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  #31 (permalink)  
Old May 9th, 2011, 06:13 PM
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Originally Posted by AR View Post
Let's go down the list

FDR. Beloved when he died in office. No need for time to heal
Refused to allow shiploads of jews into the country forcing them to return to europe where most ended up in concentration camps.

Truman. Came into office at FDR's death, popular. Re-elected in 48. Got rid of MacArthur. By the time he left office in 52 he couldn't have been elected dogcatcher. Rehabilitated by time? Definitely.
Would not allow his jewish cabinet member to enter his home (although Bess and Margaret did not share those views)

Ike. Other than ending the Korean War and getting rid of McCarthy (which he didn't do alone), he was thought of kindly during and after his presidency. His post-presidential activities, other than golf, were insignificant.
Would often refer to Mamie by the name of his mistress.

JFK. Special case, obviously. Will always be in everyone's heart no matter the politics.
Marilyn Monroe was his downfalling .

LBJ. Similar trajectory to Truman. Left the office bitter and unpopular. Brooded. Rehabilitated by time? No.
Not the nicest person around

Nixon. A morose criminal. Rehabilitated by time? No. At his funeral Billy Graham asked for 18 1/2 minutes of silence. (I actually sent that joke to Leno).
I agree totally

Ford. Nice guy, popular when he took over, simply because he wasn't Nixon. Took a big hit when he pardoned Nixon, which probably cost him the election. Rehabilitated by time? Absolutely, mainly because he was known as a very nice, kind, decent guy.
I had this point of view as well until I read the complete Warren Commission findings which changed my opinion of him and Sen.Arlen Specter.

Carter. Largely ineffective as president, hurt badly by the economy, high interest rates, Iran, but arguably one of the finest, most productive ex-presidents we've ever had. Rehabilitated by time? Yes, mostly because of his never-ending service to humankind.
Gave too much say to brother Billy .

Reagan. Came in popular. Stayed popular. Got Bush I elected. Application for sainthood pending, despite being wrong about so many things, e.g. "trickle down economics." No need for rehabilitation. Nearly everything in Washington is or will be named for him.
Invaded Grenada for absolutely no reason.

Bush I. Came in popular because of Reagan. Popularity through the roof at end of first Gulf War (the "War-gasm" in Washington is still one of the biggest celebrations ever held here). Then it all ended for him. Waged a terrible campaign against Clinton. Many felt he just didn't care any more. Rehabilitated by time? Yes, to some degree. Many say that he still looks good compared to Bush II.
Was "in bed" with the Saudi's .

Clinton. Could have been a great President if he'd kept it zipped up. Little doubt that his failing to do so got Bush II elected. Rehabilitated by time? To the extent necessary, yes. Again, largely due to his own love of good works, and his undeniable intellect, and his amazing ego.
Not only Monica but there is speculation that the death of Ron Brown was not an accident .

Bush II. Many negatives. Will time rehabilitate? Jury is out.
He had zero interest in being President .Many feel that Chaney ran the administration.

Obama. Jury is REALLY out. Now that we're past the birth certificate and Osama, we'll see how he fares. Much of his success or lack of it between now and the next election will be due to factors over which he has little or no control (e.g. gas prices, jobs), which has got to be annoying. Plus he'll never please the racists.
Yes ,he got Osama but we still have troops in Iraq and Afghanistan .In November 2007 he stated that if elected the very first thing he will do would be to remove ALL the troops from Iraq.

So I think it's a mixed bag. Time heals, sometimes. I think it's interesting that the two who have made their own reputations most clearly in the service of mankind post-presidency are Carter and Clinton. If you ever get a chance, read an annual report from the Carter Center. I truly believe that had JFK lived, he would have gone down a similar path. I also think that Obama will.

