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51  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: Opinion of John F. Kennedy on: March 08, 2014, 11:50:32 pm
I am not a fan. He allowed his economics to be far too highly influenced by Galbraith's The Affluent Society. Misdirected by Galbraith's views that budget surpluses were dangerous he led the nation into the first peacetime, non-recession deficit and to over $100 billion in debts. The loose currency and low interest rates, coupled with a massive tax cut and military build-up, led to a massive expansion of the public/private sector. Just like under Reagan this makes people think it was a time of great prosperity. GDP did grow but so did debt. I think JFK would be a Republican today. Like Republicans, he brought about economic growth through unpaid tax cuts, military spending, loose currency, low interest rates and ballooning debts! Why do Democrats want to claim this guy again? Is it the hair?

Above all I find his brother Robert to be more distasteful than Jack. RFK's war on steel magnates setting their own prices is one of the more disturbing moments in the history of civil and economic liberty. To force the lowering of the price of steel RFK sent IRS goons after steel industry officials. He used audits as weapons and used mafia like blackmail tactics to get the administration's way. These are things the Democrats, rightfully, tried to impeach Nixon over. Yet, the Patron Saint of the Old Dimmycratic Party Robert Francis Kennedy did them all the time and he is usually praised for it. Why do Democrats want to claim this guy again? Is it the hair?

In terms of foreign affairs I find Kennedy to be a mixed bag. I do firmly believe that JFK wanted out of Indochina. Henry Cabot Lodge obviously wanted more soldiers there and the assassination of the Diem brothers does not reflect well on him, however, JFK did tell Cronkite in 1963 that the "boys" in South Vietnam were expected to win their own war. Make of that as you will. Kennedy's infatuation with Castro is another issue all together. Operation Northwoods and the Bay of Pigs aimed to create war with Cuba which was hardly a wise policy. Furthermore, Kennedy continued the illegal "hidden hand diplomacy" of Eisenhower. Coups in Iraq, Guatemala and the Dominican Republic all were covered in the bloody hands of the CIA. Yes JFK made the Peace Corp and it built some flush toilets in Uganda. He also allowed for the government of Iraq to be overthrown. I think the goings on in Baghdad got his attention more than the toilets.   
52  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: Opinion of Alton Parker on: March 08, 2014, 11:27:38 pm
Judge Parker would have made a fantastic president. He was far superior to the egomaniac cowboy who was selected in the contest of 1904.   
53  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: Opinion of Dwight D. Eisenhower on: March 08, 2014, 06:41:11 pm
Eisenhower is a mixed bag but in the end I must comment that I do not really like Ike.

He and the Dulles brothers played far too fast and loose with human freedom and civil liberties. While it can be argued by Cold Warriors that Iran and Guatemala were "necessary" in terms of cold war realpolitik it must also be said that most of the time realpolitik is pretty darn awful. Eisenhower's government refused to help Nassar in Egypt with the building of the Aswan Dam and in so doing isolated that government. The isolation led Nassar to embrace Soviet style collectivism and this led to embarrassingly unnecessary Suez Crisis. Nassar's insistence on defending his borders from Israeli raids is why the US did not offer support and led Nassar into the arms of the Soviets. Poorly played by Ike in a sand trap. 

In terms of economics Eisenhower did very little any better. Under his government the average tax rate was  92% for top income owners. During the 1958 recession Ike and Treasury Secretary Robert Anderson actually demanded that the tax rate be increased. It was in 1958 when Detroit experienced 20% unemployment and the American trade deficit ballooned to modern levels. Seeing how Anderson's policies were in part to blame for negative job growth from 1958-1960 Ike obviously supported Anderson for president.

