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View Diary: Monday Murder Mystery: Whatever Happened to Washington's Birthday? And a Special Announcement (68 comments)

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  •  Neither was as dumb as Harding (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    susans, Susan from 29, RiveroftheWest

    Seriously.  NO President was dumber than him.  He literally had no idea of what the job entailed.

    This isn't freedom. This is fear - Captain America

    by Ellid on Tue Feb 18, 2014 at 07:25:35 AM PST

    [ Parent ]

    •  Oh. I was wondering how W could possibly have been (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      susans, Susan from 29, RiveroftheWest

      dumber than Reagan, or who could have been #1 if Reagan was #2.

      •  Harding was unbelievably stupid (4+ / 0-)

        He got elected a) thanks to the Republican machine, b) public weariness with Woodrow Wilson and Democratic high-mindedness, and c) silver-haired good looks that made him look presidential.

        Once in office, he spent most of his time drinking (illegally, thanks to Prohibition), smoking, playing cards with his buddies, and banging his mistress, Nan Britton, who not only got pregnant but claimed that one of their trysts took place in a closet just off the Oval Office.   His political advisers, most of whom were later indicted, actually ran the country.

        It got so bad that Harding reportedly once dashed into a friend's office begging for help since he had no idea what to do when presented with a legislative proposal.  It was awful, and despite great public grief when he died unexpectedly, the country was far, far better off with Calvin Coolidge.

        As for Reagan and GWB...I think Reagan was brighter, but neither was all that smart.  The smartest Presidents were probably Jefferson, Garfield, Kennedy, Teddy Roosevelt, Clinton, Obama, and John Quincy Adams, but that's just my opinion....

        This isn't freedom. This is fear - Captain America

        by Ellid on Tue Feb 18, 2014 at 08:07:39 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  I know next to nothing about Harding, but that he (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          susans, Susan from 29, RiveroftheWest

          was in way over his head, yes. Looking presidential: plus ca change....

          I'd long thought that if brains were dynamite, Reagan couldn't blow his nose. Remember when they purported to have found a stash of young "Dutch"'s writings? Crisp, insightful commentary! This will put to rest forever the idea that he's an amiable dunce! That faded pretty fast, I think. To me, Reagan was so stupid, it was a wonder he remembered to breathe. That little cartoon that passed for his mind...white hats/black hats....sitting tall in the saddle....that silky, soothing voice....he was as genuine as a bowl of wax fruit, and almost as smart.

          •  He wasn't even all that good an actor (3+ / 0-)
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            susans, Susan from 29, RiveroftheWest

            Although he did have some bad breaks in his career.  Not being allowed to serve overseas during the war also really did a number on him psychologically, to the point that he wrote this odd little piece for a movie magazine from the POV of a soldier in France writing to his wife, even though Reagan himself was going home to his wife and kids every night in Culver City....

            This isn't freedom. This is fear - Captain America

            by Ellid on Tue Feb 18, 2014 at 09:01:38 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  Nat'l Airport, etc. (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Susan from 29

              Captain Video's name was engrafted onto Washington National Airport making the name RR Washington Nat'l Airport thus "National Airport" remains apt.  To me personally it is now "Howdy Doody Airport," and one that I will not go near.  On the other hand, given that it always has been among the world's most unsafe airports, exists only for the Washington elites (others are purely incidental), is periodically refurbished at ridiculous costs (and overruns) to their service, it is not unreasonable that it bear the name Reagan however offensive to the rest of us (cf., the other building in this area [with a similar history, use] bearing that name).

              The composition of this country is 50 states, btw; commonwealths, protectorates, etc., are different mythology aside just as Texas really is not a republic.  To those who'd argue, on the national flag find the stars representing the entities you proclaim.

              According to a psychologist of my acquaintance, Pinkie Blush was not unintelligent appearances notwithstanding.  Obviously like Raygun, he was disengaged, incurious, unimaginative and inconceivably trusting.  

              As for Mt. Rushmore, there probably is room for a 3x5 card which appropriately could honor either of those excrescences.

              •  I book the travel for my company (2+ / 0-)
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                Susan from 29, RiveroftheWest

                and I always refer to the airport just across the Potomac from Washington as "DCA" in my itineraries.  I also remind myself that as bad as Reagan was, he wasn't nearly as bad as the Dulles brothers, who were pretty much the dictionary definition of "monsters" in their catastrophic effect on foreign policy.

                This isn't freedom. This is fear - Captain America

                by Ellid on Tue Feb 18, 2014 at 10:56:49 AM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  Good point. For some reason I never think (2+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  Ellid, RiveroftheWest

                  about the CIA or the State Dept when I use that airport. It has always just been a name.

                  Maybe future generations will see Reagan the same way.

                  •  Think of the man who named it, long-distance (3+ / 0-)
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                    Ellid, Susan from 29, RiveroftheWest

                    Louisiana trucker Cletus McIlhenny: "It's the dulles' toll road Ah evah been on."

                  •  YOu're point about the Dulles brothers (2+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    Susan from 29, RiveroftheWest

                    is well taken.  Unfortunately for me and a great many, the horrors of their contributions weren't known.  My acquaintance with them is very recent, and at my age, change is difficult.  Still, given the bloody, racist, even genocidal monsters Reagan cheerfully supported to say nothing of those he ignored, I'm not sure (even conceding my continued relative ignorance) that I agree with your assessment.  Of course there also was his interference with the Iranian situation during that election.  In addition to his incompetence, there still was such as the slaughter on the shores of Lebanon to be factored in for the Captain.  Foreign policy aside, worse for me was his  nearly constant pandering to our own racists.

                    The man simply was disgusting.  Curiously the Dulles brothers were motivated in no small way by their strong religious beliefs which says so much about religion among other things.  His mouth aside, there is  no indication of any serious religious conviction on the part of the amiable dunce.

                •  The Washpost recently reviewed a book about them. (2+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  Susan from 29, RiveroftheWest
              •  A friend claimed that "Every contractor who worked (2+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                Susan from 29, RiveroftheWest

                on the Reagan Building went way over budget." Me: "That's such a tribute to the man and his era, it brings tears to my eyes." I used to pass the Gipper Building regularly and referred to the statue outside as "Wisdom."

                Remember that RRWGA was a WWII seaplane base, or some such, and it's crammed into a rather small space. I was surprised to hear that fares to/from Gipper Dulles are considerably more expensive; odd, since it's far from DC and not yet served by subway. One of these decades...

                I hated the ground Reagan walked on. He was the living, breathing embodiment of everything I detest: incurious, mediocre, stubborn, stupid, and a fraud. My feelings for W are even stronger, and I can't believe that Oedipal disaster was pretzelnit for 8 years.

        •  I think I have a copy of The Ohio Gang about (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          RiveroftheWest, ladybug53

          the Harding administration around here somewhere. I may have to dig it out and give it a look. You always do get me interested in the most esoteric subjects.

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