I often wonder what path this country would have taken with Eugene McCarthy as President .
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Old May 9th, 2011, 06:18 PM
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AR..nice summary.. maybe you should write an article about what happens to former Vice Presidents and how they suffered/prospered because of working for their POTUS (Spiro A. gets his own chapter)

Luanne..I sense you were surprise at my response (I've always contended that African Americans owe George Bush a debt of thanks)..I think he got some very bad counsel from some very bad people and like most sons, didn't listen to his Dad who tried to help him

I once had the honor of attending a dinner where Jackie Robinson's widow spoke about the incredible death threats, pressures (both physical and mental toll) on him and the family regarding breaking the color barrier in major league sports..she drew the analogy to POTUS Obama breaking the ultimate glass barrier (which no one ever expected in our lifetime, everyone thought that a woman would be elected before a person of color)..regardless of how his Presidency is evaluated, it's forever change and removed the **** around the conversation that all African American father's (and all fathers in general) have with our sons about the rewards of hard work,good credit, education, belief in God and the privilige and responsiblity of serving our Country in the Armed Forces, and finding the right woman to marry, have a family, stick with thru good/bad times, your word is your bond and the basic belief that most people will judge you on the content of your character.. also I think that former Presidents must have a sincere heart when trying to "rehab" their images..sometimes it starts with a simple "I'm Sorry" to the people they impacted the most which means they have to put aside their ego..I always remember reading about Lee Atwater(sp?) the former RNC campaign manager for Bush 1,in his final days when he knew he was dying , he at least tried to make it right

what offends me most about the Donald Trump/Birther crap is that good decent Americans (regardless of political party) did not speak up sooner to shut Trump up because they understood the deep racism that "showing papers" means to citizens of color in our Country..the only time I want to show my papers is when I go on a cruise or travel overseas

what really scares me about the next Presidential election is that we have the potential of having the greatest divisive racial polarization campaign by the party not holding the seat, in the history of our Country (we are already seeing hints of it)..I will always admire John McCain for two reasons 1) his service to our Country 2) during the campaign when it looked like he would lose, he did not agree to go negative which meant IMHO he loved his Country more then wanting to be POTUS (and also what happen to him and his family in the South Carolina primary)..I just hope whomever the opposition candidate is will have that value in his heart

sorry for being long winded, this hit a nerve
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Old May 9th, 2011, 06:56 PM
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Venice, I was not surprised. You and AR are two of the smartest men I know.

As far as President Obama. There is no room in my life for racism. It is hurtful, wrong, and a waste of time, but I do worry about him. I am so afraid he came into that job, and needed OJT. He made promises, and then got in office, and realized what the job was really about. I resent the fact that a non AA cannot say anything bad about his job, without getting the raceist label. We have the right to say things about the job that the president is doing, and skin color should not get in the way of that right.

I agree that President Obama broke the glass ceiling, and it's about time, but a good day will be when we no longer have to talk about skin color, but on how we can make our country even better than it already is.

I do think that the birther thing was a mess. I blame both sides for it. One if I was running for president I would be more than happy to prove my citizenship. That's easy. Sadly, the proper thing was not done, so it gave an opening to people to make up their own stories of the truth.

Donald Trump is a hot dog. He loves to hear himself talk. It made headlines, and he ate it up. He also had the right, because again, we have the right to speak. If freedom of speech means we have to put up with Mr. Trump, then we do what we have to do.

AR, I loved your break down of the presidents. I still remember trying to explain to my very young sons what Oral sex was. (Jim suddenly had to leave the room, so I got the duty)
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Old May 10th, 2011, 11:31 AM
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Luanne..I hope for all of our sakes, we can move beyond racism in our lifetime (doubt it)..fyi POTUS Obama has had a passport for all of his life..one needs a birth certificate to obtain a US passport (never an issue during the 18 month primary)..there are overt and covert forms of racism in our society..there are even political strategies implemented by both major parties (i.e code words and phrases, see Lee Atwater) designed to exploit the fears and ignorance of voters, abet Karl Rove has taken it to a new level (not a compliment) and Donald Trump used code to attack the man and not his policies

in January of 2001 with the budget balanced the Congressional Budget Office forecast a surplus that over the next decade could pay off the national debt..one party advocated to cut taxes, jack up spending, give a tax break to the rich and for the 1st time in history wage two wars solely with borrow funds (alot came from China)..one party championed that the projected surplus be put aside (lockbox) to protect social security and medicare and indicated a big tax cut would encourage expensive priorities (i.e. entitlements) without the pay as you go restraints that had helped produce the surplus in the 1st place.based upon the rhetoric we hear today, guess which party advocated which position in 2001?.and by the way a certain member of Congress who is now Speaker of the House, might want to show more restraint in his public posturing based upon his past voting record

POTUS Clinton definition of having relations sent alot of parents back to the drawing board in terms of conversation with our children..your husband knew that you were up to the task

AR...I always get a kick out of the hypocrisy about the Clinton mess..the biggest most vocal Republican critics (Newt, Bob Livingston, David Vitter etc.) turns out were as big if not bigger dogs then Bill..but Newt and POTUS Clinton were able to find ways to work together..go figure
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Old May 10th, 2011, 11:32 AM
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Originally Posted by AR View Post
Let's go down the list

FDR. Beloved when he died in office. No need for time to heal
Hated by half the country. Blamed by Republicans for many of the country's ills.

Quote:
Truman. Came into office at FDR's death, popular. Re-elected in 48. Got rid of MacArthur. By the time he left office in 52 he couldn't have been elected dogcatcher. Rehabilitated by time? Definitely.
A true Populist, beloved by many for his folksy ways. A gentleman in retirement.

Quote:
Ike. Other than ending the Korean War and getting rid of McCarthy (which he didn't do alone), he was thought of kindly during and after his presidency. His post-presidential activities, other than golf, were insignificant.
True that.

Quote:
JFK. Special case, obviously. Will always be in everyone's heart no matter the politics.
Well, well certainly be remembered as a special case, if not in the heart.

Quote:
LBJ. Similar trajectory to Truman. Left the office bitter and unpopular. Brooded. Rehabilitated by time? No.
Any man who loves beagles can't be all bad. Inherited policies from Kennedy and put them into effect, which Kennedy could not have done.

Quote:
Nixon. A morose criminal. Rehabilitated by time? No. At his funeral Billy Graham asked for 18 1/2 minutes of silence. (I actually sent that joke to Leno).
The Chinese loved him. Can 800 million people be all wrong?

Quote:
Ford. Nice guy, popular when he took over, simply because he wasn't Nixon. Took a big hit when he pardoned Nixon, which probably cost him the election. Rehabilitated by time? Absolutely, mainly because he was known as a very nice, kind, decent guy.
True that

Quote:
Carter. Largely ineffective as president, hurt badly by the economy, high interest rates, Iran, but arguably one of the finest, most productive ex-presidents we've ever had. Rehabilitated by time? Yes, mostly because of his never-ending service to humankind.
One of the great mysteries of history how a peanut farmer became an elder statesman. True that he was a Lousy president, good guy as ex-president.

Quote:
Reagan. Came in popular. Stayed popular. Got Bush I elected. Application for sainthood pending, despite being wrong about so many things, e.g. "trickle down economics." No need for rehabilitation. Nearly everything in Washington is or will be named for him.
Speaks of our society that an actor has the best public image in spite of ineffectiveness as a leader.

Quote:
Bush I. Came in popular because of Reagan. Popularity through the roof at end of first Gulf War (the "War-gasm" in Washington is still one of the biggest celebrations ever held here). Then it all ended for him. Waged a terrible campaign against Clinton. Many felt he just didn't care any more. Rehabilitated by time? Yes, to some degree. Many say that he still looks good compared to Bush II.
Possibly the best qualified president we have ever had. Took on tough issues and dealt with them. Being well-qualified and knowing what he was doing obviously did not appeal to the voters.