It is to be applauded that Eisenhower ended the illegal Korean War and cut military spending by 27%. However, it is to be debated how much he did to curtail the military-industrial complex he warned against. While it is to be applauded that he warned against the creature it is not to his credit that very little was done about them. If I warn a man what a bus is coming but do not move him out of the way of it can I be applauded for warning him? I guess that's for history to decide.   
54  General Discussion / History / Re: Rooney's Presidential Election Rankings on: March 08, 2014, 06:20:31 pm
#52: The Election of 1808

The election of 1808 winds up at the number fifty-two on the list. This marked the last campaign of Jefferson’s America and the old First Party System. The Federalist Party was given a major shot in the arm by Thomas Jefferson’s unpopular Embargo Act. Throughout his presidency Jefferson had made it a habit to ignore his classical liberal roots. The Louisiana Purchase, the Lewis and Clark Expedition and the First Barbary War were all highly unconstitutional. However, they all pale in comparison to the Embargo Acts. Known as the Damnbargo in Federalist New England, the embargo betrayed all of Jefferson’s work in his first term to encourage free trade and instead forced recession and trade war onto the United States. The arrests of innocent merchants trying to make a living only reminded Americans of the Federalist regime of John Adams and his arrest of innocent printers. The Federalist Party, which was on the ropes in 1804, was given a boost by the unpopular new law.

The fact that the Federalists had an unpopular law in their favor is one of the reason why the election of 1808 places at fifty-two on the list. The Federalists, in theory, could have made a triumphant return to the White House on the back of Jefferson’s economic fumble. However, this was not to be the case because the Federalists were old hat by 1808. The candidate they produced was a nationally famous also-ran. Former American Ambassador to France Charles Cotesworth Pinckney (of XYZ Scandal fame back in the year 1798!) was informally selected as the Federalist Party presidential nominee and former New York Senator Rufus King was selected as his running-mate for the second time in a row. The same uninspired ticket from 1804 was hardly enough to energize Federalist candidates for state assembly in New York or state voters in Pennsylvania. The party of Hamilton was a as dead as its founder.

1808, however, was not a completely anti-climactic contest. The 1808 Democratic-Republican Caucus was a bitter affair that would spill over into the general election and the electoral vote canvass in December 1808. Secretary of State James Madison, Jefferson’s long-time protégé and acolyte, was the front-runner for the party’s presidential nod but faced opposition from sitting Vice-President George Clinton and popular former Virginia Governor James Monroe. The aging Clinton, who secretly yearned for retirement, was put forward as the candidate in opposition to the “Virginia Dynasty.” Clinton did not actively seek the nomination and would not be given it. Monroe actively wrote letters to congressmen stating his interest in the presidential nomination but this small time campaigning also proved to be useless. Madison had spent the better part of a year convincing Republicans in Congress that he was the choice of Jefferson, who was still the idle of the Democratic-Republican brass. The final tally for the presidential nod at the caucus was hardly close: Madison 83, Monroe 3, Clinton 3.

On the day in December when the electoral votes were cast Madison won an easy victory over his hapless Federalist challengers. Pinckney’s ability to win almost all of New England, Delaware and three electors from North Carolina are a testament to an election battle that might have been. Had Chief Justice John Marshall tossed his hat into the presidential ring perhaps a stronger race would have happened in 1808? It is to be noted also that there were some divisions in the Democratic-Republican fold. George Clinton attained 6 electoral votes from his native New York while Monroe won over 4,000 popular votes from his native Virginia. While these defections did not manage to make a difference in the overall election these defections are to be noted as factors that may have caused trouble to Jefferson’s party had the Federalist Party had a stronger ticket.

In the end the reason why the election of 1808 is ranked at number fifty-two is because it fell at the end of the First Party system. The Damnbargo and the anger from New England gave it some drama as did the opposition to Madison at the convention but in the end it had to fall in the bottom part of the list. The election offered much promise but in the end delivered very little action.     
55  General Discussion / History / Re: Rooney's Presidential Election Rankings on: March 08, 2014, 06:17:08 pm
#53: The Election of 1792

George Washington’s triumphant reelection in 1792 is ranked as #53 because it was a great deal of humdrum with only one major moment of dramatic suspense. This in itself is a disappointment because the emergence of the First Party System in the United States promised far better than what the people were given.

Haunted and depressed by divisions in his government, President George Washington had intended to refuse to seek reelection. The emergence of Hamilton’s Federalists and Jefferson’s Republicans had caused Washington much torment. While he leaned strongly toward Hamilton and the Federalists, the general hoped that the emergence of factions could be nipped in the bud. This was not to be and Washington’s own strong support for the National Bank, tariffs, whiskey taxes, debt consolidation and other Hamiltonian centralization plans did little to heal the divisions.

