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Subject: Worst President? rss

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MGK
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Recent "Obama is the worst president ever" comments had me thinking again about who the worst President of the USA in history really is. People here have previously argued for James Buchanan, and I agree Buchanan is a strong candidate, but I also think Buchanan was dealt an impossible hand: previous Democratic POTUSes like Pierce and Tyler had spent their administrations bolstering up the expectations of the slaveholding south so that a further split was more or less inevitable. This isn't to minimize Buchanan's failures, which were dramatic, but I think his failures are lessened by the situation he found himself in.

My pick for "worst President ever" is usually Andrew Johnson. Unlike Buchanan, Johnson had a Congress that was actually really willing to move forward after the Civil War, and instead Johnson threw in his lot with the loser former Confederate states and enabled them to enact laws that did everything short of re-establishing the slavery status quo in the South. Johnson actively blocked reparations (what would America look like today if newly freed slaves HAD gotten their forty acres and a mule?), tried to block the 14th Amendment from being ratified, and got impeached. So I think he wins it. But I admit there are arguments against.
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Lincoln, for not letting the southern states secede.
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Aerys Targaryen.
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MGK
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Golux13 wrote:
Aerys Targaryen.


An interesting argument, but Aerys was balls-out insane. Denethor, on the other hand, allowed himself to be influenced by the Palantir and nearly sacrificed his own son, one of Gondor's most capable battle commanders, out of spite, and only went insane afterwards.
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Jonny Lawless
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My name is Glenn! Long have I carried Cyrus's hopes and dreams, and now I bear the Masamune as well! Henceforth, I claim them as my own! I shall slay the Fiendlord Magus and restore our honor!
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Laura Roslin.
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Dan Schaeffer
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mightygodking wrote:
Golux13 wrote:
Aerys Targaryen.


An interesting argument, but Aerys was balls-out insane. Denethor, on the other hand, allowed himself to be influenced by the Palantir and nearly sacrificed his own son, one of Gondor's most capable battle commanders, out of spite, and only went insane afterwards.


Also, to be fair, there is an argument to be made that Robert Baratheon was, in fact, worse. After all, he virtually bankrupted his country, put it in hock up to its collective eyeballs - to the Lannisters, of all people - and spent all his time drinking and whoring. Aside from Aerys's insane obsession with fire, it's not clear that he was a bad leader.
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Golux13 wrote:
Aside from Aerys's insane obsession with fire...


...which involved burning people alive, no?
 
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Bill Pullman.

Edited because I ALWAYS say the wrong Bill for Independence Day for whatever reason.
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Palpatine.
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John Taylor
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H*****.

Unless he was actually a prime minister or something.
 
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Voldemort.
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Dan Schaeffer
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Salo sila wrote:
Golux13 wrote:
Aside from Aerys's insane obsession with fire...


...which involved burning people alive, no?


A sure, a little of that. But really, once you've decided to go the "insane pyromaniac" route, how much does it really add that you forced alchemical wildfire down someone's throat?
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Dave G
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Golux13 wrote:
Salo sila wrote:
Golux13 wrote:
Aside from Aerys's insane obsession with fire...


...which involved burning people alive, no?


A sure, a little of that. But really, once you've decided to go the "insane pyromaniac" route, how much does it really add that you forced alchemical wildfire down someone's throat?


As long as the burning alive was consensual, I don't think it was any of our business.
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Lex Luthor. He made a deal with the God of Evil, injected himself with a kryptonite laced steroid and confessed to trading a weapons of mass destruction with a hostile alien world in exchange for advanced weapondry.
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Antigonus Monophthalmus
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Salo sila wrote:
Golux13 wrote:
Aside from Aerys's insane obsession with fire...


...which involved burning people alive, no?


If the worst thing my king does is burn the nobility alive, I have nothing against that king.

