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A question for conservatives. Which Presidents are your role models?


#1 MSI Magus   CAGiversary! CAGiversary!   8156 Posts   Joined 15.5 Years Ago  

Posted 11 January 2016 - 02:30 AM

Watching my millionth Roosevelt documentary and thinking God do I respect FDR and to a much less extent Teddy Roosevelt. Like their policies or not its undeniable that they were at least TRYING to reach the common man and the underdog. They also both proved they were 2 of the toughest men to ever live(you try being as sick as FDR and giving a speach while holding your crippeld body up!).

 

I am interested to hear from UncleBob, Silkunderpants and the boards other conservatives which Presidents you look up to and feel other Presidents would be wise to imitate/learn from and why they were such great Presidents. Just a good way to learn where someones head is at and why they politically lean the way they do.



#2 RedvsBlue  

RedvsBlue

Posted 11 January 2016 - 05:10 AM

I fully expect a great number of Reagan answers.

#3 AdmiralGialHackbar  

AdmiralGialHackbar

Posted 11 January 2016 - 05:53 AM

coolidge and w. bush



#4 detectiveconan16   Delicious! CAGiversary!   7125 Posts   Joined 12.3 Years Ago  

detectiveconan16

Posted 11 January 2016 - 11:39 AM

Even though Reagan supported gun control, and Nixon advocated socialized health care and the EPA.

 

Actually you can say the greatest Presidents were Republican: like Lincoln, Ulysses S. Grant, and Theodore Roosevelt.... only they weren't very Conservative, they were quite Liberal considering what they did. I'm sure the KKK had the best interests of the average American in mind. Those robber barons? Grade A American businessmen who were savagely attacked by the big US government who constantly passed regulation after regulation to hamper their ability to make more money. If there is a problem regarding quality of life, they were sure the market can handle it.

 

The Democrat Woodrow Wilson, despite being a progressive, was notoriously racist and definitely resisted change to the societal order. And the list goes on and on.

 

Parties may change, but the politician more concerned about his image? That never goes away.



#5 mykevermin   Queen of Scotland CAGiversary!   37011 Posts   Joined 15.1 Years Ago  

Posted 11 January 2016 - 12:53 PM

Certainly not this gaggle of Bleeding Heart Liberals.

 



#6 dohdough   Sum Dum Guy CAGiversary!   6854 Posts   Joined 10.0 Years Ago  

Posted 11 January 2016 - 02:17 PM

Certainly not this gaggle of Bleeding Heart Liberals.

 

It's amazing what photoshop can do these days!



#7 mrsilkunderwear   Just Do It. CAGiversary!   1701 Posts   Joined 9.9 Years Ago  

mrsilkunderwear

Posted 11 January 2016 - 03:09 PM

1. Grover Cleveland

Veto president who supported a freer trade and veto'd many bills which did not fall under the power of the federal government as stated within the constitution. 

2. Calvin Coolidge

There is a very good reason why we never hear about the 1920-1921 depression.

3.  Thomas Jefferson

Father of the constitution, a man who understood that laws are not created but only discovered. 

4. Barry Goldwater

Not a president but could have been a great one. Understood the constitution and was a good defender of individual liberty. 

 

Presidents I dislike:

1. FDR

Japanese Concentration Camps, seized gold from the people, Pro-War, ran on a more free-market platform and then pulled a 180. The depression lasted into Truman's era due to his central planning.

2. Truman

Nuked two civilian centers

3. George W Bush

Ran on a conservative platform of small government, respecting state rights and balanced budget. Gave us a patriot act and an oppressive government instead. 

4. Barack Obama

Does not understand economics, did not pass any meaningful reforms after controlling the house and senate. Continued the failed policies of his predecessor. I voted for him in 08. 



#8 MSI Magus   CAGiversary! CAGiversary!   8156 Posts   Joined 15.5 Years Ago  

Posted 11 January 2016 - 03:43 PM

1. Grover Cleveland

Veto president who supported a freer trade and veto'd many bills which did not fall under the power of the federal government as stated within the constitution. 

