*hokey evil laugh*
But today is the final day of the presidency of George W Bush. I've already done my hard assessment of his eight years. This is not that. I've spent the last week reading through the blogroll and have followed the Bush Thank-a-Thon. And I'd like to thank the bloggers that joined in for that. Because the venom of the Bush haters has been so pervasive for so long, and because my entry into this arena has only been in the last year and a half, I've had more negative to focus on than positive. So I needed to remember why I voted for him in the first place. And having done so, I don't think I chose poorly.
So here's my final words (until the comment section) on the Bush years.
First, I have to thank him for keeping the country safe. While I was one who was only minimally impacted by the events of 9/11, it was an event that changed us. Like everyone, I can recite in detail where I was and how I found out. And I can remember the images of our president standing amid the rubble, bringing hope and comfort with his presence and his words. And he promised us that he would deal with this. And for all the twists and turns (and mistakes that are inevitable in war), he has kept that promise.
Second, he held to principle in the face of unpopularity. Both in the war and in addressing every other crisis and domestic issue, he has done what he thought was right. I sincerely believe that. Whether it was right or not is another debate. What matters is that, as a leader, he led.
Third, class. While he had his moments (as do we all), he strove to be a class act, staying above the rancorous crap that is now magnified here in the blogosphere. And that is seen most clearly in the transition that will be completed tomorrow with the inauguration of a new president. Greater me (John Adams again comes to mind) have attended to the transition with less dignity.
So I'll end this with thanks for all that Presidnet George W Bush has done for us. Like those that have come before him, he really deserves the rest that he has earned protecting us and serving us these last eight years.