Quote:
Clinton. Could have been a great President if he'd kept it zipped up. Little doubt that his failing to do so got Bush II elected. Rehabilitated by time? To the extent necessary, yes. Again, largely due to his own love of good works, and his undeniable intellect, and his amazing ego.
Intelligence is not wisdom. Bright? Yes. Smart? Well -- what do you think. The smart ones did not get caught with their pants unzipped (look at Kennedy. And Marilyn Monroe was a LOT prettier!)

Quote:
Bush II. Many negatives. Will time rehabilitate? Jury is out.
Better looking wife than Bush I.

Quote:
Obama. Jury is REALLY out. Now that we're past the birth certificate and Osama, we'll see how he fares. Much of his success or lack of it between now and the next election will be due to factors over which he has little or no control (e.g. gas prices, jobs), which has got to be annoying. Plus he'll never please the racists.
Bin Laden is dead. What has he done for us THIS week??

Quote:
So I think it's a mixed bag. Time heals, sometimes. I think it's interesting that the two who have made their own reputations most clearly in the service of mankind post-presidency are Carter and Clinton. If you ever get a chance, read an annual report from the Carter Center. I truly believe that had JFK lived, he would have gone down a similar path. I also think that Obama will.
So we are seeing a pattern: Ineffective president, great humanitarian afterwards? Maybe you are right about Obama...

Ain't politics fun, folks? Will Rogers had it right: "The people who are smart enough to run this country are too smart to get messed up in politics!"
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  #36 (permalink)  
Old May 10th, 2011, 12:36 PM
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Venice, Thanks for your words. I am still learning this game of name calling, and get inpatient when each color tries to tear each other up. We should all have the same goals and dreams.

I do not see the same racism you see, but I suppose to takes someone who experiences it.

I had my first chance to go back to Atlanta a couple of weeks ago. I only had the afternoon and part of the night, but spent a good deal of time, going around to the area I grew up. The first thing I noticed when I came into town, was the names of the streets had been changed. These are streets that have been in place for years. They all had been changed to Civil Rights leaders. I can understand the new streets being named, but why change what was already named. I made the mistake of asking why. I was told that the Atlanta I called home for so many years was no longer mine. It's ours I was told. So I went to see my old neighborhood to see what the new owners had done to improve it. Worse mistake I have made in awhile. I guess it didn't mean as much to the new people as it did to us.

I had never seen the Falcons stadium, but was told it was to dangerous, unless there was a game going on. Downtown I was told, is the same way.

I guess my point is that if more time was spent building a race up, and less time trying to prove a point, and pointing fingers, we might get the that special day faster.

I have spent my life trying to prove that race had little to do with leadership. My kids were raised to see what was inside, and to not care what was on the outside.

Before we can stop racism, each side has to stop what I guess could be called the New Civil War. The war needs to be over. It's time to get to work to make our country safe enough for the next generation.
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Old May 10th, 2011, 03:18 PM
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Luanne--

Your points are all good.

Every single one of us who does not have an ounce of racism in our hearts and souls has faced situations where we've been wary of saying or doing something for fear that it will be interpreted as racist. At the end of the day, those fears often get in the way of honest communications and straightforward, ethical actions.

Happens all the time, and it won't be until racism not only ends for each of us personally, but is perceived as having ended by most everybody else, that we'll never have to walk on those eggshells again.

Unfortunately, we're nowhere near that point yet in our society. With regard to the birth certificate issue, I'll say this: not every birther is a racist, but pretty much every racist is a birther. And there are plenty of them. That issue became the ideal smokescreen to provide cover for those racists whose message is, "He's not one of us." It was code; it was well-understood code among racists, and many of the rest of us caught on to the underlying agenda as well. It was a way to express hatred in a "socially acceptable" way.

I suppose some non-racist birthers simply weren't paying attention to the facts during that dust-up. That happens all the time too. You can make up your own mind about what's going on with those who still think he's not an American after all the extraordinary measures that have been taken.

It's not pretty. As a wise person said, "There is no document that will satisfy the hard core birthers, because there is no document that will turn Obama white."