Let's compare:

1. Burn a bunch of tyrants to death
2. Sit idly by as the Riverlands are ravaged by the queen's family's bannermen, raise taxes due to inordinate spending, and weaken the kingdom to the point where tens of thousands (if not more) lives are put at risk

Hm... which one would I, your average, hard-working tax payer prefer?
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Dwayne Hendrickson
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Dispaminite wrote:
Lex Luthor. He made a deal with the God of Evil, injected himself with a kryptonite laced steroid and confessed to trading a weapons of mass destruction with a hostile alien world in exchange for advanced weapondry.


and New York STILL voted for him in his run for re-election!!
 
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Ken
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mightygodking wrote:
Unlike Buchanan, Johnson had a Congress that was actually really willing to move forward after the Civil War,


We usually agree, MGK, but on this one I think you're about 100 light years off. The Congress after the Civil War was far to focused on retribution rather than reconciliation, which included a few bazillion ideas of how to screw the South once they'd been beaten. Not only weren't they looking to work with the President, they were outright hostile to the suggestion that the reunification of the country should be a higher priority that punitive measures.

It's also worth noting that Lincoln would have been just about right where Johnson was, if not even further towards a smooth reunification of the country. It's a good bet that had he survived, he would have pursued many of the exact same stances Johnson did in the interest of the nation as a whole and to avoid penalizing the South, which had already been economically and physically devastated by the war.

Keep in mind that the ACW kill a full 2% of the population of the country in battlefield casualties alone. That doesn't include "collateral damage" or civilians killed through impacts from the war (like starvation). Today, that'd be the same as 6 million dead under arms. The nation didn't need punitive measures, the war had already seen to that.

The Congress Johnson faced was hostile, yes. But it was also making a fairly large set of mistakes in assuming you could reunite while treating the losing side horribly. Its Reconstruction policies firmly re-established the "us vs. them" mentality of the war and set it in stone. We're only emerging from this very recently.

Johnson might not have been the best President ever, but Buchanan had it easy comparatively. Although Congress hated him, it was not openly attempting to usurp his authority and directly oppose his policies. Buchanan took a bad situation and made it worse. Johnson took a bad situation and did what he could with it. Buchanan took a bad situation and made it much, much worse by fracturing the Democratic party (his fight with Douglas) and generally doing everything he could to deny abolitionists any voice at all in territorial or governmental questions.

Buchanan was horrid because at a time the nation needed someone to assuage frictions, he escalated them and didn't just appear to pick sides, he picked sides. And in doing so, he opened the door for the Republicans to win the presidency in the first place. A disaster in public, on policy, and politically.
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Cal Macewan
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Salo sila wrote:
Golux13 wrote:
Aside from Aerys's insane obsession with fire...


...which involved burning people alive, no?


Give a man a fire and he's warm for a night;
Set a man on fire and he's warm for the rest of his life.
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andrew
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it's interesting how this thread was about US presidents. and then veered off to game of thrones
 
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Sven Berglowe
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Nothing overshadows that fact that no matter who we talk about in this thread NOBAMA is STILL the worst excuse we have ever had for a President. 2012 cannot get here fast enuff./DOCshake
 
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Born To Lose, Live To Win
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Docsven wrote:
Nothing overshadows that fact that no matter who we talk about in this thread NOBAMA is STILL the worst excuse we have ever had for a President. 2012 cannot get here fast enuff./DOCshake


Well, he isn't the best of all time, but he's the best we've had since Clinton. That's not saying much.
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Dave G
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Docsven wrote:
Nothing overshadows that fact that no matter who we talk about in this thread NOBAMA is STILL the worst excuse we have ever had for a President. 2012 cannot get here fast enuff./DOCshake


Thanks for that. I always value a contribution to a funny thread from someone who takes it all too seriously. I'm sure you have some compelling, objective, coherent points to make, but I like the simple elegance of just making a pun of the President Obama's name. Why bother with debate when "NOBAMA" makes the point so succinctly?

Such artful discourse brings to mind the witty back and forth of the Lincoln-Douglas debates. Particularly the brilliant rejoinder by Douglas in the second debate when he dismantled Lincoln's entire ninety-minute speech by simply stepping to the podium and shouting "NOT IN MY HOUSE, BITCHES!" while pounding on his chest with a clenched fist.