The race for president in 1792 was never in doubt. Washington’s popularity was no longer at its height as it was in 1789, but he was still the hero of the Revolution. His reelection was never in doubt. The reason why 1792 could have been a great race lies in the vice-presidential contest. With Washington assured one vote from every elector the second electoral vote was the one to fight over. Vice-President John Adams assumed that he would be the easy choice for vice-president. In a system with no parties this very well would have been the case. However, anti-Hamiltonians put forward three opposition candidates to the stout vice-president. Governor George Clinton of New York was the principal anti-Hamiltonian vice-presidential candidate but five votes were given to Thomas Jefferson and Senator Aaron Burr. Anti-Federalists vice-presidential candidates managed to win 55 electoral votes to Adam’s 70. Upon reading the results Adams later commented to his wife Abigail, “Damn them, damn them, damn them.” The race for vice-president was far closer than the crotchety Adams had expected or wanted.

The vice-presidential contest is a testament to the fact that there was obvious resistance to the Washington-Hamilton system. The fact that George Clinton, with no campaigning or even a letter stating he would accept electoral votes, managed to win 50 electoral votes shows that the Federalist system was propped up strongly on the shoulders of Washington Rex. Washington chose to run for reelection in 1792 out of fear that a partisan campaign for the top office would weaken the new republic and toss the system into civil war. It is in the opinion of this writer that Washington truly feared that the Federalist system that Hamilton had built would collapse if he was not there to be the face on the billboard of the unpopular programs. The general and the president was to be proven correct when Adams became president.

1792 is an election that could have been a great one but in the end was tame and calm. That is to be expected when George Washington was a candidate but that does nothing to further its place in campaign history or, more importantly for me, the ratings.
56  General Discussion / History / Re: Rooney's Presidential Election Rankings on: March 08, 2014, 04:22:58 pm
I will get two updates in tonight. Thank you for your patience. I teach special education and have had a huge amount of IEP paperwork for the start of the month. You guys are awesome for waiting.
57  General Discussion / History / Re: Rooney's Presidential Election Rankings on: March 07, 2014, 12:30:04 am
#54: The Election of 1996

“The era of big government is over,” President Bill Clinton declared in his 1995 State of the Union Address. With the help of known troll Dick Morris he was able to trick the nation into actually thinking what he said was true. Yes, Clinton is one of the master politicians of our time and that is the reason why the 1996 election- his triumphant reelection- ranks as #54 on the list.

The election of 1996 could have been the Waterloo for Clinton and his curious Little Rock Crew. His wife had been temporarily silenced by her health care beat down, Clinton had fumbled Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell and the Republicans were in a post-Poppy Bush resurgence. A strong Republican presidential nominee running on eloquent conservative, free market principles could very well have evicted Bubba and his buds from the Oval Office. It was the Grand Old Party’s golden opportunity to settle the score with their most successful and hated rival. They gave the world Bob Dole.

The main reason why 1996 falls into the #54 spot is that the election was not very exciting. There were no great moments of drama, no epic arguments and no real discussion of contentious issues. Dole and Clinton agreed on many core issues: national defense, education, gay rights and welfare reform. Dole, when not talking about himself in the third person or stage diving, muttered about a 15% tax cut but never explained how he would get this tax cut done, how he would pay for it or how this loss of revenue would affect his pledge to balance the budget. In the 53rd quadrennial contest Dole more or less proved that he was a relic of the 1960s. He referenced the Brooklyn Dodgers as a baseball team and appeared sleepy at the debates. Clinton rarely fell below 50% in the public opinion polls and led Dole in different tracking polls by margins ranging from nine to fifteen points. At no point was the election’s results in doubt and Bob Dole did little to fight back.

