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RunDown
Apr 21st, 2006, 12:29 AM
http://i.realone.com/assets/rn/img/7/8/6/1/9961687-9961690-slarge.jpg

The Worst President in History?
One of America's leading historians assesses George W. Bush

George W. Bush's presidency appears headed for colossal historical disgrace. Barring a cataclysmic event on the order of the terrorist attacks of September 11th, after which the public might rally around the White House once again, there seems to be little the administration can do to avoid being ranked on the lowest tier of U.S. presidents. And that may be the best-case scenario. Many historians are now wondering whether Bush, in fact, will be remembered as the very worst president in all of American history.

From time to time, after hours, I kick back with my colleagues at Princeton to argue idly about which president really was the worst of them all. For years, these perennial debates have largely focused on the same handful of chief executives whom national polls of historians, from across the ideological and political spectrum, routinely cite as the bottom of the presidential barrel. Was the lousiest James Buchanan, who, confronted with Southern secession in 1860, dithered to a degree that, as his most recent biographer has said, probably amounted to disloyalty -- and who handed to his successor, Abraham Lincoln, a nation already torn asunder? Was it Lincoln's successor, Andrew Johnson, who actively sided with former Confederates and undermined Reconstruction? What about the amiably incompetent Warren G. Harding, whose administration was fabulously corrupt? Or, though he has his defenders, Herbert Hoover, who tried some reforms but remained imprisoned in his own outmoded individualist ethic and collapsed under the weight of the stock-market crash of 1929 and the Depression's onset? The younger historians always put in a word for Richard M. Nixon, the only American president forced to resign from office.

Now, though, George W. Bush is in serious contention for the title of worst ever. In early 2004, an informal survey of 415 historians conducted by the nonpartisan History News Network found that eighty-one percent considered the Bush administration a "failure." Among those who called Bush a success, many gave the president high marks only for his ability to mobilize public support and get Congress to go along with what one historian called the administration's "pursuit of disastrous policies." In fact, roughly one in ten of those who called Bush a success was being facetious, rating him only as the best president since Bill Clinton -- a category in which Bush is the only contestant.

The lopsided decision of historians should give everyone pause. Contrary to popular stereotypes, historians are generally a cautious bunch. We assess the past from widely divergent points of view and are deeply concerned about being viewed as fair and accurate by our colleagues. When we make historical judgments, we are acting not as voters or even pundits, but as scholars who must evaluate all the evidence, good, bad or indifferent. Separate surveys, conducted by those perceived as conservatives as well as liberals, show remarkable unanimity about who the best and worst presidents have been.

Historians do tend, as a group, to be far more liberal than the citizenry as a whole -- a fact the president's admirers have seized on to dismiss the poll results as transparently biased. One pro-Bush historian said the survey revealed more about "the current crop of history professors" than about Bush or about Bush's eventual standing. But if historians were simply motivated by a strong collective liberal bias, they might be expected to call Bush the worst president since his father, or Ronald Reagan, or Nixon. Instead, more than half of those polled -- and nearly three-fourths of those who gave Bush a negative rating -- reached back before Nixon to find a president they considered as miserable as Bush. The presidents most commonly linked with Bush included Hoover, Andrew Johnson and Buchanan. Twelve percent of the historians polled -- nearly as many as those who rated Bush a success -- flatly called Bush the worst president in American history. And these figures were gathered before the debacles over Hurricane Katrina, Bush's role in the Valerie Plame leak affair and the deterioration of the situation in Iraq. Were the historians polled today, that figure would certainly be higher.

Even worse for the president, the general public, having once given Bush the highest approval ratings ever recorded, now appears to be coming around to the dismal view held by most historians. To be sure, the president retains a considerable base of supporters who believe in and adore him, and who reject all criticism with a mixture of disbelief and fierce contempt -- about one-third of the electorate. (When the columnist Richard Reeves publicized the historians' poll last year and suggested it might have merit, he drew thousands of abusive replies that called him an idiot and that praised Bush as, in one writer's words, "a Christian who actually acts on his deeply held beliefs.") Yet the ranks of the true believers have thinned dramatically. A majority of voters in forty-three states now disapprove of Bush's handling of his job. Since the commencement of reliable polling in the 1940s, only one twice-elected president has seen his ratings fall as low as Bush's in his second term: Richard Nixon, during the months preceding his resignation in 1974. No two-term president since polling began has fallen from such a height of popularity as Bush's (in the neighborhood of ninety percent, during the patriotic upswell following the 2001 attacks) to such a low (now in the midthirties). No president, including Harry Truman (whose ratings sometimes dipped below Nixonian levels), has experienced such a virtually unrelieved decline as Bush has since his high point. Apart from sharp but temporary upticks that followed the commencement of the Iraq war and the capture of Saddam Hussein, and a recovery during the weeks just before and after his re-election, the Bush trend has been a profile in fairly steady disillusionment.

How does any president's reputation sink so low? The reasons are best understood as the reverse of those that produce presidential greatness. In almost every survey of historians dating back to the 1940s, three presidents have emerged as supreme successes: George Washington, Abraham Lincoln and Franklin D. Roosevelt. These were the men who guided the nation through what historians consider its greatest crises: the founding era after the ratification of the Constitution, the Civil War, and the Great Depression and Second World War. Presented with arduous, at times seemingly impossible circumstances, they rallied the nation, governed brilliantly and left the republic more secure than when they entered office.

Calamitous presidents, faced with enormous difficulties -- Buchanan, Andrew Johnson, Hoover and now Bush -- have divided the nation, governed erratically and left the nation worse off. In each case, different factors contributed to the failure: disastrous domestic policies, foreign-policy blunders and military setbacks, executive misconduct, crises of credibility and public trust. Bush, however, is one of the rarities in presidential history: He has not only stumbled badly in every one of these key areas, he has also displayed a weakness common among the greatest presidential failures -- an unswerving adherence to a simplistic ideology that abjures deviation from dogma as heresy, thus preventing any pragmatic adjustment to changing realities. Rpeatedly, Bush has undone himself, a failing revealed in each major area of presidential performance.



You can read the rest HERE (http://www.rollingstone.com/news/profile/story/9961300/the_worst_president_in_history?rnd=1145468541266&has-player=true&version=6.0.8.1024)

Scotso
Apr 21st, 2006, 12:35 AM
Yes.

Scotso
Apr 21st, 2006, 12:35 AM
Although Reagan is a close #2.

IceHock
Apr 21st, 2006, 12:40 AM
easily!!!

RunDown
Apr 21st, 2006, 12:46 AM
Although Reagan is a close #2.

:lol: I don't think Reagan is the second worst President in history, but isn't it amazing how the Republicans have managed to talk him up to greatness?? He was nowhere near a "great" President.

tennisboi
Apr 21st, 2006, 12:52 AM
George W. Bush=Bad President

Reckoner
Apr 21st, 2006, 12:52 AM
George Bush isn't the worst president ever. And this is comming from a left-winger.

See the problem isn't George Bush. He is minipulated by his administration and Neo-Conservatives that run the U.S. He is just the scapegoat for it all. Thus you can blame his father, Karl Roave, Condaleeza Rice, etc.

Plus I thought Rolling Stone was a music magazine.

skanky~skanketta
Apr 21st, 2006, 01:03 AM
yes.

Pureracket
Apr 21st, 2006, 01:04 AM
George Bush isn't the worst president ever. And this is comming from a left-winger.

See the problem isn't George Bush. He is minipulated by his administration and Neo-Conservatives that run the U.S. He is just the scapegoat for it all. Thus you can blame his father, Karl Roave, Condaleeza Rice, etc.

Plus I thought Rolling Stone was a music magazine.Umm. . .his father, Karl Rove, the neoCons, and Condaleeza Rice aren't the President, though.;)

Brooklyn90
Apr 21st, 2006, 01:09 AM
yes with out a doubt

RunDown
Apr 21st, 2006, 01:22 AM
Umm. . .his father, Karl Rove, the neoCons, and Condaleeza Rice aren't the President, though.;)

Yep. Like Bush said the other day at his press conference, "I make the final decision....blah, blah, blah...I'm the decider...blah blah."

Rocketta
Apr 21st, 2006, 01:28 AM
I'm going with a yes vote. :hatoff:

iPatty
Apr 21st, 2006, 01:39 AM
Nope, Dick "The Real President" Cheney, is. :D

I wouldn't say he is the worst, but he is definitely, definitely on up there.

TF Chipmunk
Apr 21st, 2006, 02:04 AM
ONE OF the worst but not THE worst, thank god :unsure:

Xanadu11
Apr 21st, 2006, 02:07 AM
Not the worst, but deffinetly down there somewhere

Volcana
Apr 21st, 2006, 02:08 AM
Although Reagan is a close #2.I have to disagree. Reagan did the country an awful lot of damage. Principally by selling and awful lot of the public trust to private interests. The Federal government used to produce agriculture information, business information, land information, lots of useful info, for free. Reagan sold all that to privater interests, making it much harder for small businesses to compete with big ones.

