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Archive for Monday, February 16, 2009

Lincoln ranked best president; G.W. Bush comes in at 36th

February 16, 2009

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— Just days after the nation honored the 200th anniversary of his birth, 65 historians ranked Abraham Lincoln as the nation’s best president.

Former President George W. Bush, who left office last month, was ranked 36th out of the 42 men who had been chief executive by the end of 2008, according to a survey conducted by the cable channel C-SPAN.

Bush scored lowest in international relations, where he was ranked 41st, and in economic management, where he was ranked 40th. His highest ranking, 24th, was in the category of pursuing equal justice for all. He was ranked 25th in crisis leadership and vision and agenda setting.

In contrast, Lincoln was ranked in the top three in each of the 10 categories evaluated by participants.

Since C-SPAN’s only other ranking of presidents, in 2000, former President Bill Clinton jumped six spots from No. 21 to 15. Other recent presidents moved positions as well: Ronald Reagan advanced from No. 11 to 10, George H.W. Bush rose from No. 20 to 18 and Jimmy Carter fell from No. 22 to 25.

This movement illustrates that presidential reputations are influenced by present-day concerns, said survey adviser and participant Edna Medford.

“Today’s concerns shape our views of the past, be it in the area of foreign policy, managing the economy or human rights,” Medford said in a statement.

After Lincoln, the academics rated George Washington, Franklin D. Roosevelt, Theodore Roosevelt and Harry Truman as the best leaders overall. The same five received top spots in the 2000 survey, although Washington and Franklin D. Roosevelt swapped spots this year.

Rated worst overall were James Buchanan, Andrew Johnson, Franklin Pierce, William Henry Harrison and Warren G. Harding.

The survey was conducted in December and January. Participants ranked each president on a scale of one, “not effective” to 10, “very effective,” on a list of 10 leadership qualities including relations with Congress, public persuasion and moral authority.

Comments

Frank Smith 5 years, 2 months ago

I suppose it should be mentioned that Dubya was never actually president; Cheney was.

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max1 5 years, 2 months ago

"Lincoln was upholding the constitution when he told the slave states that he would not touch slavery where it existed. They didn't believe him and they seceded." -mom_of_three

South Carolina, Alabama, Georgia, Mississippi, Louisiana, Florida, and Texas had already seceded from the Union before Lincoln was inaugurated. When war declared on those States, he lost Virginia, North Carolina, Tennessee, and Arkansas -- four States that had previously intended to remain loyal to the Union. The North and South had been seriously at odds as early as the 1830s, and slavery wasn't the issue -- unfair tariffs were. Tariff rates were nearly half of the value of imported goods, and Southern ports were strapped with paying a disproportionate share of the Federal tax load. Lincoln had no understanding of those Southern grievances. "I don't know anything about money. I never had enough of my own to fret me, and I have no opinion about it any way." -Abraham Lincoln It was his lack of understanding and concern that caused Southerners to feel increasingly disenfranchised. Their fear of being unfairly dominated by the North was a leading cause for their secession. The financial motives behind the secessionist movement are usually ignored or glossed over by Northern historians, who prefer to perpetuate the hype that it was waged "to free the slaves". The promoters of the Bleeding Kansas mythology are deluding themselves and others by pretending the local pro-slavery/antislavery skirmishes led to the Civil War. The war wasn't started because of slavery, and it only became a convenient scapegoat issue as the war progressed. Lincoln felt he was losing the war, and so in 1863 he promoted the notion that his war was about freedom and equality. Earlier, Lincoln was so careful not to associate the Civil War to the abolition of slavery that he fired Fremont for freeing slaves in Missouri in 1861. He was afraid Fremont's actions would cause him to lose Kentucky, Delaware, Maryland, Missouri, and western Virginia (West Virginia), all allied with the North. As late as August 1862 he wrote, “My paramount object in this struggle is to save the Union, and is not either to save or destroy slavery. If I could save the Union without freeing any slave I would do it.”

