Posts Tagged Dwight D. Eisenhower
While at the Nelson Mandela commemoration in South Africa, Barack Obama had an opportunity to meet dozens of world leaders, some of them from democracies, and some from dictatorships.
Unfortunately, dictatorships are much more common historically and in contemporary times, than are democracies.
Richard Nixon went to China and met Mao Tse Tung.
Dwight D. Eisenhower met Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev at Camp David, and John F. Kennedy met Khrushchev in Vienna.
Ronald Reagan met Afghan freedom fighters, who later became involved in promoting terrorism, including September 11.
John McCain met Moammar Gaddafi of Libya, and shook his hand.
Donald Rumsfeld met Saddam Hussein of Iraq as a emissary from Ronald Reagan.
Also, many Presidents have bowed to royal leaders, including George W. Bush with the King of Saudi Arabia, and many Presidents with the Emperor of Japan and the Queen of England.
Never was such a big deal made of these handshakes or discussions, and even summits, until suddenly, Barack Obama became President!
When he met Hugo Chavez of Venezuela, it was the worst crime of the century to the right wing whackos!
Now, Obama shook the hand of Raul Castro, who has made it clear that he is leaving power in 2018, when he will be 87, and his brother Fidel Castro, will be 92, if either is still alive.
There will be a successor government in Cuba within a few years, and there is always the chance that Cuba could undergo change and reform, and in fact, already has developed capitalism and private property, as China, for instance, has done.
Has our government, under Democrats and Republicans, liberals and conservatives, refused to deal with “evil” governments? NO in the modern era, and we are talking with Iran and North Korea at times, so why not Cuba?
After 55 years, has the embargo on Cuba changed anything in that island nation? NO, as it unites the government with its population, who are the true victims of the American blockade!
Do we blockade trade and contact with other nations of much greater importance? The answer is NO, but apparently, we must cater to three million Cuban Americans, and their leadership in the Republican Party, when it benefits no one, and is a failed policy!
It is time for rapprochement with Cuba, so that we can have an effect on its future. This is the time to start such development of relations, and forget the lobbying of right wing groups and Marco Rubio, who have no interest in planning for the future without a Castro in power!
Barack Obama is not the first President to gamble to avoid the danger of war.
He is being criticized for the six month agreement with Iran, a nation which has been hostile to the United States for 34 years.
But Harry Truman worked to overcome hate and hostility from nations we fought in World War II–Germany and Japan.
Dwight D. Eisenhower promoted a “thaw” in the Cold War by inviting Soviet Premier Nikita Khrushchev to the United States in 1959.
John F. Kennedy promoted an alternative to war in the Cuban Missile Crisis in 1962, and signed the Nuclear Test Ban Treaty with the Soviet Union in 1963,
Richard Nixon went to China to overcome a generation of mistrust and lack of communication in 1972.
Jimmy Carter arranged for Egypt and Israel to negotiate diplomatic recognition to overcome decades of mistrust and war in 1979.
Ronald Reagan negotiated missile agreements with Soviet Premier Mikhail Gorbachev in the late 1980s, helping to end the Cold War.
Statesmanship requires gambles to avoid war and overcome mistrust.
Barack Obama is on the same road as were Truman, Eisenhower, Kennedy, Nixon, Carter and Reagan.
This is good company to be in!
The Pew Research Center has conducted a unique study of American Presidents, and the results are fascinating.
Presidents have been analyzed in a multitude of ways, but now there is a new one—how narcissistic they are, how much they love themselves and want attention drawn to them by the American people.
At the top of the list are Lyndon B. Johnson, followed by Theodore Roosevelt, Andrew Jackson, Franklin D. Roosevelt, John F. Kennedy, Richard Nixon and Bill Clinton as the top seven.
All seven are regarded as among the best Presidents we have had, and all are highly controversial because of their assertive manner of governing.
But also, a high level of personal insecurity is evident in all seven, including health issues and personal experiences that made them have the personalities they exhibited in the Presidency.
