John F. Kennedy

Giant Historical Figure Fidel Castro Dies, A Transformative Figure, With Great Negative Impact On The World!

Fidel Castro of Cuba, the most significant figure in Latin America in the 20th Century, and one of the most vicious dictators of modern times, passed away at age 90 on Friday.

He left behind a legacy of a brutal dictatorship, which while making some improvements in health care and education, took away any semblance of civil liberties and civil rights, and imprisoned, tortured, and murdered dissidents in great numbers over more than a half century of rule.

Castro was the longest lasting leader of modern times, with only Queen Elizabeth II of England having come to office about seven years before Castro took over the capital of Cuba, Havana, on New Years Day 1959.

Who would have thought that someone who came to power on the island of Cuba, which had been a playground for wealthy Americans, under the dictatorship of Fulgencio Batista, at a time when this author was in high school, would last in power for a half century, and then be replaced by his younger brother, Raul Castro, a decade ago, and still rules?

Castro became the dire enemy of the Unites States, and Cuban exiles fleeing to Florida in 1959-1960 and again in 1980 (the Mariel Boat Lift) and constant escapes since then, have affected the history and politics of Florida and the Republican Party, with Cuban Americans flocking to support of the party after John F. Kennedy failed in his attempt to remove Castro from power in the Bay of Pigs Fiasco in April 1961. This made Cuban Americans the one Hispanic group that would refuse to support the Democratic Party, as many Cuban Americans saw JFK as a Communist for failing to succeed to remove Castro. This led to the most dangerous moment in the Cold War years, as Nikita Khrushchev, the Soviet Union’s leader, formed an alliance with Castro, who had declared himself a Communist, and installed Soviet nuclear missiles in Cuba, with the Cuban Missile Crisis bringing the world closer to the danger of a nuclear war than any other event in history before or since. Only with the cool headed leadership of JFK was nuclear war averted.

Castro was a maniacal figure, who also abused the rights of gays and lesbians in Cuba, and initiated aggression overseas by supporting national liberation movements in Latin America and Africa, and the people of Cuba suffered economically under his five decade rule. Few more influential and significant dictators have existed, and those he is often compared with–including Joseph Stalin, Adolf Hitler, and Benito Mussolini–only lasted 25, 12 and 21 years compared to his 47 plus years.

The question is how Cuba will evolve now, with brother Raul Castro, age 85, having said he will leave power in February 2018, only 14 months away, and also how Donald Trump will react to the death of Fidel Castro, after Barack Obama had begun new relations with Cuba in 2015.

Hillary Clinton Popular Vote Lead At Over 2 Million, As Evidence Of Voter Irregularities Rises In Michigan, Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, And Even Florida!

This morning, we learn that Hillary Clinton’s popular vote lead over Donald Trump is over 2 million and counting, four times the popular vote lead of Al Gore over George W. Bush in 2000.

Hillary Clinton has a greater popular vote lead than John F. Kennedy in 1960, Richard Nixon in 1978 and Jimmy Carter in 1976.

And now, there is growing evidence of voter irregularities in the states of Michigan, Wisconsin, and Pennsylvania, as well as questions about how Hillary Clinton had such a popular vote lead in early voting, including 27 percent of Republicans, in Florida, and then, magically loses the Sunshine State. Evidence of fixing and hacking, maybe by Russian intervention, seems possible.

Was this election rigged, as Donald Trump claimed it would be, but in his favor, rather than against him?

Are we having the Presidency stolen, as many thought in 2000, by Republican led state governments, as in Michigan, Wisconsin, and Florida, although not so in Pennsylvania?

Will we ever know for sure, and is there any point, two weeks after the election, to contest it, and create an uproar, or should we all move on and accept the inevitable, President Elect Donald Trump?

This author is torn, but at this point, with two weeks to absorb the immensity of what has happened, it seems, somehow, pointless to pursue a law suit, as all it will do is further “poison the well”, so to speak.

This is said with a heavy heart and great sadness, but it is time to move on, it seems to me, and allow Trump whatever “honeymoon” he may have, wish him the best, and be ready to challenge him, as it is certain will happen soon, and on a regular basis, over the next four years, and hope for the best in a terrible situation.