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JHOK32 5 years, 2 months ago

Time will tell when we add up all the dead bodies ordered to death by the blood on W Bush's hands. How many people all told has he now killed? He killed 3000 of our own fellow Americans by being a completely incompetent President whose 911 deaths were carried out on his watch. Don't tell me what Clinton should or should not have done, BUSH was in the Whitehouse, Bush was over the CIA, FBI, ATF, & all his $Billions of dollar massive defense industrial complex, the largest on earth ever, was brought down by a couple of arabs yielding......ok get ready for this - they woop ass on W's massive military machine with a couple of 99 cent plastic boxcutters. Yes, let that one sink in for awhile & tell me how great a President W was. Then, he invades Iraq cause they got them thar WMD's. Oh, what's that, they don't got them thar WMD's? After we done killed 4000 of our own kids & they ain't got them thar WMD's? Well heck, lets put a big banner on the USS Abraham Lincoln & we can proclaim "Mission Accomplished!" What's that? You mean the mission isn't actually accomplished? You mean our boys are still getting killed & having their arms & legs blown off years after "Mission Accomplished?" Must be a type-o there somewheres. Then we goes down to New Orleans and we tells the world that Brownie is doin a "heckuva job" ("heckuva job" is a Texan word meaning he don't know diddly squat whats goin on). Then W gets on TV to the American people & says the whole country is broke! Whats this? The most powerful, richest country the human race has ever known is broke?!!! How in the world did this happen?!!! So now we gets $350 Billion dollars from congress and GIVES $18 Billion to his millionaire buddies with no strings attached!!! This guy has got Kahunas the size of Beach balls!!!! ....and we're telling him OK!!! So shall we re-cap, or are you getting the message yet? We'll probably have to re-cap about a thousand times for the reds, their kinda slow & probably won't ever get it, But the big wall street CEO's got it, the big oil got it, the big banks got it, the CEO's got $18 Billion dollars of OUR money in THEIR bank! They got it! Exxon-Mobil got it. The largest profits in U.S. history sitting in their bank accounts...they GOT it! The Defense Industry making all those million dollar planes, tanks, helicoptors, nuclear aircraft carriers, nuclear submarines, they all GOT it!!!! This is what happens when we put a snot-nosed rich kid in the Whitehouse to "play." Lets all hope to God we learned our lesson on this nightmare. Long story short - George W. Bush was by far the most incompetent, down right stupidest President we have EVER had!

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jonas_opines 5 years, 2 months ago

Trobs (Anonymous) says…

"I saw a list a few weeks ago. They ranked the Presidents based on their upholding of the constitution.

Lincoln and FDR were near the bottom. I'm trying to find the link but I can't remember where I saw it."

So then, isn't the question whether the flaw is in the Presidents, the public who holds the opinion, or perhaps the document itself? I mean, I know that the Constitution requires our requisite unquestioning faith, kind of like the Bible, but still. . . . it was just written by men. Very intelligent, learned men, of course, but men nonetheless.

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Newell_Post 5 years, 2 months ago

Over the weekend, I was watching one of the Sunday news & commentary shows. One of the commentators is a guy I like. He is a reasonable, moderate conservative. The entire panel of liberals and conservatives was discussing the current lack of cooperation and bipartisanship.

The guy in question talked about some good things the Republicans had done in "the old days." He ended by saying "of course, that was before they became the flat Earth society." And that is what has happened. The reasonable, moderate Republicans have been defeated, or purged, or become Democrats.

The Republican party used to stand for efficient government, balanced budgets, individual liberties, separation of church & state, and avoidance of foreign entanglements. It is now the Flat Earth Society.

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Tom Shewmon 5 years, 2 months ago

"...and he was proven a liar." -beoB

And even todays liberal Democrat is OK with that nowadays. Willy was your hero, until he became a conservative in your mind. Joke.

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weeslicket 5 years, 2 months ago

thanks for the link agnostic. that is an excellent web site.

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beobachter 5 years, 2 months ago

Tom, and who would be proud of W? Other than some totally mindless right wingers?

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Tom Shewmon 5 years, 2 months ago

Benito Mussolini would be so proud of BO, Pelosi and Reid.