But... he was able to recognize when he was wrong. Ronald Reagan, after his massive tax cut his first year in office, rasied taxes EACH of the last seven years he was in office. My source for this is the book his own budget director, David Stockman wrote "the Triumph of Politics'. He was nowhere near as bad as Andrew Johnson or James Buchanan. And Nixon was a VERY good president, Watergate aside. He got a lot of worker safety legislation passed, he created the EPA, he got diplomatic relations with China re-started.

meyerpl
Apr 21st, 2006, 02:11 AM
Well, I'll give the President credit for one thing: he's a "uniter, not a divider". The whole country is pretty much united in their disapproval of his job performance.

dementieva's fan
Apr 21st, 2006, 03:20 AM
I'd say his whole administration is the worst in history.

wta_zuperfann
Apr 21st, 2006, 03:38 AM
Worst of all time.

kiwifan
Apr 21st, 2006, 03:38 AM
Anyone who was alive when Jimmy Carter was President knows that we could be in much worse shape than we are right now. ;)

Carter's a good person but by far (and consider he was following Nixon and Ford ;) ) the worst President of my lifetime.

bw2082
Apr 21st, 2006, 03:43 AM
Anyone who was alive when Jimmy Carter was President knows that we could be in much worse shape than we are right now. ;)

Carter's a good person but by far (and consider he was following Nixon and Ford ;) ) the worst President of my lifetime.

For many people here, they only go back to the first george bush :lol:

Unfortuantely I was around when Carter was in office :tape: :lol:

I would say he's in the lower middle of the pack as far as ranking.

wta_zuperfann
Apr 21st, 2006, 03:46 AM
For all his faults, Carter did not start an unwinnable war for oil, did not drive up a $ 9 trillion dollar deficit, and did not get the entire world to hate our guts.

Reckoner
Apr 21st, 2006, 03:52 AM
Umm. . .his father, Karl Rove, the neoCons, and Condaleeza Rice aren't the President, though.;)
Yeah, but they control him and tell him what to say. Besides everyone knows Cheany is really running the country.

I'd say his whole administration is the worst in history.
See someone agrees with me somewhat.

Hey your from Manitoba too. Sweet. :cool:

meyerpl
Apr 21st, 2006, 03:59 AM
Carter was ineffective. We'd be better off than we are now if Bush was ineffective. I wish he's start drinking again. Think of the trouble we wouldn't be in if he was either totally smashed or passed-out all the time.

drake3781
Apr 21st, 2006, 03:59 AM
For all his faults, Carter did not start an unwinnable war for oil, did not drive up a $ 9 trillion dollar deficit, and did not get the entire world to hate our guts.

Agree. And Carter has done so much good in his life after the presidency, including winning the Nobel Peace Prize; something I somehow don't picture GWB devoting his life to. :tape:

Kunal
Apr 21st, 2006, 05:38 AM
hands down yes

kiwifan
Apr 21st, 2006, 05:41 AM
Malaise: A vague feeling of discomfort, one that cannot be pinned down but is often sensed as "just not right."

The difference between high gas prices and not being able to buy gas.

timafi
Apr 21st, 2006, 05:42 AM
fuck yes :mad: :mad: :mad: :mad:

Cashif
Apr 21st, 2006, 05:48 AM
Yes Without Doubt The Worst-ever President Of All Time

Stamp Paid
Apr 21st, 2006, 06:17 AM
I believe history will show Ronald Reagan as the worst president of all time.
He set wheels in motion in the 1980s that we WILL feel in the near future.

RVD
Apr 21st, 2006, 06:38 AM
Why is this even a question at this point? :scratch:

I keep asking my political buddies this very question, and all but one has admitted that he is. :lol:
The only one who hasn't directly answered in the affirmative, just looks sheepishly down at his shoes and abruptly changes the subject every single time. :haha:

RVD
Apr 21st, 2006, 06:40 AM
I believe history will show Ronald Reagan as the worst president of all time.
He set wheels in motion in the 1980s that we WILL feel in the near future.In all honesty, it's a very very close race between these two [Reagan and Bush, that is].

Pheobo
Apr 21st, 2006, 06:54 AM
I dunno. Hoover and Garfield were pretty damn bad too, but Dubya is definitely up there.

Reagan was just a psychopath that destroyed whatever was left of the "American Dream", or just totally changed the definition and defined it as corporate success with big companies and jets and feeding your children money for dinner because he couldn't see past destroying the commies.

Solitaire
Apr 21st, 2006, 06:59 AM
Only history will tell but he'd sure give anyone a run for their money.

Beefy
Apr 21st, 2006, 08:20 AM
I wouldn't say he's the worst, Carter was pretty dodge

wta_zuperfann
Apr 21st, 2006, 02:03 PM
Bush continues to foment war and threathens even more thanks to the support he has gotten from the pro-war media:

http://www.consortiumnews.com/2006/041906.html

Shame on the Post's Editorial Page

By Robert Parry
April 20, 2006

If a full and truthful history of the disastrous Iraq War is ever written, there should be a chapter devoted to the pivotal role played by the Washington Post’s hawkish editorial page and the many like-minded thinkers who are published in the newspaper’s Op-Ed section.

As arguably the most influential newspaper in the nation’s capital, the Post might have been expected to encourage a healthy pre-war debate that reflected diverse opinions from experts in the fields of government, diplomacy, academia, the military and the broader American public. War, after all, is not a trivial matter.

Instead, the Post’s editorial section served as a kind of pro-war bulletin board, posting neoconservative manifestos attesting to the wisdom of invading Iraq and tacking up harsh indictments of Americans who dissented from George W. Bush’s war plans.

Yet what is perhaps most amazing is that even now – after all that’s been learned about Bush’s Iraq War deceptions – the Post’s editorial page continues to act as the administration’s hall monitor for the war, trying to keep the American people and especially Washington insiders in line.

This month, the Post published two more editorials disparaging critics of the Iraq War. One resumed the near-three-year-old campaign to tear down former U.S. Ambassador Joseph Wilson for challenging “twisted” pre-war intelligence on Iraq; a second scolded retired generals for speaking out against Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld.

‘Good Leak’

In an April 9 editorial, “A Good Leak,” the Post’s editors praised President Bush’s decision in June-July 2003 to declassify parts of a National Intelligence Estimate that were then leaked to favored reporters to undermine Wilson’s criticism of intelligence used to scare the American public about Iraq’s supposed nuclear weapons program.

The Post editorial bought into virtually all the administration’s spin points, accepting at face value that Bush intended simply “to make clear why he had believed that Saddam Hussein was seeking nuclear weapons.” The editorial even attacked Wilson as “the one guilty of twisting the truth.”

Yet, the Post leaves out a number of key facts, including that Bush selectively declassified parts of the NIE – sections on Iraq’s alleged pursuit of enriched uranium in Africa – though his top aides knew that those points were hotly disputed by many U.S. intelligence experts when the NIE was written and had since been disproved.

The available evidence indicates that Bush’s goal was not to educate the public with “a good leak,” but to avoid getting caught in a deception that had misled the nation to war.

Ironically, that was the conclusion of a front-page news article in the Post on the same day as the editorial, April 9. The news article cited the fact that Vice President Dick Cheney and his chief of staff, I. Lewis “Scooter” Libby, chose to leak information they knew to be false.

“The evidence Cheney and Libby selected to share with reporters had been disproved months before,” the Post’s news article said. “United Nations inspectors had exposed the main evidence for the uranium charge as crude forgeries in March 2003, but the Bush administration and British Prime Minister Tony Blair maintained they had additional, secret evidence that they could not disclose.

“In June [2003], a British parliamentary inquiry concluded otherwise, delivering a scathing critique of Blair’s role in promoting the story. With no ally left, the White House debated whether to abandon the uranium claim and became embroiled in bitter finger-pointing about whom to fault for the error. …

“It was at that moment that Libby, allegedly at Cheney’s direction, sought out at least three reporters to bolster the discredited uranium allegation. Libby made careful selections of language from the 2002 estimate, quoting a passage that said Iraq was ‘vigorously trying to procure uranium’ in Africa.”

In other words, what the Post’s editorial-page editors judged to be “a good leak” was part of a continued disinformation campaign aimed at discrediting Wilson’s accurate assessment about “twisted” intelligence – and keeping the American public confused.

Watchdog Press?

For a U.S. editorial board of a major newspaper to embrace, uncritically, a government’s deception of the American people turns the concept of a watchdog press upside down – and it is an especially grave offense on a life-and-death issue like war.

But the Post’s editorial board went even further, echoing long-standing Republican attacks on Wilson, who has said he traveled to Niger in 2002 at the CIA’s request and concluded from his trip that suspicions of an Iraqi uranium purchase were almost surely untrue.

The Post’s editorial, however, challenges Wilson’s honesty, claiming that “several subsequent investigations” have demonstrated that “in fact, (Wilson’s) report supported the conclusion that Iraq had sought uranium.”

But the Post’s claim is, at best, misleading and, more likely, dishonest.

According to all available evidence, Wilson told the truth, that based on his interviews with former Niger government officials, he concluded that the alleged uranium purchase almost certainly did not occur and was not even feasible given the tight international controls on Niger’s enriched uranium, called yellowcake.

Wilson did report to the CIA that he was told by former Nigerien Prime Minister Ibrahim Mayaki that he had suspected that an Iraqi commercial delegation to Niger in 1999 might be interested in buying yellowcake, but that the uranium topic didn’t come up at Mayaki's meeting with the Iraqis and – whatever their intentions – nothing was sold to Iraq.