Your Atlanta example is a terrific case study in how doing the right thing is often thwarted by race issues. I don't know when it will end, but I hope our children finally see that day.
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Old May 10th, 2011, 04:28 PM
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It is all so sad. Today fathers and mothers of my generation have raised Black and white racist. They will raise the same. Whites will say the blacks want to much, and the whites will say that blacks want things delivered on a silver platter.




Truth is there has never been a time in American history when Blacks have all the rights of Whites. They can be anything they want to be. They can go anywhere, and make a good honest life for themselves. But, They can't let go of the past. I guess this is truly the sins of our fathers.

If I had one wish it would be that we could all start new. No more blame for the past, and no more blame for things that happened so many years ago.

We are wasting so much time. We need to be shoulder to shoulder, working for the greater good.
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Old May 10th, 2011, 05:21 PM
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Luanne, you have spoken a fundamental truth. We cannot change the past. We can only make a better present and try to change the future.
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Old May 10th, 2011, 05:51 PM
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every generation hopefully will improve the situation..the last census showed a marked increase in people checking:neutral: other (or mixed):neutral: for the race category and it must upset some that POTUS Obama is of mixed heritage..the real concern should be of the growing Hispanic population in our Country (thus the heated debate on immigration) and how that will impact the political landscape as that group becomes the majority in the very near future

to get back to the spirit of the original post..the next POTUS should have a strong grasp of global perspective, renew the spirit of American creative thinking, be strong on terror and have a sound financial plan which includes protecting the safety net of many senior/poor Americans..I for one, would like to see a Woman in that office (Sarah Palin not included) and have her be married to a man of mixed (Hispanic) heritage..that would really upset the apple cart in this Country
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Old May 10th, 2011, 07:29 PM
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I hope we have someone who has experience in the business world. Just to be a good speaker is not enough for me. I realize that advisors play an important role in our gov, but I want someone who understands what they advise, and the ability to say no if it doesn't work.

I still think we need to do something about the 24/7 politicing. President Obama was in Tex today. He says everything is so much better than before. That is just clueless thinking, or someone who is planning on the hispantic vote. All the drugs are going some where. We are not all stoned, so I guess some of you are benifiting from the new trade from Mexico. Blinders are for horses, not presidents.
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Old May 10th, 2011, 11:51 PM
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My favorite President of my lifetime is and has always been Harry Truman. I think it notable that he is also the last President that never graduated from college.

Following his Presidency he lived unobstrusively just like any of us in his home with his beloved Bess in Independence. We didn't have a First Lady when he was President simply because she wouldn't put up with the crap and moved back home. He wrote her almost every single day.

One day following his Presidency, two men knocked on his door. He answered and they identified themselves as Secret Service and they informed him they had been assigned for his protection. He replied rather abruptly to the effect he didn't need any and firmly shut the door.

It took Lyndon Johnson pleading with Bess to allow the Secret Service because were he not to, it would effect future ex-Presidents who might need it so he relented as long as they didn't get in his way.

After reaching home following his departure from Washington, he and Bess packed up the car and went on vacation...by themselves!

My favorite story involved a grade school student who made a report mentioning something Truman did. The teacher told the kid he was wrong (or something such as that).

A week or so later the child entered the classroom followed by the former President of the United States to whom he'd written for help. The teacher just about fainted. Truman politely explained to the teacher that the lad was indeed correct and he was proud of him. He then said goodbye and left the school. I don't know whether or not the teacher ever recovered.

As a student of military history and even though the man was a close friend of my paternal step-grandfather, I couldn't stand Douglas McArthur and I am convinced he caused the needless death of many Americans just to satisfy his montrous ego. Truman had the guts to fire the pompous jackass!

During the war when an aide entered the office of a general to tell him that General McArthur had arrived with his staff for a conference, the General replied, "McArthur doesn't have a staff, he has a G******d Court!

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Old May 11th, 2011, 10:26 AM
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Todd..POTUS Truman was one of my alltime favorites..what happen to Thomas Dewey after his defeat ?
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Old May 11th, 2011, 10:53 AM
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Truman's presidency was just a bit too early for me to remember personally, but I've heard so many stories. . .