2. Calvin Coolidge

There is a very good reason why we never hear about the 1920-1921 depression.

3.  Thomas Jefferson

Father of the constitution, a man who understood that laws are not created but only discovered. 

4. Barry Goldwater

Not a president but could have been a great one. Understood the constitution and was a good defender of individual liberty. 

 

Presidents I dislike:

1. FDR

Japanese Concentration Camps, seized gold from the people, Pro-War, ran on a more free-market platform and then pulled a 180. The depression lasted into Truman's era due to his central planning.

2. Truman

Nuked two civilian centers

3. George W Bush

Ran on a conservative platform of small government, respecting state rights and balanced budget. Gave us a patriot act and an oppressive government instead. 

4. Barack Obama

Does not understand economics, did not pass any meaningful reforms after controlling the house and senate. Continued the failed policies of his predecessor. I voted for him in 08. 

Thank you for answering seriously and respectfully. I asked this question in part because I wanted to see if a few members of the board that are clearly motivated heavily to vote conservative based on economics had high regards for Coolidge and low regard for FDR. The great depression is a complicated time in American history and economics is a mind bendingly complicated thing in and of itself.  I think that it is a very narrow minded view of history to give FDR or Coolidge all the credit and the other all the blame.

 

I mean you cant google Coolidges name without seeing economists talking about how his cutting taxes and deregulating the banks set the ground work for the great depression. Its like people that try to blame the war or the economy Obama inherited on him. He has not done enough to fix things and he is an egomaniac to the highest degree. But you cant blame him for the economy and I do not think you can blame FDR for the GD, especially while praising Coolidge. Coolidge and FDR will forever be tied together and so will Bush and Obama.

 

I am not trying to be rude, but the reason I always challenge you is 90% your economic views. You clearly have a broad and deep understanding of history, I do not doubt that. But I feel you sift your views through a conservative economic lens until things have become over simplified. Socialism, regulations and taxes are bad while lowering taxes and getting the government out of business at every step possible is good. Again I am not trying to judge or pick a fight, just giving you things as I see it. Its like Democrats who try to paint the picture that Republicans always wreck the ecnomy and Democrats always save it. Life and history rarely paint with such broad brushes.

 

P.S Thanks for reminding me that FDR was an internment camp President. Its sooooo freaking obvious yet despite it being a national shame it constantly slips my mind. Sigh back to the drawing board for having one President who did not treat life as worth so little. Teddy comes close at times and then you get to hear stories of how he treated animals.......I mean the man shot a dog for barking at him when he was in a bad mood...wtf.



#9 RedvsBlue  

RedvsBlue

Posted 11 January 2016 - 04:29 PM

I must say I'm pleasently surprised there aren't much in the way of Reagan picks.

Back in the day when I identified very strongly as Republican I bought into all the hype of how great he was and I still see him lionized by many Republicans but apparently not much here. These days though? I think he was one of the greatest tricks the Republican Party has ever managed to pull off against the American people. Let that trickle down flow, all over you. Although, in full fairness I did buy into the cynisism of Captialism: A Love Story pretty heavily.

#10 mykevermin   Queen of Scotland CAGiversary!   37011 Posts   Joined 15.1 Years Ago  

Posted 11 January 2016 - 05:18 PM

Supply side still has legions of faithful despite 40 years of evidence that it doesn't work at all.



#11 RedvsBlue  

RedvsBlue

Posted 11 January 2016 - 05:45 PM

Supply side still has legions of faithful despite 40 years of evidence that it doesn't work at all.

It's kind of like Communism in that as a concept it seems like a solid idea but the practical application of it is mostly a failure. If the rich actually spent their money on goods then it would work to help drive the lower sectors of the economy. The problem though is that in practice it just doesn't work that way. The wealthy largely horde their money, spend/keep it offshore, or put it to use in the financial markets. None of these instances help to drive the lower parts of the economy.

They've had nearly 40 years to prove it works and instead we've seen absolutely no fruits of that policy. Instead the middle class has shrunk, lower class wages have stagnated, and we've seen that it's the lower and middle classes that bear the brunt of economic recessions.