Only a total of 15 Presidents are seen as having more narcissism than the average person has, including modern Presidents such as Woodrow Wilson, George W. Bush and Ronald Reagan, as numbers 10, 11 and 15.
Presidents such as Harry Truman, George Washington, Jimmy Carter, Dwight D. Eisenhower, George H. W. Bush, Thomas Jefferson, Gerald Ford, and Abraham Lincoln all rate below average on narcissism from numbers varying from 18 to 32 on the list.
The question is how valuable is such a list, but at least it is food for thought!
As we come up to the 50th anniversary of the assassination of President John F. Kennedy on November 22, 1963, it is easy to imagine that JFK was popular, and that the country was united around him.
In reality, there was a lot of hate of our 35th President.
Southern segregationists were furious with him for having taken a strong civil rights stand.
Kennedy was still being attacked for his Catholic faith by many evangelical Christians, who even today do not show any respect for the Pope and the Vatican.
Corporations were furious with JFK for having taken a strong stand against the steel industry price increases in 1962, and the oil industry in Texas was particularly condemnatory of him.
Organized crime was angry with the pursuit of the Mafia by Attorney General Robert Kennedy.
Cuban exiles were angry with JFK over the failure of the Bay of Pigs invasion, and unhappy with the survival of Fidel Castro after the resolution of the Cuban Missile Crisis.
There was discontent within the FBI and CIA, as to the handling of issues by the Kennedy White House, which was challenging the military-industrial complex that President Eisenhower talked about in his Farewell Address, after JFK had allowed himself to be influenced early on by these agencies and their agendas.
This is not to say that JFK was killed due to these opposition forces and hatred, but the point is that the nation was not one of unity around Kennedy, and he faced a daunting task to be reelected.
America was not a nation that was united anymore then, than it is now. We remember JFK fondly more for his tragic death than his ability to unite the American people and various interest groups.
Republicans and conservatives do not want to admit it, but since the age of Ronald Reagan, they have effectively decimated the middle class, and heaped scorn on the poor.
This is reprehensible, particularly when they profess belief in God and call themselves “good Christians” as they work to slash food stamps for single mothers, children, the disabled and the working poor; oppose any rise in the minimum wage; support exporting of jobs to third world nations by greedy corporations; undermine respect for women and their basic human rights; and promote nativism and hate for ethnic minorities, as they try to survive in a nation rapidly becoming less white and Protestant by the day!
As it is, they are still able to convince struggling whites in the South and the hinterland to vote their fears, and blame all their troubles on the poor and the minorities, and progressive initiatives to help the working poor and the middle class.
But in the long run, this is a losing strategy, as now the GOP, allowing the KNOW NOTHING Tea Party Movement to have growing influence, are totally alienating the young, women, minorities, labor, gays, and educated people who care about their fellow man and woman.
So the Republican Party is rapidly becoming a dinosaur, and Ted Cruz and his buddies in the libertarian movement and the Tea Party crowd are destroying any hope of a future for the party of Lincoln, TR, and Eisenhower. They are rapidly becoming part of the dustbin of history!
The Republican Party has seen 144 members of the House of Representatives and 18 in the US Senate voting for default on the national debt!
The Republican Party has seen itself held accountable for an increase in government spending caused by the shutdown of the government, to the tune of $24 billion, instead of having 800,000 civil servants working for 16 days, but now getting back pay rightfully for their forced period out of work!
The Republican Party has shown it does not give a damn for the economic and emotional turmoil it caused millions of Americans by their reckless, selfish, delusional behavior!
The Republican Party has shown it has no limits in its determination to destroy this President, but it has failed miserably!
The Republican Party allowed itself to be hijacked by Ted Cruz and the Tea Party Movement, and it has lost all respectability and credibility to achieve control of the White House, the Senate, and at some point, the House of Representatives, as they have shown themselves to be no longer representative of a broad coalition needed to be taken seriously as a national party based on coalition and compromise!
Public opinion polls show the GOP in crisis mode, with the lowest ratings in recorded history for a major political party since polls began in the mid 1930s!
