Careless or not, I feel that Carter was right on the mark!
NBC, MSNBC and news services
Updated: 52 minutes ago
Former President Jimmy Carter on Monday said his comments over the weekend about the Bush administration were “careless.”
Carter was quoted Saturday as saying “I think as far as the adverse impact on the nation around the world, this administration has been the worst in history.”
The Georgia Democrat said Bush had overseen an “overt reversal of America’s basic values” as expressed by previous administrations, including that of his own father, former President George H.W. Bush.
Interviewed on the TODAY Show about the comments, Carter said, "They were maybe careless or misinterpreted." He said he “certainly was not talking personally about any president.”
When pressed by NBC’s Meredith Vieira as to whether he was saying his remarks were careless or reckless, the former president said, “I think they were, yes, because they were interpreted as comparing this whole administration to all other administrations."
Carter said he was answering a question about the foreign policy of former President Richard Nixon, as compared with that of the current administration. He said he wasn't comparing the Bush administration with all those through American history. But in comparison to Nixon's, the Bush administration's foreign policy "was much worse," Carter said.
On Sunday, in a biting rebuke, the White House dismissed Carter as “increasingly irrelevant."
“I think it’s sad that President Carter’s reckless personal criticism is out there,” White House spokesman Tony Fratto responded Sunday from Crawford, where Bush spent the weekend.
“I think it’s unfortunate,” Fratto said. “And I think he is proving to be increasingly irrelevant with these kinds of comments.”
Carter made the comments to the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette in a story that appeared in the newspaper’s Saturday editions.
Past criticCarter has been an outspoken critic of Bush, but the White House has largely refrained from attacking him in return. Sunday’s sharp response marks a departure from the deference that sitting presidents traditionally have shown their predecessors.
In the newspaper interview, Carter said Bush had taken a ”radical departure from all previous administration policies” with the Iraq war.
“We now have endorsed the concept of pre-emptive war where we go to war with another nation militarily, even though our own security is not directly threatened, if we want to change the regime there or if we fear that some time in the future our security might be endangered,” Carter said.
In a separate BBC interview, Carter also denounced the close relationship between Bush and outgoing British Prime Minister Tony Blair.
“Abominable. Loyal, blind, apparently subservient,” Carter said when asked how he would characterize Blair’s relationship with Bush.
“I think that the almost undeviating support by Great Britain for the ill-advised policies of President Bush in Iraq have been a major tragedy for the world,” Carter said.
Carter, who was president from 1977 to 1981 and won the 2002 Nobel Peace Prize for his charitable work, was an outspoken opponent of the invasion of Iraq before it was launched in 2003.
© 2007 MSNBC Interactive
Carter had, and still has, better moral values than Bush will ever have.
Sorry, I strongly disagree!
Right now the housing market is showing signs of collapse in most places because of all the shady financing deals that the government made no attempt to stop. More and more people are losing their homes. Here in Washington State, the housing market is still strong, but this too is a major problem. Rents are getting so high that those living on a fixed income cannot afford them anymore... even with HUD (housing assistance) paying the larger part of the bill. Oh, and HUD cut back on the amount they help too.
In my apartment complex, people who have lived here for decades have been forced out. Month after month another apartment gets emptied out and another familiar face has to leave. And ya know what? I consider this apartment complex about upper class slum level and yet the poor cannot afford to live here anymore. Just where are they moving to?
In fact, my rental agreement is up for renewal and I am not sure I can take the new rent... especially with the backdoor increase they tacked onto the rent increase. Water and sewage used to be part of rent, now it is an extra charge that is not included with rent so HUD will not cover it. It all adds up to a rent increase of about $83.00 for me and with the cost of living as sky high as it is now, I don't think I can pay it. At this time, I am wondering where in the hell am I going to find a place that I can afford. Will it be a one room shack? Will I be forced out onto the streets?
You tell me Bush isn't so bad? Well, I think he is one $#!**y President.
Anyway, I don't remember having to face the possibility of living on the streets when Carter was president. We couldn’t afford to buy a home but at least WE DID HAVE A PLACE TO LIVE!!!
Today, a fixed income is just not enough to live with.
Carter blasts US policy on Palestinians
By SHAWN POGATCHNIK, Associated Press Writer 1 hour, 35 minutes ago
DUBLIN, Ireland - Former President Jimmy Carter accused the U.S., Israel and the European Union on Tuesday of seeking to divide the Palestinian people by reopening aid to President Mahmoud Abbas' new government in the West Bank while denying the same to the Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip.
Carter said Hamas, besides winning a fair and democratic mandate that should have entitled it to lead the Palestinian government, had proven itself to be far more organized in its political and military showdowns with Abbas' moderate Fatah movement.
Hamas fighters routed Fatah in their violent takeover of the Gaza Strip last week. The split prompted Abbas to dissolve the power-sharing government with his rivals in Hamas and set up a Fatah-led administration to govern the West Bank.
Carter said the consensus of the U.S., Israel and the EU to start funneling aid to Abbas' new government in the West Bank but continue blocking Hamas in the Gaza Strip represented an "effort to divide Palestinians into two peoples."
"All efforts of the international community should be to reconcile the two, but there's no effort from the outside to bring the two together," he said.
The U.S. and European countries cut off the Hamas-led government last year because of the Islamic militant group's refusal to renounce violence and recognize Israel. They have continued to send humanitarian aid to Gaza through the United Nations and other organizations.
In the latest crisis, the U.S., Israel and much of the West have been trying to shore up Abbas in hopes that the West Bank can be made into a democratic example that would bring along Gaza.
During his speech to Ireland's annual Forum on Human Rights, the 83-year-old former president said monitors from his Carter Center observed the 2006 election that Hamas won. He said the vote was "orderly and fair" and Hamas triumphed, in part, because it was "shrewd in selecting candidates," whereas a divided, corrupt Fatah ran multiple candidates for single seats.
Far from encouraging Hamas' move into parliamentary politics, Carter said the U.S. and Israel, with European Union acquiescence, sought to subvert the outcome by shunning Hamas and helping Abbas to keep the reins of political and military power.
"That action was criminal," he said in a news conference after his speech.
"The United States and Israel decided to punish all the people in Palestine and did everything they could to deter a compromise between Hamas and Fatah," he said.
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