Posts Tagged Lyndon B. Johnson
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!
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!
President Barack Obama has made it clear that he is NOT going to cave in to the Republican hostage takers on the subject of ObamaCare, and all power to him!
ObamaCare is Obama’s signature accomplishment, and Franklin D. Roosevelt, Lyndon B. Johnson, and every other President who has had a major domestic accomplishment would react the same way Obama is reacting—no bargaining on something already in the law and approved by the Supreme Court!
But Obama has also made it clear that the office of the Presidency deserves dignity and respect, and he will not bargain away the power of that office to a group of radical anarchists known as the Tea Party Movement!
This is not just for the Obama legacy that Obama is fighting, but also for the future of the office, as the Congress, or a radical part of it, cannot be permitted to undermine the powers and prerogatives of that office, whether we have a Republican or Democratic President in the near and far future!
Only the President is voted on by the entire population, and only he, or a future she, truly represents the nation at large!
Congress must know its place in the constitutional system, and if they are, or a faction of them are, ready to allow the full faith and credit of the American government to be breached by a failure of Congress to raise the debt limit in the next two weeks, then the President, and really any President, in the future must take executive action!
The 14th Amendment allows the President to intervene and guarantee payment of all debts, and the raising of the debt limit, and if Congress does not do it, then the President, by executive order, can and MUST do do, and let the chips fall where they may, which might, very well, include a movement by the Republican Party in the House of Representatives to impeach the President!
Obama may provoke such reckless actions by what he does, but there would never be a conviction in the US Senate, even if the GOP won a majority and controlled the chamber.
So it would be another example of what the Republicans did to Bill Clinton, which may have besmirched his historical record and his future obituary, but also greatly harmed the GOP brand.
It is time for Barack Obama to throw down the gauntlet, and say to the GOP, “Bring It On!”
50 years ago today, in the most segregated city in America, led by the most divisive Governor in America at the time, hate and racism combined to lead to a horrific bombing of the 16th Street Baptist Church in Birmingham, Alabama.
Governor George Wallace had already become the symbol of the worst in America, having stood in the door of the Registrar’s Office at the University of Alabama, trying to prevent two black college students from attending the state university based upon their race, but with President John F. Kennedy sending in the National Guard to insure their entrance and security.
Four young black girls were killed in the bombing, an incomprehensible event committed by the Ku Klux Klan, against a house of worship.
This event galvanized the civil rights movement, although it took decades to prosecute and convict the perpetrators of this slaughter.
C Span today is spending much of the day on American History TV commemorating this tragedy, and reflecting on how far we have come in fifty years, and how far we have progressed. The Civil Rights Act of 1964 was a direct result of this tragedy, helped along by the brilliance of President Lyndon B. Johnson, who overcame the Senate filibuster to accomplish what seemed like impossible odds to overcome opposition.
Congress awarded Congressional Gold Medals in honor of the four girls, in a recent ceremony, and bronze replicas are available for purchase through the US Mint, a great suggestion for a wonderful gift to remind the younger generation of the sacrifices of those involved in the civil rights movement.
The Republican Party loves to claim that they are the experts, when it comes to American foreign policy, that they are far better than Democrats in executing foreign policy.
But the facts of history tell us otherwise, as witness:
Before America entered World War II. who were some of the most powerful, most influential people advocating isolationism— Republicans such as Senators Robert Taft of Ohio, Arthur Vandenberg of Michigan, Hiram Johnson of California, and Gerald Nye of North Dakota, with the latter two discussed in detail in the author’s book: TWILIGHT OF PROGRESSIVISM: THE WESTERN REPUBLICAN SENATORS AND THE NEW DEAL (Baltimore: The Johns Hopkins University Press, 1981).
When America entered the escalation stage of the Vietnam War under Democratic President Lyndon B. Johnson in 1965, it was Republicans who backed the President in much greater numbers than Democrats, but even Johnson finally realized the need for America to get out of the war, and decided not to run again in 1968.
