Wars, ongoing scandals cost Americans dearly

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To the editor:
Terrorism alone has never been nor will it ever be a threat to our way of life. The application of self-serving dishonesty in Congress and the White House is the only real threat to America.
Self-serving dishonesty enabled George W. Bush to facilitate his overreaction to Sept. 11, 2001, and his subsequent blunders. In his first campaign for president, Bush declared his mandate from God, which had instructed him to spread democracy around the world.  He was still espousing that unrealistic notion at the recent dedication of his presidential library.
That library cost $250 million. A flamboyant amount compared to the paltry $6 million (adjusted for inflation) spent on the library for Franklin D. Roosevelt, one of our truly great presidents who was reelected three times.
Most of the ostentatious Bush money was spent on cosmetic surgery, which was a futile effort. There are still a few things money cannot buy. A pretty face for an ugly administration is one of them.
Superficial surgery cannot cover up 7,000 killed, 50,000 wounded, including 16,000 amputated or blown-off limbs, nor can it conceal trillions of borrowed dollars squandered on a misguided venture to spread democracy in the Middle East, or was oil really the guiding force?
Sadly, the numbers above are only subtotals. After 12 years, the grand total for each category is still nowhere in sight and little, if anything, has been achieved or settled.  We are as vulnerable to terrorism in 2013 as we were on Sept. 10, 2001, and the 11 million illegal immigrants roaming our land with impunity add hypocrisy to those subtotals and indict the politicians in Congress and the White House for rank dereliction of sworn duty.
Moreover, the long-standing incumbents on Capitol Hill did not learn a thing from the Bush lesson or any of the other well-taught lessons of recent history. Senator John McCain is a salient example of the continuing stupidity in Congress. Just last week, he was in Syria hawking munitions for the “military industrial complex” and expecting we taxpayers to borrow more money to pay for them.
Exit Bush with his godly mandate and enter Obama with his kingly illusions and the parade of scandal-hatching, self-serving dishonesties continue to pass in review. Do not be surprised when you see Obama with the victims of the Boston Marathon bombing in his background as he makes his trademark pitch for tighter regulations on the sale of back packs, pressure cookers, ball bearings and nails.
Such misdirected pitches vividly illustrate hype substituting for real leadership, and they also reveal self-serving dishonesty and the obvious cause that is undermining our way of life.
Our $16.8 trillion debt, the diminishing middle class, and the latest burst of inexcusable scandals are the consequences of self-serving dishonesty in Congress and the White House, and they have cost Americans dearly, not to mention the needless sacrifices made by our young citizens in the armed forces including those that stand or lie among the tragic subtotals above.
Shafter Bailey
Lexington, formerly of