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President George H.W. Bush. 41 st President of the United States. "I can tell you this: If I'm ever in a position to call the shots, I'm not going to rush to send somebody else's kids into a war.“ - George Bush.

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President George H.W. Bush

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president george h w bush

President George H.W. Bush

41st President of the United States


"I can tell you this: If I'm ever in a position to call the shots, I'm not going to rush to send somebody else's kids into a war.“- George Bush

president george bush

“‘These are the times that try men’s souls.’ But even as planes of the multinational forces attack Iraq, I prefer to think of peace, not war. I am convinced not only that we will prevail, but that out of the horror of combat will come the recognition that no nation will be permitted to brutally assault its neighbor.”

- President George Bush


"One of the ironies of George Bush's life is that a fundamentally decent man presided over a moment when politics got meaner and rougher... Lee Atwater and these henchmen for Bush looking for the so-called wedge issues, not really staying on the high road and talking about the great issues of the day, but rather sniping at their opponent to find some weakness in him. And Bush put up with that."

end of the cold war a mixed blessing
End of the Cold War, a Mixed Blessing?
  • For Europe, threat of Soviet Union was over and Eastern Europe was free from Soviet domination
    • But many nations were underdeveloped, not used to democracy, unstable as nations
  • Although U.S. had won as world’s only remaining superpower…Now What
    • Remain interventionist, if so when and how?
    • Revert to isolationism?
the gulf war
The Gulf War
  • U.S. had strategic interests
    • Prevent Saddam from interfering with Middle Eastern oil production
    • Keep Iraq and Iran balanced
  • Saddam Hussein and Iraq
    • Claimed retaking of natural Iraqi land
    • Power grab, sought Kuwait’s oil reserves
12 18 11 a president is neither prince nor pope and i don t seek a window on men s souls

12/18/11“A president is neither prince nor pope, and I don’t seek a window on men’s souls”

- George H.W. Bush

outcomes of the persian gulf war
Outcomes of the Persian Gulf War
  • Saddam Hussein ousted from Kuwait
    • No Fly Zone, sanctions enforced, concern over weapson programs
    • Take two? Invasion in 2003
  • U.S. has permanent presence in Middle East
    • Osama bin Laden inspired to attack the United States
  • Emboldened Iran in the face of a weaker Iraq
    • Especially since 2003 invasion
bush s foreign policy approach
Bush’s Foreign Policy Approach
  • Sought to establish a "New World Order,“
    • Collective security
    • Multinational cooperation
    • Breaking down Cold War alliances and using peaceful nations to stand united against rogue states.
  • Supporters: United States had to take on a large role as world leader to guard against human rights abuses, defend democratic regimes, and lead humanitarian efforts.
  • Critics: Unrealistic for U.S. to engage where national interests not involved; catchphrase/gimmick of idealism
not conservative enough
Not Conservative Enough?
  • Americans with Disabilities Act
    • Required accommodations to be made for disabled
  • Clean Air Act
    • Set new standards curbing car emissions
  • Both seen as betrayals for the Reagan Revolution
    • Increased regulation, gov’t bureaucracy
clarence thomas anita hill hearings
Clarence Thomas Anita Hill Hearings
  • Sparked a national debate on Sexual Harassment in the workplace
  • Illustrated that culture issues had lost some wider appeal
bill clinton

“The future is not an inheritance, it is an opportunity and an obligation…The most important family policy, urban policy, labor policy, minority policy, and foreign policy America can have is an expanding entrepreneurial economy of high-wage, high-skilled jobs.”

- Bill Clinton

bill clinton a new democrat
Bill Clinton, a “New Democrat”
  • Helped to rebrand the Democratic Party with his “New Democrat” centrist approach
    • No longer New Deal liberals
      • Pro-growth
      • Strong on defense
      • Tough on crime
      • Reform welfare
      • Balance budgets
clinton domestic agenda
Clinton Domestic Agenda
  • Motor Voter Law
    • Allowed voter registration at RMV/DMV
  • Don’t Ask Don’t Tell policy instituted (DADT)
    • Gay men and women can serve as long as their sexual orientation is not known
  • Family Medical Leave Act
    • May receive 12 weeks of unpaid leave for medical/family reasons and still have job
modern extensions of clinton era issues
Modern Extensions of Clinton Era Issues
  • Should the federal government be allowed to mandate that everyone have health care coverage?
  • Do you believe that people should have to produce a photo I.D. in order to vote?
  • Do you believe that DADT should have been repealed?
  • What are your thoughts on the Defense of Marriage Act and the Justice Department’s decision to not defend it in court?
  • Should assault weapons be banned? Should high capacity clips be banned? Should there be background checks and waiting periods for gun purchases?
clinton tough on crime
Clinton Tough on Crime
  • Clinton passed new stiffer gun control limits
    • Brady Bill
      • Mandatory waiting period of five days, background check required
    • Assault Weapons Ban
      • Placed limits on Assault weapons and high capacity clips over 10 rounds
    • Instant background check still in effect, AWB expired in 2004
branch davidian cult waco texas 1993
Branch Davidian Cult, Waco Texas 1993

ATF raided compound, 51 day seige took place

Led by David Koresh

76 people died, including 21 children and two pregnant women when the compound was set on fire from within

oklahoma city bombing 1996
Oklahoma City Bombing, 1996

Anti government act of domestic terrorism committed when Timothy McVeigh set off a truck bomb outside the federal building killing 168 people killed and wounding 680 others.

