Prominent neoconservative Jennifer Rubin's answer is emblematic of a widespread failure to grapple with his tenure and legacy.
I understand Rubin doesn't agree that the Iraq war was a catastrophic mistake. But even someone with her neoconservative worldview should recognize all of the following as grave errors:
- The failure to take terrorism more seriously prior to 9/11.
- The failure to heed the expert planning that ought to have guided the American presence in Iraq after the initial invasion.
- The failure to bring Osama bin Laden to justice.
- The failure to address the deficit -- indeed, the pursuit of policies that made it substantially worse.
- The failure to address the economic conditions and regulatory policies that ended in the housing bubble and financial crisis.
- The failure to institute safeguards that would have prevented the morally repugnant and strategically catastrophic prisoner abuse scandals.
- The failure to institute safeguards that would have prevented so many innocents from being thrown into the prison at Guantanamo Bay.
- The seven years spent in Afghanistan without much to show for it.
- The attempt to appoint Harriet Miers to the Supreme Court.