The Moment Has Arrived: The Election Of The First Woman President Is Coming In 24 Hours!

The time has finally arrived!

One day from this writing, America will have its first woman President, way behind many other nations, including Great Britain, Germany, Israel, India, Pakistan, and others.

America will have broken the glass ceiling permanently!

America will have demonstrated that it is a true democracy, successively electing an African American President, and a woman President!

Hillary Clinton will be an outstanding President, who will further fulfill the progressive agenda of Franklin D. Roosevelt, Harry Truman, John F. Kennedy, Lyndon B. Johnson, Jimmy Carter, Bill Clinton, and Barack Obama.

But also the progressive tradition of Abraham Lincoln and Theodore Roosevelt as well!

The greatness of America is evident, and it will continue to be the nation that the world admires and respects!

The Closest Presidential Elections In American History

The closest Presidential Elections in American history would be the following in chronological order since the introduction of popular vote in 1824:

Presidential Election of 1824—Andrew Jackson vs John Quincy Adams, Henry Clay, and William Crawford

Presidential Election of 1876–Rutherford B. Hayes vs Samuel Tilden

Presidential Election of 1880–James A. Garfield vs Winfield Scott Hancock

Presidential Election of 1884–Grover Cleveland vs James G. Blaine

Presidential Election Of 1888–Benjamin Harrison vs Grover Cleveland

Presidential Election of 1892–Grover Cleveland vs Benjamin Harrison, James Weaver

Presidential Election of 1916–Woodrow Wilson vs Charles Evans Hughes

Presidential Election Of 1960–John F. Kennedy vs Richard Nixon

Presidential Election of 1976–Jimmy Carter vs Gerald Ford

Presidential Election of 2000–George W. Bush vs Al Gore, Ralph Nader, Pat Buchanan

Presidential Election of 2004–George W. Bush vs John Kerry

“Policy Wonks” In The White House

It is uncommon to have a President who is a “policy wonk”, a person who delves into the details of policies.

After all, that is what White House staff and cabinet officers are for.

But yet, we have had “policy wonks” that have been President, and not always for the good.

Who among our Presidents clearly qualifies as a “policy wonk”?

Well, we have Abraham Lincoln, who spent innumerable hours a day trying to keep track of every detail of the Civil War.

Theodore Roosevelt put his eyes, ears, and hands into keeping track of everything imaginable, even after he left the Presidency.

Woodrow Wilson, as a good scholar, was intimately involved in every detail of his Presidency, until he suffered a stroke in the middle of his seventh year in the Presidency.

Franklin D. Roosevelt became a great detail man on every aspect of the New Deal and on foreign policy crises.

John F. Kennedy was always on top of everything going on in his administration.

Lyndon B. Johnson kept track of Great Society programs and the casualty counts in the Vietnam War, and was obsessive-complusive.

Richard Nixon was fanatical in keeping track of everything, including details of White House dinners, and that is a major reason why he taped every Oval Office conversation.

Jimmy Carter was obsessive in being intimately involved in his administration’s policies.

Barack Obama has, certainly, been a hands on President in every sense of the word.

And finally, it is clear that Hillary Clinton is a policy wonk, a very bright and perceptive woman, who will not let anything pass her by when she is elected President.

Danger Of Civil Disorder If Donald Trump Refuses To Accept Defeat, Which All Previous Losers Have Accepted With Grace And Dignity!

Throughout American history, there has been great emotions as battles for the Presidency go on, but at the end, when the election is over, the loser has always conceded with grace and dignity.

This includes the John Adams-Thomas Jefferson race in 1800, the first time an incumbent has lost to a challenger.

It includes the John Quincy Adams-Andrew Jackson Presidential races in 1824 and 1828.

It includes the Abraham Lincoln–Stephen Douglas–John C. Breckinridge–John Bell four way race on the eve of the Civil War in 1860.

It includes the hotly contested 1876 Presidential race between Rutherford Hayes and Samuel Tilden, resolved by the political deal known as the Compromise of 1877.

It includes the four way contested race of 1912 between Woodrow Wilson, Theodore Roosevelt, William Howard Taft, and Eugene Debs.