The only hope for a revival of the Republican Party is to:
Repudiate Ted Cruz, Mike Lee, Rand Paul, James Inhofe, Marco Rubio and other Tea Party Senators.
Repudiate the Tea Party Movement in the House of Representatives.
Repudiate the talk show hosts on radio and Fox News Channel.
Repudiate the Heritage Foundation and other right wing think tanks, and come back to the moderate center which led to the elections of Eisenhower, Nixon, the Bushes, and yes, even Ronald Reagan, who would be mortified as to how right wing extremist the GOP has allowed itself to become.
But will the Republican Party take any or all of these actions? Do not hold your breath on this!
The Republican Party Assault On The Institution Of The American Presidency: Battle For The Past And The Future!
The Republican Party brought about the evils of the Imperial Presidency under Richard Nixon.
The Republican Party expanded the American Presidency further under Ronald Reagan after weakening the office with their conservative attacks on Gerald Ford and Jimmy Carter in the White House.
Under Reagan, and the two Bush Presidencies, they expanded their power and influence over the Courts, particularly the Supreme Court, but also lower federal courts.
In the process, however, they forgot the middle class; alienated women; attacked the environment; undermined education; utilized racism and hate against African Americans and Hispanics and Latinos, and even Asian Americans; showed less concern than ever before for children, the elderly, the disabled, and the poor (often including these precise groups); leagued themselves with hate mongers on talk radio, and allied with powerful elite wealthy people to promote right wing propaganda that influenced many who were hurt by their policies and views, but did not realize it. And they set out to destroy Bill Clinton first , and now Barack Obama, including the boldness to attack a federal program (ObamaCare) that was backed by a majority in Congress, the Supreme Court majority, and the second term victory of Barack Obama!
The decision was to bring down the government by promoting economic chaos and anarchy, doing whatever had to be done!
And today, the Republican Party has 70 percent of the American people alienated by their tactics, aims, and practices, and sees the only way to survive is to assault the American Presidency, an office they have not won in the popular vote for five of the past six national elections, and have little hope of winning anytime soon in future Presidential elections!
So their goal is to continue to win state legislatures and congressional districts through gerrymandering, and weaken the Presidency, and stalemate the US Senate, which they also have little hope of winning in the future, with their agenda exposed for all to see through coverage provided by major national newspapers and liberal and progressive media that keep us informed as to the truth of what is going on!
The ultimate goal of the modern Republican Party is to wipe out, eliminate, destroy the great advancements under Presidents Theodore Roosevelt, Woodrow Wilson, Franklin D. Roosevelt, Harry Truman, Dwight D. Eisenhower, John F. Kennedy, Lyndon B. Johnson, even Richard Nixon, Jimmy Carter, Bill Clinton, and Barack Obama!
This is a war for the future and the past of the American Presidency, and we cannot allow the systematic destruction of that office which has made for so much good in America in the past century!
The Republican Party has had its key elections which transform the party on a regular basis 52 years apart, and we are on the way to that occurring yet again!
In 1860, just six short years after the founding of the party in the upper Midwest, the Republican Party won its first national victory, gaining control of both houses of Congress, and electing Abraham Lincoln, even though he won slightly less than 40 percent of the total national popular vote. The party went on to dominate American politics for the next 52 years, only losing the Presidency twice to Grover Cleveland, in 1884 and 1892.
Then in 1912, the split between former President Theodore Roosevelt and incumbent President William Howard Taft, a conflict between conservatives and progressives, led to a disastrous defeat for Taft, the worst defeated President running for reelection ever in American history before and after 1912. This put the opposition Democrats in control of both houses of Congress, and gave Democrat Woodrow Wilson two terms in the White House, although coming close to losing in 1916. He proceeded to promote programs known as the New Freedom and the New Nationalism, stealing the second slogan from TR.
The Republican Party went on to revive itself from 1920-1932, but was then made the minority party in voter registration after 1932, due to the Great Depression, and only won two terms in the White House under Dwight D. Eisenhower, and two separate two year terms in Congress over the next 32 years.