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rusty2 5 years, 2 months ago

W goes back to Texas for bong hits!

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beobachter 5 years, 2 months ago

for those of you who still worship W, quick sample of some rated higher. Gerald R. Ford 22 Ulysses S. Grant 23 Jimmy Carter 25 Calvin Coolidge 26 Richard M. Nixon 27 Herbert Hoover 34 Pretty bad when when even tricky Dick is rated higher and he was proven a liar. Where will W rate when his lies are finally proven?

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overplayedhistory 5 years, 2 months ago

Watch out logrithmic when badmouthing the conservative messiah.

He may have borrowed us out of the cold war but at what cost. It is amazing that the republicans are still thought of as fiscal conservatives. I too think Ronnie is culprit of our current economic situation. Ronnie started the whole culture of borrowing and investing nothing. Investing money in tax breaks only creates jobs if the corporation decides to keep the jobs in the US.

These guys have some balls to talk about robbing future generations, when they have been steeling from our kids since 1980. How easily the public is bamboozled.

Some consider Clinton a fiscal conservative. I often wonder what his economic record would have looked like if there had not been a silicon boom during his presidency.

It has been a long time since any real wealth has been created in this country. We have spent the last 30 years convincing ourselves of our economic superiority with a pyramid scheme.

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mom_of_three 5 years, 2 months ago

Lincoln was upholding the constitution when he told the slave states that he would not touch slavery where it existed. They didn't believe him and they seceded.
Not sure what much else he could have done.

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logrithmic 5 years, 2 months ago

Another interesting tidbit on Reagan' economic policies:

http://www.cedarcomm.com/~stevelm1/usdebt.htm

"The fact is that Reagan was able to push his tax cuts through both Houses of Congress, but he never pushed through any reduced spending programs. His weak leadership in this area makes him directly responsible for the unprecedented rise in borrowing during his time in office, an average of 13.8% per year. The increase in total debt during Reagan’s two terms was larger than all the debt accumulated by all the presidents before him combined. From 1983 through 1985, with a Republican Senate, the debt was increasing at over 17% per year. While Mr. Reagan was in office this nation’s debt went from just under 1 trillion dollars to over 2.6 trillion dollars, a 200% increase. The sad part about this increase is that it was not to educate our children, or to improve our infrastructure, or to help the poor, or even to finance a war. Reagan’s enormous increase in the national debt was not to pay for any noble cause at all; his primary unapologetic goal was to pad the pockets of the rich. The huge national debt we have today is a living legacy to his failed Neo-Conservative economic policies. Reagan’s legacy is a heavy financial weight that continues to apply an unrelenting drag on this nation’s economic resources."

May God bless!

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max1 5 years, 2 months ago

excerpt from "Oration in Memory of Abraham Lincoln" by Frederick Douglass (dedication of Freedman's Memorial in Lincoln Park, Washington, DC, April 14, 1876) photo: http://www.democracycellproject.net/blog/images/300px-EmancipationMemorialPhoto.jpg "It must be admitted, truth compels me to admit, even here in the presence of the monument we have erected to his memory, Abraham Lincoln was not, in the fullest sense of the word, either our man or our model. In his interests, in his associations, in his habits of thought, and in his prejudices, he was a white man. He was preeminently the white man’s President, entirely devoted to the welfare of white men. He was ready and willing at any time during the first years of his administration to deny, postpone, and sacrifice the rights of humanity in the colored people to promote the welfare of the white people of this country . . . To protect, defend, and perpetuate slavery in the states where it existed Abraham Lincoln was not less ready than any other President to draw the sword of the nation. He was ready to execute all the supposed guarantees of the United States Constitution in favor of the slave system anywhere inside the slave states. He was willing to pursue, recapture, and send back the fugitive slave to his master, and to suppress a slave rising for liberty, though his guilty master were already in arms against the Government. . . You are the children of Abraham Lincoln. We are at best only his step-children; children by adoption, children by forces of circumstances and necessity. To you it especially belongs to sound his praises, to preserve and perpetuate his memory, to multiply his statues, to hang his pictures high upon your walls, and commend his example, for to you he was a great and glorious friend and benefactor. . . Our faith in him was often taxed and strained to the uttermost, but it never failed. When he tarried long in the mountain; when he strangely told us that we were the cause of the war; when he still more strangely told us that we were to leave the land in which we were born; when he refused to employ our arms in defense of the Union; when, after accepting our services as colored soldiers, he refused to retaliate our murder and torture as colored prisoners; when he told us he would save the Union if he could with slavery; when he revoked the Proclamation of Emancipation of General Fremont; when he refused to remove the popular commander of the Army of the Potomac, in the days of its inaction and defeat, who was more zealous in his efforts to protect slavery than to suppress rebellion; when we saw all this, and more, we were at times grieved, stunned, and greatly bewildered; but our hearts believed while they ached and bled."

