Citizens should ask more of the members in the ex-presidents' club

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  • ECR Burke, VA
    March 29, 2013 8:34 p.m.

    happy2bhere - Bush inherited a surplus budget and turned it into 5 trillion in more debt. He also increased federal spending by more than 8% on his watch. Obama inherited an economy that was losing 800,000 jobs a month and turned it around to increasing jobs by over 100,000 per month. And he did it by increasing government spending by only 1.4%. If you think both presidents started their time in office on equal terms then you haven't been paying attention for the past 13 years.

    Bush enjoyed the cooperation of the Congress and he squandered the unity felt after 9/11 where he could have brought greater peace to the world but, instead, we received their disdain for the way we handled the aftermath and misused our power as a nation. Obama has received a kick in the teeth by the opposition in Congress who have even voted for programs and policies they previously supported just so they could squash everything the president wanted to do to fix the problems he inherited. And despite that obstruction, look what he has done. We have gained the confidence and respect of other governments and the economy is improving.

  • happy2bhere LAYTON, UT
    March 29, 2013 4:47 p.m.

    Re: ECR

    The Democrat who said that about the managable debt was Bob Beckle. You might not know who is because I doubt you watch Fox News. As for anything that happened beyond 4 years ago. That is now largely irrelevent due to the fact that Obama doubled what Bush did in 8.
    And for the record, I have a lot of problems with Bush running up a 4 trillion debt on his watch. He was at best a medicore president who would be forgotten by now were it not for his pretty good handling of 911. That was until he got us into useless Iraq war and a too long Afghanistan War. So that's what I think of Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld, Rice, Powell, and the gang. The only problem, is Obama is 10 times worse than those guys.

  • ECR Burke, VA
    March 29, 2013 11:09 a.m.

    happy2bhere said , "Democrat spokespeople are now saying that this is a "managable" debt and don't worry about it."

    If you're going to put a quote out there like that I wish you would actually provide the quote and who said. On the other hand you might be interested in who actually suggested that deficit spending doesn't matter. In a documented meeting with treasury Secretary Paul O-Neill our then Vice President stated this:

    "O'Neill said he tried to warn Vice President Dick Cheney that growing budget deficits-expected to top $500 billion this fiscal year alone-posed a threat to the economy. Cheney cut him off. "You know, Paul, Reagan proved deficits don't matter," he said, according to excerpts. Cheney continued: "We won the midterms (congressional elections). This is our due." A month later, Cheney told the Treasury secretary he was fired."

    So what, in your mind, has changed since the Republican Vice President made that statement? Can you provide evidence of your disgust with that statement made by the Republican Vice President? Or did you agree with him then? I'd rally like to know.

  • pragmatistferlife salt lake city, utah
    March 29, 2013 8:06 a.m.

    Wow, ECR, you've once again pointed out why posting on this thread is so entertaining. You make a simple nonpartisan comment about the value of our Presidents and system of government and suddenly the winds bring in deficit spending, the evils of Obama, and the short comings of congress. Nice job I might say.

  • Howard Beal Provo, UT
    March 28, 2013 6:59 p.m.

    All of the ex-Presidents are uber-wealthy. They can hire their own private security. They don't need pensions. This is beyond ridiculous.

  • RedShirt USS Enterprise, UT
    March 28, 2013 5:19 p.m.

    To "Truthseeker" just because congress passes something does not mean that the President has to sign it.

  • Truthseeker SLO, CA
    March 28, 2013 4:21 p.m.


    When Clinton was elected President, the Republican Congress passed a bill limiting Secret Service Protection for former presidents to 10 yrs. The bill to reverse the limitation and extend it for life was introduced in 2012 by 2 Republicans and 1 Democrat. It passed by unanimous consent. Apparently Republicans and Democrats can agree on something!

    In Congress, unanimous consent is a way of quickly deciding issues without taking a vote. Issues where unanimous agreement may be readily obtained are noncontroversial ones.

  • Hutterite American Fork, UT
    March 28, 2013 4:11 p.m.

    Ex presidents should don tights and travel around the country in a van, solving crimes.

  • happy2bhere LAYTON, UT
    March 28, 2013 2:59 p.m.

