|low graphics version | feedback | help|
|You are in: Talking Point|
Wednesday, 2 May, 2001, 10:27 GMT 11:27 UK
Bush: Is he doing a good job?
On Sunday George W Bush completed 100 days in office.Disclaimer: The BBC will put up as many of your comments as possible but we cannot guarantee that all e-mails will be published. The BBC reserves the right to edit comments that are published.
In that time he has had to deal with an escalation of violence in the Middle East and growing tensions with China.
Bush has been criticised by some for causing unnecessary hostility with the Chinese over the spy plane incident and the controversial arms sales to Taiwan.
He has also crossed swords with environmentalists when he failed to ratify the Kyoto Protocol which would reduce carbon dioxide.
Yet recent polls put Bush in a favourable light, suggesting that Americans still like his personal appeal and honesty.
Andrew Grossman, US
Bush did ok on China (but the spy plane is still there!) However, he is a disaster on the environment. Already he has reversed a campaign promise to reduce carbon monoxide emissions, abandoned the Kyoto treaty and delayed a rule that would have restricted the amount of arsenic in drinking water. Bush is pandering to his oil and big business buddies. This doesn't sound like a moral leader.
My main disappointment with Bush is that he is always trying to create a crisis to sell his policies such as his tax cut and his energy policy. He should be careful about talking down the economy and creating fear. He cried recession to get his $1.6 billion tax cut. When he got most of the tax cut he did an about turn and started to talk up the economy. He is now spreading fear about an impending energy crisis but refuses to reverse the effects of deregulation which brought the current crisis about, instead focusing on some far off idea of oil drilling in Alaska that will do nothing to solve the present problems.
As a Californian, I am extremely concerned about Bush ignoring an energy crisis that is affecting or will affect 24 US states. He is allowing the energy crisis to worsen so that people will desperately buy his Alaska oil drilling energy plan. I think Americans should be extremely concerned that Bush is willing to sacrifice ordinary people to satisfy the special interests and the wealthy who donated over a $100 million to get him elected. So much for compassionate conservatism.
RICH GOLLNER, USA
He is insensitive, insolent and ignorant of global affairs. As the President of the United States he has failed in his commitment as a world leader to have great insight into pressing matters. It seems he is disillusioned with his position. A position so powerful should be filled with a more capable, knowledgeable and astute person. He is letting the world, American citizens and the environment down.
Bush is dangerous. Not only has he broken the Kyoto treaty, refused to
apologise to the Chinese over the spying incident but now he is going
to anger Moscow among others by pushing forward with his missile system
(breaking another treaty in the process) and risk sparking another arms race. He is concerned with no one but himself. I think the fact he didn't even have a decisive election victory says it all.
Bush appears to have performed adequately. He isn't perfect and never professed that he was. I believe he was voted in because America wanted a higher sense of honesty and morality. (I found it sad that I had to try to explain some of Clinton's behaviour to my young child who listened to the news on TV). Bush by far represented those values better than his predecessor and his opposition. As to his refusal to commit to the Kyoto agreement - our government wasn't going to approve the agreement anyway (sad but true) so you should respect his honesty for telling the truth upfront. Bush's competitor for president unfortunately probably would have claimed to write the Kyoto agreement.
Darlene, Calif, USA
As a Yank whose work takes him around the world, I feel that "Dubya" is failing to understand that the USA cannot stand alone, and cannot afford to alienate the rest of the world.
Bush is looking out for his own personal interests and has no course of action for the betterment of the global arena. Perhaps that's because he doesn't understand that the US is part of it and has an impact on the rest of the world? Either that or he just doesn't care is more like it. He's more interested, it seems, in ensuring profits for corporate America than he is about the people of his own country and of the world. This is clearly demonstrated by his complete lack and disregard of environmental policy. So now we live with this for at least 3 years and 9 more months. Definitely room for improvement.
I find it hilarious that Europeans that live off the hard work and economic policies of the USA have the gall to insult GWB, and that ignorami (this includes US citizens brainwashed by our liberal media and universities) comment on our election even though they know nothing of our Constitution. The freeloaders of Europe will continue to bite the hand that feeds them. Europe and China loved Clinton because he sold the USA down the river to them for his own selfish reasons. Bush puts a stop to this, and Europe gets huffy.
Elliott K, UK
To all you people (myself included) who are outside the US and make comment about his performance. I'm sure he really doesn't care what YOU think of what he does. He was elected to represent the American people and, for what it's worth, I don't think he's doing such a bad job. We don't expect our government to represent America, and neither should we expect Bush to represent us.
