The (mostly) kind obituaries for former President George H. W. Bush have highlighted the decency and civility that marked his long career, often as a less-than-subtle jab at the current Commander-in-Chief.
“Never a proponent of ‘kinder and gentler’ politics, Mr. Trump prefers a brawl, even with his own party,” New York Times reporter Peter Baker juxtaposed in a Saturday morning article. On that morning’s Todayshow, NBC’s Peter Alexander scolded: “President Trump was not always so gracious about Bush’s hope for a kinder, gentler nation.”
On that same program, ex-Newsweek editor and Bush biographer Jon Meacham praised the late President’s bi-partisanship: “His substantive legacy is one of reaching out across what was a pretty wide aisle back in 1989 to 1993.”
The media’s current appreciation for the 41st President stands in sharp contrast to how they covered his presidential campaigns and his administration. When Bush was still in the arena, liberal reporters were among his most vociferous critics, who deplored his campaign tactics, accused him of exacerbating racial tensions, and bashed him for failing to adopt liberal policy positions.
One of my favorites was the DNC-MSM, in lockstep with their candidate Bill Clinton, pummeling Bush in the run-up to the 1992 election over a minor recession that Clinton described as “the worst economy in 50 years,” only to turn around and reveal that, as the Charlotte Business Journal wrote in 2010, “The U.S. economy actually grew 4.2% in the fourth-quarter that year and went on to enjoy a terrific decade-long run of prosperity. And we learned in hindsight that recession had actually already ended when the [September 1992 Time magazine] article was printed.” Time described it in December of that year as “Bush’s Economic Present for Clinton.”
Or as Jim Treacher once said: