W.: The Selective History, Vol. 1

The White House has upon a novel way to deal with the more problematic aspects of President Bush's legacy: ignore them.

By Justin Jouvenal

Published December 9, 2008 9:43PM (EST)

The White House has put out talking points for top administration officials, telling them how to describe President Bush's time in office, the Los Angeles Times reports. Notably, the talking points make no mention of the federal response to Hurricane Katrina, the Iraq intelligence failures, the abuses of Abu Ghraib or the recent housing market collapse.

According to the Times, the "Speech Topper on the Bush Record" presents the administration as an "unalloyed success." During the current financial crisis, Bush "responded with bold measures to prevent an economic meltdown." The memo also claims Bush bolstered the economy with his 2001 tax cuts, kept the country safe after Sept. 11 and curbed AIDS in Africa. No mention of saving puppies from burning apartment buildings, however.

The real kicker comes at the end.

"Above all, George W. Bush promised to uphold the honor and the dignity of his office. And through all the challenges and trials of his time in office, that is a charge that our president has kept."

Justin Jouvenal

Justin Jouvenal is an editorial fellow at Salon and a graduate student in journalism at New York University.

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