Bush says he won’t criticize Obama

posted at 12:55 pm on November 5, 2010 by Ed Morrissey

George W. Bush has come out of his self-imposed media blackout to promote his new book, Decision Points, which goes into full release on November 9th.  Oprah Winfrey will air a pretaped interview with the former President on that day, but has a preview of the appearance out already, via The Right Scoop.  In this clip, Bush tells Winfrey that he refrains from opining on Barack Obama’s performance because he wants to treat the current President the way he wished other former Presidents had treated him.  Also, he elects to stay out of the “swamp” of punditry when Winfrey asks him about Sarah Palin.  Click the image to watch:

Classy?  Certainly.  Smart?  Well, yes. Bush immediately went into hibernation after Obama took office, while Dick Cheney initially took a more aggressive public approach to fighting back against Obama, at least until health issues sidelined him.  That allowed Obama to successfully keep painting the Bush administration as the villain and distracted people from Obama’s own failures in leadership.  Once both Bush and Cheney stopped talking, Obama had no foil at his level and had to start looking around for a boogeyman to keep Americans distracted — getting so desperate that he went after Karl Rove and the Chamber of Commerce in the end.

Democrats tried claiming that they played rope-a-dope in the election to wear out the GOP and win in the final weeks of the midterms.  Unlike Democrats, Bush actually knows how and when to play rope-a-dope.


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Pure class.

carbon_footprint on November 5, 2010 at 12:57 PM

pwned

nicely, of course.

but pwned.

blatantblue on November 5, 2010 at 12:58 PM

No foil for Obama. Makes Carter and Clinton look petty and small by comparison.

Mr. D on November 5, 2010 at 12:58 PM

Hey Carter, Clinton and Bambi…THIS is how a President should act!

Cookies Mom on November 5, 2010 at 12:59 PM

Smart? Well, yes. . . Unlike Democrats, Bush actually knows how and when to play rope-a-dope.

Unlike Obama, Bush is smart.

smellthecoffee on November 5, 2010 at 12:59 PM

Yes President Bush, our home misses you and Laura. You both have so much class unlike those in the wh now.
L

letget on November 5, 2010 at 12:59 PM

Exactly, Ed. Bush doesn’t need to criticize Obama.

Abby Adams on November 5, 2010 at 12:59 PM

George W. Bush is a true blue class act from one end of the spectrum to the other. And contrary to what his critics and enemies alike have to say about him, he is proving to be far more smarter and far more cleverer than any of them will give him credit for.

pilamaye on November 5, 2010 at 1:00 PM

See, he wouldn’t even weigh in on Palin being a presidential nominee. I think his approval numbers are going to continue to rise and Obama’s plummet.

carbon_footprint on November 5, 2010 at 1:00 PM

Bush restores sanity better than Jon Stewart fans.

Abby Adams on November 5, 2010 at 1:00 PM

I would add Clinton and Carter to the list of “hardest hit”.

csdeven on November 5, 2010 at 1:00 PM

Better communicator than O, huh?

publiuspen on November 5, 2010 at 1:01 PM

Classy? Yes. Presidential? Absolutely — 2 qualities Obama will always lack.

Beaglemom on November 5, 2010 at 1:02 PM

Reagan > Bush I > Bush II > Clinton > Carter > Obama

Greek Fire on November 5, 2010 at 1:03 PM

Oh boy`O,this must drive LibTards nuts,President Bush
not saying a word!

Thats why President Bush is Presidential,Obama,not
sooo much!

canopfor on November 5, 2010 at 1:03 PM

Even with all he did that I disagree with, he still has appeal. I would swap him out for Obama anytime. GWB is a man of faith and honor.

The Expert Knows

HAExpert on November 5, 2010 at 1:03 PM

Y’all pre-ordered your books yet?

publiuspen on November 5, 2010 at 1:03 PM

He doesn’t need to.

