’s been an error in judgement in politics that people are unwilling to accept problems. People don’t expect politicians to be perfect but how you handle yourself when you’re not is very important.
I have a theory on the whole Iraq/WMD thing. I honestly believe that Bush could probably have gotten 60-65% of the vote in the 2004 election had the story gone like:
“We did not find any WMDs in Iraq. All information from many nations intelligence organizations said they were there. Everyone agreed on this. They also pointed to new information showing he was getting ready to use them. Saddam has been violating 10 UN resolutions for the last 12 years and was continuing to kill and oppress his own people. The time had come to end this. Yes, we were incorrect about the WMDs but Iraq will now be a better place, …. yadda yadda.”
Instead it went like:
“WMDs? No we have not found WMDs yet. Are you saying you wanted to see Saddam keep killing his people? We said from the beginning that this was about freeing the Iraqi people. Don’t you want to free them? Why do you keep asking about WMDs? We never mentioned that.”
The second one (reality) was insanely frustrating. Without admitting anything they tried to reframe the argument towards “freeing the Iraqi people.” Everyone knew what was going on behind the scenes but the politicians simply refused to admit it. These lies were what really got the “left” fired up. I really think had it gone like the first scenario that he wouldn’t have angered part of the moderate “left” near as much.
I still wouldn’t have agreed with him but you have to respect when someone accepts their failures, which means they’ll learn from it. When it’s not accepted the only conclusion you can reach is that they don’t see a problem therefore they’d make the same mistake again.