After years of establishment Republicans losing, except for Eisenhower, the conservatives took over the party in 1964, again 52 years after the 1912 split, and nominated Senator Barry Goldwater, and suffered a massive defeat, insuring the biggest landslide victory in history for Lyndon B. Johnson, and the promotion of the Great Society.
While the Goldwater mentality in broad outline became the government under Ronald Reagan in 1980, the split between conservatives and progressives revived under the two Bush Presidents, as well as criticism of the Gerald Ford, Bob Dole, John McCain, and Mitt Romney Presidential runs.
And here we are again with the right wing striving to take over the party, with Ted Cruz, Rand Paul and Marco Rubio, along with some others, trying to move the party to an extreme, more so than Barry Goldwater represented.
And one can be sure that 2016, 52 years after 1964, we will see another massive defeat, for the GOP, probably to Hillary Clinton, but with no certainty that the party, 160 years old in 2014, can survive as a viable political party opposition!
Speaker of the House John Boehner needs to be a profile in courage, a man with “cajones”, as the crisis over the budget reaches its peak, and default on the debt is possible by mid October.
The Speaker of the House of Representatives is, first and foremost, a constitutional officer, and under the Presidential Succession Act of 1947, he is second in line, two heartbeats away, from the Presidency.
That is his most important role, more than being a partisan leader of his party, and it is essential, accepted, and mandated that he do NOTHING to cause the “good faith and credit” of the United States government to be harmed, or for the creation of an economic collapse that could harm all of the American people!
So it is time to stop playing games, and for Speaker Boehner to refuse to allow the Tea Party whackos, who are basically domestic terrorists taking America hostage, from stopping the necessary actions to avoid a government shutdown and, later, a reneging on the raising of the debt limit!
He must work with those responsible Republicans, and with Nancy Pelosi, the Democratic leader and her party, to gain the majority vote to resolve both of these crises, and to hell with the right wing lunatics who do not care about anything but their sick, demented ideology!
And if that leads to his party in the House of Representatives to depose him as Speaker, so be it, as he will look great in history for having taken the responsible, sane stand on his duty as top ranking federal official after the President and Vice President!
This situation would never have occurred under Sam Rayburn during the Eisenhower Administration; under John McCormack or Carl Albert during the Nixon and Ford Administrations; and Thomas “Tip” O’Neill during the Reagan Administration, and it MUST NOT be allowed to hold America in a reckless grab for power by an anarchistic group which is controlled by powerful special interests, including the Koch Brothers!
Mr. Speaker, do what you need to do, and you will leave office with your head held high!
Barack Obama: Elements Of Theodore Roosevelt, Woodrow Wilson, Dwight D. Eisenhower, And John F. Kennedy In Him!
Barack Obama has, after some false starts and hesitation, accomplished something no one would ever have imagined: convincing Russian President Vladamir Putin that he had better do something with his ally, Syria, on the subject of chemical warfare, or face an American military strike against Damascus! There is a long road to travel, but the outlook for a peaceful resolution of the matter seems very promising and likely.
And in so doing, Barack Obama has demonstrated elements of two former Republican Presidents, and two former Democratic Presidents, all of whom are ranked in the top ten of all of our 43 Presidents of the United States!
Chronologically, Obama has demonstrated:
That he is like Theodore Roosevelt in his promotion of “speak softly, but carry a big stick”, promoting diplomacy but willing, if need be, to use force.
That he is like Woodrow Wilson in his ethics and moral cause to enforce the international ban against chemical weapons, as Wilson wished to secure the ideal of a world without war and promotion of international diplomacy.
That he is like Dwight D. Eisenhower in wishing to have Congressional backing and approval on important issues of foreign policy, a master stroke by Obama, putting the onus on Congress to do what needs to be done, but reserving the right to take action as Commander in Chief if need be, even if Congress refuses support.
That he is like John F. Kennedy, staring down the Soviet Union in the Cuban Missile Crisis, as Obama is staring down Russia in the Syrian chemical warfare crisis.
So Obama has some of the characteristics and principles of four outstanding Presidents!