They're almost all gone now, but years ago one of the joys of Washington was its corps of veteran career cab drivers, most of them black, most of them with close-cropped salt-and-pepper hair, who had "seen them all" and driven many of "them." Riding with one of these great guys one day many years ago near Farragut Square, he pointed to a coffee shop and said, "See that coffee shop? Mr. Harry Truman bought me a cup of coffee in there one day. He just walked in, sat down, asked me what I did, and asked me if there was anything he could do to make things better. I couldn't believe it. He was the president, but just a regular guy."

Many more Truman stories have come to me over the years from my old boss and friend George Elsey, now 93 and going strong. George was a Naval aide to FDR, and ran the White House Map Room during the war. He knew "tham all" too, including Churchill. After FDR died, he continued serving Truman, ultimately as a civilian as assistant to the president. George was on the famous "whistle stop" train in the 48 campaign, frantically writing the "ad libs" Truman would deliver from the back of the train at each stop.

If you care, George's lovely memoir, An Unplanned Life, gives many insights into the presidency during those years. He's a historian by training and by temperament, and for years he's been consulted as an authority on WWII and the years following. He's also a superb writer and a wonderful guy.

He was in my thoughts several years ago when we spent a day walking the beaches at Normandy, where George landed on D-Day while he was on special duty for the president. He could have stayed safely offshore on a troop ship, but, like I said, he's a historian and he prefers firsthand accounts.
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Old May 11th, 2011, 12:02 PM
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AR..thanks..I will put your friends book on my list to read
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Old May 11th, 2011, 12:21 PM
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I will add to my reading list as well
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Old May 11th, 2011, 04:56 PM
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AR or Todd..Truman in his role of VP, became POTUS to complete Roosevelt's 3rd term..he then won one term on his own..would he have been inelgible to run for a 2nd full term ?

I've often thought that Truman made decisions based upon the good of the Country and not for political considerations (i.e dropping the h-bomb, firing Gen. McArthur, signing the Presidential decree to intergrate the Armed Forces (that must have really infuriated off the Southern Dixiecrats (Democrats) senators..as I have read he left office with one of the lowest approval ratings of any POTUS, but history has been much kinder to him
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Old May 11th, 2011, 06:15 PM
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Yes, he could have run, but just barely.

The 22nd Amendment was enacted in 1951, (mostly because FDR had been elected four times). It states that any president who has served in the office for more than two years can only be elected one more time. Since FDR died in 45, Truman had been president for more than two years when the 48 election rolled around, so that would have excluded him from running in 52--except that the Amendment exempted the sitting president at the time of its enactment. Truman decided not to run because he was pretty sure he couldn't win. He was profoundly unpopular by 51-52.

After JFK was killed in 63, the 22nd Amendment was in full force, but LBJ had only served for about a year when he beat Goldwater in 64. Therefore, since he hadn't served for more than two years when he was first elected, LBJ could have run again in 68, but chose not to. I'm sure we all remember the famous "I shall not seek, and I will not accept, the nomination of my party for another term as your president" speech.
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Old May 11th, 2011, 06:53 PM
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AR....thanks..when LBJ signed the Voter Civil Rights Bill, that along with the anti-war sentiment, cooked his goose even within his own party..many state his signing of that bill is what caused the South to go Republican

understand in everything I've heard/read about him, LBJ was not a very nice person to deal with..he was downright mean:evil::evil::evil:
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Old May 11th, 2011, 07:30 PM
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Truman had the lowest approval ratings of any President in history when he left office. Not only that, he maintained probably the lowest approval ratings over his full term than any President in history as well. You are indeed correct, Venice, he did what he thought was right for the country and could have cared less about the ratings. The reason? He never wanted the office in the first place, in fact he never wanted to be Vice President under Roossevelt. He was convinced to do so because of the good of the party. Actually, the Democrats didn't want him either! It was a convenience thing for them. No one outside of Washington had really heard of him, and he was only agreed upon because most thought Roosevelt would not live out his term and they figured he wouldn't upset the apple cart were he to become President. Even as Vice President, Roosevelt looked down his nose at him and would pointedly exlude him as much as he could from everything. Harry knew that and truly, could have cared less. Well, he upset the apple cart more than a few times.

