President George H.W. Bush: a life well lived

George Herbert Walker Bush, the 41st President of the United States, passed into history last week at the age of 94, surrounded by family: there’s no doubt he lived an extraordinary life. 

He was known as a competent, level-headed leader, articulate and calm, dedicated to conservative political principles, but like many leaders who came of age during World War II, he was capable of reaching across the aisle for bipartisan actions when the nation required it—a skill sorely lacking among today’s leaders.

Born a New England son in Milton Massachusetts (he would also summer in Kennebunkport Maine throughout his life,) he lived in an exemplary and unusually adventurous manner, traveling the world in both war and peace, accumulating a fortune as an oil industry executive during the golden age of American capitalism, and reaching the highest echelons of power in both business and politics. 

He grew up loving baseball, and excelled academically. He answered the call of military service following the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, postponing his university education to serve as one of the youngest naval aviators in U.S. History, achieving the rank of Lieutenant, and flying numerous combat missions. He was even shot down in action over the pacific, and forced to bail out, then rescued by a U.S. naval vessel, making for a dramatic story his biographers loved to tell over and over again.

In 1945 he married his beloved Barbara Pierce. They started a family, eventually counting a Governor and U.S. President among their six children. 

Following the war he attended prestigious  Yale University, graduating with a B.A. in 1948. He then moved to Texas to pursue a career in the oil industry, climbing the corporate ladder quickly, eventually founding his own oil company, and achieving enormous success and great  wealth by 1964, at the age of 40.

Developing an interest in politics, the accomplished business man ran for the U.S. Senate, but lost. Undeterred, in 1966 he won a seat in the House of Representatives, for Texas’s 7th congressional district, winning re-election, but then losing another run for the senate in 1970.

President Nixon appointed him the ambassador to the United Nations in 1971, and he became the chair of the Republican national committee in 1973. President Ford continued to call on Bush for national service, ultimately appointing him to the Director of the Central Intelligence Agency, a formidable position of responsibility and prestige, though a challenging office in those turbulent times, when public trust in government was at an all-time low following the Watergate years and the debacle in Vietnam.

Running for President in 1980, He was defeated by Ronald Reagan. In a famous debate he slammed his future boss’s economic plan by referring to trickle down economics as “Voodoo Economics,” a phrase which has stood the test of time. 

But despite their initial rivalry, the two leaders mended fences, and Reagan tapped him for the Vice Presidential slot after winning the Republican nomination.

Serving 8 years as Vice President, he championed deregulation and helped to administer Reagan’s War on Drugs. In 1988 he successfully defeated Massachusetts Governor Mike Dukakis in the general election to become the 41st President of the United States. 

During an eventful 4-year term, President Bush conducted the first gulf war following the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait, and also military activity in Panama. The Berlin Wall, a long-standing icon of Soviet Tyranny, fell and the Soviet Union dissolved two years later. He strongly advocated for private charities, a life-long interest—his famous “thousand points of light.” His highest approval rating in office was a whopping 89%. 

However, he had to renege on a no tax pledge, and an economic recession challenged his administration. These factors, and the nearly electric charisma of his young political opponent, lead to his loss to former governor Bill Clinton. 

In his later years, former President Bush was an exemplary ex President, championing numerous social causes and charities, and joining forces to work with former President Bill Clinton to promote these noble endeavors.

He also captured the imagination of the nation, inspiring millions of aging people around the globe, by sky diving well into his eighties, reminiscent of his early naval jump over the pacific.

As he’s laid to rest, we should remember how George H.W. Bush represents the best of his generation, and in this time of eroding public standards of decency, ethics and conduct among our leaders, he stands as a guiding light for all leaders, regardless of political affiliation, who aspire to greatness and ethical leadership.

Photo: Wikipedia Commons (U.S. Navy Photo – public domain)

President George H.W. Bush dies at 94

Former President George Herbert Walker Bush passed away today at the age of 94.

Face Activities extends our condolences to the Bush family and the nation. Thoughtful, dignified and Presidential, he will be greatly missed by liberals and conservatives alike in these tumultuous times.

