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Battle of the x-Presidents: Which Legacy Will Survive? May 12, 2009

0107presidents As I look at the photograph to the left of these words, I wonder which of these men do I respect more. Jimmy Carter represented a beacon of hope and change for my mother. He was a major disappointment, one term stand president.

Ah, Bill….The great centrist.  loved you but you broke my heart (giving him Fredo kiss).

This is embarrassing but I cannot remember much about Bush 1.0. The Berlin Wall fell  during his presidency. There was the Gulf War. I think he hated broccoli and said “Read my lips..”    I saw him as an extension of Ronald Reagan and so did many others and he was not a great leader.  1992 was the last year I would enthusiastically vote for any presidential candidate.

Bush 2.0 was my governor and Obama was at one point my senator. I thought they were both mediocre at those jobs so why vote for them to be my president.

I lost each time.

Each of these men will be remembered no matter how good or bad they were  at their jobs. They will each have their own presidential library. Dissertations will be written about them. But some will have more to lose than others.

Today the Wall Street Journal ran this interesting opinion piece on the Obama administration and Bush 2.0 bashing. It would seem then that Bush’s legacy is Texas toast but according to the WSJ  article, Bush may be in less danger of legacy trauma than Bill Clinton.

MAY 12, 2009
Obama and the Clinton Legacy
Governors understand the tangible benefits of trade.

Inside the Fourth Estate, the received wisdom holds that the White House is now home to the anti-Bush. And on issues from taxes and stem cells to union elections and Guantanamo, Barack Obama is indeed taking America in a direction different from that of his predecessor.

Still, there’s a persuasive case that the legacy most threatened by the Obama presidency belongs to the last Democrat who sat in the Oval Office: Bill Clinton.

Think about it. It was Mr. Clinton who campaigned on the promise to “end welfare as we know it.” It was Mr. Clinton who signed the bill removing the Glass-Steagall barriers separating commercial from investment banking. Most famously, it was Mr. Clinton who assured us that “the era of Big Government is over.”

Today all the assumptions that once defined Bill Clinton’s “New Democrats” are being contested by the Obama White House. And nowhere is the contrast more stark than on the defining issue of trade.

Is anyone surprised? I am most certainly not. When Obama was elected I immediately knew that it was Clinton’s legacy he was after. he attacked Hillary more viciously during the 2008 Democratic primary than his general election opponent John McCain. Obama is no friend of the Clinton’s and If I were Bill, I would never have shook hands with the devil. You might just get burned. Besides, it is enough that I have to figure out who our first black president is.

Who is the first black president? Barry or Bill?

Who is the first black president? Barry or Bill?


6 Responses to “Battle of the x-Presidents: Which Legacy Will Survive?”

  1. SimoFish Says:

    The Berlin Wall came down under Reagan.

    I still like Bill – even though he broke my heart as well.

    • afrocity Says:

      Bush 1.0 was president when the Berlin Wall fell. It was my graduate thesis so I am pretty sure of that.

  2. Valorie Says:

    I’m pretty sure the wall actually came down after Bush 41 was in because it was 1989. But all the work up to that point was definitely done by Reagan.

    I’m sure they are all fairly nice guys but I think they all did whatever the polls told them was the most popular thing to do. Not alot of true leadership qualities here, IMO.

  3. manbearpig68 Says:

    He is after the Clinton legacy but he doesn’t stand a chance. Obama will come up short on most issues and is going to end up like Carter. I still think Hillary should have said No to her position but I’m not sure what direction the Clinton’s are thinking about. Carter is much better fitted to building houses for people than he ever was for president and I would bet that we will find Obama a much better BSing community organizer post 2012.

  4. ghostofsparta Says:

    Bush the elder was Pres when the wall came tumbling down.

    And the first black president was actually James Garfield [citation neeeded].

  5. boldandbald Says:

    As I look at that picture the thought that goes through my mind is “Is this the best our country has had to offer? How sad.”

    I think that Bush 2.0 needs to be credited with keeping us safe for the last 7+ years, but on the whole he was a very mediocre President. Clinton did sign some good legislation, but most of it was given to him by the Republican Legislature. Bush 1.0 was pretty much a ‘do nothing’ President. And Carter is right up there on the list of worst ever President’s. As for Obama, it is too early to say what his Presidential legacy will be, but the direction he is going is not good at all.

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