History

What Calvin Coolidge Can Teach Barack Obama

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Writing in the DC Examiner, the Cato Institute's Gene Healy argues that President Barack Obama could learn a thing or two from President Calvin Coolidge:

Calvin Coolidge, a genuinely humble man and a fine president, wrote in his autobiography that it was "a major source of safety to the country" for the president "to know that he is not a great man." Few of our recent presidents display Coolidge's self-awareness….

Obama's supporters…fancy themselves members of the "reality-based community." Yet they doggedly defend a president for whom the word "hubris" might have been invented — one who thinks that the government, under his direction, can rationally reshape the one-sixth of the U.S. economy devoted to health care.

Our president describes his budget as a "blueprint" for America's future, and believes that, with the proper mix of social workers and soldiers, we can bring orderly governance to Afghanistan, which has never enjoyed it.

We'd do far better if our presidents had Coolidge's sense of his own limitations and of government's as well.

Read the rest here. Healy on the cult of the presidency here.

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  1. Obama would do well to get a hat that bitchin’. Fuck.

    1. He used it like Oddjob in Goldfinger. Nobody messed with Cal.

  2. This one ain’t good enough for ya, cunt face?

    http://static.open.salon.com/f…..707579.jpg

  3. Sorry, but Coolidge was crap as president.

    1. Re: Syd Henderson,

      Sorry, but Coolidge was crap as president.

      Agreed – he only enabled what was the period of greatest economic growth the US had seen in the whole of 20th Century, with balanced budgets and low taxes. He was crap, all right… just because he was not as profligate as Obama.

    2. And you would know that because you were there, or because some professor poured crap into your head which you still parrot?

      1. Meaning Syd.

        1. Got it the first time 😉

      2. Well, it would have to be the former, because professors don’t get hired at universities in this country if they have anything nice to say about Calvin Coolidge.

        1. Coolidge is the second greatest American President of the last one hundred years. Warren G Harding being the greatest. Greatest ever? Grover Cleveland.

          Take your crap and eat it like a lap dog, Syd, because that is what you are.

  4. No, that’s the kind of hat worn by pseduointellectual 70s twerps. Cal’s hat looks like it could cut an Indian in half if you threw it.

    Also, choke on a mile of cock, you smegma-encrusted whore.

    1. I eat smegma for breakfast.

      1. Kids got out of school early today.

  5. Coolidge was awesome in Poltergeist III.

    And that performance could teach Obama how not to act so creepy.

  6. Coolidge had a healthy dislike for redistributive federal policies.

  7. It’s hard to believe now, but in the early days not only was the President expected to be humble, but the Congressmen and Senators were as well. They had no concept back then of full-time “lawmakers”.

    1. I blame television and, of course, FOX News.

  8. Obama could learn a thing or two from President Calvin Coolidge

    All growth depends upon activity. There is no development physically or intellectually without effort, and effort means work.

    Collecting more taxes than is absolutely necessary is legalized robbery.

    Don’t expect to build up the weak by pulling down the strong.

    Four-fifths of all our troubles would disappear, if we would only sit down and keep still.

  9. MSG 2 B.O: STFU

    “Coolidge was known for his terse speech and reticence. A woman bet her friend that she could get Coolidge to speak to her, which was something he was reluctant to do. She went up to him and said:

    “Hello, Mr. President, I bet my friend that I could get you to say three words to me.”

    “You lose,” Coolidge replied dryly, and walked away.

    1. Which just proves the superior justice of the communist system.

      “Hey Giorgy, I bet these Uzbeks I could get you to say three words to me.”

      “You lose….Comrade.” replied Giorgy, with a wry wink.

    2. Almost. From Wikipedia:

      A possibly apocryphal story has it that Dorothy Parker, seated next to him at a dinner, said to him, “Mr. Coolidge, I’ve made a bet against a fellow who said it was impossible to get more than two words out of you.” His famous reply: “You lose.”

  10. For leftists, hubris isn’t a vice, it’s the attraction.

    Nothing feeds the ego like the idea that one has the solutions to all the worlds problems right in one’s pocket. By claiming that they know how to solve almost every problem they are implicitly making the claim that their intellects are so vast that they can perceive the solution to every problem. They have to believe they know the solution because if they don’t, then they can’t view themselves as special and superior anymore.

    The average leftist believes themselves expects on virtually every field of human endeavor. Of course, they will deny it if you put in such stark terms but when you ask them about subject they believe they understand the subject well enough to justify imposing their view of solution on other by force.

    Just try a few subjects with your favorite leftist: climatology, economics, criminology, foreign policy, technological (cars, chemicals etc) safety, energy production, biology, medical innovation, medical administrations, how to run any business form the corner coffee shop to biggest multinational, etc.

    There isn’t anything they don’t know…wait.. that’s wrong. They are humbled and confused by sex. Apparently, human beings only started having sex ten years ago or so and nobody understands it so we shouldn’t get the government involved.

    They’ll keep the government out of your bedroom but they will tell you what lightbulbs you can use in your bedroom, what materials you have to use to build the bedroom and where you can build the house the bedrooms in.

    1. You remind me of what my dad used to say: “Scratch a liberal, find an autocrat”.

      -jcr

  11. We have much to learn from the ways of Silent Cal.

  12. The Coolidge administration pushed banks into making bad loans to Latin American countries, and did other things that helped cause the Depression.

  13. The last decent president we had from a libertarian standpoint was Benjamin Harrison. And not coincidentally, he was the last president with a beard.

  14. What was wrong with Grover Cleveland?

    1. He was president before Benjamin Harrison was.

      1. And after!

        1. Ah, but recognizing that would prevent me from making a snarky comment about the inherent untrustworthiness of shaven men.

          1. Harrison’s an intriguing figure. And not just because he was an Ohioan and once commanded the Union Army XX (dos Equis) Corps.

  15. Oh the ignominy! Oh the racism!

  16. “Yet they doggedly defend a president for whom the word “hubris” might have been invented one who thinks that the government, under his direction, can rationally reshape the one-sixth of the U.S. economy devoted to health care.”

    Actually, he’s being perfectly rational. He’s just trying to make health care a little more proftable for the insurance companies and it looks like he’s going to succeed.

    And his supporters, the insurance companies, are definitely “memebers of a reality based community” (people who spend their money wisely).

    http://www.opensecrets.org/new…..ealth.html

    1. Actually, he’s being perfectly rational. He’s just trying to make health care a little more proftable for the insurance companies and it looks like he’s going to succeed.

      Exactly. They paid a lot of depreciating dollars for his services, and he’s making damned sure he delivers what he promised. If he crossed them, who’d pay his lecture fees when his term ends?

      -jcr

  17. “Perhaps one of the most important accomplishments of my administration has been minding my own business. ” Calvin Coolidge

    1. The Coolidge administration only minded its own business relative to its successors. See my comment about strongarming banks into making bad loans.

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