George W. Bush Reappraised? Sort of

, Malcolm A. Kline, 1 Comment

We think we’ve found the closest thing you will ever see to a scholarly defense of George W. Bush.

“Let me begin by acknowledging that George W. Bush is unlikely to be remembered as a great president,” Stephen F. Knott of the Naval War College wrote in an article which appeared in Citizens and Statesmen last year. “Bush’s management of the war in Iraq and of the aftermath of Hurricane Kartrina, his share of responsibility for the collapse of the economy in 2008, his contribution to the national debt, his excessive loyalty to incompetent subordinates (George Tenet) or to disloyal  subordinates (Colin Powell and Richard Armitage), all make for a somewhat tarnished record.”

“Additionally, Bush’s repeated butchering of the English language eroded confidence in his intelligence and undermined his ability to make a compelling case for his policies. But George W. Bush was hardly the ‘worst president in history,’ as Princeton historian Sean Wilentz and countless other academics have suggested, nor did he represent, as they claim, an unparalleled threat to the United States Constitution.”

Citizens and Statesmen: An Annual Review of Political Theory and Public Life,  is a journal published by St. Vincent’s College in Latrobe, Pennsylvania. Knott is a professor of National Security Affairs at the Naval War College.