Mr Bush is about to totally despoil and endanger areas in our country with his harebrained ecological plans. He rates a big zero from me for the first 100 days of his presidency.
President Bush is doing an outstanding job ! He is exactly what the USA needs after the previous corruption we've had to endure for 8 years.
I live in a small town in Colorado.
The one thing I have noticed with
Mr. Bush is that you can discuss
until the cows come home with him
but at the end of the day, he has a
very set agenda of his own. Like
all politicians I guess.
Ann Clayton, USA
Shock horror! President Bush represents American interests over and above other nations' interests. Perhaps I missed the point - isn't that his job? At least he doesn't constantly hand over power to unelected bodies like a certain Mr Blair I could mention. He held his own against the Chinese over the spy plane. I can't say he's doing such a bad job.
I think a lot of people from Europe and around the world are misinformed about GW's position on environment - and for those who think that he is not actively involved in foreign policy I have a question: would you like GW to actively participate in the decision making process of your own country?(especially Europe). He is doing a great job , he is hands on the job, and he avoids the spotlight unlike other presidents and leaders.
In response to John, UK, the reason we want politicians to be 'morally pure' is so we can take their words at face value, and on that basis judge them. George Bush's policy on Kyoto, for instance, represents no actual change from the previous American policy, but it's now apparent to all what that policy is. Would it be better if he had continued the charade of pretending to support Kyoto, whilst doing nothing whatsoever to implement it?
Quite apart from that, George W. Bush's academic record is far better than Clinton's, Blair's or Gore's, so he's clearly not a man of 'low intellectual capacity'. He does appear to be a man with very little knowledge of, or experience with, things beyond America's shores, but in that respect actually reflects the majority of Americans, who have little interest in the outside world.
Bush has done a really good job. He is an able administrator and, maybe to the dislike of some European leaders, represents the values and interests of typical Americans. Maybe he can't be lead around by Blair et.al. like Bill Clinton was (i.e. bombing Serbia) but that's a positive attribute. As for the Kyoto treaty, don't forget that the US Senate (which is half Democrat) voted 95 to 0 to reject that treaty. Even if Bush had wanted to support such a flawed proposal, to do so would be to go against the will of the public.
Has the US gone back 20 years on the evolutionary spectrum, or what?
The Bush administration is ignorant, selfish and tribal. Please America, start thinking a little further ahead than next months value of the Dow.
Why do we in the UK, and our friends in the USA, want our politicians to be morally pure? That's not what politicians are for. If we want moral guidance, let us look to our religious leaders, not our politicians, who are there to run the country. Fortunately for George, low intellectual capacity does not seem to preclude one from achieving high political office. Oh, by the way, I think he's doing a terrible job!
What we appear to have in GW is something we haven't seen since before World War 1 - a US President determined to give precedence to what he and his advisors see as American interests. We can shake our fists as much as we like, but in truth we can only sit and watch an experiment in government by business, for business in the modern age. Interesting times.
George Bush is doing an excellent job. He has changed the tone in Washington and now when the Democrats speak their words ring so hollow and their anger is so out of step with normal Americans. George Bush will be remembered as one of the great U.S. Presidents.
Doug P, USA
George W. Bush said in an interview: 'My job Is to set priorities'.
We love the dignity and honour shown by President Bush's conduct in office. Those are the elements of leadership that endure despite policy and issue disputes.
I think Colin Mitchell's remarks are very accurate. From my point of view, living here in the USA, I can add that Bush was not elected by us, the citizens of our country. We did not have a choice in who we wanted for President. I hope people in other countries realise this fact and do not hold Americans responsible for the Bush administration's destructive and disrespectful acts to other peoples, countries, our fast-disappearing species and the world's environment.
He has given the Brazilian people the green light to gut the Amazon, he has angered many non-US countries and he has committed the US to fighting China over Taiwan. If the scale of measure is harm per unit of time, then he is doing quite well.
I am worried about the next four years under this immature administration.
America has made a fatal mistake by alienating itself from the rest of the world. Greatness does not lie in pathological defence of the nation but rather in total respect for all other nations.
It is too early to say anything, but his childlike smile is becoming more confident with time. I also believe that with the exception of some hasty steps (in the beginning) in bombing Iraq and provoking China he is doing pretty well.
Lisa R, USA
Bush the great pretender. He is a dangerous and ignorant man. A selfish leader for a generally selfish country.