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logrithmic 5 years, 2 months ago

Everybody — everybody — got tax cuts under Reagan, not just the wealthy.


Ah, the big lie. This time from Bilgegrin.

Reagan passed whopping tax increases on workers in the form of FISA increase, gas tax increases. See:

http://query.nytimes.com/gst/fullpage.html?res=9B05E5DE1F31F93BA35755C0A9629C8B63

From link:

"Mr. Reagan's second tax increase was also motivated by a sense of responsibility -- or at least that's the way it seemed at the time. I'm referring to the Social Security Reform Act of 1983, which followed the recommendations of a commission led by Alan Greenspan. Its key provision was an increase in the payroll tax that pays for Social Security and Medicare hospital insurance.

For many middle- and low-income families, this tax increase more than undid any gains from Mr. Reagan's income tax cuts. In 1980, according to Congressional Budget Office estimates, middle-income families with children paid 8.2 percent of their income in income taxes, and 9.5 percent in payroll taxes. By 1988 the income tax share was down to 6.6 percent -- but the payroll tax share was up to 11.8 percent, and the combined burden was up, not down."

It is also important to note that the well-heeled paid social security taxes only up to $60,000 of income at that time. No social security taxes were levied on any income earned over that amount. This directly benefited the wealthy at the expense of the poor and middle class. Someone making $500,000 paid the FISA tax only the first $60,000 of income and the remaining $440,000 of income was FISA tax free.

The well-heeled in our society benefit tremendously from our tax code. They can buy multiple house and write the interest off of their income. They can depreciate their investments (non-owners cannot). They can write off their entertainment and meals (non-owners cannot). It's all a scam.

Also see: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reaganomics

From link:

"During Reagan's tenure, income tax rates of the top personal tax bracket dropped from 70% to 28% in 7 years."

The interesting thing here was, prior to Reagan, that at some level of income, $10 million, every dollar made over $10 million was taxed at 70%. This caused a number of the wealthy to shelter their money in productive assets rather than taking their money as income. Reagan tax cuts reduced this burden to 28%, meaning that the wealthy received a huge tax decrease. Remember that their income above $60,000 was exempt from his FISA tax increase, so you can see why the wealthy benefited so heavily from Reagan's tax policies. It also explains why the corporate reichwing media can't praise Reagan enough. His policies were extremely beneficial to owners of capital and the wealthy.

May God bless!

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sfjayhawk 5 years, 2 months ago

Interesting article in the NY Times on what the rest of the world thinks about Lincoln

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/02/16/opinion/16lincolnpackage.html?_r=1

Can you imagine where the rest of the world would rate bush?

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flamingdragon 5 years, 2 months ago