When Obama is so far off the rails he thinks losing 63 house seats was due to a “messaging” problem, don’t interrupt him.

forest on November 5, 2010 at 1:04 PM

In other words Bush don’t want to take away any rope.

esnap on November 5, 2010 at 1:04 PM

Hopey/Changey,

the Wanna-Be,That Never Will be!!

canopfor on November 5, 2010 at 1:04 PM

Reagan > Bush II > Clinton > Bush I > Carter > Obama

Greek Fire on November 5, 2010 at 1:03 PM

That’d be mine.

lorien1973 on November 5, 2010 at 1:05 PM

Bush rocks. Second greatest prez in my lifetime thus far (Reagan is 1st).

jediwebdude on November 5, 2010 at 1:05 PM

Obama had no foil at his level and had to start looking around for an boogeyman to keep Americans distracted ass to kick

Deny the demagogue his boogeyman, or his ass to kick and you have denied him power.

nice work GDub….brilliant.

ted c on November 5, 2010 at 1:05 PM

Reagan > Bush II > Clinton > Bush I > Carter > Obama

Greek Fire on November 5, 2010 at 1:03 PM

Dead on.

carbon_footprint on November 5, 2010 at 1:06 PM

Better communicator than O, huh?

publiuspen on November 5, 2010 at 1:01 PM

‘O’, has never been a great communicator. His entire ‘persona’, if you will, was media telling people what to think. Only perennial fools got ‘took’.

Lanceman on November 5, 2010 at 1:08 PM

In other words Bush don’t want to take away any rope.

esnap on November 5, 2010 at 1:04 PM

esnap:

As the spokesman,for Political ACME ROPE COMPANY,our moto
is,when the Liberals are Politicaly Hang’em themselves,its
only right,to,…………give’em all the Rope they need!

Yes,you nailed it!!

President Bush is supplying zero Fuel!

canopfor on November 5, 2010 at 1:09 PM

Dear Mr President,

Get your butt back here to Texas. We loaned you out long enough.

Limerick on November 5, 2010 at 1:10 PM

Better communicator than O, huh?

publiuspen on November 5, 2010 at 1:01 PM
====================
‘O’, has never been a great communicator. His entire ‘persona’, if you will, was media telling people what to think. Only perennial fools got ‘took’.

Lanceman on November 5, 2010 at 1:08 PM

Lancemen: The Great Lecturer from Chicago Law School!:)

canopfor on November 5, 2010 at 1:10 PM

I don’t think anyone has actually accused the Obama administration of having any “class”.

GarandFan on November 5, 2010 at 1:11 PM

I’ve always liked W, I believe he’s a good man.

beachgirlusa on November 5, 2010 at 1:11 PM

Jiminy Carter does not approve of this m/o.

slickwillie2001 on November 5, 2010 at 1:11 PM

I’m looking forward to reading Dubya’s book. He, and his father are demonstrating just how a retired president should behave once out of office.

simkeith on November 5, 2010 at 1:13 PM

one classy dude….

we wish you and laura well

cmsinaz on November 5, 2010 at 1:13 PM

No way was Clinton a better President than Bush 41. NO WAY!!! Better politician, yes, president, no!

hamnj7 on November 5, 2010 at 1:13 PM

‘O’, has never been a great communicator. His entire ‘persona’, if you will, was media telling people what to think. Only perennial fools got ‘took’.

Lanceman on November 5, 2010 at 1:08 PM

lefties heard him and thought that, if they wanted a great communicator, then Obama is what they’d want him to sound like. So, they got the sound, just no skills. He was a One hit Wonder. He toured around in 2008 and 2009 singing his only #1 tune “Change We Need” with it’s chorus of “Yes We Can”. Each time, each venue, the song was the same—the girls swooned, the pols and pundits did too and now the job is requiring him to put out another single and it just ain’t working. Nobody is buying his iTunes downloads, matter of fact, he can only give them away.

ted c on November 5, 2010 at 1:14 PM

Fox News Online Live………………

http://atdhe.net/4371/watch-fox-news
========================

And,Rush Limbaugh on the air on the net-live……

http://player.streamtheworld.com/_players/entercom/player/?id=WILK

canopfor on November 5, 2010 at 1:15 PM

Y’all pre-ordered your books yet?

publiuspen on November 5, 2010 at 1:03 PM

Yep.

amerpundit on November 5, 2010 at 1:15 PM

Bush wouldn’t defend himself his last two years in office, why would he do it after he’s out? Defending himself against the BS is about all he could do. He certainly has very little policy-wise to bark about since he’s a big government Republican or otherwise a “compassionate conservative”.