Massive landslide reelection victories do not naturally deem an election boring. In 1972 and 1964, for example, upstart senators were able to manipulate party rules in order to surpass establishment candidates. Even though their nominations led to the incumbent winning by a wide margin the election is still thrilling because one was able to witness the meteoric rise and noble decline of the upstart underdog. In 1996, Pat Buchanan was the underdog who had managed to beat Dole in the New Hampshire Primary. Beaten in New Hampshire in all three of his quests for the presidency, Dole commented that he realized how the Granite State got its name: “It’s tough to crack.” Buchanan, like Ron Paul in 2012, attempted to use the machinations of party to attain the nomination but was stopped time and time again by establishment party attorneys and bigwigs. A Pat Buchanan vs. Bill Clinton race would have showcased real differences between candidates and made the election of 1996 a memorable race. Buchanan would have won 39% of the popular vote and 60 electoral votes but the race would have been a real difference. It would have offered the American people a choice, not an echo.

H. Ross Perot was not even able to add flavor to the campaign’s stoic soup. His Reform Party was plagued by intraparty rivalries and laws which set up obstacles for third parties. Perot was unable to attend the debates because the League of Women Voters had had their power over the debates snatched from them by the cold, iron grasp of a major party amalgamation known as the Commission on Presidential Debates. Despite lawsuits, the CPD set the bar so high that Perot was not allowed to talk straight to the American people as he had in 1992. Plagued by ill health and a party that was not totally united behind the Lilliputian leader, Perot was a nonentity in the 1996 race.

In the end the main reason why 1996 is ranked as #54 on the list is because it offered no surprises and took no chances. The establishment Republican ran a lackluster campaign against a popular incumbent. The economy was decent and the nation was not embroiled in any unpopular wars so the incumbent won by a large margin. It was a “nice” little election. Yawn.      
58  General Discussion / History / Re: Rooney's Presidential Election Rankings on: March 06, 2014, 02:50:26 pm
#55: The Election of 1816

1816 ends up at the number fifty-five spot for more or less the same reason that 1820 and 1804 are ranked low: it was a one-party show. James Monroe’s first election to the presidency boasted more struggle than the previous two elections, no doubt. However, the struggle was primarily in the Democratic-Republican caucus. This makes for one important episode but when compared to elections to come this one blip of excitement does not even register on the scales.

The end of the Madison Administration ushered in a civil, silent election. The War of 1812 was over without victory, the Second Bank of the United States was in full swing and the nation was slowly recovering from the economic disaster of the war. One would think that in such an environment a strong Federalist challenge may well have arisen against Little Jemmie’s government. The great trouble was that the Federalist’s opposition to “Mr. Madison’s War” and the meeting of secessionist High Federalists at the Hartford Convention had made the party as dead as their founder, Hamilton. Federalism was no longer even relevant in Massachusetts or Connecticut. “Our two great parties have crossed over the valley and have taken possession of each other’s mountain,” former Federalist President John Adams wrote. Yes, the Federalists were no longer a legitimate threat to anyone, not even to themselves.

The great drama of the campaign was the Democratic-Republican Congressional Caucus. This could very well have been an incredible battle of egos. Potential candidates for the Democratic-Republican nomination included Monroe, Secretary of War William H. Crawford, House Speaker Henry Clay, New York Governor Daniel D. Tompkins and former Senator and the Hero of New Orleans Andrew Jackson. Clay, Jackson and Tompkins bowed to the inevitable. While New York Republicans grumbled about the “Virginia Dynasty” all they could do was grumble. Crawford ran a spirited race in which he questioned Monroe intelligence and vision, but the well-liked Monroe was always the front-runner. The Congressional Caucus of March 1816 was close but the Monroe was the winner by a decently wide margin. The overwhelming selection of Tompkins for vice-president concluded what could have been a wild, crazy caucus.

The Federalists failed to even nominate a candidate for the general contest. Senator Rufus King was nominally selected as the candidate but he knew from the very beginning that he was a sure loser. Long before the electoral votes were counted in December 1816 King had commented: “Federalists of our age must be content with the past.” It is to be applauded that Senator King realized the fight was lost but that does not add to the joy of the campaign.

The contentious fight for the Democratic-Republican Party nod proved to be quite anti-climactic. So too did Senator King’s pathetic candidacy. Monroe, the only man to serve as both secretary of state and secretary of war at the same time, coaxed to victory without writing and letter of issuing a statement. The main reason why this election is ranked low is because it was yet another one party romp. The one party romp may well have been interesting had more legitimate candidates jockeyed for the Republican presidential nod but that did not occur. While there was a controversy over whether or not Indiana’s electoral votes would count the issue was worked out quickly and with no issue. Additionally, it is not as if the 3 electoral votes from the Hoosier States mattered for the final outcome.