    Re: ECR

    You refer to "checks and balances" in our government. Today that has a meaning our founding fathers could not possibly fathom. The checks are being written as fast as possible and the balance is 17 trillion in the red! What are we supposed to do about that when the low information voters are enough to reelect this runaway spending train. Democrat spokespeople are now saying that this is a "managable" debt and don't worry about it. That is now the White House and Democrat talking point they take to the media. Does anyone out there on the Democrat side think this debt could become unmanagable? If so, what is the number? I'd really like to know.

    More to the point of this article RedShirt makes a good point. I only wonder how Obama is going to make the 500 million a year necessary to support the lifestyle to which he has become accostomed.

  • RedShirt USS Enterprise, UT
    March 28, 2013 12:41 p.m.

    Here is the irony of the whole situation. Clinton signed a bill during his presidency that would have eliminated the free Secret Service details that the ex-presidents get. Bush did nothing to change that. Now, Obama brings it back.

    Tell us, who wants to live like royalty when they retire on taxpayer dollars.

  • lost in DC West Jordan, UT
    March 28, 2013 11:43 a.m.

    Thank you for agreeing they put themselves out there.

    And I am sure we will differ as to the value of the service some of them provide now or if they ever did, even in office.

    But you are sadly mistaken if you believe I have disdain for the form of government our founders established. I DO have disdain for the travesty that it has become; that we have wandered so far from the principals of freedom on which our once-great nation was founded.

    My stridency is caused by my deep love for my country and the horror with which I watch it descend. Though I definitely claim to be no prophet, and no one on earth knows my shortcomings more than I, I begin to get a glimpse of how Jeremiah in the OT must have felt as he watch his nation decline and then be overrun by Babylon.

    To quote Pogo, we have seen the enemy, and they are us.

  • ECR Burke, VA
    March 28, 2013 10:24 a.m.

    Lost in DC - So sad to learn of your derision and disdain for our form of government here in the United States of America. I'm going to play the Founding Fathers card and suggest that they set up our government with checks and balances. They saw the need for a Commander in Cheif who would have limted power kept in check by the Congress and the Courts. So, as the saying goes, the miracle of our nation is that every four years we have a national election and elect or re-elect a president. Regardless of whether or not we like the results of the election, we support a peaceful transfer of power. We can disagree with the president's positions - as we both often do, depending on who the president is - and we can make that disagreement known in public.

    But these folks put themselves out there. They didn't hide behind a phoney name or acronym, like you and I do. They proudly stated their position and worked for what they thought was right. And although they are no longer in office, I think your comments provide evidence that they still protection, sometimes from our own citizens.

  • lost in DC West Jordan, UT
    March 28, 2013 9:59 a.m.

    Say what you want about tricky dick nixon, and I am no fan, but he told the SS to get lost in his later years, thereby reducing his burden on the taxpayers.


    no one held guns to these jokers heads and forced them to be president! They agressively sought the office. If they were too stupid to see the effects the demands of the office would have on them, too bad! Their lust for power and notoriety were just too great.

  • SEY Sandy, UT
    March 28, 2013 9:17 a.m.

    The less we hear of current and past presidents the better.

  • Wastintime Los Angeles, CA
    March 28, 2013 7:52 a.m.

    There's a reason for term limits, and they should be respected. Ex-presidents can engage in charitable activities if they want, but should stay clear of matters of state after their terms.

  • ECR Burke, VA
    March 28, 2013 6:18 a.m.

    I think the picture accompanying this article gives a good illustration of how much nonsense Mr. McFeatters is spreading. What would have been even more telling was a comparative picture of these two men when they first took office. The silver/gray/white hair on their heads is a testament to the toll taken by serving in that position for 4-8 years. Regardless of the party affiliation of the president, we should all be grateful for their willingness to sacrifice their privacy and to give their full time to such an arduous job assignment, literally putting their lives on the line every day.

    Near the end of the article Mr. McFeatters outlines the cost of recent presidential libraries thinking we will forget what he said earlier in the article - that the libraries are funded with private donations. These libraries serve as an accounting of our national history - during that brief period of time - where our citizens can visit and be educated about issues of the day. Mr. McFeatters does point out that recent presidents have given their service after they left office. We should all be grateful for their willingness to serve us.