The problem is that a large swath of the lower classes still believe in upward mobility if they just work hard. Resultingly they tolerate and even favor tax breaks for the rich because they think that'll be them one day.

#12 MSI Magus   CAGiversary! CAGiversary!   8156 Posts   Joined 15.5 Years Ago  

Posted 11 January 2016 - 05:59 PM

It's kind of like Communism in that as a concept it seems like a solid idea but the practical application of it is mostly a failure. If the rich actually spent their money on goods then it would work to help drive the lower sectors of the economy. The problem though is that in practice it just doesn't work that way. The wealthy largely horde their money, spend/keep it offshore, or put it to use in the financial markets. None of these instances help to drive the lower parts of the economy.

They've had nearly 40 years to prove it works and instead we've seen absolutely no fruits of that policy. Instead the middle class has shrunk, lower class wages have stagnated, and we've seen that it's the lower and middle classes that bear the brunt of economic recessions.

The problem is that a large swath of the lower classes still believe in upward mobility if they just work hard. Resultingly they tolerate and even favor tax breaks for the rich because they think that'll be them one day.

Do not forget that they spend it on luxury items that do nothing to boost the economy. A rich guy buying a 10 million dollar yacht and 20 million dollar home does not do near as much for the economy as having a million average joes each buying a smaller boat and home.



#13 mykevermin   Queen of Scotland CAGiversary!   37011 Posts   Joined 15.1 Years Ago  

Posted 11 January 2016 - 06:38 PM

I'm not sure it compares to communism because (and this may just be the hindsight) supply side *doesn't make sense*.

 

You need multiple participants to have a successful economic transaction. Supply and demand.

 

We've seen countless examples where demand makes a company grow. Even in video games, consumer demand for the Nintendo Wii led to Nintendo building new manufacturing facilities to keep up with demand. They didn't add jobs because they got tax cuts; they added jobs because they couldn't make Wiis fast enough for consumers.

 

Additional income, absent a reason to use it (i.e., demand), means nothing. So it's not the additional income, it's the demand.

 

The public is so scared of the national debt, but fails to realize where we might be economically if we'd stuck with Austerity spending (i.e., not stimulating the demand side of the economy artificially). Sadly, we know where we would be without additional deficit spending: go take a look at Greece.

 

Supply side is attractive because its romantic - eat more and still lose weight! It's so painless!

 

It's also utter nonsense, good intentions, applied in practice, or otherwise.



#14 RedvsBlue  

RedvsBlue

Posted 11 January 2016 - 07:12 PM

But in a perfect world, as it was sold, that additional supply would in turn create additional demand. "I've got all this money, I've gotta do something with it." The problem is that because corporations and the wealthy don't have his mentality it doesn't end up driving the economy. They sit on it, put it into financial markets, they just plain don't use it to stimulate demand.

We're always told to prepare for the worst so we save our money, the rich and corporations especially. That's where the inherent incompatibility comes in. On the one hand it's responsible and smart not to blow all your money, on the other hand for supply side to work it demands that irresponsibility.

#15 soonersfan60   Longing for retro CAG... CAGiversary!   4395 Posts   Joined 13.9 Years Ago  

soonersfan60

Posted 12 January 2016 - 01:05 AM

Stimulating the economy on the demand side increases quantities, but also increases prices (or at least keeps them from dropping as much), so it's potentially inflationary. Stimulating the economy on the demand side also increases quantities, but it is supposed to do that by lowering prices from economies of scale, so it's not inflationary. That's the theory.

 

As for the rich buying yachts, there are still "common folk" employed in those industries also. If people aren't buying luxury goods, there are still potential job losses. And if they sit on their money or invest it, that should make capital more available and hence cheaper for other businesses. So it doesn't really matter much which side gets the money, as long as it isn't put into mattresses. But I agree the optics of someone buying a yacht with a tax cut aren't nearly as good as lots of people buying new mufflers.

 

The problem really is when government is spending the money instead of people. One argument for not giving tax cuts to "ordinary" people is that they might not spend it... sound familiar? It's true that in the short term if they pay down debt instead of buying stuff, the economy does not grow from that. But I would argue that in the long run those people are better off if they do decide to pay down debt rather than buy more stuff.