It includes the upset election victory of Harry Truman against Thomas E. Dewey in 1948.

It includes the John F. Kennedy-Richard Nixon race in 1960, which Nixon thought might have been corrupt, but chose not to challenge.

It also includes the Presidential election of 2000, when Al Gore challenged the results in court, but then was graceful once the Supreme Court intervened in favor of George W. Bush.

And it includes the grace and dignity of John McCain in 2008 and Mitt Romney in 2012, when they lost to Barack Obama.

But now, we have had indications that Donald Trump will not concede, and will claim a “rigged” election if he loses, and this will only encourage civil disorder, and the potential for bloodshed and violence, and refusal to allow a peaceful transition to the inauguration and administration of Hillary Clinton.

This is not a laughing matter one iota, and a very worrisome matter!

First Clinton-Trump Debate Takes Place On 56th Anniversary Of First Presidential Debate In 1960, John F. Kennedy Vs. Richard Nixon!

Tonight’s Clinton-Trump Presidential debate takes place on the 56th Anniversary of the first Presidential debate in American history, September 26, 1960, in Chicago, John F. Kennedy vs. Richard Nixon.

That debate is famous for the statement that if you watched the debate, you thought Kennedy had won, but if you listened on the radio, you thought Nixon had won.

Body language, eye movements, and even just comparing the two faces, really does matter, and some have said just watch with the sound off, and you will see who has won.

By all measurements, Hillary Clinton should perform better, but there is always a possibility that tonight, we could see a surprise, which could change the race, which as of this morning, shows a statistical tie across the nation, although Clinton still is the one who has the theoretical math to win the Presidency.

It is estimated that 100 million people will watch the debate, an all time high, and the whole world will be standing by to watch what could be the defining moment of the 2016 Presidential campaign.

Hillary Clinton Health Reminds Us Of Importance Of Vice Presidential Choice

The fact that Hillary Clinton has Pneumonia has drawn attention once again to the issue of Vice Presidential choices.

Ignorant people have argued that the Vice Presidency does not matter, and has no effect on electing the President of the United States.

But that is not true, as any intelligent voter should be concerned about the quality and competence of a person who is only a heartbeat away from the Presidency on a daily basis.

it has been a long time since we faced a Presidential death, 53 years since John F. Kennedy, and even the resignation of Richard Nixon is now 42 years ago.

So the odds are getting better that we could have a Vice President once again ascending to the Presidency during a term, and with the combination of the two oldest Presidential nominees to run since Ronald Reagan, who had early signs of Alzheimer’s Disease, it is urgent that we think about the Vice Presidential running mates much more than we usually have done.

Right now, any sane person would agree that Senator Tim Kaine of Virginia is far superior to Indiana Governor Mike Pence, if either had to assume the Presidency, based on experience, viewpoints on issues, and basic character.

Pence is a right wing extremist on so many issues, while Kaine is a mainstream Democrat, and well liked by his colleagues in the Senate, and capable of “crossing the aisle” in a way as Joe Biden, the present Vice President, has done so often.

Pence is an ideologue, and not good at “crossing the aisle”, and very mean spirited and judgmental on so many issues, a perfect fit for Donald Trump, but not good for the nation at large.

As We Have Oldest Combination Of Presidential Candidates In History, A Look Back At Three Candidates Younger Than TR And JFK!

At a time when we have the oldest combination of Presidential candidates in history, with Donald Trump being past 70, and Hillary Clinton to be 69 in October, let’s take a look back at three Presidential candidates who lost, but were all younger than Theodore Roosevelt, our youngest President at 42 years and almost eleven months when he succeeded the assassinated President William McKinley in 1901; and these three Presidential candidates also, therefore, younger than John F. Kennedy, our youngest elected President, who took the oath at 43 years and almost eight months.

Our youngest Presidential nominee of a major party in history is William Jennings Bryan of Nebraska, a former Congressman, who ran as the Democratic nominee for President in 1896 and 1900, when he was younger than TR or JFK. Bryan was 36 and 40 when he ran his first two of three Presidential races, and had he won, he would have been inaugurated 15 days short of his 37th and 41st birthdays.

