This is apparently confirmed as a real billboard on Interstate 35 in Minnesota, somewhere on the way to Duluth.
I don’t miss him at all, for reasons that would not be apparent to a casual political observer. It’s not that I don’t think he was a much better president that Barack Obama has been so far or is likely ever to be. I do. But I’m a conservative. I believe what conservatives believe, that limited government and low taxes are vital to liberty, and that big government and high taxes are a menace to liberty without accomplishing any offsetting good.
If Bush were still president I don’t believe the conservative movement would be alive and well. I think it might be dead. Bush did a few conservative things, but he was not a conservative. He did more boneheaded politically correct things that conservative ones. When a liberal like Obama steals our money, our liberty, and our future, a Tea Party Movement is born. When a Republican does those things, albeit in a more friendly and well-meaning manner, the people who might otherwise be disposed to support the conservative movement go into the witness protection program and are not seen or heard from. [In 2004 and 2006 they protested the Republican abandonment of conservative values by staying home. Frustrated that their message was still not heeded, they voted for "hope and change" in 2008. When Republicans revert to being "the stupid party" it benefits Democrats.]
If Bush could have had a third term or if McCain had won would there be a Tea Party? Would conservatism be in the ascendancy among independents, as it clearly is right now? Well, I guess it’s possible there would be something like a tea party but they would be protesting Bush because he would still be on a spending binge, just not as wildly as Obama. Remember, he started TARP. He’d be on TARP II or III by now.
Actually, I’m taking the message on the billboard too literally. Nobody seriously wishes Bush were still President. To miss Bush is not to miss the man, but to miss a slightly more sane political landscape. Saner and better politics will return, at the ballot box.