#16 MSI Magus   CAGiversary! CAGiversary!   8156 Posts   Joined 15.5 Years Ago  

Posted 12 January 2016 - 01:40 AM

Stimulating the economy on the demand side increases quantities, but also increases prices (or at least keeps them from dropping as much), so it's potentially inflationary. Stimulating the economy on the demand side also increases quantities, but it is supposed to do that by lowering prices from economies of scale, so it's not inflationary. That's the theory.

 

As for the rich buying yachts, there are still "common folk" employed in those industries also. If people aren't buying luxury goods, there are still potential job losses. And if they sit on their money or invest it, that should make capital more available and hence cheaper for other businesses. So it doesn't really matter much which side gets the money, as long as it isn't put into mattresses. But I agree the optics of someone buying a yacht with a tax cut aren't nearly as good as lots of people buying new mufflers.

 

The problem really is when government is spending the money instead of people. One argument for not giving tax cuts to "ordinary" people is that they might not spend it... sound familiar? It's true that in the short term if they pay down debt instead of buying stuff, the economy does not grow from that. But I would argue that in the long run those people are better off if they do decide to pay down debt rather than buy more stuff.

My point on a rich guy buying a yacht had nothing to do with optics. A small handful of people buying a few big luxury items is just plain not as good for the economy as many many many people buying some smaller thing be it a car, a muffler or a house.

 

Look at it this way. If one rich guy buys one giant $15 million dollar yacht how many people are honestly employeed? Compared to the number of employees it takes to make tens of thousands of smaller boats not much. I mean again its not hard be it food, luxury toys, houses, decorations or anything else we can compare to see how $15 million in the hands of the common man creates more jobs then $15 million in the hands of the rich.

 

Also yes the common man also may choose to save his money which defeats the purpose of taking it from rich people who are not spending it either. However I would argue that after a period of savings, most people start loseining the purse strings. Its just human nature, everyone eventually finds a hobby or passion to spend their green backs on.

 

Finally I want to point out that again I am disgusted how these economic issues are always discussed on a numbers basis and so rarely a moral basis. After the last 20-40 years or so the common man deserves a period to save some money, he more then deserves it he NEEDS it.



#17 soonersfan60   Longing for retro CAG... CAGiversary!   4395 Posts   Joined 13.9 Years Ago  

soonersfan60

Posted 12 January 2016 - 02:00 AM

Well, the first thing that I tell my students in economics class is that you have to take the emotion out of the decisions. That is a separate consideration, but yes it should always be made. Nothing wrong with helping people, but it needs to be a separate decision. (Incidentally, because most policy makers don't want to do that, it's one of the reasons why economics is taught as a social science in most universities and not as a business discipline.)

 

If I had to pick one of the biggest problems with economics in this country, though, it is clearly crony capitalism. And that really highlights the second biggest problem which is ridiculous government spending... not just the amount, but what we actually get for the money the government spends. (And don't get me started on the fiasco that was TARP. It illustrates everything that is wrong with government meddling in the economy. One of the goals was to rescue the home mortgage crisis, but if the government truly wanted to help homeowners, they should have actually refinanced people's mortgages directly at their pre-adjusted ARM rate, but lock it in for the life of a new 30 year loan and have the gov't hold the paper. The last thing they should have done was give banks money or access to money to "help" because they ended up mostly helping themselves.)



#18 dopa345   All around nice guy CAGiversary!   2247 Posts   Joined 15.3 Years Ago  

Posted 12 January 2016 - 02:14 AM

Washington and Lincoln.



#19 mykevermin   Queen of Scotland CAGiversary!   37011 Posts   Joined 15.1 Years Ago  

Posted 12 January 2016 - 02:29 AM

Well, the first thing that I tell my students in economics class is that you have to take the emotion out of the decisions.

 

...the second biggest problem which is ridiculous government spending.

;)

 

Can you define 'crony capitalism' in an operationalizable, concrete way? More for my edification than anything else.