Our second youngest Presidential nominee was John C. Breckinridge of Kentucky, who was Vice President at age 36 under President James Buchanan from 1857-1861 but was actually 35 at the time of his election. He was the Southern Democratic nominee in 1860 at age 39 although he would have been 40 at the time of the inauguration, running against Republican Abraham Lincoln, Democrat Stephen Douglas, and Constitutional Union nominee John Bell. Breckinridge served in the US House before being Vice President, and later was part of the Confederate government and army during the Civil War, and later served in the US Senate from Kentucky.

Thomas E. Dewey of New York sought the Presidency for the first time in 1940, when he was 38, and serving as Manhattan County District Attorney, but was thought to be too young to be taken seriously. But in 1944, in his first of two Presidential campaigns, when New York Governor, he ran on the Republican Party line against Franklin D. Roosevelt, running for his fourth term as World War II was nearing its last months. Dewey would have been inaugurated about two months short of his 43rd birthday, had he won in 1944, making him about a month younger than TR when he became President.

Dewey was favored in his second round of Presidential candidacy in 1948, when he lost in an upset to Harry Truman, after all public opinion polls projected an easy win but at that point he would have been two months short of 47, at the time of inauguration.

Democratic Party Historical Accomplishments

The Democratic Party has been criticized for the fact that in its 188 year history, it was the party that promoted slavery, segregation, and lynching, being dominated for a long time by its ugly Southern membership.

This cannot be denied, but it is the Democratic Party which has also, in the last century of history, had many historical accomplishments.

Among these are:

First Catholic nominee for President–Alfred E. Smith 1928
First Catholic President elected–John F. Kennedy 1960
First Catholic Vice President elected–Joe Biden 2008
First Jewish nominee for Vice President–Joseph Lieberman 2000
First Jewish Presidential candidate as serious contender–Bernie Sanders 2016
First African American President–Barack Obama 2008
First Woman nominated for Vice President–Geraldine Ferraro 1984
First African American Presidential Contender–Shirley Chisholm 1972
First Woman nominee for President–Hillary Clinton 2016
First woman Secretary of State—Madeleine Albright under Bill Clinton
First Southerner elected President since 1848–Jimmy Carter 1976
Youngest elected President–John F. Kennedy 1960
President who gave us Social Security–Franklin D. Roosevelt 1935
President who gave us Medicare and Medicaid–Lyndon B. Johnson 1965-1966
One Term President who advanced Environmental Causes the most in history–Jimmy Carter 1977-1981
President who gave us ObamaCare–Barack Obama 2010
President who advanced Civil Rights—John F. Kennedy and Lyndon B. Johnson 1960s
President to appoint first Jewish Supreme Court Justice—Woodrow Wilson 1916 (Louis Brandeis)
President to appoint first woman Jewish Supreme Court Justice—Bill Clinton 1993 (Ruth Bader Ginsburg)
President to appoint first African American Supreme Court Justice–Lyndon B. Johnson 1967 (Thurgood Marshall)
President to appoint first Hispanic-Latino Supreme Court Justice—Barack Obama 2009 (Sonia Sotomayor)
President who promoted Containment Foreign Policy with the Soviet Union—Harry Truman
President who promoted concept of international cooperation—Woodrow Wilson and Franklin D. Roosevelt
First Woman Speaker Of The House of Representatives–Nancy Pelosi 2007
Most accomplished Congresses, Democratic controlled—-63rd and 64th (1913-1917) under Woodrow Wilson; 73rd and 74th (1933-1937) under Franklin D. Roosevelt; 89th Congress (1965-1967) under Lyndon B. Johnson; 111th Congress (2009-2011) under Barack Obama
Great Supreme Court Justices appointed by Democratic Presidents—Louis Brandeis 1916 by Woodrow Wilson; Hugo Black 1937 by Franklin D. Roosevelt; Felix Frankfurter 1939 by Franklin D. Roosevelt; William O. Douglas 1939 by Franklin D. Roosevelt; Thurgood Marshall 1967 by Lyndon B. Johnson; Ruth Bader Ginsburg 1993 by Bill Clinton; Stephen Breyer 1994 by Bill Clinton