The USA is out of step with the rest of the world and its past history indicates it will make another political mistake. Taiwan has no political friends except one, the USA. Taiwan (or Formosa) is technically Chinese territory. If the USA wants a war with China over Taiwan then let it go ahead but don't drag your so called allies along with you.
The USA has so long confused political issues (democracy verses communism) and while it thinks it is supporting democracy in the short term, many of those democratic governments it aided and abetted were worse despots than the ones they replaced. The USA hasn't got it right yet.
Bush seems to be only interested in USA. He looks like a selfish person.
The only people in this country that admire him are getting mixed messages from the media. That is why the polls give him high approval ratings, but low ratings as far as human concerns. The polls alone tell the story of mass confusion regarding this person.
We should apologize to all that we have in some convoluted way permitted this frat boy to become the "leader of the free world". Bush is another Reagan who governs by tele-prompter and committee and has no independent clue about any issue whatsoever. Please be understanding for the next few years. Our Supreme Court chose this guy not us.
While many people have praised Bush for his revival of industry and patriotism, it is undoubtedly important to consider his stand on global warming. Where Clinton would have recognised the vitality of European views towards the global environment, Bush is trying to please his own people in the short term.
It would also be necessary to notice the overall presence with which President Bush is viewed by the media. He seems to have escaped a bad press for now, but appears to be thinking on a very narrow level regarding his power. Power rather than intelligence.
It's worse than I thought. I wonder why he didn't commit to the Kyoto agreement, he would have had an occasion to try and buy underdeveloped countries' share of non-pollution...
I am very pleased with Bush's honesty and practicality in the first hundred days. It's amazing how people who criticize Bush's presidency so far simply repeat the rantings of the liberal media. Can anyone think for themselves anymore? The facts are that only three countries had signed the Kyoto accord, and none of them were the major powers who publicly denounced the US for not signing.
The US people seem to have got the president who reflects their own indecision. Does he suppport Taiwan or not? Does he support democracy and human rights or not. Sooner or later he is going to have to support either Taiwan or China, and by his vagueness and little gaffs such as promising Taiwan submarines he cannot supply, he risks alienating both sides
I am very pleased with Bush thus far. He has shown true leadership through a challenging first 100 days, hey, leading the only superpower is not an easy job. Not bowing to the Chinese, Europeans et al, only strengthened his position with many Americans. The liberal bend will always complain, it's their way and as for the Brits who are complaining so, you'd have to live here!!It's great!
I find it interesting how people seem to blame Bush for not committing to the Kyoto agreement when the Senate voted 95-0 against the treaty in 1997. I live in Cleveland, Ohio, where it is cloudy, calm, and flat. So where are you to get electricity from if the enviromentialists refuse to allow nuclear power plants to be built?
With a leader like Bush I wonder whether in 50 years the sun will be shining on the US or whether the smog clouds will be obscuring it!!
President Bush's failure to ratify the Kyoto Protocol will come back to haunt him. I don't think his administration, or the American populace for that matter, has grasped the gravity of this issue. It's a shame that the Americans can't put their considerable resources behind something of real value to ALL of us.
President Bush is a man who is passionate about his presidency.His first 100 days in office revealed that he is a man of his words.He has been charismatic, sincere, hardworking, honest and a visionary. It takes courage to take some of the bold decisions he has taken in the few days he has been in office.
If this is not a sign of strength or demonstration of able leadership, what else is it? The new leadership has brought morality and respect back to the oval office and augurs well for the future of this great nation
I think Bush was right to stand up against China. But he is wrong with environmental concerns, resources are running down too fast.
"Saved Europe with litle or no help from the Europeans."
Even if you ignore the years of the war prior to the joinging of US then it is ignorant and plain wrong to suggest such a thing. Personally I'm sad to that George W isn't the only person in the US with a severe lack of knowledge in such important areas.
Perhaps the USA might be the most powerful country on the planet, but why vote in one of the weakest and least able world leaders for the rest of the world to openly see the insecurities of your country and it's polices.
All hail the first amendment.
Mike in USA hit the nail square on the head concerning the Bush administration. We now have another Ronnie Reagan in the White House who is making us feel good about ourselves again after being picked on by the likes of Cuba and Iraq. We've won every war for everybody in the history of the ungrateful world. So as long as we feel good about ourselves, we don't have to do any thinking. That's why we elect Reagans and Bushes; the brainless, elected by the thoughtless end up doing the unthinkable.