 

Speaking of TARP, or at least items related to it, I'm curious what your thoughts are on the repeal of Glass-Steagall.



#20 soonersfan60   Longing for retro CAG... CAGiversary!   4395 Posts   Joined 13.9 Years Ago  

soonersfan60

Posted 12 January 2016 - 04:02 AM

Crony capitalism defined in an "operationalizable, concrete way" is simply when companies get government money (contracts, investments, etc.) based more on who they know rather than objective criteria. Now I understand that business to business capitalism works that way also, but government spending should be more objective since it's everyone's money. The best way to do this is via illustration. I have no problem with the government spending money on general research, such as DARPA and other basic research, but I don't like when government money is given to corporations where individuals personally benefit from it (often at the expense of taxpayers, or at least where taxpayers do not benefit from these "investments"). I have a problem with government giving money to companies like Solyndra (for a variety of reasons), or even many of Elon Musk's ventures, since he is personally enriching himself from those government infusions of capital.

 

I also object to the way many government contract bids are written, being so specific that they are obviously targeted for only one company to win. If you've ever looked into government grants, you probably know what I'm talking about. Some appear to be open to everyone and for a reasonable amount of time; others are so specific and only open for a few days, such that you can tell that the RFP was probably written so that only one company could in fact bid. (I have not studied these for industries outside of my research and/or consulting areas, but based on what I've seen in these areas and how narrowly targeted the language and bidding windows are, I would suspect that this is how Halliburton and others benefit from winning so many contracts (not including the no-bid contracts)).

 

I'm not in a position to judge all of these, but certainly this is one area where I think there is not enough transparency because it's complicated, tough to prove, and one of those areas where it's hard to enforce consequences even if questionable deals are found.

As far as Glass-Steagall, I know that is one of your favorite laws to champion. I don't have such a big problem with commercial banks being allowed into other activities as long as there's true competition. The problem is that I'm not sure there is true competition or ever will be. And the result of repealing that law is the "too big to fail" ideology which gives these financial institutions too much insulation from the risks they're taking...and so we get the bailouts. And I think big time investors also benefit from this, but of course not everyone is in the same position to benefit. This goes back to my crony capitalism problem actually... there is not equal access. Of course I know not everything can be fair. One of the only failings of economic theory is that it assumes perfect information by all sides, but that will NEVER be the case. The difference is that I don't think government is the answer either. They are either too slow to adapt to changes (since private enterprise has the resources to attract and hire the best and brightest--and perhaps most devious), or the government ends up favoring one party/entity/group over another (and you cannot necessarily imbue good and noble intentions to their choices or favoritism either).

 

When I figure out the answer to having a pure solution to these problems--one that can't be manipulated by individuals, either in corporations or in government--I'll submit my paper to the Nobel committee on economics.

 

EDIT: Wow! I had no idea that would be so long as I was typing it...



#21 mykevermin   Queen of Scotland CAGiversary!   37011 Posts   Joined 15.1 Years Ago  

Posted 12 January 2016 - 04:57 AM

One of my favorite laws to champion? M'lord, I'm hardly a ghost around these parts anymore - not to mention I've no clue what laws I do like to champion. Personally, I think I'm more fond of bringing back the pre-Reagan federal tax rates. :)

 

I do think that it's fascinating the first thing you espouse is, earlier today, dispassionate examination of economics. You then follow that by citing recent examples that seem to suggest distaste with what is happening under Obama (TARP - well, okay, somewhat Bush, but I'm sure that's some nasty "big government intervention") - Solyndra, for instance. Nobody brings up Solyndra except for like Glenn Beck listeners.

 

But what you're decrying is private enterprise profiting off of government expenditures. That, my dear friend, is not the market cornered by any single party. For every "Solyndra," I could counter with a right-leaning private enterprise (KBR, baby!) that profits to the hundreds of millions, if not billions, in annual revenue. So it is either that you find distaste with the way government is not a fully sufficient public enterprise (i.e., that we should have more public goods, assets, and jobs - not less); or, that you simply disagree with the way the United States economy works - but you use your ideological perspective to cherry pick the kind of profit you find distasteful. Green energy receives scorn, while prison loaf is conveniently ignored.