In 2002, the State Department’s intelligence analysts, who had already correctly concluded that the Niger claims were baseless, reviewed Wilson’s report and believed that his information corroborated their judgment that the Iraq-yellowcake story was bogus.

However, CIA analysts, who then were pushing the Niger allegations, seized on Wilson’s comment about Mayaki suspecting that Iraq was in the market for yellowcake as corroboration for the CIA position.

That’s why the Republican-controlled Senate Intelligence Committee wrote in its July 7, 2004, assessment of the WMD intelligence that “for most analysts, the information in the [Wilson] report lent more credibility to the original CIA reports on the uranium deal, but State Department Bureau of Intelligence and Research analysts believed that the report supported their assessment that Niger was unlikely to be willing or able to sell uranium to Iraq.”

The CIA analysts had “cherry-picked” the one fact from Wilson’s report that could be used to support their faulty judgment about the Niger uranium, while the State Department analysts, who had debunked the Niger story, also found backing for their correct assessment from Wilson’s report.

But either way, it wasn’t Wilson’s fault that the CIA and other erroneous analysts outnumbered the State Department analysts who drew the right conclusions from Wilson’s investigation.

Yet, the Senate Intelligence Committee, the Republican National Committee and the Washington Post’s editorial page did their own “cherry-picking” in seizing on the phrase “most analysts” as a way to attack Wilson’s honesty. Under any logical scrutiny, however, that argument makes no sense.

Retaliation

The Post editorial goes on to slam Wilson again, by citing the supposed findings of special prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald, who has been investigating the administration’s leak of the identity of Wilson’s wife, undercover CIA officer Valerie Plame.

“Mr. Wilson subsequently claimed that the White House set out to punish him for his supposed whistle-blowing by deliberately blowing the cover of his wife,” the Post editorial said. “After more than 2 ½ years of investigation, Mr. Fitzgerald has reported no evidence to support Mr. Wilson’s charge.

“In last week’s court filing, he [Fitzgerald] stated that Mr. Bush did not authorize the leak of Ms. Plame’s identity. Mr. Libby’s motive in allegedly disclosing her name to reporters, Mr. Fitzgerald said, was to disprove yet another false assertion, that Mr. Wilson had been dispatched to Niger by Mr. Cheney. In fact Mr. Wilson was recommended for the trip by his wife.”

But again, the Post editorial writers have gotten almost all their facts wrong, especially the assertion that Fitzgerald didn’t find evidence to support Wilson’s claim that he had been targeted for reprisals because of his whistle-blowing.

In the court filing on April 5, 2006, Fitzgerald said his investigation uncovered government documents that “could be characterized as reflecting a plan to discredit, punish, or seek revenge against Mr. Wilson” because of his criticism of the administration’s handling of the Niger evidence.

Fitzgerald added that “the evidence will show that the July 6, 2003, Op-Ed by Mr. Wilson [in the New York Times] was viewed by the Office of Vice President as a direct attack on the credibility of the Vice President (and the President) on a matter of signal importance: the rationale for the war in Iraq. Defendant [Libby] undertook vigorous efforts to rebut this attack during the week following July 7, 2003.”

In other words, Libby’s “vigorous efforts” against Wilson were not simply part of some educational program for reporters; the goal was to defend the credibility of Bush and Cheney at a time (summer 2003) when the American people were learning that the principal argument for going to war – Iraq’s supposed stockpiles of WMD – was false.

It’s also untrue for the Post editorial to say that Fitzgerald concluded that Libby’s motive for leaking was to disprove the “false assertion” that Wilson had been sent to Niger by Cheney. A fair reading of Fitzgerald’s April 5 filing would support a conclusion that Libby was sent out in a counterattack against the threat that Wilson posed to the overall White House credibility on Iraq’s WMD, not to clarify who authorized Wilson's trip.

The Post editorial also exaggerates when claiming that Fitzgerald “stated that Mr. Bush did not authorize the leak of Ms. Plame’s identity.” The filing contains nothing definitive on this point, beyond Fitzgerald recounting Libby’s grand jury testimony which has Bush approving disclosure of selective pieces of intelligence, but doesn’t mention Plame.

The absence of Libby’s testimony about whether Bush also may have approved the leak of Plame’s identity is not proof that Bush didn’t give such authorization to others; it simply means that Libby didn’t testify to that suspicion. Libby is facing a five-count indictment for perjury, obstruction of justice and lying to the FBI.

Republican Assault

Another troubling aspect of the Post’s April 9 editorial is how closely it tracks with the long-running Republican assault on Wilson.

For years now, Republicans and their right-wing media allies have focused on tiny points of Wilson’s statements as a way to blur the larger picture – that Wilson was right about the absence of an active Iraqi nuclear program while the Bush administration was wrong.

The Post editorial page followed the Republican lead again in an April 18 editorial entitled “the Generals’ Revolt.” A sub-head characterized the Iraq War complaints from a half dozen retired generals as “finger-pointing” that should be excluded from the debate over whether Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld should resign.

While acknowledging valid concerns about Rumsfeld’s mismanagement of the Iraq War, the Post editorial calls the “rebellion” of the retired generals “problematic.”

“It threatens the essential democratic principle of military subordination to civilian control – the more so because a couple of the officers claim they are speaking for some still on active duty,” the editorial said.

It then compares the Iraq War critiques by these retired generals to the opposition from the uniformed military, including then-Gen. Colin Powell, chairman of the Joint Chiefls of Staff, against President Bill Clinton’s plan to allow gays in the military.

But the comparison is faulty. For one, the retired generals are retired, not active-duty as Powell was in 1993. Also, until these half dozen or so ex-generals spoke out critically about Bush’s Iraq policies, no one in memory had ever argued that private citizens who previously served in the military should remain silent about questions of war and peace.

The Post editorial board never objected when retired generals appeared on CNN or other TV news programs supporting the Iraq War or when President Bush claimed that he was following the advice of the generals in Iraq, including some of those now out of uniform who are contradicting Bush’s claim.

Rather than following the facts and logic to a conclusion, the Post editorials seem to start with an ideological conclusion – that Bush must be defended – and then cobble the available spin points together into some dubious argument.

Long Pattern

These two editorials in April also do not stand alone. They are part of a long pattern at the Post to ignore or denigrate Iraq War critics – both in the news columns and on the opinion pages.

Sometimes before the Iraq invasion, Post readers learned about voices of dissent by reading Post columnists denouncing the dissenters. For instance, when former Vice President Al Gore gave a speech about Iraq and Bush’s “preemptive war” doctrine on Sept. 23, 2002, his talk got scant press coverage, but did elicit a round of Gore-bashing on the TV talk shows and on the Post’s Op-Ed page. [See Consortiumnews.com’s “Politics of Preemption.”]

Post columnist Michael Kelly called Gore’s speech “dishonest, cheap, low” before labeling it “wretched. It was vile. It was contemptible.” [Washington Post, Sept. 25, 2002] Post columnist Charles Krauthammer added that the speech was “a series of cheap shots strung together without logic or coherence.” [Washington Post, Sept. 27, 2002]

When reading the Post’s pre-war coverage, there was a whiff of totalitarianism in which dissidents never get space to express their opinions but are still excoriated by the official media. When the state speaks, however, the same media hails the government’s brilliance.

For instance, after Secretary of State Powell’s now-infamous speech to the United Nations Security Council on Feb. 5, 2003, a Post editorial called his arguments “irrefutable,” adding: “it is hard to imagine how anyone could doubt that Iraq possesses weapons of mass destruction.”

That judgment was echoed across the Op-Ed page by Post columnists from Right to Left, a solid wall of misguided consensus.

But the Post’s gullibility about Powell’s testimony wasn’t an exception. As a study by Columbia University journalism professor Todd Gitlin noted, “The [Post] editorials during December [2002] and January [2003] numbered nine, and all were hawkish.” [American Prospect, April 1, 2003]

After the U.S. invasion of Iraq in March 2003 and the failure to discover evidence supporting the administration’s pre-war claims, editorial-page editor Fred Hiatt acknowledged that the Post should have been more skeptical.

“If you look at the editorials we write running up [to the war], we state as flat fact that he [Hussein] has weapons of mass destruction,” Hiatt said in an interview with the Columbia Journalism Review. “If that’s not true, it would have been better not to say it.” [CJR, March/April 2004]

Repeat Offenders

But Hiatt’s supposed remorse hasn’t stopped him and the Post editorial page from continuing their assault on anyone who questions Bush’s Iraq War strategy.

On Feb. 7, 2005, Hiatt penned a column under his own name, entitled “Bad News Donkeys,” in which he chastised Sen. John Kerry and other Democrats for not showing enough enthusiasm over the Jan. 30, 2005, elections in Iraq.

Hiatt wrote that Kerry “grumped” his answer about the Iraq election when the senator told NBC’s Tim Russert that “I think it’s gone as expected.” Days later when House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi pressed for a clearer exit strategy for U.S. troops, Hiatt judged that her comments “sounded grudging and morose.”

In case Post readers hadn’t gotten Hiatt’s point, he finished up his column comparing the Democrats to the sad-sack character Eeyore in the Winnie-the-Pooh stories.

Though the Jan. 30, 2005, election turned out to be more a mirage than an oasis, the Post’s editorial page was back asserting its august judgments again in June 2005 after thousands of readers complained that the Post was ignoring the “Downing Street Memo” and other evidence of Bush’s Iraq War deceptions.