shardwurm: Reagan did not end the cold war by outspending the soviets... it was actually Gorbachev that ended the cold war. He had no real choice, because his country was spending 90% of its gnp on the military. It was really a combination of all of our presidents for the last 40 years being involved. In every country in the rest of the world, Gorbachev is credited with the end of the cold war....I know that makes some of us feel like we didn't win, but we really all won, because nobody got nuked.
I know that I erroneously championed reagan as the ender of the cold war, but it is simply not true. Carter typically called for cuts in military nuclear aresenals, but our surveillance, european presence, nuclear boomer submarines and bomber technology grew under his command. He was telling Breznev one thing and doing quite the opposite. Carter refused to the guidlines of the proposed salt II (Ussr wanted nuclear subs eliminated) You should see the photo of the Carter and Breznev at their meeting...the looks on their faces says it all. The afghanistan war is what really put the USSR on the ropes financially. Only a fool would go into that rugged landscape and fight a bunch of cave-dwellers for relativley no value what-so-ever....oh wait, nevermind that last part. by 1982, Soviet planes were towed to the runway and started engines less than 30 seconds before takeoff in order to save gas. The ENTIRE soviet fleet was moored for 3 years. Trainees fired their rifles once before serving in real battle, and (my favorite) OVER 500 Long-range ICBMs were made out of cardboard and paraded through red-square, intending to trick us into thinking they had more than they did. It worked. No kidding. read this book: cold war illustrated 1945-1991 by jeremy issacs....awesome photos and a good overview.

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Newell_Post 5 years, 2 months ago

That's not really fair to poor Harrison. He was only president for a month and was terminally ill for part of that time. How many things could he have really messed up in that time? GWB, on the other hand, had eight years to lurch from disaster to misunderestimation.

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Tom Shewmon 5 years, 2 months ago

"Who cares." -BABBOY

You certainly cared the past eight years. You need to get your BDS and passive-aggressiveness under control.

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Trobs 5 years, 2 months ago

Mallard fillmore? isn't he a comic character

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Candide 5 years, 2 months ago

helloooooooooooo. are you seriously ranking all the presidents? history books are just a story someone wrote, we don't know what the hell lincoln was like. and i don't believe millard fillmore even existed.

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Trobs 5 years, 2 months ago

I saw a list a few weeks ago. They ranked the Presidents based on their upholding of the constitution.

Lincoln and FDR were near the bottom. I'm trying to find the link but I can't remember where I saw it.

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gogoplata 5 years, 2 months ago

A good president would honor his oath to uphold the constitution. By that definition Lincoln was a horrible president.

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badger 5 years, 2 months ago

Agnostick, thanks for posting that link. The data were very interesting.

mike_blur, I don't remember Teapot Dome, as I wasn't born till the latter half of the 20th Century. However, I do remember learning about it, which is what I suppose you meant.

Yeah, it was a scandal. A pretty big scandal, but I look at history and there are any number of underhanded acts and schemes, from illegitimate children to spying on political opponents to kickbacks to fabricated threats to justify invading other countries (Cuba (Maine) or Cuba (Bay of Pigs) or Iraq, take your pick, really), and I look at the fact that poor Warren G. Harding is at the bottom of almost every list of ranked Presidents I see, and I don't know that Teapot Dome really justifies it. Was it just that he really never did do anything of value to offset it?

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mom_of_three 5 years, 2 months ago

I would agree with the bottom of the list being Pierce, Buchanan, Johnson. Harrison didn't do anything in his three weeks in office, and not sure about Harding.

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Pilgrim2 5 years, 2 months ago

NoSpin (Anonymous) says…

Most people fail to know history that Hawaii was not a part of the US in 1941 thus that attack did not occur on American soil.


Um, no, the Pearl Harbor naval base was, indeed, US property. Just as an embassy in a foreign country is on US soil, so are US military bases.

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sfjayhawk 5 years, 2 months ago

No Spin, How did bush do with the Katrina Crisis? How did he handle the economic crisis? Gore certainly couldn't have done any worse.

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NoSpin 5 years, 2 months ago

In as much as the survey was for the left leaning viewers, they should at least commend President Bush on crisis management(#25). He handled 911 without wavering- the biggest attack on American soil ever! Most people fail to know history that Hawaii was not a part of the US in 1941 thus that attack did not occur on American soil. He faced many natural catastrophic disasters and took the fall for a local government that was ill-prepared for a Cat 5 hurricane in a city below sea level(physics anyone?). Unfortunately, laissez-faire policy of the '90s would not have worked for President Bush. He was a man with conviction who had to make difficult and timely decisions. Do you think Gore would have been better? Ha!

