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Promises to keep

On my earlier thread on how to respectfully remember the other former presidents when they pass, I asked people to refrain from snarkiness until today, when I posted a second piece where such cheap shots would be welcomed. This is it.

I am somewhat disappointed. I challenged Kevinís readers to show a bit of class and demonstrate the proper way to honor the men who have held this nationís highest electoral office on the occasion of their passing. I was trying to take Ronald Reaganís 11th Commandment, ďthou shalt not speak ill of thy fellow Republicans,Ē and extend that sentiment to former presidents. My appeals largely fell on deaf ears.

However, I did promise to give people a chance to vent themselves on Ford, Carter, Bush I, and Clinton. Here it is. Have at it. Iím refraining from participating, though. Iím still too moved by the Reagan services. Iím also closing the comments on that previous thread.

J.


Comments (5)

In reference to your other ... (Below threshold)

In reference to your other post, I thought it was a great idea, and was surprised people didn't comment with the requested focus. I had little to add, really. Your eulogies were pretty good and comprehensive.

What I was talking to Deb about is how strange it is I could sum up more good points to add about Carter and Clinton than about Ford and Bush 41. I was puzzling over that, and figure maybe it's that I had to console myself with something I could try to appreciate about them.

Anyway, this thread ought to be interesting...

and miles to go before i sl... (Below threshold)

and miles to go before i sleep..

Jay Solo, thanks for the ki... (Below threshold)
Jay Tea:

Jay Solo, thanks for the kind words. But if you look, there was virtually NO praise for four of the men who have held the highest office in the land. Hell, I was poking around online, and found another thing to honor Clinton for: he brought about the current peace in Ireland. That took one of the few non-Islamist terrorist groups off the boards entirely.

And yeah, Pylorns, that's where I stole the title. What did you expect? Robert Frost was a fellow Cow Hampshirite.

J.

Well, I missed the "good co... (Below threshold)

Well, I missed the "good comments" thread commenting period, so I'll stick them here. And the bad stuff, too. How's that?

1) Gerald Ford
- He was a "caretaker" President at exactly the time we needed one. He managed to help heal many of the rifts in the country caused by Watergate and allowed us to move onto tackle some of the critical needs under other Administrations. Had Ford fouled up, I believe the presidency would be a greatly diminished positioni right now. He was also perhaps the finest athlete aside from Washington to hold office. It's a shame that part of him is ignored by the slapstick "stumblebum" image he now carries.

- Not much bad here. He didn't really have a mandate to act and with the office itself crippled, what much could he really do? He did pardon Nixon far too soon, though.

2) Jimmy Carter
- He brought a personal moral clarity back to the White House, continuing the healing of the office. His important foreign policy moves were to establish diplomatic relations with China, a biggie, and to finally bring Israel and Egypt to the table at Camp David and get the Accords. His efforts with Habitats for Humanities was the model for the sort of good a President can do out of office.

- On the other hand, he did give the Panama Canal away, established the Department of Education, put together the Salt II Treaty (which the Russians then openly violated in front of us), fumbled the entire Iranian Hostage situation. He, once out of office, managed to get snowed by the North Koreans in (I believe) 1994, allowing them to develop nuclear weapons under our noses.

3) George H.W. Bush
- The Gulf War freed a nation and boxed in Saddam Hussein for a decade. He also signed the Americans for Disabilities Act into law. Sent troops into Somalia to feed and protect those suffering from genocide.

- His raising of the Capital gains tax killed the real estate market and drove us into a recession. He hung the Iraqi rebels out to dry and watched the "boxed in" Hussein kill tens of thousands, and launch an assassination attempt against him.

4) Bill Clinton
- Brokered the Wye Island Peace Accords and the Good Friday Peace Accord. The latter effectively ended the conflict between the British Government and the IRA. Signed a number of beneficial domestic programs into law, including those which reduced welfare rolls. Resisted numerous calls to raise taxes across the board, thus not putting the brakes on a rapidly-growing economy. Gathered NATO Allies, over UN protests, to bomb Kosovo and to apprehend Milosovich, thus ending several decades of genocide. Sent troops into Haiti, also ending a bloody coup attempt.

- Brokered an agreement with North Korea that allowed the to pursue their nuclear program undetected. Allowed the rise of al-Qaeda by permitting strikes against American targets and refusing to take custody of Osama bin Laden on three occasions. Covered up the genocide occurring in Rwanda so that the American people would not demand our intervention. Violated the civil rights of dozens of people by illegally using their FBI files. Committed perjury, for which he was impeached. Allowed Chinese nationals who contrunited to his campaign to also act as spies for their nation, stealing vital nuclear and military information. (Okay, so I didn't like that Clinton turned the White House into his personal playground.)

That's a fair enough list for each one, I think. YMMV, however.

Vent? No thanks. I refuse t... (Below threshold)
Ken:

Vent? No thanks. I refuse to lower myself to the level of the Left.




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