I believe that the former Federalist newspaper the Boston Daily Advertiser put the election of 1816 the best: “We do not know, nor is it very material, for whom the Federalist electors will vote.” John Randolph of Virginia further commented that amongst the people there was a, ‘Unanimity of indifference if not approbation.”        
59  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: The Deluge of Absurdity, Ignorance, and Bad Posts III on: March 06, 2014, 01:57:05 pm
It's a good post because it uses the delightful phrase 'Mad Haberdasher of Independence' and because aside from the welfare state stuff the things for which it criticizes Truman are very much legitimate criticisms, yes. It's a bad post because it uses the laughable phrase 'Mad Haberdasher of Independence', because of the welfare state stuff, and because the entire thrust of the argument is the, as you said, bizarre assertion that Truman's presidency was somehow the worst of all time or without significant redeeming qualities.
My post is a legitimate opinion backed up by reason and fact. You may disagree with it, Nathan, for that is your right. However, it does not belong here. The moderator should rename this thread "The Deluge of Posts that Red Avatars do not Approve Of." This whole thread is utterly disgusting and is a testament to close minded, anti-intellectual thought.
60  General Discussion / History / Re: Rooney's Presidential Election Rankings on: March 06, 2014, 01:31:56 pm
It may have been pointless, but it was the first election under the new rules.
The rule change made absolutely no difference in the outcome of the election. While the addition of the 12th Amendment made a difference in other races it is not really all that consequential to the election of 1804. Thus, 1804 ranks as #56 on the list. 
61  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: Opinion of Harry S. Truman on: March 05, 2014, 11:01:17 pm
The Mad Haberdasher of Independence is the worst president in American history. He violated the U.S. Constitution on a daily basis, gave birth to the millitary-industrial complex, wished to force socialist medicine of the United States, used nuclear weapons for poor reasons and, above all, invented the police action which has been abused by power hungry presidents time and time again. He is worse than Wilson, FDR, Clinton and Reagan. Harry S Truman is the worse president in American history.

First we should examine how he harmed the nation in terms of foreign affairs. The dropping of the atomic bomb on civilians in Japan was inhuman, especially considering that the Japanese had sued for peace earlier on in 1944 an 1945. The atomic bomb that fell on Nagasaki on August 9, 1945 detonated in Urakami only 500 meters from the cathedral, completely destroying it. The mass of the Assumption of Mary (August 15) was approaching, thus the mass held on that day and was well attended. Due to heat wave and collapsed stones all were killed. The atomic bombing was inhuman and unjustified.

The Korean War gave birth to the undeclared war- "The Police Action." Truman's overzealous responses to the Soviet Union led to the unnecessary Cold War and the birth of the CIA police state. George F. Kennan, his National Security Adviser, gave birth to the idea of perpetual wars of "containment" that led to Vietnam, Nicaragua and Haiti throughout the Col War.

Additionally, Truman's modern military budgets during the the illegal Korean War helped give birth to the military-industrial complex. His recognition of the state of Israel has tied American interests to the Middle East and the countless, complex issues which affect that powder keg. Thus, Harry Truman's administration gave birth to the idea of undeclared "wars" and the American Middle Eastern policy that had killed so many and all sides.

Furthermore, Truman's outrageous corruption in his administration certainly hurt society. The IRS frauds and "mink coat bribery" were straight out of Boss Pendergast's Kansas City, however, they were being done in the White House, not a flop house. Truman was disgustingly corrupt. Also, his deranged economic theories in the form of the "Fair Deal" paved the way for the wasteful  "Great Society" of Lyndon Johnson (who is the second worst president in the United States).  