 

I've experienced the kind of specificity you're speaking of in federal announcements. 100%. RFPs, job calls, etc. They're pretty bureaucratically inflexible (which is, it seems, the result of what direction you want your corruption coming from - hyperspecificity leading to accusations that it was written with one person in mind, or such a broad degree of "well, we don't *really* have to meet this qualification" that Joe from down the block (think Billy Carter, Roger Clinton) is now the head data scientist in charge of the NIJ's report writing squad. Pick your poison. I had it out with someone a few months ago b/c I told them they were being so specific in the field they were requiring for education that they were overlooking other very very capable degrees/backgrounds for the job. They were rigid. Their loss, I told them - but also their choice. They don't have to accept a PhD in dance if they don't want to. But I've seen plenty that were fine - job calls and RFPs. Luck of the draw.

 

The same is the case in private enterprise. If you look at job calls, you've surely seen job calls in your field that you KNOW were drafted and written by someone who doesn't understand your field in the *slightest*. Yet they're the ones who first view your resume, and therefore who first cut you: not for not being qualified, but because you didn't meet this silly contradictory/nonsensical clause in the job call.

 

That's life, man. "People Fuck shit up" is a rule of this world. Singling out government for bad calls and misuse of funds is a moralistic judgment, and you're conveniently ignoring that while trying to tell us to take emotion out of the equation.

 

Which makes me think you're a Libertarian. Only Libertarians treat their economic philosophy like an unassailable religion, to be highly regarded, overprotected, and incapable of being critiqued. The irony being that only Libertarians fail to see how irrational and emotional they sound in trying to assert the points of what they think are clear, objective tenets of their philosophy.

 

"...as long as there's true competition..." lollllllllllll. No True Scotsman, my friend.



#22 soonersfan60   Longing for retro CAG... CAGiversary!   4395 Posts   Joined 13.9 Years Ago  

soonersfan60

Posted 12 January 2016 - 05:39 AM

Well, you missed that I mentioned Halliburton in there to show that I don't like either side pulling these shenanigans. I am familiar/aware of numerous examples I don't like on both sides, but Solyndra popped into my head first.

 

I give the "job calls" and things you describe in private enterprise more of a pass because that is private people doing what they want with their money, or corporations that have to answer to shareholders (but we won't go there because that opens up a whole new topic of discussion about how that doesn't really work the way it should). I call out government more only because they (and people who blindly support them) hold themselves out as the only bastion of fairness. I accept that I miss out on opportunities in the private sector because I don't know the right people; I expect a higher standard from government if they purport to protect me.

 

And I'm not emotional about this, I'm passionate. There's a difference... :-P (I won't give you irrational, though.)

 

P.S. And you saw that I mentioned how I think TARP should have happened, so I'm not completely anti-government. The Glass-Stegall thing is something I recall from a long time back on these boards when you used to be almost a daily poster. I could be recalling that incorrectly, but somehow I had your name associated with that...



#23 Feeding the Abscess   CAGiversary! CAGiversary!   3251 Posts   Joined 10.0 Years Ago  

Feeding the Abscess

Posted 13 January 2016 - 03:08 AM

'2. Calvin Coolidge

 

There is a very good reason why we never hear about the 1920-1921 depression.

 

3. George W Bush

Ran on a conservative platform of small government, respecting state rights and balanced budget. Gave us a patriot act and an oppressive government instead.'

 

 

Harding was president in 1920-21. Another favorite of W's campaign era was his opposition to America's position as 'policeman of the world'.

 

My flippant answer, and the president I frequently hold as the greatest in US history, is William Harrison.

 

EDIT: something weird happened with the quote function, and I'm entirely too busy (read: lazy) to fix it.



#24 berzirk   I'm not so serious CAGiversary!   2506 Posts   Joined 11.2 Years Ago  

Posted 14 January 2016 - 08:37 PM

I'm an Independent (so I'm better than all of you.  If I start Crossfit, or quit eating gluten, then I'll really have something to talk about) but I probably lean conservative more often than liberal. While I'm no Presidential historian, a couple that stand out to me are Teddy Roosevelt, and Bush Sr.  Carter, if you look at his after-the-Presidency actions.

