Watergate, the Iranian hostage crisis and the Trail of Tears revealed what utter disasters they were as president.
We measure presidents by what they did — and we should also consider what they did not do.
George Washington is the greatest president because he served rather than ruled.
He never sought the job and left after two terms, setting a limit on presidential power that all presidents followed — until Franklin Roosevelt.
Bush makes my top 10 because, faced with the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, he showed similar restraint.
Unlike Lincoln, Bush refused to suspend habeas corpus. While the Geneva Conventions do not require legal representation for enemy combatants, Bush made sure lawyers were provided.
Liberals railed against the prison at Gitmo, but after giving his word that he would close Gitmo in his first year, President Obama has kept it open.
Unlike FDR, who interned American citizens of Japanese origin after Pearl Harbor, Bush's first speech to Americans after 9/11 was to remind them of the peaceful nature of Muslim Americans.
His words were prescient. With few exceptions, Muslims in this country have been as supportive as anyone of the war on terrorism.
Bush knew that terrorists want a clash of civilizations and he was not about to give them one.
I do not mean to imply that Bush was better than Lincoln or FDR, only that Bush learned from the mistakes of every previous president — including his father.
The biggest lesson to learn from the 43rd president is the importance of moderation.
Bush had tremendous power as the leader of the free world, and the sense to be judicious in wielding it.
Surber's email is donsur...@dailymail.com.