I still would rather have him than Obama, but Bush ushered in the Dems and Obama who in turn ignited the Tea Party and a true conservative/libertarian movement in record time. So thanks Bush, thanks Obama, if we can hold on, we may yet have a republic! (sorry, Ben)

cartooner on November 5, 2010 at 1:15 PM

hamnj7 on November 5, 2010 at 1:13 PM

Yeah, and I doubt Bill could have flown a Dauntless over the Pacific without a diaper.

Limerick on November 5, 2010 at 1:15 PM

one classy dude….

we wish you and laura well

cmsinaz on November 5, 2010 at 1:13 PM

cmsinaz:X 1,000,000 to the power of 100:)

canopfor on November 5, 2010 at 1:16 PM

Remember when we used to have Presidents that didn’t hate America, as it was founded?

MNHawk on November 5, 2010 at 1:16 PM

The Great Lecturer from Chicago Law School!:)

canopfor on November 5, 2010 at 1:10 PM

Laurence Tribe has more under his hat than this fool.

Lanceman on November 5, 2010 at 1:16 PM

You realize O will never take a vow of silence when he leaves the Oval Office? Oy…we’ll have to listen to him o-pine forever.

publiuspen on November 5, 2010 at 1:17 PM

Remember how Bill Clinton could just not shut up all though the first three years of the Bush presidency? Oh, how the Obamamites wish George W. Bush had done the same thing.

I always knew that they were misunderestimating Dubya. He is far smarter than they give him credit for. Dubya always knew that he had to be popular on two days – November 7, 2000 and November 2, 2004. If he spent a lot of political capital keeping his numbers up on other days, he would not have had 50% +1 on the days when he needed them.

Haiku Guy on November 5, 2010 at 1:17 PM

If this is how Bush chooses to play it, he will easily become a widely beloved ex-President. As policies, wars and controversies fade into the mists of memory, Oprah’s audience, and the wider middle America, will see a kind, decent guy with a folksy accent who happily takes a pass on a chance to insult a guy who has spent years blackening his (Bush’s) name. As politics and politicians (on both sides) becomes increasingly hard-edged, Bush’s behavior will stand out.

holdfast on November 5, 2010 at 1:17 PM

holdfast on November 5, 2010 at 1:17 PM

Great insight.

publiuspen on November 5, 2010 at 1:18 PM

Yeah, and I doubt Bill could have flown a Dauntless over the Pacific without a diaper.

Limerick on November 5, 2010 at 1:15 PM

Limerick: Oh me likey:)
=========================

2009 New Garden Airshow – SBD Dauntless

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dLpnWLxeZq4

canopfor on November 5, 2010 at 1:18 PM

Bush: Obama doesn’t need me criticizing him

Au contraire, he’s desperate to inject Bush into his failure..

the_nile on November 5, 2010 at 1:19 PM

canopfor on November 5, 2010 at 1:18 PM

the age of MEN

Limerick on November 5, 2010 at 1:20 PM

Reagan > Bush II > Clinton > Bush I > Carter > Obama

Greek Fire on November 5, 2010 at 1:03 PM

That’d be mine.

lorien1973 on November 5, 2010 at 1:05 PM

You liked Clinton better than H.W.?

Count to 10 on November 5, 2010 at 1:20 PM

Reagan > Bush I > Bush II > Clinton > Carter > Obama

Greek Fire on November 5, 2010 at 1:03 PM

I put Obama before Carter, but not by much…

Haiku Guy on November 5, 2010 at 1:21 PM

I hope the Oprah treated him with respect throughout the entire interview. I expect she did; based on the clip she seemed quite enchanted with him (notice how she strokes her chest when he talks).

Anyone know if he’s scheduled to go on The View???!!

Brat on November 5, 2010 at 1:21 PM

Obama didn’t just go after Karl Rove and the Chamber of Commerce.

He went after the American people.

IronDioPriest on November 5, 2010 at 1:22 PM

Seriously, Dubya has been pitch-perfect as an ex-President.

Good Solid B-Plus on November 5, 2010 at 1:22 PM

Anyone know if he’s scheduled to go on The View???!!

Brat on November 5, 2010 at 1:21 PM

Not enough Midol on the planet to get Joy through that interview.