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sfjayhawk 5 years, 2 months ago

Actually Trobs, the secessionist movement began prior to Lincoln taking office. And while I do agree that suspending Habeus Corpus was a controversial move, the rest of what he accomplished is overwhelmingly positive. He was, in my opinion, a visionary man who 'belongs to the ages' and only Washington can come close to his greatness.

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funkdog1 5 years, 2 months ago

Eleanor Roosevelt was America's best president.

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Trobs 5 years, 2 months ago

Lincoln did a lot of bad things. Habeus Corpus being suspended, the federal bank that nearly broke the country and he favored more federal control which lead to the succession of the south.

It's all justified now. The north won.

At the time though, he nearly broke the country.

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sfjayhawk 5 years, 2 months ago

Lincoln and Washington are indeed the greatest. I was a little surprised that Eisenhower was not near the top, and Jefferson did grab a bunch of land for us.

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Trobs 5 years, 2 months ago

Sending a massive amount of money to the federally controlled military doesn't count as a stimulus in my eyes.

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deskboy04 5 years, 2 months ago

I always like Teddy Roosevelt. He walked softly and carried a big stick.

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Shardwurm 5 years, 2 months ago

Logrithmic:

You did leave out one tiny item about Reagan. He ended the Cold War and lifted the imminent threat of global thermo-nuclear war. Yes...the method he used was to out-spend the Soviets...but our country did recover relatively quickly and the removal of that threat allowed Clinton to slash the military to the bone during the 90s and reduce the deficit.

That reduction in military capability (including national intelligence-gathering) can be directly correlated to why we were caught unaware in 2001.

The Dems talk so highly about Clinton and what he did in the 90s for the economy...and I must agree that the 90s were good times. But he was able to do that because of Reagan...and because of what he did we were weak and caught off-guard in 2001.

But yeah....other than ending the Cold War and enabling Germany to re-unite and kindling prosperity for 15 years after he left office he pretty much sucked.

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Tom Shewmon 5 years, 2 months ago

http://www.rasmussenreports.com/public_content/business/indexes/rasmussen_consumer_index

You're doin' a heck of a job, Barry!

oh and...

"...any of the trolls..."

should read:

"...any of the other trolls..."

Why exclude yourself?

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Pilgrim2 5 years, 2 months ago

logrithmic (Anonymous) says…

What do you call massive tax cuts to the wealthy and a massive increase in the Pentagon budget? Stimulus.

One third of the stimulus passed by Congress consisted of tax cuts (though not exclusively to the wealthy as under Reagan).


Yup, your Alzheimer's meds definitely need adjustment. Everybody -- everybody -- got tax cuts under Reagan, not just the wealthy. They were across-the-board cuts. But don't let those inconvenient facts get in the way of your looney left dementia.

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Lance Cheney 5 years, 2 months ago

Agnostick-

Thanks for the link. That answered my question.

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Mike Blur 5 years, 2 months ago

badger, don't you remember Teapot Dome? It's the Iran-Contra of the Harding administration.

Personally, my favorite president is James Knox Polk. He was all business and no BS. Vastly underrated, and almost forgotten. We would be in vastly better shape had JKP been at the helm the last 8 years.

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Agnostick 5 years, 2 months ago

Why didn't LJWorld.com provide a link to the original survey referenced in this article?

On the other hand... it's not like any of the trolls ranting in this thread would bother reading it anyway...

http://www.c-span.org/PresidentialSurvey/presidential-leadership-survey.aspx

Agnostick agnostick@excite.com

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badger 5 years, 2 months ago

I don't know that it's all that fair to put William Henry Harrison in the bottom 5 just because he was only President for a few weeks. I think he should be removed from the comparisons, really.

And I'm always surprised to see all the hate for Harding. I mean, sure he was ineffectual, but I've always kind of considered him an average President. Why does he rate the bottom spot so often?

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CLARKKENT 5 years, 2 months ago

TROBS---PART OF THE REASON FOR THE "RECESSION" WE HAVE NOW, STARTED WITH REAGAN. HE IS GETTING WAY MORE CREDIT/RESPECT THAN HE EVER EARNED.