Truman was the product of an outrageously corrupt political machine (The Missouri Pendergast machine) which almost rivaled the same type of machine that existed then and still yet today in Chicago. Yet they quickly found out that he was his own man, not theirs. Over time, they were furious with him, especially since most of them went to jail.

Remember, the Democrat back then was far different than today's Democrat. While the Democrats were the alleged champion of the "working man," something he admired, he had absolutely no love whatsoever for powerful Unions simply because he thought their power would become too extreme to the point of hurting the country and by that, the working man.....something about which history proved him all too correct.

Even had he enjoyed high ratings, there is no doubt whatsoever in my mind that he never would have sought another term regardless of what the party wanted. Why? He simply wanted to go home. That decision was obvious by what he did during his term(s). When he fired McArthur, the public was enraged and the Republicans thought, well, we've got the perfect candidate. Well that love affair with both the public and the Republicans lasted about six months if that simply because both the Republicans and most Americans discovered what Truman had known for years, that McArthur was really about..........McArthur!

When the Puerto Rican nationalists attacked Blair house, he was napping upstairs. He tried everything he could to have one of the Secret Service Agents give him a gun (I believe he was trying to find a Thompson Sub machine gun) and by God he'd go down and take care of the problem! It was all they could do to keep him out of danger and he was furious, especially when he learned that several of those assigned to protect him had died.

He was indeed, the real article!

Todd
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Old May 11th, 2011, 07:39 PM
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Right on all counts, Venice.

Worse, LBJ told HHH during the 68 campaign that if HHH broke with him on the war (which HHH desperately wanted to do), he would throw his support to Nixon. It took Humphrey too long to realize that the emperor had no clothes, and by the time he did come out publicly against the war it was too late. Hell, if Johnson HAD supported Nixon it would have probably helped Humphrey! Mr. Johnson was not a popular guy in 1968. And, as you say, he was borderline unconscionable as a human being.

A man who I knew well (but will not name--and it is not the aforementioned George Elsey) said that LBJ had tried more than once to cajole him into taking a cabinet post. He said he declined each time, because he had seen firsthand how the man treated those around him. And he wanted no part of that.

The one thing you have to give the guy credit for was his firm stand on civil rights. Considering his background, that was very bold. Of course, it was Humphrey and Ev Dirksen who shepherded it through Congress.
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Old May 11th, 2011, 10:20 PM
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Ah, another point of history, this time regarding LBJ.

LBJ was Congressman who enlisted shortly after the start of WWII. He was, along with some other political "officers" aboard a B-17 that I believe was technically on a military mission but the type where they knew nothing would occur. All these guys were, were observers, they had no function or duty aboard the aircraft. Of course, it was arranged that any assigment he got would involve no real danger.

The B-17 got lost and the pilot made an excellent landing in a field in Australia. There is a photo of Johnson and the other "military" officer(s) standing beneath the bomber. Following that event, the political "officers" were awarded something like the Bronze Star if indeed not the Silver Star (I forget which) for extensive bravery in combat (Johnson was scared to death) which of course they never saw. The crew of the bomber? They did this stuff, only it was for real, every day and they didn't even get a thank-you.

Todd
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Old May 11th, 2011, 10:56 PM
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ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh..the good old days of politics and political scandal..remember when Illinois US Senate candidate Jack Ryan took his actress wife Jeri Ryan (of Star Trek Voyager fame) to kinky clubs in Paris and New York where cages,whips and chains hung from the ceiling and they were photographed in the club in NYC..the scandal broke, he gave up his senate run and his party opponent was a then unknown Democratic state senator named______________who went on to win the senate seat and then the big prize

maybe, in the modern era of Newt G announcing his intentions of running for POTUS today, Jack Ryan can also make a comeback for his desire Senate Seat that the former Gov B., was trying to sell..politicians believe that voters have a very short memory
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Old May 12th, 2011, 03:06 AM
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Here's another one I love.