Limerick on November 5, 2010 at 1:22 PM

canopfor on November 5, 2010 at 1:16 PM

:)

cmsinaz on November 5, 2010 at 1:23 PM

You liked Clinton better than H.W.?

Count to 10 on November 5, 2010 at 1:20 PM

Bush I’s compromise on taxes caused the 91 recession, which cost him a second term. He was a 3rd Reagan term, essentially, but he wasn’t a believer in Reagan. It’s a real shame.

Clinton, although dragged along for the ride, did sign a balanced budget and welfare reform.

lorien1973 on November 5, 2010 at 1:24 PM

the view is not worth the dirt on W’s shoes….he’d better not go on that trash show…

cmsinaz on November 5, 2010 at 1:24 PM

did sign a balanced budget and welfare reform.

lorien1973 on November 5, 2010 at 1:24 PM

yep, after getting his hat handed to him on HillaryCare.

Limerick on November 5, 2010 at 1:25 PM

Clinton, although dragged along for the ride, did sign a balanced budget and welfare reform.

lorien1973 on November 5, 2010 at 1:24 PM

Yep, though he has horrible character and is probably a rapist, Clinton did one thing that made him a good president. He compromised and moved to center.

carbon_footprint on November 5, 2010 at 1:25 PM

Even with all he did that I disagree with, he still has appeal. I would swap him out for Obama anytime. GWB is a man of faith and honor.

The Expert Knows

HAExpert on November 5, 2010 at 1:03 PM

I think that’s a mistake. The naked socialist ambitions of the current administration has woken the country up. I don’t know if the slow boat ride of compassionate conservatism was any better but it sure was more effective.

DFCtomm on November 5, 2010 at 1:26 PM

canopfor on November 5, 2010 at 1:16 PM
==============
:)

cmsinaz on November 5, 2010 at 1:23 PM

cmsinaz:–:)

canopfor on November 5, 2010 at 1:26 PM

This will frustrate the media/left even more because they can’t use President Bush’s words against him. So they’ll ignore this interview.

perroviejo on November 5, 2010 at 1:26 PM

Limerick on November 5, 2010 at 1:22 PM

They could all storm off the set except Elizabeth! That would be worth watching.

Brat on November 5, 2010 at 1:27 PM

can’t wait to read his book :)

cmsinaz on November 5, 2010 at 1:28 PM

In the eight years he was president, did Bush ever make any negative comment about the democrats? I mean the kind that Obama makes daily about the republicans.

carbon_footprint on November 5, 2010 at 1:29 PM

I put Obama before Carter, but not by much…

Haiku Guy on November 5, 2010 at 1:21 PM

Have to disagree with you on this point: Carter was a bumbling fool and grossly incompetent, but I don’t think anybody believed he hated his country and wanted it destroyed in preparation for rebuilding it as a socialist democracy ala Obama. In my estimation that puts him slightly ahead of Duh Won.

Extrafishy on November 5, 2010 at 1:29 PM

When your opponent (enemy) is making a fool out of himself, just let him continue.

rjoco1 on November 5, 2010 at 1:29 PM

Simply by being a class act, he makes Obama look like a shmuck.

saiga on November 5, 2010 at 1:29 PM

You have got to LOVE that. It makes Obama look so small and petty.

John the Libertarian on November 5, 2010 at 1:30 PM

I put Obama before Carter, but not by much…

Haiku Guy on November 5, 2010 at 1:21 PM

And you call yourself a haiku guy…

Lanceman on November 5, 2010 at 1:31 PM

canopfor on November 5, 2010 at 1:18 PM
==================
the age of MEN

Limerick on November 5, 2010 at 1:20 PM

Limerick:Thats an accurate statement:)

canopfor on November 5, 2010 at 1:31 PM

Ed, you forgot to tell people you’ll get a cut from books sold through that Amazon link.

SEC on your ass! ;-)

Abby Adams on November 5, 2010 at 1:33 PM

Wisdom is as Wisdom does.

Wisdom is not in the left’s vocabulary… they have no clue what it truly means… they thought they’d found some in Obambi … that says it all.
Well, lefties, you’re looking at WISDOM (GWB) !

pambi on November 5, 2010 at 1:34 PM

The Great Lecturer from Chicago Law School!:)

canopfor on November 5, 2010 at 1:10 PM
===========================
Laurence Tribe has more under his hat than this fool.

