19 January 2008

Moyers on LBJ and MLK

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Anyone who's been here more than once or twice has a good feel for my political leanings; those who know me better have a clearer picture. I believe in muscular liberalism. For too long weasels, rats, and pompom girls of the right have tried to make up for their physical, emotional, and intellectual shortcomings by talking and acting tough. Sadly, my party has become quiet, reserved, and unassuming, rolling over at every (*cough* Harry Reid *cough*) opportunity to have their bellies rubbed by the opposition. Of course, I exclude the smaller, Patchouli Wing of the party which is anything but quiet and reserved; however, they're too busy arguing with the Ron Paul supporters over just whom is being followed by the black helicopters.

The last great American President was Lyndon Baines Johnson.

Before that, I'd have to go back to Harry Truman (Ike woulda gotten the call if he'd actually *done* something about the military industrial complex, rather than just warn us about it right before the door hit him in the ass.) Of course FDR was a great, great leader and gifted President (though I hate his cheesy attempt at stacking the court.) Before that? Dunno. Wilson was a tool, but he did accomplish a lot. Teddy Roosevelt added the needed muscle to actually enforce the century-old Monroe Doctrine. And then? Back to Lincoln?

Really, we haven't had a lot of great Presidents. Most have been serviceable, with only a handful downright disastrous: Nixon; GWB; Andrew Johnson, maybe; Hoover, because he was too hide-bound and conservative to take an active roll in combating the depression. For 220 years of history, we have earned about a C+ or B- overall in terms of electing suitable leaders.

That's not bad, really. It's above average. It's kept us together (except for that one span, but fortunately we had an A+ President at the time.) And I believe we can raise our grade with a little extra credit work.

So back to LBJ...let's start looking for Johnsons. Let's start looking for leaders of men and women who can tell right from wrong, who can bully when bullying is appropriate, yet caress and coo, too. Let's find more giants among us.

And while we're at it, a few more Bill Moyers wouldn't suck, either. C'mon, people. We really do deserve better than this.

via Josh Marshall