Republican President Richard Nixon ran his campaign for the Presidency in 1968, pledging that he would end the Vietnam War expeditiously, and saying he had a “secret plan” to end the war, which soon became evident did not exist, and Nixon made up his plan to end the war as he went along, and it took four long years to end the war, with a heavier loss of soldiers killed and wounded, than had been so under Johnson! Nixon and Henry Kissinger, his National Security Adviser and Secretary of State, misled the American people and lied to them about the plans and strategies to end the war, and it created a feeling of unwillingness to engage in overseas crises as a result, what could be called the Vietnam War Syndrome.
And then under George W. Bush, Vice President Dick Cheney, and Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld, the Republican run national government in 2003 lied to us, manipulated us, propagandized us, to begin a war in Iraq, with no plan to get out, and the war dragged on through the second Bush term, and into the Barack Obama Administration. No “weapons of mass destruction” were ever found, and it created an Iraq War Syndrome, which now has made many Americans reluctant to engage in a military action against an outlaw nation, Syria, which has utilized chemical warfare, only the third world leader ever to do so, after Adolf Hitler and Saddam Hussein!
So the Republican Party and its cynical, corrupt leadership in the 1969-1973 and 2002-2009 periods poisoned the political atmosphere of America, making it more difficult to engage in the shaping of a sane, rational foreign policy that would be in American interests.
And now Rand Paul and his kind, libertarian “Know Nothings”, promote isolationism all over again, back to the image of the GOP in the late 1930s before American entrance into World War II.
The damage that Presidents Richard Nixon and George W. Bush have wrought is massive, and undermining America in 2013 from doing what it must do, react to the massive war crime of the Syrian government!
The American South has undergone a lot of change in the past half century since the March On Washington in 1963.
Many Northerners have moved South; many people of African American and Latino heritage have grown up in an environment where segregation and open prejudice is gone: and we have seen Southern Presidents who completely represented a different image of the South.
So we have President Lyndon B. Johnson of Texas, who overcame his past and his heritage, and promoted the Civil Rights Revolution, including the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965.
We have Jimmy Carter of Georgia, the first Southerner elected from outside since Zachary Taylor in 1848, representing the “New South” Governors elected in 1970, including Ruben Askew of Florida and Dale Bumpers of Arkansas. Carter promoted advancements in civil rights and human rights, and demonstrated then, and right up to this moment, that he is a very principled, decent man.
And we have Bill Clinton, elected Governor of Arkansas, representing the New South tradition after Dale Bumpers had initiated it in Arkansas, and being a major promoter of civil rights and equality during his Presidency, as much as Johnson and Carter.
And we have John Lewis, the only surviving speaker at the March on Washington, now 73 years old, and carrying on the tradition of his mentor, Martin Luther King, Jr. He has been an exemplary Congressman from Georgia, and truly the conscience of the nation on civil rights!
These four gentlemen, three Presidents and a Congressman, represent the best of the “New South”!
The “Old South” was thought to be overcome, particularly over time with the death of Strom Thurmond, Jesse Helms, and others of their ilk.
But as it turns out, the “Old South” mentality has survived even past these two GOP leaders who promoted segregation and hate, as the 2013 Republican Party, with the evil influence of the Tea Party Movement, is working very hard to back track on racial equality, racial progress, racial justice, and using code language to appeal to the bigots and racists who remain in America, whether in the South or Midwest or Great Plains areas of the nation, and hoping to repeal the progress of the past half century.
They do this without shame or embarrassment, and that is what is most troubling, and they even have their talk show hosts on radio and television and cable, who spew forth hateful and divisive propaganda with no apologies–Rush Limbaugh, Glenn Beck, Bill O’Reilly, Sean Hannity et al—and make millions on promotion of hate and division, rather than trying to bring us together and move forward!
So the “Old South” is, ironically, surviving in the party of Abraham Lincoln, Thaddeus Stevens, Charles Sumner and the other principled Republicans of 150 years ago, who fought against the “Old South” and slavery, and would, if they were here today, hold their heads in their hands, and weep over what the Republican Party they loved, has become!
Here we are, on the 50th Anniversary of the March on Washington in the month of August, and we have the reality of three August Birth Presidents, in the past 50 years occupants of the White House, and all three of them have promoted civil rights and human rights as their ultimate legacy in the Presidency!
