H/t to Gary Norton for finding Rmoney's remarks that were buried in a report from the Las Vegas Sun yesterday and posting his diary, Romney Says You Must Have Three Years of Business Experience to be President. A number of comments in that diary remarked on former U.S. Presidents who might or might not qualify for the office under Rmoney's proposal. That idea seemed worth exploring in a little more detail.
First, here is what Mitt Rmoney said, yesterday:
“In addition to the age of the president and the citizenship of the president and the birthplace of the president being set by the Constitution, I’d like it also to say that the president has to spend at least three years working in business before becoming president of the United States.”Follow me into the tall grass to consider how Mitt's "three years in business" rule might have changed American history.
Let's consider a list of former American Presidents whom some observers would consider the ten best of the 44 incumbents who have led us from where we started as a nation to where we are now. How many from a list of Top Ten Presidents do you think would qualify under Mitt Rmoney's constitution?
Would 10th place, Andrew Jackson, qualify? Remember that the test for the Presidency proposed by Rmoney is "three years working in a business". Our 7th President became an outstanding lawyer while still in his teens, a national war hero in the War of 1812 and a politician of considerable statute prior to his election as President. He never worked in a business.
Would 9th place, John F. Kennedy, qualify? JFK graduated from Harvard with a degree in international relations and soon thereafter entered the Navy while America was still at peace in 1940. After World War II, he entered politics, which remained his life until the tragic end. He never worked in a business.
Would 8th place, Dwight D. Eisenhower, qualify? He went to West Point and rose to become the mastermind of the military operation that freed Europe from the Nazis. Then he commanded NATO and later became President of Columbia University. He never worked in a business.
Would 7th place, Harry Truman, qualify? Well, after leaving the farm for Gay Paree where he became an artillery captain, Harry Truman, upon his return home and entry into the reserves, opened a haberdashery store in November, 1919. By 1922, the business had failed, after less than three years all told. At that point, with the backing of the Kansas City political machine, Truman assumed elective office and remained thus engaged until his retirement from the Presidency. Truman, with a failed business to boast about, almost qualifies under Rmoney's Rule, but doesn't meet the full three year standard.
Would 6th place, Woodrow Wilson, qualify? He earned a Ph.D. and became a political science professor, and then President of Princeton University. He never worked in a business.
Would 5th place, Theodore Roosevelt, qualify? As a young rich kid, Teddy amused himself by playing a very capable cowboy on family lands in the West. He later became a national hero of the Spanish American War and entered politics. He never worked in a business.
Would 4th place, Thomas Jefferson, qualify? He grew up and inherited the properties of a great Virginia surveyor and planter. By his late twenties he had read for law and then took office in the Virginia House of Burgesses. At 33, he was writing the Declaration of Independence and largely led a life of pubic service thereafter. He never worked in a business.
Would 3rd place, Franklin D. Roosevelt, qualify? FDR Went to Harvard and then to Columbia Law School, quickly entering and remaining in politics for the remainder of his life. He
never worked in a business.
Would 2nd place, George Washington, qualify? He grew to manhood as what passed for aristocracy in planter Virginia. He chose to develop military skills and became a surveyor to help serve his greed for land and territory. Given his times, these interests served him and the country well. But he never worked in a business.
Would 1st place, Abraham Lincoln, qualify? Lincoln was running for office in Illinois in his early twenties and ever thereafter. It was while he was already doing that that he became a lawyer, ultimately a very successful one. He floated rafts down the rivers to New Orleans a couple of times and for a while thought of himself as a river man. He did a little store keeping along the way, but he never worked in a business.
Ronald Reagan doesn't make the top ten lists of sane people. He was a disaster for America that keeps on giving. The Overton Window shift that his administrations initiated has skewed American politics to the point that it looks painted by Dali.
Oh, yeah. You know who does qualify for President under Romey's Rule? George W. Bush.
Just imagine America's political landscape if we had suffered 10 historical George W. Bushes in place of the extraordinary Presidencies of the list of ten above. I'm guessing that America would by now be about as unified as the Balkans after World War I and as peaceful as modern East Africa.
I want to know where to get whatever Rmoney is smoking that would free his mind to the point that he would air thoughtless criticism of Presidents Lincoln, Washington, Reagan, Nixon, Eisenhower, JFK, LBJ, nearly all of those would could become Rmoney's predecessors, should Americans or corrupt Justices somehow enable his election. It seems like the only kind of former American President Rmoney respects is the George W. Bush kind. That is some very scary thinking.