On June 15, 2005, the Post’s lead editorial asserted that “the memos add not a single fact to what was previously known about the administration’s prewar deliberations. Not only that: They add nothing to what was publicly known in July 2002.”

While that claim may be true in a way – because some people indeed were challenging Bush’s case for war, albeit without the damning details – the problem was that the Post and other pro-war news outlets were treating those skeptics as fringe characters who should be ignored.

Looking back to 2002 and early 2003, it would be hard to find any “reputable” commentary in the mainstream U.S. press calling Bush’s actions fraudulent, which is what the “Downing Street Memo” and other British evidence have since revealed Bush’s actions to be.

The British documents prove that much of the pre-war debate inside the U.S. and British governments was how best to manipulate public opinion by playing games with the intelligence.

On July 23, 2002, for instance, Blair met with his top foreign policy advisers to review the Iraq situation. According to the minutes, which became known as the “Downing Street Memo,” Richard Dearlove, chief of the British intelligence agency MI6, described a recent trip to Washington at which he discussed Iraq with Bush’s top national security officials.

“Bush wanted to remove Saddam, through military action, justified by the conjunction of terrorism and WMD. But the intelligence and facts were being fixed around the policy,” Dearlove said.

One might have thought that this pattern of official deception – effectively making fools out of the Post’s editorial page and, to a lesser extent, the news columns – would have stirred up some outrage from Hiatt and his boss, Washington Post Chairman Donald Graham.

But Hiatt and Graham seem to be beyond shame, or perhaps they are committed neoconservatives who simply won’t let facts get in the way of their ideological convictions.

Now, despite even more evidence of the Bush administration’s pre-war lies, the Post editorial board is back at its role trying to construct a consensus by marginalizing Ambassador Wilson and silencing the retired generals.

The Post’s goal apparently is to protect George W. Bush from public outrage over his Iraq War deceptions – that have led to so much death, injury and destruction – while sparing the Post’s editors from the journalistic disdain that they have so richly earned.

Robert Parry broke many of the Iran-Contra stories in the 1980s for the Associated Press and Newsweek. His latest book, Secrecy & Privilege: Rise of the Bush Dynasty from Watergate to Iraq, can be ordered at secrecyandprivilege.com. It's also available at Amazon.com, as is his 1999 book, Lost History: Contras, Cocaine, the Press & 'Project Truth.'

GrandSlam05
Apr 21st, 2006, 03:02 PM
Yes. Bush is a social conservative and fiscal liberal who only cares about the rich. That's about the worst you could be IMO. And the fact that he thinks he's above the law is really scary.
Reagan could've been alot worse probably, but the democrats held the majority in congress when he was pres so he couldn't always get his way. At least Reagan was semi-likeable and could give a decent speech.
Calvin Coolidge was another bad one. Trickle-down economics, nuff said.

Lord Nelson
Apr 21st, 2006, 03:06 PM
I have to disagree. Reagan did the country an awful lot of damage. Principally by selling and awful lot of the public trust to private interests. The Federal government used to produce agriculture information, business information, land information, lots of useful info, for free. Reagan sold all that to privater interests, making it much harder for small businesses to compete with big ones.

But... he was able to recognize when he was wrong. Ronald Reagan, after his massive tax cut his first year in office, rasied taxes EACH of the last seven years he was in office. My source for this is the book his own budget director, David Stockman wrote "the Triumph of Politics'. He was nowhere near as bad as Andrew Johnson or James Buchanan. And Nixon was a VERY good president, Watergate aside. He got a lot of worker safety legislation passed, he created the EPA, he got diplomatic relations with China re-started.
I agree with what you said except on Reagan who helped end the Cold war and is one of the best leaders U.S. has had. William Henry Harrison on the list. Anyone (especially one who is elderly) who does not wear a coat when it is freezing and raining outside has to be up there too. The poor chap died 4 months after he was sworn in after he caught pneumonia due to his carelessness.
Apart from you I found it interesteing to see that hardly anyone has mentioned Presidents from 19 or 18 Century. They just analyzed leaders from late 20th Century onwards. Bravo. :rolleyes:

"Sluggy"
Apr 21st, 2006, 03:17 PM
I have to disagree. Reagan did the country an awful lot of damage. Principally by selling and awful lot of the public trust to private interests. The Federal government used to produce agriculture information, business information, land information, lots of useful info, for free. Reagan sold all that to privater interests, making it much harder for small businesses to compete with big ones.

But... he was able to recognize when he was wrong. Ronald Reagan, after his massive tax cut his first year in office, rasied taxes EACH of the last seven years he was in office. My source for this is the book his own budget director, David Stockman wrote "the Triumph of Politics'. He was nowhere near as bad as Andrew Johnson or James Buchanan. And Nixon was a VERY good president, Watergate aside. He got a lot of worker safety legislation passed, he created the EPA, he got diplomatic relations with China re-started.

Nice post Volcana, very informative. :)

Aquanetta
Apr 21st, 2006, 04:01 PM
A rhetorical question if there ever was one.

miffedmax
Apr 21st, 2006, 04:20 PM
He's dreadful, but I think it's too early to say he is the worst. The critical thing is has he done so much damage that the U.S. is unable to recover from his policies? For example, dreadful as Buchanan was, and horrible as the Civil War was, the U.S. emerged from this crisis in many ways a stronger nation. Same with Hoover (truly, I believe, the right man at the wrong time--his efforts before and after he was President show he was a man of great ability in many areas). We emerged from the Depression and World War II as the world's greatest power.

Is Bush's admin. and the war in Iraq just a setback, or does it actually mark the beginning of the unraveling of the American Empire? I don't know.

(Also, for all the abuse Carter takes, I think in retrospect his concerns about declining industrial productivity, the environment and U.S.diplomacy were well-founded; he just lacked the political skills to do anything about it. Like Hoover, a good case of right man, wrong time).

Helen Lawson
Apr 21st, 2006, 04:25 PM
I think there's been far worse, and, begrudgingly, he's had a lot of bad stuff to deal with that some others never had on their plates.

*JR*
Apr 21st, 2006, 05:21 PM
I dunno. Hoover and Garfield were pretty damn bad too, but Dubya is definitely up there.

Reagan was just a psychopath that destroyed whatever was left of the "American Dream", or just totally changed the definition and defined it as corporate success with big companies and jets and feeding your children money for dinner because he couldn't see past destroying the commies.
Garfield was assassinated in his first year in office (1881) and his VP, a NY Republican machine hack named Chester A. Arthur was "surprisingly competent". And any list that omits utter moron Millard Fillmore (another VP, who served under 3 years after Zachary Taylor died) is somewhat suspect.

In more recent times, we've had many "mixed cases", like Reagan in the comments already posted. JFK inspired "a new generation", but passed little important legislation, other than his 1962 tax cut. (A NY Times editorial a week B4 the assassination noted his popularity, but mused that he just didn't seem to have learned the art of governing. And that was a very pro-Kennedy newspaper).

His successor Lyndon Johnson passed the most sweeping civil rights legislation (that lasted) in history, but blundered deep into the quagmire of Vietnam, and was succeeded by Richard Nixon in 1968.

Nixon indeed created the Environmental Protection Agency, etc. and opened up China, but his drawbacks went way beyond Watergate. He pursued the lost cause left to him in Vietnam (where the Vietcong had huge support in the South) and rampantly spied on Americans (leading to Watergate, as that Paranoid President "had to know" what the Democrats knew about this as his '72 re-election approached).

Lastly, Woodrow Wilson left huge lasting damage. Our unneccesary intervention in WW I (no "isms", just an old fashioned Eurowar about territory; in fact Germany's Kaiser Wilhelm and Russia's Czar Nicholas were both nephews of Britain's late Queen Victoria) directly led to WW II, due to Germany's resulting humiliation @ the 1919 Versailles conference. And maybe to Vietnam, as a France more weakened might have had to abandon (French Indochina). Wilson was also a terrible racist. Pro-KKK film Birth of a Nation was the first movie ever shown in the White House, during his Administration.

griffin
Apr 21st, 2006, 05:36 PM
JFK inspired "a new generation", but passed little important legislation, other than his 1962 tax cut. (A NY Times editorial a week B4 the assassination noted his popularity, but mused that he just didn't seem to have learned the art of governing. And that was a very pro-Kennedy newspaper).

Boston may deport me for saying this, but JFK was a more effective president dead than alive. Johnson milked JFK's legacy for all it was worth in order to get all kinds of legislation passed - including the Civil Rights Act, something Kennedy himself couldn't have made happen had he lived.

*JR*
Apr 21st, 2006, 05:47 PM
Boston may deport me for saying this, but JFK was a more effective president dead than alive. Johnson milked JFK's legacy for all it was worth in order to get all kinds of legislation passed - including the Civil Rights Act, something Kennedy himself couldn't have made happen had he lived.
Massachusetts Democrats. :shrug:

Example: Michael Dukakis :o

Example: John F(ucking) Kerry. :p

griffin
Apr 21st, 2006, 05:49 PM
Is there a point to your post? Or did you just want to say "John F(ucking) Kerry." Again.