Lanceman on November 5, 2010 at 1:16 PM

Lanceman:LOl:)

canopfor on November 5, 2010 at 1:35 PM

Bush…a man who would never dream of having a parthenon set being made as a backdrop for one of his speeches.

scalleywag on November 5, 2010 at 1:36 PM

But the NY Daily News used an anonymous source to claim: Ex-President George W. Bush rips wisdom of Barack Obama, Sarah Palin and John McCain to friends http://bit.ly/cvoAbZ

debg on November 5, 2010 at 1:38 PM

I agree that he’s an honorable man and his post-presidential reticence has been smart and dignified.

But don’t try to sell me that eight years of playing a doormat while leftists savaged him, his presidency, his supporters and the country was either brilliant politics or a sign of noble character. It was stupid and infuriating. The failure to enunciate and defend conservative positions, the failure to name and confront the Left (which can be done in a perfectly civil and still-effective way), were disastrous.

I have no nostalgia for those years, and hope never to see that kind of prolonged conservative passivity again.

rrpjr on November 5, 2010 at 1:39 PM

carbon_footprint on November 5, 2010 at 1:25 PM

No way – Clinton let terrorism run rampant all over the world and didn’t do a damn thing about it. He is as responsible for the troubles in the world as much as Carter is when he let the Iranian hostage crisis carry on for as long as it did. People romanticize Clinton like he was an old West outlaw, but he really is a bad man, in many ways, and did great harm to this country both politically and socially. The air will be cleaner the day he drops.

hamnj7 on November 5, 2010 at 1:40 PM

No more communists, Muslims, or rapists for president please. Thank you.

Akzed on November 5, 2010 at 1:45 PM

rips wisdom of Barack Obama, Sarah Palin and John McCain to friends http://bit.ly/cvoAbZ

I think rips is a rather strong word. Sounds like mild criticism too me, and most of it accurate.

scalleywag on November 5, 2010 at 1:48 PM

I understand how most people on this blog feel about GWB with respect to class and so forth. I would take him over ig-nobel Zero in a heartbeat, but let’s never forget Bush II is the man who cloaked himself as a Reagan conservative, swapped spits with Abdullah, never vetoed a speding bill, threw the free market under the bus “in order to save it,” presided over the unchalleged invasion of millions, and practically set the table for the marauding Alinskyites. Can we get over his post-POTUS beatification?

Yes, he has class over Obama in large measure, but we could probably say that about Michael Moore.

Western_Civ on November 5, 2010 at 1:48 PM

Why should he? Obama is doing a great job continuing the foreign policy that Bush championed.

popularpeoplesfront on November 5, 2010 at 1:50 PM

rrpjr,

But don’t try to sell me that eight years of playing a doormat while leftists savaged him, his presidency, his supporters and the country was either brilliant politics or a sign of noble character. It was stupid and infuriating. The failure to enunciate and defend conservative positions, the failure to name and confront the Left (which can be done in a perfectly civil and still-effective way), were disastrous.

I have no nostalgia for those years, and hope never to see that kind of prolonged conservative passivity again.

Brilliantly put.

Mike Honcho on November 5, 2010 at 1:50 PM

A man who knows and understands America and Americans.

Mason on November 5, 2010 at 1:51 PM

The reason Bush could win at rope a dope is that, not only do you need rope to play… you also need dopes.

Plenty of dopes opposed to Bush.

petunia on November 5, 2010 at 1:51 PM

In the eight years he was president, did Bush ever make any negative comment about the democrats? I mean the kind that Obama makes daily about the republicans.

carbon_footprint on November 5, 2010 at 1:29 PM

No, because he acted just like them. The nation building of Clinton that Bush ran against? Bush did that too. The excessive deficit spending of Clinton? Bush did that too.

When you surround yourself with neoconservatives like Clinton, Bush, and Obama did, it really doesn’t matter which party you’re in.

popularpeoplesfront on November 5, 2010 at 1:55 PM

President Bush is a very honorable guy.

Kudos to him.

texasconserv on November 5, 2010 at 2:01 PM

It really has to gall when someone you constantly deride as an idiot outsmarts you at every turn.

