One doesn’t simply write about Lyndon Johnson. You get the Johnson treatment from beyond the grave – arm around you, nose to nose. I should admit that he also reminds me of my father, quite an overbearing and narcissistic character. And in some ways, he reminds me of myself. Another workaholic.
McGeorge Bundy was a brilliant man who’d had a meteoric academic career and was the youngest man ever to be dean of the Harvard faculty. But he was also arrogant and looked upon all sorts of people and politicians as not to be taken all that seriously.
Nowadays, everyone seems to have a blog that finds readers.
A national government using New Deal programs and the massive defense spending beginning with World War II and continuing through the Cold War was Johnson’s vehicle for expanding the Southern economy and making it, as he hoped, one of the more prosperous regions of the country.
Ronald Reagan in foreign affairs, I think, was someone who had certain, very general ideas, general propositions by which he lives: To combat communism, to build up the American military power to assure our national security against any conceivable threat.
Harry Truman wrote scathing letters, but he almost never sent them.
Clinton’s egregious act of self-indulgence was outdone by an impeachment based not on constitutionally required high crimes and misdemeanors but on a vindictive determination to bring down a president who had offended self-righteous moralists eager to put a different political agenda in place.
Political vitriol is a familiar enough characteristic of American history.
If nobody trusts you as president, then you can’t get anything done.
Access to presidential materials should be as wide as possible.
For those of us who cry out for gun control, our fears cannot be eliminated as long as the country remains an armed camp in which the most troubled among us can find ways to appropriate one of the easily available weapons in all our communities.
Historians will look back and say, ‘Foreign policy in the Ford presidency was very much dominated by Kissinger, with a kind of continuity from the Nixon period.’ Ford is not going to be remembered as a really significant foreign policy maker.
The rise of the Tea Party, along with the emergence of Christine O’Donnell in Delaware, Sharron Angle in Nevada, Carl Paladino in New York and Ron Paul in Kentucky, is not the first time in American history that voters have responded to hard economic times by supporting angry, unorthodox Senate and gubernatorial candidates.
Presidents need to be critically studied and analyzed.
During Grover Cleveland’s second term, in the 1890s, the White House deceived the public by dismissing allegations that surgeons had removed a cancerous growth from the President’s mouth; a vulcanized-rubber prosthesis disguised the absence of much of Cleveland’s upper left jaw and part of his palate.
Theodore Roosevelt had drawn public attention to his attractive family in order to create a bond with ordinary Americans. Eleanor Roosevelt had successfully broached the idea that a First Lady could be nearly as much a public figure as her husband.
At the end of their first years, there are few people who would have predicted that Truman would be elected in 1948 or that Reagan would get a second term. It’s always premature to make some kind of categorical judgment after the first year in office.
Vice President Biden’s surprising declaration of unqualified support for gay marriage seems to have forced President Obama into a public endorsement of a controversial social issue. It is difficult not to suspect that Biden’s pronouncement aimed to give the president some political cover.