*JR*
Apr 21st, 2006, 05:55 PM
Is there a point to your post? Or did you just want to say "John F(ucking) Kerry." Again.
Who, me? :devil:

GracefulVenus
Apr 21st, 2006, 05:59 PM
Take it from an American Citizen. YES! Without a doubt the worst president in my lifetime. The man and his administration has a very selfish agenda and could care less what the American people have to say about certain issues. I agree with the Dixie Chicks and the comment they made in England a while back. I am also embarrased to say the man is my President. Besides Bush cutting the budgets on just about all domestic spending education being the most important, I am just disgusted with the
War in Iraq. I'm still waiting on the weapons of mass destruction to be found in Iraq, or has his administration already said they were none...........hum, I don't remember. What a dumbass! And to the rest of the world, you have to know that not all Americans agree with Bush and his arrogant policies. In fact, MOST Americans disagree with him and his failed administration. And shame on those who voted in back into office. I hope you are feeling the economic devistation that most Americans are feeling right now because of Bush's lack of concern for the Lower and Middle Classes and his tax breaks (avg. $500,000.00) for the rich.

kiwifan
Apr 21st, 2006, 06:17 PM
He's dreadful, but I think it's too early to say he is the worst. The critical thing is has he done so much damage that the U.S. is unable to recover from his policies? For example, dreadful as Buchanan was, and horrible as the Civil War was, the U.S. emerged from this crisis in many ways a stronger nation. Same with Hoover (truly, I believe, the right man at the wrong time--his efforts before and after he was President show he was a man of great ability in many areas). We emerged from the Depression and World War II as the world's greatest power.

Is Bush's admin. and the war in Iraq just a setback, or does it actually mark the beginning of the unraveling of the American Empire? I don't know.

(Also, for all the abuse Carter takes, I think in retrospect his concerns about declining industrial productivity, the environment and U.S.diplomacy were well-founded; he just lacked the political skills to do anything about it. Like Hoover, a good case of right man, wrong time).

What an enlightened, non-partisan and mature post. :cool:

We'll have none of that in WTAworld, Thank You!!! :fiery: :fiery: :fiery:




:p

tennislover
Apr 21st, 2006, 06:17 PM
:( I love him

Lord Nelson
Apr 21st, 2006, 07:57 PM
His successor Lyndon Johnson passed the most sweeping civil rights legislation (that lasted) in history, but blundered deep into the quagmire of Vietnam, and was succeeded by Richard Nixon in 1968.

Nixon indeed created the Environmental Protection Agency, etc. and opened up China, but his drawbacks went way beyond Watergate. He pursued the lost cause left to him in Vietnam (where the Vietcong had huge support in the South) and rampantly spied on Americans (leading to Watergate, as that Paranoid President "had to know" what the Democrats knew about this as his '72 re-election approached).

Lastly, Woodrow Wilson left huge lasting damage. Our unneccesary intervention in WW I (no "isms", just an old fashioned Eurowar about territory; in fact Germany's Kaiser Wilhelm and Russia's Czar Nicholas were both nephews of Britain's late Queen Victoria) directly led to WW II, due to Germany's resulting humiliation @ the 1919 Versailles conference. And maybe to Vietnam, as a France more weakened might have had to abandon (French Indochina). Wilson was also a terrible racist. Pro-KKK film Birth of a Nation was the first movie ever shown in the White House, during his Administration.
I liked reading your post JR. I agree with you on World War I that Germany was not the bad guy. There were no good guys or bad guys in this war unlike WWII and the Versailles Treaty was unjust and contributed to Hitler rising to power and WWII. The U.S. should have stayed out of the war but had a close connection with the Brits that lasts till this day hence the U.S. involvement.
Was Birth of a Nation thought of as a racist movie in those days? Remember the mentalities were different back then so maybe Wilson was not a racist thoug Griffith was of course. BON still happens to be a prominent movie in the hsitory of cinema just as the Jazz singer is and the latter is definetely not a racist movie though some may think otherwise.
Did the Vietcong actually had huge support in the South? They may have had support but it may not have been so huge. If that is the case then why were there millions of boat people. Also Vietcong contributed to Khmer Rouge coming to power and communists in Laos.
Nixon was indeed more moderate than many people think. Reagan was more gung ho than Nixon. If Reagan was in power instead of Nixon he would have probably invaded North Vietnam instead of just concentrating troops in the South. He would have been like Truman with Korea, i.e more effective. But that is just speculation.

meyerpl
Apr 21st, 2006, 08:33 PM
If Reagan was in power instead of Nixon he would have probably invaded North Vietnam instead of just concentrating troops in the South. He would have been like Truman with Korea, i.e more effective. But that is just speculation.
Lord Nelson, you have posted some lucid, rational thoughts here. Not only that, not one mention of Clinton unilaterally launching a bombing campaign in the former Yugoslavia! You are to be commended.

I do believe that Birth of a Nation was a racist film at the time it was produced, although it wasn't as universally perceived to be as it would be today.

Was Truman effective in his handling of Korea? The U.S. launched a major invasion deep into North Korea, which brought China into the conflict, which resulted in a massive retreat of U.S. forces in brutal winter conditions. U.S. forces suffered severe hardship and tremendous casualties. The conflict became a stalemate at that point and really remains so to this day. The only suggestion I recall Reagan making regarding Viet Nam was his comment about turning the country into a parking lot.

*JR*
Apr 21st, 2006, 08:47 PM
Did the Vietcong actually had huge support in the South. They may have had support but it may not have been so huge. If that is the case then why were there millions of boat people. Also Vietcong contributed to Khmer Rouge coming to power and communists in Laos.

Nixon was indeed more moderate than many people thing. Reagan was more gung ho than Nixon. If Reagan was in power instead of Nixon he would have probably invaded North Vietnam instead of just concentrating troops in the South. He would have been like Truman with Korea, i.e more effective. But that is just speculation.
The "VC" had huge support, based on Ho Chi Minh having gotten the French out of much of the country in 1954. And Hanoi's support for the Pathet Lao and Khemer Rouge was mostly to "secure their Western flank". (Of course they toppled the Khmer Rouge in '78, only 3 years after Saigon fell).

Had Reagan been in office and invaded North Vietnam, China likely would have sent forces in, just as when MacArthur pushed well into North Korea in that war. Unlike Soviet puppet Kim Il Sung, Ho had a long record (back to that Versailles Conference of 1919) of trying to get the French out, and became a "Communist of convenience", as only they supported him. He was genuinely popular. (And post WW II, the west still could have made a deal with him).

Volcana
Apr 21st, 2006, 10:10 PM
Carter was ineffective.Carter was NOT ineffective.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jimmy_Carter
As president his major accomplishments included the creation of a national energy policy and the consolidation of governmental agencies. He enacted strong environmental legislation; deregulated the trucking, airline, rail, finance, communications, and oil industries, bolstered the social security (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Social_security) system; and appointed record numbers of women and minorities to significant government and judicial posts. In foreign affairs, Carter's accomplishments included the Camp David Accords (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Camp_David_Accords), the Panama Canal Treaties (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Panama_Canal_Treaties), the creation of full diplomatic relations with the People's Republic of China (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/People%27s_Republic_of_China), and the negotiation of the SALT II Treaty (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SALT_II). In addition, he championed human rights throughout the world and used human rights as the center of his administration's foreign policy.The canard that Carter was 'ineffective' stems lmost solely from his choice to try and use negotiation to end the 'Iranian hostage crisis'. This is the same as judging Nixon's presidency solely by Watergate. In both cases, the men were actually very effective executives, until they met what became, in the eyes of the public, the defining event of thier respective Presidencies. Most of the things that were major focuses of their Presidencies have stood up well in the eyes of history.

Bush Jr, by comparison, has gotten almost everything he wanted passed. But very little of it, in respect, has been good for America or the average American. Overthrowing the Taliban government was obviously good for the USA, given that they were sheltering Al Qaeda. Outside of that, his presidency is one of total subservience to national and multi-national corporate interest. I feel truly sorry for any Christian who thinks this man is one.

Lord Nelson
Apr 21st, 2006, 10:26 PM
Lord Nelson, you have posted some lucid, rational thoughts here. Not only that, not one mention of Clinton unilaterally launching a bombing campaign in the former Yugoslavia! You are to be commended.

I do believe that Birth of a Nation was a racist film at the time it was produced, although it wasn't as universally perceived to be as it would be today.

Was Truman effective in his handling of Korea? The U.S. launched a major invasion deep into North Korea, which brought China into the conflict, which resulted in a massive retreat of U.S. forces in brutal winter conditions. U.S. forces suffered severe hardship and tremendous casualties. The conflict became a stalemate at that point and really remains so to this day. The only suggestion I recall Reagan making regarding Viet Nam was his comment about turning the country into a parking lot.
Thanks for the compliment, I appreciate it. With regards to Birth of a Nation I haven't seen the movie but now I went to imdb and saw that yes it is definetly racist but still I do not think that Wilson the father of the League of Nations was a racist one at least not openly.
The U.S. had no choice to go deep into North Korea otrherwise the Korean war would have ended up like the Vietnam one where the whole Korean peninsula would have fallen to the North Koreans. The U.S. should have been wise enough though to establish diplomatic ties with the Chinese during this war to ensure that they would not support the North Koreans. the war was a stalemate but at least the aggressors did not win the war and so it can be called a minor victory to the Americans. On the other hand South Vietnam was lost to the Northerners.
Speaking of North Korea, I have heard that the Northerners may still be holding U.S. soldiers from the 1950 war in captivity. The Northerers are indeed brutal and I fear that the peninsula will not be reunited in the near future. North Korea may not remain a communist dynasty but the generals who are a growng power inthe country will be still around.