The real cherry on this sundae of rhetorical brilliance is the use of the "word" enuff, though. It's well-known that intellectual pursuits like "spelling" and "literacy" are for panty-waisted liberal communists, and how better to capture the populist zeitgeist than by spelling a simple word wrong? It wouldn't be enough to misspell a word like rendezvous or idiosyncrasy--even the liberal elites get those wrong sometimes. To really make it hit home, to really emphasize the distance between your line of reasoning and the elitist intellectuals in the lamestream media, you have to misspell a word that any third-grader could spell correctly if they wanted to.

Well played, sir. Well played. I will be awaiting further news as to whom I should vote for in place of Obama in the coming election, as you've thoroughly convinced me that he is poorly suited for the job.

Also, he's black. WTF is that about?
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Sven Berglowe
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djgutierrez77 wrote:
Docsven wrote:
Nothing overshadows that fact that no matter who we talk about in this thread NOBAMA is STILL the worst excuse we have ever had for a President. 2012 cannot get here fast enuff./DOCshake


Thanks for that. I always value a contribution to a funny thread from someone who takes it all too seriously. I'm sure you have some compelling, objective, coherent points to make, but I like the simple elegance of just making a pun of the President Obama's name. Why bother with debate when "NOBAMA" makes the point so succinctly?

Such artful discourse brings to mind the witty back and forth of the Lincoln-Douglas debates. Particularly the brilliant rejoinder by Douglas in the second debate when he dismantled Lincoln's entire ninety-minute speech by simply stepping to the podium and shouting "NOT IN MY HOUSE, BITCHES!" while pounding on his chest with a clenched fist.

The real cherry on this sundae of rhetorical brilliance is the use of the "word" enuff, though. It's well-known that intellectual pursuits like "spelling" and "literacy" are for panty-waisted liberal communists, and how better to capture the populist zeitgeist than by spelling a simple word wrong? It wouldn't be enough to misspell a word like rendezvous or idiosyncrasy--even the liberal elites get those wrong sometimes. To really make it hit home, to really emphasize the distance between your line of reasoning and the elitist intellectuals in the lamestream media, you have to misspell a word that any third-grader could spell correctly if they wanted to.

Well played, sir. Well played. I will be awaiting further news as to whom I should vote for in place of Obama in the coming election, as you've thoroughly convinced me that he is poorly suited for the job.

Also, he's black. WTF is that about?


Wow Dave you really should take that oversized stick out of where you sit. You remind me of a "That guy" that insults other gamers and forum board members to prove your point thru (yes another cut word Dave! OMG) playing the I am smarter than you and know more than you because I try harder and louder than everyone else to make my posts "Rhetorical and Brilliant".

We used to call "That Guy" a rules lawyer and other fun names while making sure to NEVER invite them back for anything.

Sorry. I really don't need to google large words and smart phrases to get my point across like you have tried to do here. Also Dave really who are you? Other than another person on a forum that tries a bit too hard to convince himself and others thru (they just keep coming huh Dave.) insults to see his point when I was just venting my views towards Obumbles (OMG another pun! Yes folks he does again!).

And really Dave the "Also, he's black. WTF is that about?" comment you thru (ouch Dave another one!) in there is pretty childish. I didn't say that in my post and never will so I guess you could't try to dazzle us enough with big words and phrases you googled from somewhere so you had to fall back on what everyone who has no real argument does and use that old card. Please.

Once again Dave who are you in the grand scheme of things except another troll in the RSP who sits around all day just waiting to dazzle us with BS since you have nothing else to use.

So now since I have foolishly fed the troll, I will eagerly and with heartfelt enthusiasm wait here patiently for you to draft a "Rhetorical and Brilliant" response. Thus (yet another one Dave OH MY!) allowing you to try and once again prove your point through BS insults and witty responses.




 
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MGK
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Docsven wrote:
when I was just venting my views towards Obumbles (OMG another pun! Yes folks he does again!).


That was actually a portmanteau, not a pun.
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