Seeing it All: The Onion Nailed the Bush Presidency in 2001

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Days before Bush’s first inauguration in 2001, the Onion ran the headline: “Bush: Our Long National Nightmare of Peace and Prosperity is Finally Over.”

As we count down the final hours of the Bush presidency, it’s time to recall the remarkably far-sighted bit of satire The Onion penned in January 2001. Among the many chillingly prescient elements of the fake Bush speech that the Onion penned for him eight long years ago:

“You better believe we’re going to mix it up with somebody at some point during my administration,” said Bush, who plans a 250 percent boost in military spending. “Unlike my predecessor, I am fully committed to putting soldiers in battle situations. Otherwise, what is the point of even having a military?”

On the economic side, Bush vowed to bring back economic stagnation by implementing substantial tax cuts, which would lead to a recession, which would necessitate a tax hike, which would lead to a drop in consumer spending, which would lead to layoffs, which would deepen the recession even further.”

The Onion also “quotes” then Republican Speaker of the House Dennis Hastert looking forward to the Bush presidency:

“Finally, the horrific misrule of the Democrats has been brought to a close,” House Majority Leader Dennis Hastert (R-IL) told reporters. “Under Bush, we can all look forward to military aggression, deregulation of dangerous, greedy industries, and the defunding of vital domestic social-service programs upon which millions depend. Mercifully, we can now say goodbye to the awful nightmare that was Clinton’s America.”

Re-reading this now, I don’t know whether to laugh or cry. But you can read the rest of it here.

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