Thus, for dropping atomic bombs that killed thousands of Japanese non-combatants; for creating the CIA with a mandate to destroy undesirable democracy around the world via assassination and coups; for instigating the Cold War with the help of George F. Kennan; for his illegal, unjust involvement in the Korean War; and for playing a major role in the establishment of American policy in the Middle East and Israel; for his massive corruption and for paving the way for the modern welfare state Harry Truman should be known as the worst president in US history.
62  General Discussion / History / Re: Rooney's Presidential Election Rankings on: March 05, 2014, 10:47:55 pm
#56: The Election of 1804

Thomas Jefferson’s reelection campaign was hardly a dramatic or interesting election. His first term as president is fascinating, no doubt. In his first term he had slashed taxes, reduced Adam’s bloated navy, destroyed the Additional Army, purchased Louisiana, increased free trade on the Atlantic and managed to sever the close alliance of the Barbary States. While the constitutionality of Louisiana and the mission to Tunisia, as well as the later Lewis and Clark Expedition, stands on shaky ground the American people always seem to love constitutional violations. In 1804 President Jefferson was highly popular and looked forward to a sunny second term.

Jefferson had also spent his first term dedicated to coopting Federalists into the Republican Party. “We are all Federalists, we are all Republicans” he waxed eloquent in his first inaugural address, one of only two public speeches he would make as chief executive. If only the current occupant of the White House was so economical with his words. Jefferson rejected highly partisan judicial appointments and broadly interpreted the constitutional powers of his office in order to appeal to those Federalists excluded by the High Federalists and the Essex Clique. Thus, the Federalist Party was a weak shadow of its former self when it nominated former Minister to France Charles Cotesworth Pinckney for president and former Senator Rufus King for vice-president. Pinckney, who was once mocked in a sermon by the mercurial Reverend Timothy Dwight, never stood a chance outside of Connecticut.    

This scenario makes for one boring election. Landslides are usually boring. They are like when the Miami Heat plays the Detroit Pistons. It is fun to watch a beat down for a little while but pretty soon you turn off the TV and open up a book on moral philosophy. This is not to say that there were not some exciting and dramatic moments in this election but none of them had anything to do with the ultimate outcome.

One amazing moment of 1804 was, of course, the field of honor at Weehawken. The Burr-Hamilton Duel was attached to an election in 1804, just not the presidential campaign. President Jefferson had already dropped Burr (“The American Cataline”) for the jovial, doddering Governor George Clinton of New York. As all students of history know, Burr shot Hamilton over Hamilton’s machinations against him in his ill-fated quest for the New York governor’s post. The story of the duel and Burr’s later dreams of an American Empire stretching from Mobile Bay to Monterrey is one of the epics of American History. However, it plays very little to no role in the reelection of Jefferson. In fact, it played no role at all. Thus, this grand drama has nothing to do with Mr. Jefferson’s reelection.

There is also the story of Jefferson’s gunboats. The Federalists mocked Jefferson for his gunboat fleet. Gunboats were far cheaper to maintain than any ship-of-the-line so Jefferson, a penny pincher in public and a spendthrift if private, obviously fell in love with them. Fifteen gunboats floated across the Eastern seaboard to defend the nation from piracy. In September 1804, a terrible hurricane off the coast of Savannah, Georgia, picked up Gunboat Number One and tossed it into a cornfield. The proprietor of the cornfield actually tried to sue the government for damages! The Federalist campaign mocked Jefferson by stating that he had finally found a good use for his gunboat: as a scarecrow. While these gibes made victory starved Federalists smirk and giggle they are merely fun historical trivia. They added nothing to the campaign itself and added no drama to the final outcome.

A third interesting story that came from the election was the scurrilous charges that Jefferson had sired children from one of his female slaves. In September 1802, political journalist James T. Callender, a disaffected former ally of Jefferson, wrote in a Richmond newspaper that Jefferson had for many years "kept, as his concubine, one of his own slaves." "Her name is Sally," Callender continued, adding that Jefferson had "several children" by her. Jefferson never commented on these accusations and Sally, who could not write, never recorded any letters or documentation to back up the story. Callender, who was found drowned in less than three inches of water in 1803, was a well-known political crank and scandal monger. While the faltering Federalist campaign tried to make “Black Sal” a campaign issue it never gained traction. This was not the first time that base rumor mongering would be used in an election but many times such dark tactics can dramatically effect an election. In 1804 this was not the case.