Halardfan
Apr 21st, 2006, 10:36 PM
I don't frankly know much about the leaders of the dim and distant past, outside of the obvious one's...but one would like to think that there haven't been too many worse than GW...

I mean honestly...

Listen to him for 5 minutes and you HAVE to see it, have to despair at him. You do. Honestly. I don't care if you happen to be hilariously right wing, its way beyond a left and right thing. One has to see it. You know its true. He is a very, very stupid man. VERY. Do admit it. Go on. For me? ;)

joepike
Apr 21st, 2006, 10:42 PM
http://i.realone.com/assets/rn/img/7/8/6/1/9961687-9961690-slarge.jpg

The Worst President in History?
One of America's leading historians assesses George W. Bush

George W. Bush's presidency appears headed for colossal historical disgrace. ... Now, though, George W. Bush is in serious contention for the title of worst ever. [B]In early 2004, an informal survey of 415 historians conducted by the nonpartisan History News Network found that eighty-one percent considered the Bush administration a "failure." ...

About 83 % of those historians vote Democrat.

So what was your point?

joepike
Apr 21st, 2006, 10:43 PM
Although Reagan is a close #2.


"The Man Who Beat Communism"?

Let me guess - you think Socialism is in fact a good idea, no?

joepike
Apr 21st, 2006, 10:47 PM
:lol: I don't think Reagan is the second worst President in history, but isn't it amazing how the Republicans have managed to talk him up to greatness?? He was nowhere near a "great" President.


He was one of the most influential U.S. presidents ever.
After the Carter debacle he gave the U.S. new confidence to fight communism everywhere. With a weak president like Carter in the 80ies the Berlin wall most probably would exist even today. The Soviet Union would still be in Afghanistan. And perhaps at the river Rhine.

joepike
Apr 21st, 2006, 10:50 PM
George Bush isn't the worst president ever. And this is comming from a left-winger.

See the problem isn't George Bush. He is minipulated by his administration and Neo-Conservatives that run the U.S. He is just the scapegoat for it all. Thus you can blame his father, Karl Roave, Condaleeza Rice, etc.

Plus I thought Rolling Stone was a music magazine.


The influence of the Neo-Cons is weaker than ever during the Bush administration. Rumsfeld, Cheney and Rice are no and never were Neo-Cons. Just ask the Kristols. Do you even know the history or the roots of Neo-Conservatism?

joepike
Apr 21st, 2006, 10:52 PM
Well, I'll give the President credit for one thing: he's a "uniter, not a divider". The whole country is pretty much united in their disapproval of his job performance.


Well, that's why the country voted him into office twice. The last time with the most votes EVER for any presidential candidate.

joepike
Apr 21st, 2006, 10:55 PM
Yeah, but they control him and tell him what to say. Besides everyone knows Cheany is really running the country.


See someone agrees with me somewhat.

Hey your from Manitoba too. Sweet. :cool:


Crazy canucks ....

BTW, who is "Cheany"?

joepike
Apr 21st, 2006, 10:57 PM
Agree. And Carter has done so much good in his life after the presidency, including winning the Nobel Peace Prize; something I somehow don't picture GWB devoting his life to. :tape:


Le Duc Tho ("Who is that?") and Arafat have won the Nobel Peace Prize as well.

So what was you point?

joepike
Apr 21st, 2006, 10:59 PM
I believe history will show Ronald Reagan as the worst president of all time.
He set wheels in motion in the 1980s that we WILL feel in the near future.


Yes, he defeated communism, that idiot!

joepike
Apr 21st, 2006, 11:02 PM
:( I love him


Tennistony! :worship: :worship: :worship:

joepike
Apr 21st, 2006, 11:04 PM
I liked reading your post JR. I agree with you on World War I that Germany was not the bad guy. ....

It was by far the worst guy in a very mixed bag.

meyerpl
Apr 21st, 2006, 11:09 PM
Well, that's why the country voted him into office twice. The last time with the most votes EVER for any presidential candidate.
Sure, cling to that. Meanwhile the guy's Presidency is going up in flames.

joepike
Apr 21st, 2006, 11:13 PM
Sure, cling to that. Meanwhile the guy's Presidency is going up in flames.

"But it isn't these things that make my heart flutter: It's that he drives the people I hate the most nuts."
(Noemie Emery on George W. Bush)

:lol:

meyerpl
Apr 21st, 2006, 11:34 PM
Yes, he defeated communism, that idiot!
Reagan was no idiot. He was a master of the old bait and switch. He was a showman and a flim-flam man from way back. He ran on a platform that highlighted the budget deficit and national debt as the nation's most serious problem, then he tripled the debt while in office. Nothing up the sleeve. He blamed the democratic congress for the deficit, yet he never submitted a balanced budget to congress, in fact, the congress trimmed every one of his budgets. Which walnut is the pea underneath? He armed Osama Bin Laden and Al Queda, sold weapons to Iran and Iraq and propped up brutal dictators in South America, yet he spoke movingly about freedom and democracy. Nothing in the hat. He slashed taxes for coorperate America, sold publically held natural resources to the private sector for pennies-on-the-dollar, deregulated numerous industries to the detriment of the public, then created terms like "welfare queen" to shift blame onto poor Americans for the nations budget woes. He happened to be President when the Soviet Union imploded and has been credited with "defeating communism" ever since. He pulled a lot of rabbits out of his hat.

joepike
Apr 21st, 2006, 11:43 PM
Reagan was no idiot. He was a master of the old bait and switch. He was a showman and a flim-flam man from way back. He ran on a platform that highlighted the budget deficit and national debt as the nation's most serious problem, then he tripled the debt while in office. Nothing up the sleeve. He blamed the democratic congress for the deficit, yet he never submitted a balanced budget to congress, in fact, the congress trimmed every one of his budgets. Which walnut is the pea underneath? He armed Osama Bin Laden and Al Queda, sold weapons to Iran and Iraq and propped up brutal dictators in South America, yet he spoke movingly about freedom and democracy. Nothing in the hat. He slashed taxes for coorperate America, sold publically held natural resources to the private sector for pennies-on-the-dollar, deregulated numerous industries to the detriment of the public, then created terms like "welfare queen" to shift blame onto poor Americans for the nations budget woes. He happened to be President when the Soviet Union imploded and has been credited with "defeating communism" ever since. He pulled a lot of rabbits out of his hat.

Reagan raised the national debt to win the arms race against the Soviets. In which he succeeded.

He didn't arm Bin Laden as Bin Laden was a not very prominent young mujahedin lieutenant in his 20ies during the first Afghanistan war. The CIA could not check out every young anti-communist Afghan fighter whether he might become a terrorist 15 years later.

Reagan supported the Contras in Nicaragua against a crypto-communist dictatorship that had murdered thousands of indians. And he supported a christian democrat (Duarte) in El Salvador against Soviet-backed insurgents. All that during a cold war against the Soviet Union.
FDR support the Stalinist regime against the Nazis in the 40ies. Although Uncle Joe was no proponent of human rights. Was FDR wrong back then or did he wisely choose the lesser of two evils? You most probably would have answered that one in the affirmative. Thankfully most Americans of the great generation did see that different.

*JR*
Apr 22nd, 2006, 12:41 AM
It was by far the worst guy in a very mixed bag.
Doesn't matter. Wilson was a damned liar, who promised in his 1916 re-election race a year (and a half AFTER the sinking of the Lusitania) that he wouldn't take us into the war. Had we stayed out, it would have continued until perhaps 1922, as neither side was gaining or losing much ground.

(Like another "war of the trenches", the 1980-88 Iran-Iraq War, lasted 8 years with little change in the front lines). And the horror of "innovations" like poison gas (banned afterwards by the 1925 Geneva Convention, and actually honored by both sides in WW II; civilians not being protected under the agreement) and machine guns might have made both sides think twice about restarting the war.

But we caused an imbalanced result, and a bitter Germany sprouted groups like the Nazi's, who consistently scored vote totals of 25% or better. Then the great depression started in 1929, and quickly enveloped the Western world, getting Hitler close enough to winning in 1933 that he cobbled together a governing coalition, and "the rest is history".

RunDown
Apr 22nd, 2006, 01:29 AM
Reagan raised the national debt to win the arms race against the Soviets. In which he succeeded.



Like meyerpl said, the SU was imploding before Reagan took office due to decades of policy toward it, under many Presidencies. No one president "defeated communism" nor was the arms race the final blow that cause the SU to collapse. Gorbachev came into office implementing all sorts of economic and social reforms (to an economy that had been wrecked for decades) which facillitated the collapse. Had he been a hardliner, who knows how much longer the SU would've lasted?

And yes, King is right, we will be feeling the consequences of Reagan presidency in the near future, namely his HUGE budget deficits. But, I'm sure you knew what he was hinting at.

About 83 % of those historians vote Democrat.

So what was your point?

