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Re: The Culture War

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  • Ram Lau
    ... Ike didn t like him at all but didn t do much to rid him either, pretty much consistent with his lukewarm attitude towards everything:
    Message 1 of 6 , Nov 11, 2005
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      > I think Eisenhower was the last Republican not to
      > demonize.. well there was McCarthy.. Anybody know
      > where Ike came down on McCarthy?

      Ike didn't like him at all but didn't do much to rid him either,
      pretty much consistent with his lukewarm attitude towards everything:

      http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/amex/presidents/34_eisenhower/eisenhower_politics.html

      "Eisenhower defended his refusal to denounce McCarthy publicly,
      claiming that to do so would only further polarize the nation and
      reward McCarthy with additional publicity. To his aides, Eisenhower
      vowed, 'I will not get into the gutter with this guy.' By the end of
      1953, polls indicated that at least half of all Americans had a
      favorable impression of McCarthy and his tactics. Emboldened by such
      support, McCarthy set out to widen the scope of his investigations.
      This time, however, he would go too far."

      Ram
    • THOMAS JOHNSON
      Thanks, Ram. More questions, if I may. Did Hoover, Coolidge or Harding need to frame their presidencies with enemies? I think it would be safe to say that
      Message 2 of 6 , Nov 11, 2005
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        Thanks, Ram. More questions, if I may. Did Hoover,
        Coolidge or Harding need to frame their presidencies
        with enemies? I think it would be safe to say that
        Wilson did with communism, but how about LBJ? How
        about FDR, Truman, Carter and Clinton? Just ignore
        this if I'm out of line with too many questions.

        Tom



        --- Ram Lau <ramlau@...> wrote:

        > > I think Eisenhower was the last Republican not to
        > > demonize.. well there was McCarthy.. Anybody know
        > > where Ike came down on McCarthy?
        >
        > Ike didn't like him at all but didn't do much to rid
        > him either,
        > pretty much consistent with his lukewarm attitude
        > towards everything:
        >
        >
        http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/amex/presidents/34_eisenhower/eisenhower_politics.html
        >
        > "Eisenhower defended his refusal to denounce
        > McCarthy publicly,
        > claiming that to do so would only further polarize
        > the nation and
        > reward McCarthy with additional publicity. To his
        > aides, Eisenhower
        > vowed, 'I will not get into the gutter with this
        > guy.' By the end of
        > 1953, polls indicated that at least half of all
        > Americans had a
        > favorable impression of McCarthy and his tactics.
        > Emboldened by such
        > support, McCarthy set out to widen the scope of his
        > investigations.
        > This time, however, he would go too far."
        >
        > Ram
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >
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      • Ram Lau
        ... Tom, Enemies as in wars, definitely. Don t forget that LBJ had to start a war on poverty on top of Vietnam. It s a matter of legacy. There seems to be a
        Message 3 of 6 , Nov 11, 2005
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          > Thanks, Ram. More questions, if I may. Did Hoover,
          > Coolidge or Harding need to frame their presidencies
          > with enemies? I think it would be safe to say that
          > Wilson did with communism, but how about LBJ? How
          > about FDR, Truman, Carter and Clinton?

          Tom,

          Enemies as in "wars," definitely. Don't forget that LBJ had to start a
          war on poverty on top of Vietnam. It's a matter of legacy.

          There seems to be a theme in each presidency, with some being more
          obvious and intentional than the others. Coolidge is definitely best
          known as the laissez faire Sir Sleep-A-Lot (with a 2-4 hour nap every
          afternoon); Hoover, the fishing geek who had the most tragic
          presidency in history (as seen in Carter's to a lesser extent);
          Truman, the partisan yet veracious straight shooter (half a century
          before McCain); Carter, the Plains guy who can't tell a lie; Clinton,
          the slick Rhodes scholar political genius and the first "Black
          President" beloved by the majority of the country even during his
          impeachment days.

          So the "enemies" depend much on the current events. The Cold War
          presidents all had an enemy by default. During the sixties, it
          definitely got "heated up" with Khrushchev and Mao. (LBJ was literally
          forced to go all out with Vietnam thanks to his insecurity about
          looking soft on Communism. I really think JFK would have handled the
          situation differently.) Having said all that, it was Reagan the actor
          who stole all credit for ending the Cold War that took decades of
          effort of all the Presidents since Ike anyway. Reagan made the
          baby-boomers "feel good about being themselves again" but future
          generations will eventually judge him with much more serious scrutiny.

          Didn't mean to single out Harding. But my guess is that Harding would
          have been a Grant redux had he lived longer. (The current President
          took it to another level.) Finally, note that Nixon doesn't belong to
          this group.

          Ram
        • THOMAS JOHNSON
          Ram.. Thank you, as always, for answering my questions. I just read this in a short bio on Grant: Grant learned that he was dying of throat cancer. He wrote
          Message 4 of 6 , Nov 14, 2005
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            Ram.. Thank you, as always, for answering my
            questions. I just read this in a short bio on Grant:

            Grant learned that he was dying of throat cancer. He
            wrote his autobiography so that his family would not
            be penniless. Mark Twains helped get the book
            published. It was a success and brought the Grant
            family over half a million dollars.

            We had a discussion some time back about Twain's
            involvement in Grant's book. It would appear Twain was
            at least in the periphery, although far from clear
            whether he ghosted, as HST opined.

            Tom



            --- Ram Lau <ramlau@...> wrote:

            > > Thanks, Ram. More questions, if I may. Did Hoover,
            > > Coolidge or Harding need to frame their
            > presidencies
            > > with enemies? I think it would be safe to say
            > that
            > > Wilson did with communism, but how about LBJ? How
            > > about FDR, Truman, Carter and Clinton?
            >
            > Tom,
            >
            > Enemies as in "wars," definitely. Don't forget that
            > LBJ had to start a
            > war on poverty on top of Vietnam. It's a matter of
            > legacy.
            >
            > There seems to be a theme in each presidency, with
            > some being more
            > obvious and intentional than the others. Coolidge is
            > definitely best
            > known as the laissez faire Sir Sleep-A-Lot (with a
            > 2-4 hour nap every
            > afternoon); Hoover, the fishing geek who had the
            > most tragic
            > presidency in history (as seen in Carter's to a
            > lesser extent);
            > Truman, the partisan yet veracious straight shooter
            > (half a century
            > before McCain); Carter, the Plains guy who can't
            > tell a lie; Clinton,
            > the slick Rhodes scholar political genius and the
            > first "Black
            > President" beloved by the majority of the country
            > even during his
            > impeachment days.
            >
            > So the "enemies" depend much on the current events.
            > The Cold War
            > presidents all had an enemy by default. During the
            > sixties, it
            > definitely got "heated up" with Khrushchev and Mao.
            > (LBJ was literally
            > forced to go all out with Vietnam thanks to his
            > insecurity about
            > looking soft on Communism. I really think JFK would
            > have handled the
            > situation differently.) Having said all that, it was
            > Reagan the actor
            > who stole all credit for ending the Cold War that
            > took decades of
            > effort of all the Presidents since Ike anyway.
            > Reagan made the
            > baby-boomers "feel good about being themselves
            > again" but future
            > generations will eventually judge him with much more
            > serious scrutiny.
            >
            > Didn't mean to single out Harding. But my guess is
            > that Harding would
            > have been a Grant redux had he lived longer. (The
            > current President
            > took it to another level.) Finally, note that Nixon
            > doesn't belong to
            > this group.
            >
            > Ram
            >
            >
            >
            >
            >
            >
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            > Get fast access to your favorite Yahoo! Groups. Make
            > Yahoo! your home page
            >
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            >
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