Not content with bending the constitution over the Lincoln Bedroom divan and having his way with it fortnightly, The Boy Who Would Be King has decided that not only does he get to decide who reads his papers, but so will his children and grand children:
As professors at Southern Methodist University have mobilized against the plans to build President Bush’s library there, their focus has not been the library, but a policy institute to be affiliated with it that would have as its mission promoting the Bush philosophy.
Such an institute, with an explicitly ideological identity and reporting to the president’s foundation instead of to the university, runs counter to academic values, the critics have said. Many times they have attempted to contrast their dislike of the institute with the library itself, which could be a valuable source of documents on the Bush administration â€” open to scholars with a range of views. And SMU officials, in defending the library plans, have stressed the scholarly value of the archive.
But with opposition to the SMU plans growing, national groups of archivists and historians are trying to broaden the debate. Weeks after 9/11, President Bush signed an executive order giving presidents and former presidents much more control over their records â€” and extended that right to a family member when a former president dies. While there have been periodic disputes over how much control presidents should have over their papers, the Bush order goes beyond the control asserted by any president since Nixon (whose efforts to control his papers led to various laws to promote access).
Basically, what this provision means is that not only can GW keep Reagan’s paper’s locked up and out of the reach of researchers for longer than the usual 12 years but he’ll be able to look up his own papers, and his daddy’s, for however long he wants– even after he’s dead. He can grant his children and descendants the power of sole ownership, meaning that if you want to view his paper’s fifty years from now, you’d have to buy Jenna and Barb a drink and even then, maybe they’ll let you.
W keeps saying that no one can judge him now, that only history can do that. What he isn’t saying is that he’s going to do everything in his power to ensure that the only history involving him that you get to read is written by his loyal true believers. No one bothered to teach hi the difference between hagiography and history, but then, he’s always held the view that their was one set of rules for him and different, more stringent rules for those not chosen by Jesus, God and the Easter Bunny, that is, everyone else.