US NEWS and World Report speculated that Bush isn't just doin' a heck of a job - he might even be one of the worst Presidents in our history.
"an informal survey of 109 professional historians conducted by the History News Network. It found that 98 percent of them believe that Bush's presidency has been a failure, while only about 2 percent see it as a success. Not only that, more than 61 percent of the historians say the current presidency is the worst in American history."I disagree. There are PLENTY of WORSE Presidents out there.
Let's look at today's news (pops a window), where a certain former US President was refused protection for all the great work he did for their country? That's one hell of a fantastic legacy Mr. Carter!
"Speaking at an event organized by an Israeli financial newspaper, Carter said Monday that he wanted to become a “communicator” between Hamas and the U.S.Good old Jimmy Carter. He's meeting with and actively seeking the job as a mouthpiece of an organization that's mission statement is simply "KILL teh JEWS."
“I hope then the Israeli government will deign to meet with me — they have so far refused,” he said."
But given Jimmy and all his flaws, he's still no where NEAR the WORST President of all time.
No, the worst US President, of all time? That distinction should go to James Buchanan, Jr. Buchanan had a chance to stop the Civil War! Under his watch we had the Dred Scott Decision, Bleeding Kansas, a massive financial panic that makes today's little mortgage crisis look like a lost ATM card. He sent the Army to Utah to kill Brigham Young - but held them back when South Carolina seceded from the Union. He simply felt he didn't have the authority. Letting your country fall into a Civil War? Yeah, you're pretty much the worst President.
Number two on my list - and it was tough -Warren G. Harding. Teapot Dome, The Ohio Gang, possible ties to the Klan... all kinds of Fail there! Whew.
Harding is reputed to have said: “I have no trouble with my enemies, but my damn friends, my God-damned friends… they’re the ones that keep me walking the floor nights!”
Number three? Who's the Imperialist who wished to take Cuba by force, and who's Secretary of War cabinet member - Jefferson Davis actively fugged up the Missouri Compromise forcing the dreaded Kansas-Nebraska Act? If you said dough faced Franklin Pierce, you're right! You may have recognized the name Jefferson Davis as the future President of the Confederacy?
Four on my list - Richard Milhous Nixon. Where do you start with old "Tricky Dick"? Operation Menu- which was the bombing of Cambodia? Watergate? Impeachment? Resignation? Spiro Agnew? Expanding the reach of the Federal government? Instituting 55 miles per hour? Crippling NASA's Moon Base plans? His anti-Semite views, his enemies list... or all of the above?
Five - Andrew Johnson. Failed Reconstruction policies, and not one but TWO impeachment attempts. Johnson was a poor politician who could not build coalitions and was doomed to fail. He is saved only by "Seward's Folly" or "Seward's Icebox" AKA "Icebergia" since it proved to be full of oil and polar bears.
Six - US Grant. As a General, he saved the Union. As President, corruption, scandals and lies - not by him, per say - but by the people he hired to advise him. Like the failures of Pierce, Grant surrounded himself with people he didn't know - and people who took great advantage of their positions. The Gold speculation scandal known as Black Friday, The Whiskey Ring the Sanborn Incident, General Order No. 11, among just the first few that come to mind. What keeps Grant from being higher on the list of worst is that he kept the US out of foreign wars and actually helped broker peace on a few of those foreign wars. Oh, and the S? Totally made up.
Seven - Herbert Hoover. Hoover promised: "We in America today are nearer to the final triumph over poverty than ever before in the history of any land." Within months, the Stock Market Crash of 1929. Ooops. Hoover agreed to one of the largest tax increases in American history. The Revenue Act of 1932. He taxed the shiznit out of everybody. Other electoral liabilities were Hoover's lack of charisma in relating to voters, and his poor skills in working with politicians. That's a fail.
Eight - I could say William Henry Harrison - mostly because he died right after coming into office -- but how much damage can one cause when you're only around for 31 days after oath of office? His death caused a Constitutional Crisis.... and John Tyler didn't do much to stop it. Among his many nicknames, "His Accidency" pretty much sums up the thoughts of the day. Tyler was also has the distinction of being our first President to considered for impeachment for a veto... and he Vetoed EVERYTHING. He also annexed the Republic of Texas -- which depending on how you feel about this -- could raise or lower his ranking.
Nine - Tough one. Millard Fillmore - who was the second President to take over since Zack Taylor died in office. Fillmore signed the Fugitive Slave Act, which basically destroyed the Whig party. Took down his party with that one.
Yeah, you're a pretty bad politician when you take out your party. Not just out of power -- but from existence.
Ten - James Garfield? Being named after an unfunny lasagna eating cat isn't enough to be named on this list. Being assassinated after only 6 months and a couple days in office also isn't enough to be put on the list. It was his Vice President, Chester A. Arthur who should take number 10. Upon entering the presidency, he believed that the only way to garner the nation's approval was to be independent. Well, you can imagine how popular that was - he pissed off EVERYBODY. He did such a poor job, he lost the Republican party's nomination - and then they lost to Grover. Grover Cleveland - not the Muppet... that would be humiliating.
Hey, what about : Gerald Ford or Jimmy Carter? - while both equally terrible - didn't let the country fall into a Civil War or create a Constitutional Crisis. Bill Clinton? It's been said that he's tarnishing his Presidential legacy while on the campaign trail for Hillary. What legacy? The one where he lied about beejays and being soft on Arab terrorists while being hard as nails with domestic ones (Waco, Texas)? (not Ruby Ridge - that was George H. Bush* Thanks anonymous caller!)
Perhaps worst post-Presidential legacy could be a new list?
Jimmy, I think you're leading the pack!
UPDATE: 2.15.09: (the New! Historians picks)