Bush has received little attention or thanks for his compassionate reforms. This is less a reflection on him than on the political challenge of compassionate conservatism. The conservative movement gives the president no credit because it views all these priorities — foreign assistance, a federal role in education, the expansion of an entitlement — as heresies, worthy of the stake. ~Michael Gerson

It doesn’t help that these “compassionate reforms” are all monumental failures and/or appalling burdens on the national fisc of dubious value and poor implementation.  Why might no one be congratuating the President on sending unfunded mandates to the states?  Could it be that introducing vast new entitlements–when our current entitlement system is already in serious trouble over the long-term–is an irresponsible, short-sighted gamble with the wealth of future generations for the sake of brief, transitory and already vanished political gain?  No, it must be that there are unimaginative inquisitors who are intent on ripping out Bush’s bleeding heart and throwing it on the pyre.  That must be the only explanation.  What would we do without Gerson to explain these things to us?