Bush's Convention Charade: Compassionate Conservatism is a Cruel Hoax
Yoshi Tsurumi (Professor, City University of New York)
For the coming Republican Convention, President George W. Bush is letting his spin meisters dust off his broken promise of "compassionate conservatism." He seems oblivious to his dismal domestic and foreign policies that have shown his "compassionate conservatism" to be a cruel hoax. Will many Americans be fooled again? His serious disconnect with the reality reminds me of the George W. Bush I had as a student at Harvard Business School 30 years ago. His flawed leadership -- misrepresenting facts to advance his selfish goals and indulging in denial when challenged -- was already apparent. He denounced as socialism Social Security, Medicare and the civil rights movement. He showed his lack of compassion for the ordinary working Americans. Behind his smirk was his "say-anything-do-anything" tendency to attack his critics. He is now relying on big lie tactics of the fringe Swift Boat veterans to attack John Kerry. They are organized and financed by George W. Bush's Republican friends in Texas and his Prince of Darkness adviser, Karl Rove. During the last presidential election, the same dirty tricksters destroyed John McCain's candidacy by spreading the lies that he fathered an illegitimate son with a black prostitute and that he collaborated with his North Vietnamese captors.
George W. Bush as an HBS student was all for others to fight and die in the Vietnam War. But he admitted to me that to avoid a Vietnam draft, he had his father's friends skip him through the long waiting list of the Texas National Guard. I cannot possibly recommend George W. Bush to his ultimate employers, namely the American voters.
(Originally appeared in The Scarsdale Inquirer, August 27, 2004)