Poor, poor Democrats.

Merovign on November 5, 2010 at 2:02 PM

Sorry, It’s way too altruistic of a response especially when the left expects and and indeed survives on others ability to turn the other cheek. The Left’s only weapon against the strong is to make you surrender your self interest. If was him I would lay them all to waste and sell a hell of a lot more books in doing so.

Egfrow on November 5, 2010 at 2:03 PM

Sorry, It’s way too altruistic of a response especially when the left expects and and indeed survives on others ability to turn the other cheek. The Left’s only weapon against the strong is to make you surrender your self interest. If was him I would lay them all to waste and sell a hell of a lot more books in doing so.

Egfrow on November 5, 2010 at 2:03 PM

The question is not the effect on the left, the question is the effect on the center.

exhelodrvr on November 5, 2010 at 2:08 PM

I miss him. Yes, he spent too much, but putting that aside, I miss him.

Oink on November 5, 2010 at 2:11 PM

Bush deserved better treatment than America gave him.

hawksruleva on November 5, 2010 at 2:17 PM

Yeah, and I doubt Bill could have flown a Dauntless over the Pacific without a diaper.

Limerick on November 5, 2010

Haha! Too many mental images to contemplate there. And on a Friday afternoon no less. Thanks for the laugh!

JonPrichard on November 5, 2010 at 2:19 PM

he question is not the effect on the left, the question is the effect on the center.

exhelodrvr on November 5, 2010 at 2:08 PM

Actually, it’s the effect on the person slinging the mud. At the end of the day, Bush probably sleeps better at night than the people who spend all day calling him Bushitler. He spent his 8 years in office doing what he thought was right, and didn’t attack his opponents.

I don’t recall Reagan going out and torching Tip O’Neil and Ted Kennedy. It comes across as petty, vindictive, and unbefitting of a President. See Obama, Barack for more evidence of that.

hawksruleva on November 5, 2010 at 2:20 PM

That look “You’re asking me to wade back into the swamp” was great XD

apollyonbob on November 5, 2010 at 2:22 PM

He was, is, always will be smart, as a fox.

Also, class is class and dreck is dreck.

Schadenfreude on November 5, 2010 at 2:26 PM

Limerick – Bush I flew an Avenver (TBF/TBM), not a Dauntless (SBD), I believe (and was shot down in same, near Chichi Jima, but rescued by a US sub). I think he was the youngest pilot in the USN to that date, or something similar.

Ed – Cheney’s criticisms, typically for him, were utterly substantive, and devastating to the current clown-show in office. A reflection of the bizarre duality of today’s America – most un-thinking people (Beltway elites, NPR-listeners, the usual clueless “educated” people) were (amazingly) convinced to hate and demonize Cheney, who was clearly one of the best, most able, and most sensible high-level public figures in decades. For no particular reason. So when Cheney emerged from hiding and landed (easy) body blows on the new crew, they reeled.

Rope a dope? Dubya? Nope. Whatever the conscious strategy(if it was), Dubya’s refusal to defend, explain, and educate about US POLICY (not “his” policy) was DISASTROUS. Talk about a bizarre duality – hard decisions to do the right thing, at substantial cost – yet a refusal to even respond to the increasingly hysterical and idiotic “criticism” at home or abroad. And his people were warned about it, at the time, from the center of the storm. I had the opportunity. They had nothing to say in response, even agreed. Yet the pernicious slander against the US and its allies went unanswered.

I am speaking of foreign/national security policy here, of course. A more mixed bag at home. There was the absolute low-point (“see you at the bill-signing” flippancy when pushing the insane rule-of-law-shredding “amnesty” garbage). But not just silence when attacked, at least not all the time.

IceCold on November 5, 2010 at 2:33 PM

He’s way too smart to answer the Palin question. The left would have trumpeted either answer (yes or no) from the ramparts.

Also he is a great human being.

Missy on November 5, 2010 at 2:33 PM

I miss W. He took a lot of abuse and never showed that any of it mattered. Bush is still being attacked by Obama and yet remains silent in public. If only 9/11 had not occurred and we had eight years of peace while he was in office, but it was not to be.

SC.Charlie on November 5, 2010 at 2:33 PM

Comment pages: 1 2