The main reason why the election of 1804 is the second most boring presidential election is that there was no drama. While Jefferson and Pinckney are “big names” in American history neither ran an active campaign. Unlike in 1796 and 1800 both parties were docile and tame. There was no incredible politicking for control of state legislatures or wonderfully juicy accusations of atheism and monarchism. The campaign was bland and calm. That makes for a nice tea party but a downright dull presidential campaign.            
63  General Discussion / History / Re: Rooney's Presidential Election Rankings on: March 04, 2014, 09:54:06 pm
#57: The Election of 1820

This crazy train starts out with a leisurely caboose ride. In 1820 the nation was riding high on a time of unchecked pork barrel politics and internal “improvement” spending spearheaded by the mild-mannered President James Monroe of Virginia. Leading the nation in a time known as “The Era of Good Feelings” Declaring that political parties were “incompatible with free government” Monroe had sought in his first term to coopt members of the defunct Federalist Party into the Republican fold. Known to some as the “Young Washington”, Monroe’s one-party rule produced a lull in election action but not in political troubles.

The main reason why the election of 1820 is such a bore is that it could have been an incredible contest if there had been any formal opposition to Monroe and Vice-President Daniel Tompkins. In 1819 the heavy borrowing and inflationary monetary policies of the U.S. government brought about a specie strain that led to the Panic of 1819. This first great economic struggle could very well have caused an issue for Monroe’s reelection had he faced an opponent willing to run against the Second Bank of the United States and the lose money policies of the Madison and Monroe governments. Additionally, the sectional trouble caused by the Missouri Compromise could also have led to an anti-slavery candidacy from a Northern or Western candidate to oppose Monroe. Alas, there was no vessel and so Monroe, a former wily politico turned pacific executive, was reelected by the margin of 227 to 1.

The reason why this election is the most boring in American history is the lack of good drama. This is not to say that there was no drama in the election. There simply was no memorable drama. There was the surprise vote for John Quincy Adams from Baptist lay preacher William Plummer of New Hampshire. While it would be nice to believe the story that he voted for Adams in 1820 in order to ensure that only Washington was unanimously elected close scrutiny has shown this dramatic response is quite tepid. It appears that Plummer voted for Adams because he thought Monroe to be a “mediocrity” and Tompkins to be “negligent” of his duties as vice-president. These are very logical conclusions and while logic is nice it is hardly dramatic.

There was also a brief struggle over whether or not Missouri’s electoral votes would be counted. This came down to the technicality that Missouri was not actually a state when it cast its electoral votes for Monroe. New Hampshire proved itself to once again be the only state that wanted to make this election interesting when Congressman Arthur Livermore of the Granite State raised his voice in protest of the Show Me State’s electoral votes. The Senate, however, destroyed all drama by passing a resolution allowing for the state’s electoral votes to count provided they did not change the outcome of the election. This could have been a great controversy had the election been so close that the state’s three electoral votes been the linchpin for a presidential victory. However, this was not the case and is merely a legal footnote in the history of elections.

Monroe’s near unanimous reelection was a major personal victory for him and for his one-party state. If the election of 1820 is to teach us anything we should take from it two lessons. The first is that one-party states are either boring or tyrannical. Sometimes they are both! The second lesson we should take is that while political parties can be annoying they make elections a heck of a lot more fun.
64  General Discussion / History / Rooney's Presidential Election Rankings on: March 04, 2014, 09:52:13 pm

Elections are what bring us all together at this site. We love the hand shaking, back slapping, ass-ahem-baby kissing that makes an election the greatest show on earth. There is no denying that of all elections the quadrennial calumny of the United States Presidential contest is the gaudiest and grandest of all elections in this Land of the Free.

However, which elections were the best and which were critical and commercial flops? The United States has experiences fifty-seven national contests. Some are historic battles of ideologies, others a game of Trivial Pursuit while some were nothing more than flops.

In this list I will count down all fifty-seven of these elections from the most mundane to the most exciting. In this list I will not take the ideology or politics of the winner into account. For example, in a comparison of the 1836 election and the 1912 election I much prefer the victor in 1836. However, there is no denying that 1912 has many more intriguing, unique and entertaining factors. Thus, even though the victor of 1912 is not to my ideological liking the election is an excellent one that will attain a high ranking.