I think Bush's approach to both domestic and world matters has been pragmatic, and compares favourably with Clinton's first 100 days in office! It is refreshing to know that decency and respect will be returned to the White House. I'd like to remind 'Mike' that many British people have not forgotten World War 2, nor America's huge contribution. I'd like to think however, that we offered more than 'little or no help' in the Cold War.
Bush is an embarrassment for the US, not only because of his ignorance but also because of his policies. However, we as Americans probably deserve this because of our collective ignorance and apathy. And most Americans seem to have no idea how conservative they really are. It has been said many times that it takes a crisis or catastrophe to get Americans to wake up and pay attention, ... and vote. I wonder what it will take.
In a country where the race issue has for so long been its Achilles heel, his salute to the African American has accelerated the American people through a quantum leap in social values. He brought the detainees home by showing he could say sorry. Maestro of expedience or not, this is a man who has character.
I find it remarkable that the number one criticism all you Europeans have of Bush is that he puts American interests before all others. That's why we elected him to be OUR president. How about you stop worrying about the USA's politics and mind your own business?
Bush is a man of no experience. His ability to run the States is questionable. It seems to me, he's actually being told what to do by people surrounding him - luckily, people who are aware of how things go. I can not say that Bush did so, or didn't do so. I can say his advisers did a reasonable job.
Bush has done nothing to the Middle East crisis, and his handling of the China incident was "okay". Yet, he could have been better should he choose not to go ahead with the arms-sales deal with Taiwan. At least not at this point in time, when people of both nations (USA's and China's) hardly "sighed" after the plane crisis was supposedly resolved. Bush is a phenomenon that can only exist in America!
Perhaps the most depressing aspect of Bush's reign so far is his apparent popularity in the US. His chid-like and arrogant attitude towards the rest of the world should be an embarrassment to any intelligent and responsible nation.
Mpaphi Kuswani, United Kindom
Bush, out of the blue, declares that China is the US's "number one enemy." About a week later, during the spy plane crisis, he states, without a hint of irony, that China's refusal to release the plane's crew "risks damaging US-Sino relations." How could anyone have even considered voting for this man?
Dubya needs all the support he can get to fight the new cold war against China. Looks bad from here in Oz.
What people in other parts of the world
will not know is that thousands are
being turned out of work each day.
All this has started since Bush came to
office. Now people are just glad to have a job.
The corporations are free to do what
they like. Is this a coincidence. NO! I say.
People seem to expect too much from Bush, and this is leaving them disappointed. The disappointments are mainly due to errors about what is in a president's power to achieve. For instance, the reaction to his decision about the Kyoto agreement bordered on hysteria; many people seemed to think he was in a position to implement it on his own. In fact, he knew the Senate would never pass it (even most Democrats were against it) and he simply didn't want to waste his efforts in grandstanding. A refreshing change from Clinton in that respect.
Many people feared that a George Bush presidency would be selfish, mean, greedy, ignorant and dangerous. They have been proved right. I would have thought that a president whose legitimacy is in doubt (he shouldn't be in the White House - he lost) would tread very carefully. Instead Bush is rapidly turning the US into the biggest rogue state in the world.
The first 100 days of the bush presidency have in my opinion been exemplary. With regards to our environmental and domestic policy president bush has exhibited a degree of practicality long absent in the leadership of western countries. Abroad the president and his cabinet have also done a superb job. Not backing down when our interests were challenged and not fowling up royally as President Clinton did in most of is foreign policy ventures.
Alan Bailey, Atlanta, USA
He's done reasonably well, I guess. But he still occupies a position for to he was NOT elected.
G. Cooper, England
In 100 days we have seen how much control big business has over Bush. Little-reported moves include ending government legal challenges to tobacco companies, and scrapping a range of work-safety measures. Big business bought Bush's election campaign, and has bought Bush's policies.
We all knew what he was like and what we would be getting before he came to office. Do we really expect anything more from somebody who's only been in politics for 6 years??
I was disgusted to learn that GW Bush is putting America's energy "requirements" over the common good of the planet. The number of Americans who apparently support Bush's policies is astonishing and not a little alarming.
Bush overall has not had a bad first hundred days, although the China crisis could have been handled without defeat and the very direct support of Taiwan could prove to be very dangerous. Also I believe his decision not to pursue the tobacco law suit is misguided, but what do you expect when you put a Republican in the White House?
As someone who feels as if I have an illegally elected President, I am deeply distraught. Bush has been working hard at repealing workers' rights, environmental laws and human rights. It's amazing that the leader of the free world also takes this hands-off policy at trying to stabilise the world we live in.