There was a woman from this town that during the War, was a Washington Society Hostess. She was every bit as outrageous as her friend, Tallulah Bankhead. The woman was much loved in this town and always treated my mother as the daughter she never had. And funny? She was hilarious and the older she got the funnier she became, in short, she was the epitome of "Auntie Mame."

One day during the war, she and Tallulah were having lunch in probably the Mayflower hotel. At some point a couple or three very powerful Senators walked in and of course dropped by Tallulah's table. What they wanted was to know who this beautiful woman was having lunch with her. She introduced them and the Senators fawned all over our friend. When they finally left Tallulah's nose was obviously out of joint over all the gushyness directed toward her friend.

The friend asked, "What the hell's got into you?" Tallulah replied it was the behavior of Senator so and so. The friend asked, "So why are you so upset, he recognized you and said hello?" Tallulah replied, "He acted as if he hardly knew me but I was good enough to sleep with B*****d last night!!"

Oh well, "Hell hath nor fury, etc..........").

Todd
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Old May 12th, 2011, 03:50 AM
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Okay, one last one and then I promise, that's it.

When I was seventeen, I went to visit good family friends who lived across the bridge from DC in Fairfax, VA.
While there, the mother suggested that her then 12 year old son Anthony, take me into Washington and show me around. they were originally from Illinois. His father was a corporate executive with some large outfit in D.C. and we rode in with him that morning.

So around 11:30, Anthony says, "Let's go see Uncle Ev." I asked him who "Uncle Ev" was and he said Senator Dirksen. I admit I was impressed. Everette Dirksen was the last of the real sonorous old time political speakers and was so good, he actually cut a couple of successful records. He was at the time Senate Reublican Majority Leader and his friend Charlie Halleck from Indiana was the Congressional Republican Minority leader. They both had hilarious senses of humor and were often seen together in front of TV cameras giving their views on everything from politics to probably even the weather. They were so popular, their joint little appearances became known as the "Ev and Charlie Show."

So, in we go to the Senate Office building and Anthony walks into Dirksen's office as if he owned the place and indeed he must have often gone there, because everyone knew him. He asked if "Uncle Ev" was there. He was. One of the secretaries buzzed the Senator and said Anthony and a friend are out here to see you. Immediately Dirksen came out of his office and treated Anthonly as one would their grandson and very warmly introduced himself to me. He looked at his watch and asked if we had yet to have lunch and Anthony replied we had not. So he said, "Let's go." Well over we went to the Senate Dining Room. Back then (as I'm sure it remains today) it was known for it's famous Bean Soup. It was every bit as good as advertised and at the time I didn't like bean soup but from henceforth, I did. I don't know if the Senate dining room is still open to the public at large but if it is, you must go if you're ever in Washington if only to have the Bean Soup.

After lunch we parted company and I was just old enough to understand that I had a rare personal lunch with one very famous American politician.

When we got back home his mother (a British war bride) asked Anthony what we'd done. He told her we had toured the Capitol and then said we'd had lunch with "Uncle Ev." She merely replied with a casual, "Oh, that was nice." Anthony must have been a fixture at that office!

For me, it's been a treasured memory.

Todd
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Old May 12th, 2011, 11:02 AM
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Dirksen was the first politician I ever interviewed on the radio. It was long before my Washington days, when I was in college in Illinois. The Nam war was going full tilt, and the good Senator was 100% against it. Standard argument (and a good one): no payback, civil war, none of our business. At that time we were calling our troops "advisors." Many of us remember that. So I asked him about that. The reason I know his answer verbatim is that I still have the tape:

"You're just as DEAD as an advisor as you are as a second lieutenant or a doughboy."

Doughboy. Wow.
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