Now I am off to analyze the campaign trail. After all, while elections may very well make history and alter the policy of a nation we all know what they are supposed to do: entertain us.
65  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Elections / Re: LumineVonReuental for At-Large Senate HQ (Victory?) on: March 04, 2014, 08:56:20 pm
Congratulations! You will do a grand job I have no doubt.
66  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Elections / Re: Survey Atlasia: February Regional Senator Approval Ratings on: March 01, 2014, 01:31:46 pm
I agree with about 30% of what Senator TNF wants to do in the senate but I approve of him. He is an effective legislator who responds to PMs and works hard. I approve of the senator.
67  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Elections / Re: LumineVonReuental for At-Large Senate HQ on: March 01, 2014, 01:30:34 pm
I greatly hope we will see you in the senate, governor. I can think of no one who could do a better job or make a greater difference.
68  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Voting Booth / Re: February 2014 Federal Special Election - At-Large Senate on: February 28, 2014, 10:28:48 pm
1. Lumine van Reuenthal
2. Poirot
3. Adam Griffin
69  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: Opinion of Franklin D. Roosevelt on: February 27, 2014, 06:24:27 pm
Let's see you get elected four times and save the world.
Because German panzers would have rolled through Lincoln, Nebraska without FDR Roll Eyes.
Now, now The new Wolfenstein game had the Naxis conquering the world. That is good history, right?
70  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: Opinion of Karl Marx on: February 27, 2014, 06:23:50 pm
It could be argued he is the most evil person ever born. I personally agree with that argument.
Did not his philosophy destroy the human spirit? Did it not force individuals into a collective? Did it not put forward the nauseous theories of "state ownership" and the "Labor Theory of Capital?" How many were murdered on the alter of reaching his utopian system? Marx murdered the human spirit and his system degrades the rights of man. He is the ultimate of all evil.
71  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: Opinion of Franklin D. Roosevelt on: February 27, 2014, 06:20:48 pm
Let's see you get elected four times and save the world.
There is no denying that Roosevelt was elected four times. The man was addicted to power after all. He hardly "saved the world." That is comic book history at its finest.
72  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: Opinion of Horace Greeley on: February 27, 2014, 06:19:35 pm
Greeley himself was a fine man. He is to be respected for his strong stance on abolition and his dedication to the Union. However, it must be remembered that he called for Lincoln to compromise with the Confederacy in 1864. To his credit he helped raise money to bail Jefferson Davis out of jail and in doing so helped to salve some wounds of the war.

His party, however, was a group of fiends and fools. The Liberal Republican movement stood for nothing except "anti-Grant" ranting and raving. The "leaders" of that group of rapscallions were Eastern elitists like Sumner and Fisher Ames. These were men who approved of nearly everything Grant did but simply did not like it was a Midwestern man doing the great work of civil rights and nation mending. That party is an awful one indeed.
73  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: Opinion of Franklin D. Roosevelt on: February 27, 2014, 06:15:09 pm
FDR is one of the most foul presidents this nation has ever had. His odious administration should be the model of what a presidency should not be. Unfortunately, it has been taught to generations of historians that the mark of a good president is to attack free enterprise, massively intrude on the private lives of citizens, arrest as many people as possible, destroy food while thousands starve, set silver prices based of of "lucky numbers" and get the nation involved in a war. By these sterling requirements Roosevelt is one of the very greatest presidents. Those who actually care about civil liberties and free markets should never have a single word to say about FDR....unless that word is "charlatan." 
74  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: Opinion of Karl Marx on: February 27, 2014, 06:11:20 pm
It could be argued he is the most evil person ever born. I personally agree with that argument.
75  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Elections / Re: The Federalist Party of Atlasia: February 2014 Convention on: February 27, 2014, 06:06:10 pm
Official Ballot:
Party Chairman:
[2] Devin (F-WA)
[1] North Carolina Yankee (F-NC)

Vice Chairman:
[2] Dereich (F-MS)
[1] JohanusCalvinusLibertas (F-IN)
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