Tom OD, UK
Bush has a strong team of advisors who are running around clearing up after him, but it won't be long before he gets us all into serious trouble.
I am an American who lives in the UK. I voted for Bush on a Florida absentee ballot and was over the moon when he was FINALLY elected. I think he has so far been an excellent president. I like his views on taxation in particular and think he will prove to be one of the most popular presidents in time.
I just want to tell the good people of the U.K. that not all Americans and Texans are as belligerent as Mr. Bush. I am embarrassed at his sabre-rattling and his stance on the environment. The only good thing about his presidency is that we no longer have the idiot as governor of Texas.
Colin Cope, USA
I wasn't expecting too much from Bush, and I've got to say he hasn't disappointed me.... from foreign affairs to the environment to law and order, he has shown himself to be way out of his depth.... it could only happen in America (I hope)
Has Bush done well? Apart from managing to annoy the Russians, Chinese and the Arabs as well as infuriating the rest of the developed world with his environmental policy. Apart from all that he's done alright.
I have yet to see a person cause so many troubles in so little time. A good leader in today's world has to have the ability to negotiate a peaceful end to any conflict
George W Bush must be the worst president the US has ever had. And that is saying something! In the few days since he took office, he has managed to alienate most of the rest of the world.
Thank God for Bush! Finally someone who will stand up to the Green Stalinists and the Metropolitan Liberals, I wish him all the best!
Phil Saum, UK
Bush is doing a good job as far as corporate America is concerned. He's dumped the Kyoto agreement because his 'buddies' in the oil industry say it'll hurt their profits to make them clean up their own mess. He's also helped his defence contractor 'buddies' by agreeing to sell high profile arms to Taiwan, he'll be appearing in Ford and GM car adverts next!! The man is an idiot and has proved in his first 100 days that he's nothing more than a spokesman for the people who bankrolled his campaign, who now want their payback. Good investment for them, bad for the rest of world.
For a second generation President he is doing pretty well. I'm more curious about what his son and heir will be like when he continues the family tradition and inherits this post.
In 100 days he has made it clear that the most powerful country in the world is being run by a handful of tobacco and oil companies. God help us all.
The only thing that can be called a minor success is the return of our airmen. Otherwise, Bush is running our country into the ground with lame, washed-out ideas that failed the first time, and "compassionate" conservatism that does nothing but destroy the environment and cripple the less advantaged for the benefit of corporations. He is an international embarrassment on an even greater scale than his father was.
He's tried all he could to remove what Bill Clinton has left, and that includes the good things that he left!
Sharon B, UK
Much as I had expected: a gung-ho idiot with little regard for anything beyond America's corporate and economic well-being.
I find Bush's refusal to ratify the Kyoto agreement obscene and unimaginably more alarming then any personal errors committed by the previous president. Furthermore Bush's self-provoked hostility with China and his failure to build on the peace initiatives in the Middle East and Ireland will cause the unemployment of countless more Americans than he could possibly hope to gain by supporting heavily polluting industries.
Joel Morse, USA
It seems strange to me that ordinary Americans would vote in someone who cares most about big business interests and considerably less about the average person. But that's what they asked for, and that's what he's been supplying.
The so-called president is leading this country towards a 2-tier society. His economic policy is wiping out the middle class. He is giving huge tax cuts to the wealthy, and destroying our environment. As I told a friend, If you liked the Dark Ages, you will love the Bush years.
The US, like all representative democracies, get the government they deserve.
Graham Fuller, United Kingdom
Bush is setting a dangerous policy on foreign affairs and the environment. Global condemnation seems to mean nothing to him. Let's hope that the arrogance of his administration wears off soon before some lasting damage is done.
Colin Mitchell, UK
The latest scientific report on the ozone layer predicts that due to our continued burning of fossil fuels, the world will not be a pleasant place to live in 50 years. Despite this, Bush refuses to commit the USA to the Kyoto agreement to cut back on fossil fuel burning on short-term economic grounds. There will be no economy in 50 years if the science is right. This decision alone in the first 100 days of his presidency proves Bush is a self-interested disaster to the world at large.
27 Apr 01 | Asia-Pacific
China vents fury at Bush
The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites
Other Talking Points:
Links to more Talking Point stories
|^^ Back to top
News Front Page | World | UK | UK Politics | Business | Sci/Tech | Health | Education | Entertainment | Talking Point | In Depth | AudioVideo
To BBC Sport>> | To BBC Weather>>
© MMIII | News Sources | Privacy