Bring It On!

Despite Historic Obama Election, Bush Still Has 77 Days In Which To Make Things Even Worse

November 5th, 2008 | by Ken Grandlund |

Despite yesterday’s historic election that has made Barack Obama the next president, let us not forget that we still have 77 days of George W. Bush to contend with. Because believe me, Bush isn’t forgetting that he’s still the Decider in Chief until January 20th.

Outgoing presidents like to “tie up loose ends” and place their ideological stamp on all sorts of governmental regulations and programs. Clinton did it. So did many of his predecessors. Often times, these last minute regulatory efforts take place in the final days or hours of an outgoing presidents term. But because new or revised regulations have a specific path they must take before becoming active, incoming presidents can sometimes halt or even negate these plans. It isn’t uncommon. In fact, when W took office, he ordered a halt to all of Clinton’s last minute regulations that had not yet been published in the federal register.

Hoping to avoid a halt to his own last minute regulations, the Bush administration got the ball rolling early, hoping to have over 90 new or revised regulations on the books before Obama can take the oath of office.  So what’s the problem? Isn’t Bush just doing what many previous outgoing presidents have done? Well, yes…and no.

Where Clinton’s end of term regulations sought to strengthen enviromental policy or help create more parity with regards to publically funded aid programs, it seems that Bush’s regulatory efforts do the exact opposite, and may also add to an already overburdened national treasury.

Some of the changes Bush seeks to stamp in cement before he departs include:

CIVIL LILBERTIES: Expanded F.B.I. guidelines that permit agents to use chillingly intrusive techniques to collect information on Americans even where there is no evidence of wrongdoing.

ENVIRONMENT: Weakening the Endangered Species Act even further; rules that weaken clean air and water standards; opening even more federal lands for gas and oil exploration. Also, easing restrictions on mountaintop mining, removing mining restrictions near the Grand Canyon and easing rules on power plant emissions.

ABORTION RIGHTS: New regulations aimed at further limiting women’s access to abortion, contraceptives and information about their reproductive health care options.

ECONOMIC: Restored tax breaks for banks that take big losses on bad loans inherited through acquisitions. Now that this change is in the works, JPMorgan Chase and others are planning to use their bailout funds for mergers and acquisitions, transactions that will be greatly enhanced by the new tax subsidy.

Bush’s last minute regulations are really more DEREGULATIONS aimed at rewarding those remaining loyalist in corporate America. And if we’ve learned nothing from this whole economic crisis, it’s that when Republicans DEREGULATE it doesn’t bode well for John and Jane America.

Bush wants to leave his mark, but he seems to not understain that what he’s already left (and apparently wants to leave more of) is a big ugly stain. Apparently not content with being the least popular president AND the worst president in US history, Bush wants to make sure he can still screw things up when he’s out clearing brush at the ranch. With an economy in ruins, a military stretched to the breaking point, and an international reputation in tatters, Bush has already tied the hands of his successor to a great degree. But it just doesn’t seem to be enough for the Decider.

Some presidents want to be remembered for the good things they do. Sadly for America, George W. Bush has never done anything good in his life. So if we’re going to remember him for his failures, it seems that he wants to be sure to leave us plenty to ruminate on.

Barack Obama has a tough road ahead of him. So do we all.

(cross posted at Common Sense)

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  1. 2 Responses to “Despite Historic Obama Election, Bush Still Has 77 Days In Which To Make Things Even Worse”

  2. By Liberal Jarhead on Nov 6, 2008 | Reply

    I hope Obama has the option of simply reversing those changes once he’s in office. Seems to me that if a sitting president can make a rule just on his own say-so, a sitting president should be able to re-make it in the opposite direction.

  3. By me on Nov 6, 2008 | Reply

    Sore losers ,sour winners

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