With the current controversy about the Middle name of Barack Hussein Obama, perhaps it is time for a look at the lessons of history.
George Washington did not have a middle name. Nor the rest of the early Presidents. The first one to have a middle name (or initial) is John Quincy Adams. J.Q. Adams is the first son of a president to hold the office. Many current observers wish he were still the only one.
The first POTUS to show middle initial was William Henry Harrison. He was the first victim of the Zero Factor, in which Presidents elected in years ending in zero died in office. This tradition was ended by Ronald Reagan.
Abraham Lincoln did not have a middle name. Ulysses S. Grant was born Hiram Ulysses Grant, and I don’t know what the S. stood for.
Moving into the twentieth century, William Howard Taft was referred to by all three names.
In many ways, Franklin Delano Roosevelt was the first president of the modern age. As far as the middle name business is concerned, this is the truth. For some reason, his middle name was frequently used, and the initials FDR became popular. Again, this is apparently a first, although presidential initials did not become popular again until JFK and LBJ.
And, in case you are asking, Herbert Hoover’s middle name was Clark. Perhaps that was the reason for the depression.
After FDR went to the fireside chat in the sky, Harry S. Truman became president. The S. stood for nothing.
The next president whose middle name was frequently used was John Fitzgerald Kennedy. Could this be a subtle dig at his Irish background, much as the current noise about B. Hussein Obama?
As for Baines and Milhous, those both seemed to fit the personality of the man in the oval office.
After Tricky Dick was helicopered out of the White House, the use of Presidential middle names went into decline. Gerald Rudolph Ford would be a good trivia question. George H.W. Bush downplayed his quadruple initials, perhaps knowing that many people don’t trust a man with two middle names. George W. Bush is frequently referred to by his middle initial. Some even refer to the current “War on Terror” as “World War W”.
In the current election, we have a dark skinned man with a Muslim middle name. We have a white haired republican with the middle name of Sidney. And we have a married woman, who uses her maiden name as a middle name. Her original middle name is Diane.
Thanks to Wikipedia for help in researching this feature.
When I first heard about liberals and conservatives, it was about civil rights. The short version is that liberals wanted black people to have the basic rights of Americans, and conservatives did not. I suspect that nothing has really changed. All the happy talk about smaller government is just that…nonsense. If someone really wants a small government, then they don’t want to send a six digit army to battle eight time zones away.
The truth is, I never saw “The Firing Line” or read more than a few paragraphs of Mr. Buckley’s writing. Not that it mattered…he was famous for being famous. If he didn’t exist someone would have created him…the erudite blueblood with the vocabulary on steroids. Comedians should be grateful for such an easily figure of parody.
I met Mr. Buckley, briefly. I was walking home after taking an accounting test. Mr. Buckley was speaking at the UGA coliseum, and I found a poster advertising the event. Mr. Buckley was standing backstage, and I got him to autograph the poster. His signature was very neat, and about an inch and a half long. Of the celebrity autographs I have gotten, his was the smallest.
The lecture started soon. Mr. Buckley started with a story about a lady, who after much verbal contorting, was found to have gonorrhea. He said it in a very academically amusing way.
Meanwhile, I had just taken an accounting test. I went home and got drunk.
Something Something happened at a John McCain rally Tuesday. Radio “Personality” Bill Cunningham spoke before Senator McCain. “Willie” said some unkind things about Senator Barack Obama. After the rally, Senator McCain repudiated the comments by Mr. Cunningham.
To begin with, let me voice my suspicion. This may have been a strategic move by Senator McCain. If he hadn’t made comments about the comments, the original comments would have been ignored. As it is, these rude charges against Senator Obama are reprinted verbatim in hundreds of newspapers. Not only did he get attention paid to this dirt; he can appear to be taking the high road about wanting to have a clean campaign.
Or, it could be that he is sincere. The desire to have a clean campaign, and be able to work together after the election for the common good. If he were sincere, this would speak very well for Senator McCain.
Then there is the “Conservative” reaction to all this. Rightwingnews opines:
“Incidents like this one are exactly why so many conservatives loathe John McCain: the man is reflexively hostile to conservatives who support him while he bends over backwards to cater to liberals who think he’s two steps away from being Hitler merely because he’s a Republican.”
And over the top rhetoric like that are exactly why so many people are tired of conservatives.
I consider myself an independent moderate, who is tired of labels and pigeonholing. I have no time for the tit for tat, two- wrongs-make-a-right rhetoric spewing out of wingnut world.
Now, I have plenty of Issues with Senator McCain, as well as Senator Clinton and Senator Obama. (Is this the redo of Mod Squad?). I suspect that all three are clueless as to how to deal with the war in Babylon, as well as repairing the rest of the damage done by the reign of W. However, a call for clean campaigning does look mighty good for Senator McCain. Maybe he could find Reagan’s hairdresser and dye his hair premature orange.
Spell check suggestions for this feature:
McCain- Micatin, moccasin, MCA, MCI
This This item was in kikoshouse today:
Barack Obama wants to ban the use of cluster bombs while Hillary Clinton and John McCain don’t.
What makes the use of these submunitions, which are miniature bombs nested inside a mother bomb, so insidious is that they drop beneath tissue parachutes and are magnets for unsuspecting Iraqi children.
Some 82 countries have signed the Wellington Declaration to ban cluster bombs, but don’t expect the U.S. to join them anytime soon.
Cluster Bombsare air-dropped or ground-launched munitions that eject a number of smaller submunitions (“bomblets”).When they are dropped on enemy territory, many of the bomblets fail to explode, and form a land mine like hazard. They are often dropped with tissue like parachutes. They have been called “Lethal Pinatas“.
They are often a bright yellow. This is similar to food packages, and can confuse someone who does not speak english.
They remain on the ground, waiting to explode, when civilian populations return home after the war. According to Handicap International:
Ninety-eight percent of cluster submunitions casualties are civilians killed and injured while returning home in the aftermath of conflict or while going about their daily tasks to survive.
2-Violence against civilians to achieve military or political objectives.
Does dropping bomblets on a civilian area qualify as terrorism?
In bicycle races, the winner does not race in front of the pack. The team will send a racer to lead the way, while the rest of the team rides around the lead racer for much of the race. (I don’t know the technical terms for this. In fact, I don’t know much at all about the strategy of bike races). At an appropriate time, the lead racer will break out of the pack, and sprint for the finish line, hopefully in front of the lead racer from the other teams.
I suspect this is what is going on with Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama. Does anyone really want that woman (to use her hubby’s tactful phrase) in the oval office? Slick Willie enjoyed the company of another “that woman” in the oval office.
As I see it, the role of Hillary is like the front runner in a bike race. She is the flack catcher, taking the heat from the right wing loudmouths. Meanwhile, Mr. O is charming the country with his personality, and moving into position to make his charge to the finish line.
Now that Mr. O is in the lead, the nutcase accusers are coming forward. Larry Sinclair has already shown deception in a polygraph. Does anyone think an ambitious State Senator would fool around with him?