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American politics was rough 200 years ago.

This according to Mary McNamara LA Times television critic.

George Washington so quickly tired of the infighting among his Cabinet and vagaries of public opinion that he stepped down from the presidency after a single term.
Those of us who don't get our history from television melodramas, know that President Washington served two terms. I learned that when I was still very young. Have our schools gotten that bad or the profession of journalism? All those fact checkers and editors the LA Times employs, and not one of them caught this glaring mistake.

Hat tip- Eugene Volokh of the Volokh Conspiracy. EV quips to one of his commenters who said don't you know Hanna Montana was the first President- "Dude, Hanna Montana was the first state." Hey hey.


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Comments (6)

Except that if the writer h... (Below threshold)
Ridolph:

Except that if the writer had actually paid *attention* to the television melodrama, (s)he would have heard in one scene Abigail Adams clearly saying that Washington stepped down after two terms when he could have been President for life.

Even more embarrassing for the Times.

It seems like McNamara was ... (Below threshold)
Brian:

It seems like McNamara was simply relating the content of HBO's "John Adams." If so, it's HBO that deserves the scorn, not the LA Times.

The LAT deserves all the sc... (Below threshold)

The LAT deserves all the scorn they get for turning a once-solid newspaper into a pile of garbage.

The point about politics is valid, though. For all the whining these days about "negative campaigning," nothing we've seen in the last century or so rivals the down-and-dirty campaigns in both Adams-Jefferson races, the 1824 and 1828 campaigns, and for that matter most of the 19th century contests.

No, Brian, HBO's program di... (Below threshold)
SPQR:

No, Brian, HBO's program did not botch the history - the silly twit from the Los Angeles Dog Trainer did.

It doesn't surprise me, the... (Below threshold)
GarandFan Author Profile Page:

It doesn't surprise me, the education system being what it is in the late great state of Kalifornia.

But hey, their teaching the kids to come home to tell Mommy and Daddy to pressure the legislature for more money for the skools.

Does the LAT even bother to check any "facts"?

To her credit:<a h... (Below threshold)
D-Hoggs:



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