Daily Archives: 02/17/2014

Obama Legend

obama tx hat(Community Matters) in my mind: first person-of-color president, Obamacare*, LGBT equality, real strides in education (thanks Arnie Duncan) & navigating us through the Great Recession (adept handoff from 43 acknowledged).

Politico Playbook:

POLITICO Magazine’s “History Dept.”: “Barack Obama’s Paragraph: 10 leading historians assess Obama’s rank in the pantheon of American presidents“: “Barack Obama knows he’s a man running out of time. Reflecting on his presidential legacy in a long interview with The New Yorker’s David Remnick, Obama said, ‘at the end of the day we’re part of a long-running story. We just try to get our paragraph right.’ For Presidents’ Day, POLITICO Magazine asked a panel of distinguished historians to take up: … How will Obama’s paragraph read? … Here’s what they told us: …

“Douglas Brinkley, Rice University: ‘The very fact that Barack Obama-an African-American-was twice elected to the presidency will always be the lead line in that hard-to-meld, gold-plated paragraph. There is no bigger Obama accomplishment than his encouraging women and minorities that they, too, can win the White House, that the traditionalist glass ceiling can be shattered with grace, dignity and unflappable integrity. He’ll receive high marks in history for appointing two women to the Supreme Court, defending gay rights, saving General Motors and extricating American troops from Iraq. …

“On the most important issue of our time-climate change-he’ll be seen as an educator more than a leader. … Obama-winner of the Nobel Peace Prize-will, ironically enough, be honored for killing Osama bin Laden and overseeing the controversial drone program. … Overall, he’ll be ranked above average, in league with James Monroe, John F. Kennedy and Bill Clinton.’

“Margaret MacMillan, Oxford: A man who promised too much … Jeremy D. Mayer, George Mason: The next Taft? … Sean Wilentz, Princeton: Everything depends on his successor: ‘Obama’s reputation, to an unusual and perhaps unprecedented degree, will depend on whom the voters choose as his successor. [*]If a Republican wins the White House in 2016, Obama’s landmark achievement of national health care will almost certainly be destroyed.’ … Robert E. Bonner, Dartmouth: A stabilizing force … Beverly Gage, Yale: A liberal standard-bearer he’s not … Jack Rakove, Stanford: The analyst in chief … James Goldgeier, American University: He ended the wars, but — … James T. Kloppenberg, Harvard: He’s no LBJ … Lizabeth Cohen, Harvard: In a word, Obamacare.” http://goo.gl/mRAkdH

Donald Trump

enhanced-buzz-wide-16007-1392342191-4(Community Matters) In BuzzFeed: 36 Hours on the Fake Campaign Trail with Donald Trump. 

notorious Republican operative Roger Stone.

a “Nixon-era trickster” who blackmailed reporters, lied constantly to everybody, and had, among other ploys, engineered an explosive feud in 2000 between Pat Buchanan and Donald Trump as part of a hazy scheme to help the GOP avoid a third-party threat. [the] consulting firm . . . . counts Trump among its clients.

The day after the 2012 election, I spoke with one of Trump’s confidantes about his political appeal to working-class men in flyover country. “If you have no education, and you work with your hands, you like him,” the confidante told me. “It’s like, ‘Wow, if I was rich, that’s how I would live!’ The girls, the cars, the fancy suits. His ostentatiousness is appealing to them.”