It wasn't MY point, it was the author's. I just highlighted the parts of the article i found interesting. :angel:

And, the author addresses your critism in the next few paragraphs:

Contrary to popular stereotypes, historians are generally a cautious bunch. We assess the past from widely divergent points of view and are deeply concerned about being viewed as fair and accurate by our colleagues. When we make historical judgments, we are acting not as voters or even pundits, but as scholars who must evaluate all the evidence, good, bad or indifferent. Separate surveys, conducted by those perceived as conservatives as well as liberals, show remarkable unanimity about who the best and worst presidents have been.

Historians do tend, as a group, to be far more liberal than the citizenry as a whole -- a fact the president's admirers have seized on to dismiss the poll results as transparently biased. One pro-Bush historian said the survey revealed more about "the current crop of history professors" than about Bush or about Bush's eventual standing. But if historians were simply motivated by a strong collective liberal bias, they might be expected to call Bush the worst president since his father, or Ronald Reagan, or Nixon. Instead, more than half of those polled -- and nearly three-fourths of those who gave Bush a negative rating -- reached back before Nixon to find a president they considered as miserable as Bush. The presidents most commonly linked with Bush included Hoover, Andrew Johnson and Buchanan. Twelve percent of the historians polled -- nearly as many as those who rated Bush a success -- flatly called Bush the worst president in American history.

meyerpl
Apr 22nd, 2006, 01:34 AM
Reagan raised the national debt to win the arms race against the Soviets. In which he succeeded.

He didn't arm Bin Laden as Bin Laden was a not very prominent young mujahedin lieutenant in his 20ies during the first Afghanistan war. The CIA could not check out every young anti-communist Afghan fighter whether he might become a terrorist 15 years later.

Reagan supported the Contras in Nicaragua against a crypto-communist dictatorship that had murdered thousands of indians. And he supported a christian democrat (Duarte) in El Salvador against Soviet-backed insurgents. All that during a cold war against the Soviet Union.
FDR support the Stalinist regime against the Nazis in the 40ies. Although Uncle Joe was no proponent of human rights. Was FDR wrong back then or did he wisely choose the lesser of two evils? You most probably would have answered that one in the affirmative. Thankfully most Americans of the great generation did see that different.

Reagan raised the national debt the same way Bush did: massive military spending and massive tax cuts targeted at those whe need them the least.

As for most of your post, it can be summed up by saying, they were sons of bitches, but they were our sons of bitches. Anything, even nun raping brutes and the Taliban are preferable to communism. It's a dangerous foreign policy and look where it has landed us.

FDR hardly propped up, financed or armed Stalin. It was an alliance of necessity all around and not an apt comparison.

Lord Nelson
Apr 22nd, 2006, 02:00 AM
Reagan raised the national debt the same way Bush did: massive military spending and massive tax cuts targeted at those whe need them the least.

As for most of your post, it can be summed up by saying, they were sons of bitches, but they were our sons of bitches. Anything, even nun raping brutes and the Taliban are preferable to communism. It's a dangerous foreign policy and look where it has landed us.

FDR hardly propped up, financed or armed Stalin. It was an alliance of necessity all around and not an apt comparison.
The U.S. did not prop up the Taliban but financed the mujahedin. These included moderates like Massoud and brutes like Hekmatyar. Bu Mullah Omar and co. were just foot soldiers who got financed by Pakistan when they were refugees overthere. So Taliban is almost entirely a Pakistan creation.

I am happy to see people like you complain about tax cuts. That's the spirit. In France people have the opposite menatrality such as with the CPE crisis where many think that CPE is a bad thing when actually this will loosen rigid labor laws and help the economy on the long run.

Sure many U.S. Presidents can be credited for helping with the demise of the Soviet Union but it broke up right after his term endedand so he should be credited for that. Reagan's arms race certainly helped with the Soviet's demise and he is one of the leaders of the 20th Century I most admire. He had flaws but who hasn't. Even Gandhi had major flaws such as sleeping with his neices (at least according to Dominique Lapierre) and having his buddy Nehru be in power.

meyerpl
Apr 22nd, 2006, 02:34 AM
I think Soviet economic policies brought about the demise of the Soviet Union, and if we keep going the way we are we'll be next to relinquish our status as a "super power". The notion that tax cuts shrink the deficit (trickle down economics) has been disproven. Tax cuts are popular, but are they good if they create huge deficits and explode the debt? The Bush administration has borrowed more money from overseas than all previous Presidents combined! He raised the debt ceiling to 9 trillion dollars. Remember, Reagan said that America couldn't live with a 1 trillion dollar debt. As things stand, China can bring the U.S. to it's knees without firing a shot simply by calling in our debt to them. Our total debt represents $30,000 for every man, woman and child in the U.S. That isn't counting money owed to trust funds (Social Security,etc.). Factor that in and it's more like $50,000. The Republican party is the party of fiscal responsibility? The last President, prior to Clinton, to run an administration with a balanced budget LBJ! You may recall he had a foriegn war going on at the time, as does President Bush. The idea that we should all love tax cuts is preposterous under the circumstances. President Bush submits deficit budgets to Congress that don't contain one dime for the war in Iraq!! Then he goes to Congress asking for hundreds of billions of dollars for the war, (remember, the war that was supposed to cost around 30 billion dollars) and you aren't a patriot, you hate our troops if you serve in Congress and don't approve the spending.
President Bush calls himself a "decider". Trusting this man with the responsibilities of Commander in Chief and with our nation's budget is like trusting a teenager with the keys to your liquor cabinet and your car.

RJWCapriati
Apr 22nd, 2006, 03:21 AM
In my opinion he is the worst, and probably will be the worst of all time forever.

cheesestix
Apr 22nd, 2006, 03:34 AM
:worship:

....to Lord Nelson and joepike

Volcana
Apr 22nd, 2006, 05:24 AM
About 83 % of those historians vote Democrat.a) NONE of those historians vote 'Democrat'. There's no 'Democrat' party in the USA.

b) Exactly where did you get that figure? Or did you just make it up?

c) Historians, according to every who's commented, pro or con on this survey, DO vote more for the Democratic Party than the Republican Party. They are still the best informed people on the topic.

BTW, the results of this survery were first published May 17, 2004.

May 17, 2004

BEFORE it was revealed the Bush administration was using the NSA to spy on Americans in direct violation of the law.

BEFORE the disasterous lack of repsonse to Hurricane Katrina.

BEFORE it was revealed the Bush humself was the source of leaks of material thought classified.

BEFORE the insane run-up of gas pries.

BEFORE the public found out he might nuke Iran.

BEFORE Bush's approval rating sunk into the high 30's, a level that means only those who willfully ignore reality approve of the job he's doing.

Volcana
Apr 22nd, 2006, 05:30 AM
Did the Vietcong actually had huge support in the South? They may have had support but it may not have been so huge. If that is the case then why were there millions of boat people. Why do so many Haitians try to come to the USA. And Mexicans, and Cubans, and Peruvians, et al?

Greater economic opportunity.

Also Vietcong contributed to Khmer Rouge coming to powerOnly in that they, and the Khmer Rouge, were fighting the same enemy. Three years after winning the Vietnam War, the Vietnamese government, which then (and now) include the Viet Cong, overthrew the Khmer Rouge. Compare that to our current response to genocide in the Sudan.

Volcana
Apr 22nd, 2006, 05:37 AM
The influence of the Neo-Cons is weaker than ever during the Bush administration. Rumsfeld, Cheney and Rice are no and never were Neo-Cons. Just ask the Kristols. Do you even know the history or the roots of Neo-Conservatism?I know that Cheney and Rumsfeld are both founders of 'The Project for a New American Century' (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Project_for_the_New_American_Century#Other_members ), which, as far as I'm concerned, makes them card carrying Neo-Cons.

Rice, OTOH, is a hitter. Smart, competent, fatal, and without loyalty beyond Bush, as far as I can tell. She scares me, beyond even Cheney. Wish she played for our team, but that;s life.:)
Well, that's why the country voted him into office twice. The last time with the most votes EVER for any presidential candidate.The population increases every four years. That the only reason it was the most votes ever. Far more relevant is that it was the smallest percentage margin ever.
He didn't arm Bin Laden as Bin Laden was a not very prominent young mujahedin lieutenant in his 20ies during the first Afghanistan war. The CIA could not check out every young anti-communist Afghan fighter whether he might become a terrorist 15 years later.However, the philosophy of the Taliban was quite evident then. However, 'the enemy of my enemy is my friend' does provide some defense.
Reagan supported the Contras in Nicaragua against a crypto-communist dictatorship that had murdered thousands of indians.Are you just re-writing history for laughs!?!? It was Contras who 'murdered thousands of indians', far more than ther Sandanistas.
And he supported a christian democrat (Duarte) in El Salvador against Soviet-backed insurgents.In the immortal words of Ronald Reagan, 'There he goes again!' In El Salvador, Reagan support a government which had death squads preying on their own population to retain power.

I know there are a lot of young folks on this board, but SOME of us were adults back then. An awful lot of what you're writing is pure fiction.

Volcana
Apr 22nd, 2006, 05:58 AM
Bu Mullah Omar and co. were just foot soldiers who got financed by Pakistan when they were refugees overthere. So Taliban is almost entirely a Pakistan creation.There's not a cause and effect relationship there. They may have been refugees there, but it simply doesn't follow that Pakistan is therefore responsible for all their funding. We gave a hell of lot of money to anybody who'd fight the Soviets in Afghanistan. It might be pleasant to believe none of the money flowed to what eventually became Al Qaeda, but it isn't realistic.

