Once again George W. Bush explains that the failings of his presidency were due to bad marketing — his choice of poor words “that conveyed the wrong message.” If only he could have sold himself better, everything would have been A-okay.
“I regret saying some things I shouldn’t have said,” Bush told CNN’s Heidi Collins when asked to reflect on his regrets over his two terms as president. “Like ‘dead or alive’ and ‘bring ’em on.’ My wife reminded me that, hey, as president of the United States, be careful what you say.”
The interview, aboard the USS Intrepid in New York, came after the president addressed a Veterans Day ceremony.
Shortly after the attacks of September 11, the president said of al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden: “I want justice. There’s an old poster out West that said, ‘Wanted, dead or alive.’ ”
Bush was also criticized in 2003 for his answer addressing insurgents in Iraq.
“There are some who feel like that the conditions are such that they can attack us there. My answer is, bring ’em on,” he said then.
On Tuesday, the president also referenced the moment aboard the USS Abraham Lincoln on May 1, 2003, during which he declared an end to major combat operations in Iraq.
“They had a sign that said ‘Mission Accomplished.’ It was a sign aimed at the sailors on the ship, but it conveyed a broader knowledge. To some it said, well, Bush thinks the war in Iraq is over, when I didn’t think that. But nonetheless, it conveyed the wrong message.”
I can’t wait until the day when we have a president who has the marvelous ability to self-reflect.