Watch this retrospective tribute to the 41st U.S. President:

Video: PBS News Hour / Youtube

Photo: Wikimedia Commons, Public Domain

 

 

 

Happy Thanksgiving! What’s the history of this traditional holiday?

History of Thanksgiving

The management team of Face Activities wishes a Happy Thanksgiving to all of our members who celebrate this traditional American Holiday! We hope you enjoy a joyful, bountiful holiday with friends and family.

 

Learn about the history of the American Thanksgiving Holiday (History Channel / Youtube)

Millions of Americans will travel to sit down with family members across the land for a grand feast, typically comprising turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes, gravy, cranberry sauce, pumpkin pie, and much more. But what is the history of this very American holiday?

Photo: By Glen Edelson from ATLANTA, USA – Turkey Time, CC BY 2.0, Link

Mid Term Elections: get out and vote!

Today millions of Americans are voting in the U.S. mid-term elections, widely seen as a nation-wide referendum on the Trump administration. Congressional seats, including representatives and Senators across the country, will be chosen, as well as mayors, governors and many local positions, and issues.

Face Activities encourages all of our users and site’s visitors to get out and vote today. Please don’t skip this important activity: it’s crucial to make your voice count in the electoral process. It’s too easy to give in to feelings of powerlessness, or apathy. But voting is the life’s blood of our democracy, and the more people who vote, the stronger our democracy becomes.

The Democrats are hoping to recapture the House of Representatives, at best, or at least strengthen their numbers in both the House and the Senate. A stronger position in Congress will mean a more effective opposition to Trump Administration policies. Of course, republicans are attempting to block this, and strengthen their control of congress.

Over the last few days President Trump has seemingly ignored the advice of his advisors, who recommended messaging about the strength of the economy, in favor of strong anti-immigration rhetoric that’s bound to appeal to his base but offend the sensibilities of less politically extreme swing voters and more main stream republicans, while insensing liberal democrats and progressives.

Trump has frequently referred to the immigrant caravan of desperate refugees headed towards the southern U.S. border, triggering fears that they are a dangerous invading force in the eyes of his more xenophobic followers. Trump has attempted to send thousands of U.S. military troops to the southern border.

Donald Trump Jr. was even accused of dog whistling to alt right and Neo Nazi Groups, using the number “88” (a significant white supremacist symbol) in a speech, disguised as an inaccurate percentage when ostensibly discussing voting records in the Senate.

The nation’s political parties are playing for keeps. The results of the mid term elections will either strengthen or weaken the ability of the Trump administration to govern. What ever your political stand, it’s time to go to the polls to vote, and let your voice be heard.

Photo: wikimedia commons – Dude7248 • Public domain

Video: YouTube / Financial Times

A week of tragic violence

The management team of Face Activities extends our sympathies to the victims of the horrific Synogogue mass-casualty event in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, in which 11 innocent people lost their lives, and the tragic shooting incident at a Kroger in Kentucky, where two African Americans lost their lives.

These despicable crimes are outrages, and part of the same week of hate which also included 14 attempted bombings by a deranged Trump supporter. The degree of hatred and the lack of empathy required to commit such acts is truly shocking.

Learn more about these incidents:

Photo: Published Domain

Video: msnbc / YouTube

Watch Brett Cavanaugh sworn in as Supreme Court justice

Following a confirmation process that was among the most controversial in American History, Judge Brett Cavanaugh was sworn in as a U.S. Supreme Court Justice.

President Trump spoke in the minutes before the actual swearing in, insisting that, during the confirmation process, judge Cavanaugh had been “proven innocent,” of sexual misconduct claims during the hearings and limited FBI investigation. This was an extraordinary and illogical claim, but not unusual for the President, who is known for his mistruths and lies.

After the swearing in, the newly minted Justice, with his proud wife and daughters beaming by his side, delivered his own speech in which he thanked conservative republican law makers by name for helping him achieve his confirmation.

Will Justice Cavanaugh ever live down the sexual assault allegations levied by Dr. Christine Blasey Ford, who testified on the matter before congress.

Watch the swearing in ceremony:

Photo: Public domain

video: Space Force News / YouTube

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