AjdeNate!
Apr 22nd, 2006, 06:02 AM
Is that a legit question? I mean, c'mon there's not even sport in making fun of/seeing all the ills of the administration anymore. It at least used to be fun and a game. Now it's just too easy and convenient.

But yes, Karl Rove er I mean Dick Cheney er I mean GWB is the worst.

Infiniti2001
Apr 22nd, 2006, 06:04 AM
I look at the Bush national security officials much the way I look at drunken drivers. I just want to take away their foreign policy driver's licenses for the next three years. Sorry, boys and girls, you have to stay home now — or take a taxi. Dial 1-800-NATO-CHARGE-A-RIDE. You will not be driving alone. Not with my car.

New York Times' Thomas Friedman
:haha:

drake3781
Apr 22nd, 2006, 06:09 AM
Le Duc Tho ("Who is that?") and Arafat have won the Nobel Peace Prize as well.

So what was you point?

First of all, that is a very condescending way to speak to others.

Secondly, I am aware that others have received the Nobel Peace Prize; I did not say that Carter is the ONLY winner of the Nobel Peace Prize.

Thirdly, my point was ( and you could read my post to see it, why ask?) that after his presidency Carter has continued a life of public service in the best interest of humanity, and I don't expect GWB to do the same.

joepike
Apr 22nd, 2006, 10:49 AM
....
But we caused an imbalanced result, and a bitter Germany sprouted groups like the Nazi's, who consistently scored vote totals of 25% or better. Then the great depression started in 1929, and quickly enveloped the Western world, getting Hitler close enough to winning in 1933 that he cobbled together a governing coalition, and "the rest is history".

You got that completely wrong.
The Nazi party never scored more than 5 % in the 20ies.
In the 1930 parlamentary election they made 18.3 % due to the world-wide economic crisis.
In the July 1932 election 37.3 % (first time "25 % or better") and in the November 1932 election 33.1 %.
In January 1933 he came to power and abolished all opposition parties shortly after.

joepike
Apr 22nd, 2006, 10:57 AM
First of all, that is a very condescending way to speak to others.

Secondly, I am aware that others have received the Nobel Peace Prize; I did not say that Carter is the ONLY winner of the Nobel Peace Prize.

Thirdly, my point was ( and you could read my post to see it, why ask?) that after his presidency Carter has continued a life of public service in the best interest of humanity, and I don't expect GWB to do the same.


Me thinks all these Bush-bashers are very condescending themselves.
Bush was elected twice.
To denigrate a politician (like it has been done in this thread) who at least TRIES to get rid of brutal dictators who harbour terrorists, use WMDs and plan to build more is sign of mean character.

*JR*
Apr 22nd, 2006, 01:54 PM
You got that completely wrong.
The Nazi party never scored more than 5 % in the 20ies.
In the 1930 parlamentary election they made 18.3 % due to the world-wide economic crisis.
In the July 1932 election 37.3 % (first time "25 % or better") and in the November 1932 election 33.1 %.
In January 1933 he came to power and abolished all opposition parties shortly after.
I should have said that "the German rightwing parties" (together) got 25% plus throughout the 20's. By 1932, the Nazi's were in a 3 party coalition that got almost half the vote, then added the support of a small Catholic oriented party to create a majority. As the Nazi's had the most votes in this coalition, their leader (Hitler) was appointed Chancellor by the head of state, President von Hindenburg.

Lord Nelson
Apr 22nd, 2006, 02:01 PM
There's not a cause and effect relationship there. They may have been refugees there, but it simply doesn't follow that Pakistan is therefore responsible for all their funding. We gave a hell of lot of money to anybody who'd fight the Soviets in Afghanistan. It might be pleasant to believe none of the money flowed to what eventually became Al Qaeda, but it isn't realistic.
You are talking about al queda and I was talking about Taliban which I repeat is almost entirely a Pakistan creation. The Pashtuns from Pakistan and Afgahnaistan funded the groups with help from ISI, the Pakistani secret services. Indeed, a lot of weapons that the U.S. gave to Mujahedin ended up in Taliban hands but those weapons were not a factor in Taliban coming to power.
Now you want to talk anbout Al queda so lets talk about it. AMany people now link Islamic terrorism with one group al queda which is inacurrate. For isntance, the Londona dn Madrid bombings had nothing to do with al queda. They were homegrown bombings by radical Muslim immigrants. Even Al queda in Iraq has nothing to do with Bin laden's group,. Al Zarqawi is his own man. But all of these groups get support from various private and even government sources. The hawala banking system also is a means of these financing. To conclude most of the blame should not be on U.S. shouldiers but on these groups that I mentioned.

Lord Nelson
Apr 22nd, 2006, 02:07 PM
I know that Cheney and Rumsfeld are both founders of 'The Project for a New American Century' (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Project_for_the_New_American_Century#Other_members ), which, as far as I'm concerned, makes them card carrying Neo-Cons.

Rice, OTOH, is a hitter. Smart, competent, fatal, and without loyalty beyond Bush, as far as I can tell. She scares me, beyond even Cheney. Wish she played for our team, but that;s life.:)
The population increases every four years. That the only reason it was the most votes ever. Far more relevant is that it was the smallest percentage margin ever.
However, the philosophy of the Taliban was quite evident then. However, 'the enemy of my enemy is my friend' does provide some defense.
Are you just re-writing history for laughs!?!? It was Contras who 'murdered thousands of indians', far more than ther Sandanistas.
In the immortal words of Ronald Reagan, 'There he goes again!' In El Salvador, Reagan support a government which had death squads preying on their own population to retain power.

I know there are a lot of young folks on this board, but SOME of us were adults back then. An awful lot of what you're writing is pure fiction.
Isn't the smallest percentage margin still the win that Kennedy had over Nixon in 1960? This is just a question.

Yoiu seem to have high words for Sadinistas who used brutal methods. I wonder what you think of FARC then? Maybe the Burmese regime, a right wing dictatorial group should start calling itself communist for it to be worthy in your eyes. :rolleyes: The truth is in Latin America, there was brutality on all sides. Violence breeds violence.

meyerpl
Apr 22nd, 2006, 03:36 PM
I know that Cheney and Rumsfeld are both founders of 'The Project for a New American Century' (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Project_for_the_New_American_Century#Other_members ), which, as far as I'm concerned, makes them card carrying Neo-Cons.

Rice, OTOH, is a hitter. Smart, competent, fatal, and without loyalty beyond Bush, as far as I can tell. She scares me, beyond even Cheney. Wish she played for our team, but that;s life.:)
The population increases every four years. That the only reason it was the most votes ever. Far more relevant is that it was the smallest percentage margin ever.
However, the philosophy of the Taliban was quite evident then. However, 'the enemy of my enemy is my friend' does provide some defense.
Are you just re-writing history for laughs!?!? It was Contras who 'murdered thousands of indians', far more than ther Sandanistas.
In the immortal words of Ronald Reagan, 'There he goes again!' In El Salvador, Reagan support a government which had death squads preying on their own population to retain power.

I know there are a lot of young folks on this board, but SOME of us were adults back then. An awful lot of what you're writing is pure fiction.
Excellent Post! :worship: :worship: :worship:

meyerpl
Apr 22nd, 2006, 03:39 PM
Isn't the smallest percentage margin still the win that Kennedy had over Nixon in 1960? This is just a question.

Yoiu seem to have high words for Sadinistas who used brutal methods. I wonder what you think of FARC then? Maybe the Burmese regime, a right wing dictatorial group should start calling itself communist for it to be worthy in your eyes. :rolleyes: The truth is in Latin America, there was brutality on all sides. Violence breeds violence.
I read and re-read the post you're referring to and can't find and "high words" for the Sandinistas. Would you please point them out to me?

meyerpl
Apr 22nd, 2006, 04:09 PM
Me thinks all these Bush-bashers are very condescending themselves.
Bush was elected twice.
To denigrate a politician (like it has been done in this thread) who at least TRIES to get rid of brutal dictators who harbour terrorists, use WMDs and plan to build more is sign of mean character.
With all due respect, do you know what "condescending" means? I don't see anyone talking down to Bush supporters here. Is simply disagreeing with someone assuming a condescending attitude? I disagree with Lord Nelson about nearly everything, but I would never talk down to him. He is intelligent, articulate and supports his positions effectively. Usually. :)

I see very little denigrating of President Bush in this thread. Sure, you can pick out a couple statements, most of which are intended to be humorous, and make a case that they are, but for the most part, critical posts consist of well reasoned, responsible criticism of the President's administration and policies. Is that a sign of mean character? I thought such speech and disention was not only allowed, but encouraged by our founding fathers and built into our political system.
Who knows exactly what the President has in mind when he "TRIES" things? Are you suggesting that, without regard to results, the American people should just shut-up and give this President a free pass because at least he's trying?

Volcana
Apr 29th, 2006, 04:56 AM
Apart from you I found it interesteing to see that hardly anyone has mentioned Presidents from 19 or 18 Century. They just analyzed leaders from late 20th Century onwards. Bravo. :rolleyes:My Dad taught American history. It's not like I had a choice.:)