Committed on the anniversary of the Waco Siege ending/fire

Provoked National Debate:

Regarding gun control laws, guns violence involving youths.

High school cliques, subcultures, bullying and intervention

Role of violent video games/movies in American society

Increased emphasis on school security

Columbine High School shooting, April 20, 1999Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold, 12 students killed, one teacher
edward abbey american author

"The tank, the B-52, the fighter-bomber, the state controlled police are the weapons of dictatorship. The rifle is the weapon of democracy....”

- Edward Abbey (American author)

the second amendment
The Second Amendment

"A well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.“

Should assault weapons be banned?

Should there be background checks and waiting periods for gun purchases?

Should high capacity clips be banned? (anything over 10 rounds)

violence in movies tv
Violence in Movies/TV
  • Public Enemy, 1930s. Most violent film of the decade, had eight deaths
  • Robocop, Die Hard, and Rambo each had over 60 deaths
  • 1991, by the age of 18 the average viewer had witnessed some 40,000 murders on TV
the contract with america
The Contract with America
  • Republicans gained control of both houses of Congress
  • Sought to realign back with Reagan principles of smaller gov’t, cut welfare, balance budgets, etc.
    • Over estimated mandate with gov’t shutdown in 1994.
    • Welfare Reform Act of 1996
1 10 11 segregation is no longer the law but too often separation is still the rule

1/10/11"Segregation is no longer the law, but too often separation is still the rule."

- Bill Clinton, 1997

a racial divide
A Racial Divide
  • Harsh racial tone during decade
    • Affirmative Action policies repealed by Proposition 209 in C.A.
  • Thurgood Marshall, Supreme Court justice commented that Americans had “given up on integration.”
  • Persistence of inequality
    • 1972 income of black families were 1/3 less than white families
    • Virtually unchanged 20 years later
    • Sharp declines in black test scores, achievement gap remained
rodney king riots l a 1992
Rodney King Riots, L.A. 1992
  • In reaction to four white officers being “not guity” of excessive force, L.A. erupted into rioting
    • Verdict ignited an already tense atmosphere
      • Mistrust towards police
      • Urban decay
      • Defacto segregation
o j simpson trial
O.J. Simpson Trial
  • 85% of African Americans agreed with the “not guilty” verdict
  • 34% of whites agreed
  • In response, inclusive “Million Man March” on Washington (half a million)
racial ambivalence
Racial Ambivalence?
  • 1964 1 in 5 whites lived near a black neighbor
  • 1994 3 in 5 whites did so
  • 1968 17% of whites and 48% of blacks approved of interracial marriage
  • 1994 had increased to 45% for whites and 68% for blacks
  • Yet was there a voluntary racial apartheid?
clinton s foreign policy undefined
Clinton’s Foreign Policy: Undefined
  • Hesitant to intervene disaster during humanitarian mission to Somalia
  • Avoided genocide in Bosnia 1993, Rwanda 1995,
  • Successfully intervened in 1999 in Kosovo
  • Brokered Israeli/Palestinian peace agreements, pathway to statehood
    • Only to be shattered by extremists on both sides
clinton s defense said with a straight face
Clinton’s Defense…said with a straight face!
  • “I have not had sex with her as I defined it”
  • My understanding of this definition is it covers contact by the person being deposed with the enumerated areas, if the contact is done with an intent to arouse or gratify”
  • Clinton had not made any effort to arouse or gratify Lewinsky, he had therefore not “had sex”
  • “It depends on how you define alone”
  • When pressed if lawyer’s previous statement “that there is absolutely no sex of any kind,” Clinton said it was not untrue because “it depends on what the meaning of the word ‘is’ is.”
longest economic expansion in history
Longest Economic Expansion in History
  • 1998 unemployment down to 4.5%, lowest since 60s
  • Inflation down to 1%, lowest since 50s
  • Fed. Gov’t had first surplus since 69’
  • By 2000, 237 billion surplus
  • boom, some 200 companies went public, raised 20 billion
  • NASDAQ doubled from Oct 1999-March 2000
  • Crash in spring, NASDAQ lost half its value, 2 trillion in stocks lost
north american free trade agreement or nafta
Free trade agreement under Clinton

Effects are controversial; lowers cost of goods, creates opportunities for American companies


Lost jobs to Mexico with available cheap labor

North American Free Trade Agreement or NAFTA