HAD THEY ALLOWED THE FLORIDA RECOUNT, BUSH COULD HAVE NEVER FINISHED WHAT REAGAN STARTED.

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logrithmic 5 years, 2 months ago

Trobs,

What do you call massive tax cuts to the wealthy and a massive increase in the Pentagon budget? Stimulus.

One third of the stimulus passed by Congress consisted of tax cuts (though not exclusively to the wealthy as under Reagan). In fact, it was the rightwingers in Congress that insisted on this and then they voted lockstep against their own modifications!

A stimulus by any other name is still a stimulus.

Have a great day!

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Trobs 5 years, 2 months ago

Reagen did get us out of a recession worse then what we currently have, sans stimulus.

So he has that going for him

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logrithmic 5 years, 2 months ago

lcjayhawk,

Beyond a poll of historians, we should also have a poll of historians with a strong expertise in economics, sociology, and politics. These various subsegments would probably differ mightily on the questions. And then of course it would be interesting to compare it to the poll of the general population, which is largely influenced by spoonfed commercial laden reichwing media. My belief is that the differences would be vast. Still, I am heartened by this poll that Reagan ranks number 10, despite all the propaganda by rightwing squawk radio and the corporate media (which loved his tax cuts and his dismantling of regulations on the environment, worker safety, labor rights, consumer rights, and taxpayer insured institutions). Remember too, that Reagan was in charge of monitoring the savings and loans of the country, which were looted to the tune of $1 trillion while he was president. Most Americans have forgotten this, but this was the original bailout. Reagan even instituted a forgiveness of these crooks by issuing a decree to the SEC and FBI that any loan in default under $1 million should simply be ignored - too small. So you or I could've ripped of the system for up to $1 million and gotten away with it scott free. What a prez!

God bless!

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Tom Shewmon 5 years, 2 months ago

Log, you never went to have your meds adjusted, did you?

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Lance Cheney 5 years, 2 months ago

However, I don't think there would too much disagreement with George W. Bush being in the bottom 10, though. I'm Republican, and even I agree with that.

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logrithmic 5 years, 2 months ago

Salad,

Your criticisms are valid. It's amazing to me how the rightwing media tried to blame Clinton for this failure, even though he had been out of office for seven months. I mean, one watching the movie on corporate rightwing ABC would've believed Clinton was equally culpable for this attack. Given that Clinton and Richard Clarke did everything they could to warn Bush and his crew that there was a threat, one wonders if the 9-11 truthers have some validity when they argue that Bush let it happen. We know that Bush was warned, but Rice argues that the warning was not "actionable." Come again? How is it that airport security was not beefed up with new restrictions etc. after Bush received warnings that Bin Laden was determined to strike in the U.S., possibly using hijacked aircraft? And why was no one ever punished for failing to protect the country during the attack? And why did both the DOD and FAA lie under oath to the 9-11 commission? And finally, why did George and Dick agree to testify to the committee only if no transcript was taken, and if their testimonies were joint and not under oath. Hmmmm.... Suggests coverup and lying doesn't it?

Oh well - nothing new in the home of the brave and the land of the free!

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Lance Cheney 5 years, 2 months ago

I'm not sure who they polled for this survey, if they were asking people on the street or what, but I think for this thing to be anywhere close to accurate, they would have to poll history and/or politics professors from universities across the country. I don't know, I haven't seen this survey; maybe they did. I'm just saying, I don't know how many Joe Schmoes on the street would be able to tell you if Benjamin Harrison's foreign relations policies were superior to those of Warren Harding's. I know I couldn't.

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salad 5 years, 2 months ago

Let's not forget that "W" allowed the worst terrorist attack in US history. Talk about FAILING to keep us safe. Worst president ever; no question.

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logrithmic 5 years, 2 months ago

Rusty,

Bush 2 would've never been president if it had not been for a treasonous Supreme Court. Their five to four ruling to stop the vote recount in Florida should forever dismiss the notion that America stands for blind justice. Given this ruling, it is absolutely hilarious to hear the rightwing spout on about "liberal activist" justices. HA HA.