 

Teddy for the old school break the mold, do whatever the hell he wanted mentality. Politically...I don't know what he did :P

 

Bush Sr for his surprisingly even-handed dealings in the Israel-Palestine conflict, his willingness to break the party position and raise taxes as needed to work towards a balanced budget (which along with the campaign of Ross Perot, was his undoing), his experience in the intelligence community, for good and for bad, giving him an informed, less party-driven background for foreign policy.  Ability to partner with other Arab nations to tactfully and swiftly be involved in the first Gulf War.  I think he is so massively underrated as a President, because of his one-term status, and his idiot son(s). Really a shame, because I think in terms of moral standing, he was one of the most ethical, compassionate, fair Presidents we've had in my lifetime. After the Presidency, his tireless efforts surrounding aid to Africa, post tsunami, and many, many more endeavors cement that position in my mind.  Also for the ability to swallow his pride and team up with Bill Clinton on these charitable causes, I admire him. I think he was far more centrist than people gave him credit for.

 

Carter (post Presidency) for all he's done for human rights, Middle East politics, helping the poor. Seems like a really, really good dude. I'm not old enough to really grasp how/why he sucked as a President, but as a post President, he's been phenomenal.



#25 MSI Magus   CAGiversary! CAGiversary!   8156 Posts   Joined 15.5 Years Ago  

Posted 14 January 2016 - 11:38 PM

I'm an Independent (so I'm better than all of you.  If I start Crossfit, or quit eating gluten, then I'll really have something to talk about) but I probably lean conservative more often than liberal. While I'm no Presidential historian, a couple that stand out to me are Teddy Roosevelt, and Bush Sr.  Carter, if you look at his after-the-Presidency actions.

 

Teddy for the old school break the mold, do whatever the hell he wanted mentality. Politically...I don't know what he did :P

 

Bush Sr for his surprisingly even-handed dealings in the Israel-Palestine conflict, his willingness to break the party position and raise taxes as needed to work towards a balanced budget (which along with the campaign of Ross Perot, was his undoing), his experience in the intelligence community, for good and for bad, giving him an informed, less party-driven background for foreign policy.  Ability to partner with other Arab nations to tactfully and swiftly be involved in the first Gulf War.  I think he is so massively underrated as a President, because of his one-term status, and his idiot son(s). Really a shame, because I think in terms of moral standing, he was one of the most ethical, compassionate, fair Presidents we've had in my lifetime. After the Presidency, his tireless efforts surrounding aid to Africa, post tsunami, and many, many more endeavors cement that position in my mind.  Also for the ability to swallow his pride and team up with Bill Clinton on these charitable causes, I admire him. I think he was far more centrist than people gave him credit for.

 

Carter (post Presidency) for all he's done for human rights, Middle East politics, helping the poor. Seems like a really, really good dude. I'm not old enough to really grasp how/why he sucked as a President, but as a post President, he's been phenomenal.

Good list. Bush Sr and Carter are two Presidents who do not get nearly the respect they deserve. Many of the things Carter did that made people dislike him then would be seen as positives now. His work after leaving the Presidency is even more impressive and impossible to overlook or deny. Bush on the other hand was the only President in modern times that I feel even when I disagreed with him was GENERALLY trying to do the right thing. If nothing else he is country miles ahead of his competition. I would have said Obama comes close, but I think Obama even when he was trying to do good was often letting his own ego get in the way.



#26 mykevermin   Queen of Scotland CAGiversary!   37011 Posts   Joined 15.1 Years Ago  

Posted 14 January 2016 - 11:56 PM

Right. Bush Sr was a man I could respect. His "no new taxes" pledge more or less led to him being a one term president (although Perot was also a major factor in 1992) - this ultimately, I suspect, helped lead to the tremendous power Grover Norquist wields in the modern GOP, along with the 100% fear/refusal to ever raise taxes (even when it makes sense to do so, or is done in a negotiated exchange that ultimately benefits spending cuts).