Barack Obama was born on August 4, 1961; Bill Clinton on August 19, 1946; and Lyndon B. Johnson on August 27, 1908.
Their births span a half century, from the early 20th century to the post war years and the early 1960s.
And all three have a record they can be proud of on civil and human rights, and the two surviving ones will be speaking today, and the older daughter of Lyndon B. Johnson, Lynda Bird Johnson Robb, will be speaking in her father’s name, to celebrate the historic event of the March on Washington.
This is a day to celebrate Martin Luther King, Jr, but also Lyndon B. Johnson, Bill Clinton, and Barack Obama as well!
A Great Historic Moment: Barack Obama, Bill Clinton, Jimmy Carter At Lincoln Memorial Today To Commemorate 50th Anniversary Of March On Washington!
Today will go down as one of the most historic days of speech making in American history, commemorating one of the greatest speeches and events in American history—the historic speech of the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and the March on Washington fifty years ago today!
We will see three Democratic Presidents–Barack Obama, Bill Clinton, and Jimmy Carter—speak at the Lincoln Memorial to commemorate the event, along with Lynda Bird Johnson Robb, the older daughter of Lyndon B. Johnson, and the one surviving speaker of the March on Washington, Georgia Congressman John Lewis!
As wonderful as all this is, one has to wonder where is George W. Bush? His dad, George H. W. Bush, is in poor health and in a wheelchair, so he gets a pass, but why is the son not expected to be there? And what about the Republican leadership in Congress and Republican Governors? Where are they, and will any show up? If so, there is so far a deathly silence, as if they do not wish to be part of this historic event, even though many Republicans were supportive fifty years ago.
If no leading Republicans show up, it will be a total disgrace, and a sign of the terminal illness of a party that had Lincoln, TR, and Ike, along with many Senators and Governors historically, who made the Republican Party proud!
Today, August 27, is the 105th Birthday Commemoration of President Lyndon B. Johnson, a President who had a massive effect on our nation’s history.
We live under the influence of LBJ on Civil Rights, Medicare, Education, NPR, PBS, Environmental Laws, Consumer Protection Legislation, Departments of Housing and Urban Development and Transportation, and the War on Poverty that so desperately needs to be revived after 45 years of ignoring it!
Yes, this President is blamed, and carries the burden of the Vietnam War, but his legacy in domestic affairs lives on!
And tomorrow, his older daughter, Lynda Bird Johnson Robb, will join Presidents Jimmy Carter, Bill Clinton, and Barack Obama, in commemorating the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington, which led to the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965 during the Presidency of LBJ!
President Lyndon Johnson overcame his Southern past to promote the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965 through Congress, because he knew it was the right thing to do in his time!
President Jimmy Carter took a strong stand on human rights in Haiti, the Philippines, South Africa and elsewhere when he was President, because he knew it was the right thing to do in his time!
On the other hand, Ronald Reagan did everything to work against advancement of civil rights in America and human rights overseas in his time, refusing to condemn the governments of Haiti, the Philippines, and South Africa!
Only when Haiti and the Philippines overthrew their governments in 1986 in revolution, did Reagan, belatedly, endorse the changes and say he was for human rights in those nations, only five years late, and only when the deed was done to overthrow both dictatorships!
And when Reagan had a chance to condemn apartheid in South Africa, he threatened to, and finally did veto, a resolution passed in Congress to start sanctions against that racist regime. The Congress went ahead and overrode the veto, the first time in the 20th century that Congress had overridden a President on a foreign policy matter, with many Republicans joining Democrats in overriding the veto. This is so well depicted in the fantastic film, THE BUTLER, one of the best films in many years to come from Hollywood about history and politics!
In the film, the actor portraying Reagan shows insensitivity to the main character, black actor Forest Whitaker, on this issue, but then asks, is he possibly wrong in his decision to veto? Forrest Whittaker does not answer, but the resounding answer is YES!
So despite the adulation of Ronald Reagan on the far RIGHT of the Republican Party and the conservative movement, Reagan is correctly depicted as NOT being an advocate of civil rights and human rights, and did not have the courage and foresight of Lyndon Johnson and Jimmy Carter, who were principled men for good, unlike our 40th President!