There's a great book by Vincent Bugliosi on this decision. I highly recommend it. It's called "The Betrayal of America." You can read about it here:

http://archive.salon.com/books/review/2001/07/04/bugliosi/

May God bless!

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rusty2 5 years, 2 months ago

W is in a special category.

Katharine Harris & his brother JEB helped to steal the election in 2000 from Al Gore.

needs to be remembered as the thievery and liar president. Election 2000 & WMD lies.

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invictus 5 years, 2 months ago

Lincoln was a tyrant, if thats what people like in presidents they can have it. I would put Andrew Jackson up there in my top five also Reagan and Ike.

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logrithmic 5 years, 2 months ago

Despite all the public relations and money thrown at elevating Reagan, it's pretty funny that he has only achieved 10th place in the pantheon of popular scalewags and criminals. I mean, when he died, the corporate reichwing media covered it for 10 days. RepuLICKlans during their debates this last election cycle couldn't fall over each other fast enough with their "I'm most like Reagan."

Americans never hear that Reagan was suffering from Alzheimer's during the last three years of his term. In fact, during the last year, Nancy Reagan assumed control of the government more or less, firing Donald Regan, Reagan's then chief of staff.

Reagan could have been impeached for two elements of his foreign policy. Reagan removed Iraq from the terrorist list of countries early in his first term. Few realized, for example, the extent of Reagan's involvement in opening the U.S. vault of chemical, biological, and nuclear weapon technology to Saddam. Reagan authorized the use of agricultural loan programs - guaranteed by you and me, the U.S. taxpayer - to provide Saddam with the wherewithal to purchase these weapons. And even after Saddam used the technology we provided to chemically destroy up to 5,000 Kurds, Reagan looked the other way. Our policy of support for Saddam continued on into the Bush 1 term up to the point Saddam invaded Kuwait. The true story of this scam has been covered up under the ruse of National Security, but involved all levels of the secret government and a now-defunct bank used by the reichwing, BCCI, to fund these illegal programs.

The other impeachable offense was the Iran Contra effort. The Iranians were on the list of terrorist countries (Reagan himself could not remove the Iranians from the list for political reasons). There was also a Congressional prohibition against trade with Iran. Reagan simply flipped Congress off and sold weapons secretly to the Ayatollah. He then used the proceeds to violate another congressional ban placed on supplying the crack cocaine-financed militias (he compared these militias to our founding fathers) with weapons to terrorize their own populations. American nuns and priests were slaughtered along with 200,000 Latin Americans in a bizarre attempt to reinstitute American puppets to control countries like Nicaragua and El Salvador.

Reagain also tripled the national debt. This was amusing, given he ran in large part against Carter's deficits. He thus set the trend for his RepubLICKlan followers who have continued the outrageous practice of financing government wars and expenditures using a giant credit card, a card whose interest taxpayers now pay $300 billion a year on (in large part to foreign bond holders).

During Reagan's first term, he presided over the sharpest recession with official unemployment reaching 13%. Lucky for Reagan, it was a relatively short recession.

God bless!

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Tom Shewmon 5 years, 2 months ago

"I guess you use someone else's opinion which seems reasonable this day and age." barry

The sole reason FOR the success of the far-left blogosphere.

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barrypenders 5 years, 2 months ago

How do you rank someone that wasn't alive during your lifetime? I guess you use someone else's opinion which seems reasonable this day and age.

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Liberty_One 5 years, 2 months ago

Lincoln isn't the best president. Not by a long shot.

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Bob_Keeshan 5 years, 2 months ago

Indeed. The far left blogosphere has tremendous influence over Richard Norton Smith.

I hope your irony meter was turned on for that one...

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Tom Shewmon 5 years, 2 months ago

That spot is reserved for BO in four years.

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beobachter 5 years, 2 months ago

Hell, I figured W at least as low as 40.

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Tom Shewmon 5 years, 2 months ago

Carter would not have beat W before the far-left blogosphere unfortunately sprung out.

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