- Letters to the Editor
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Elsa Van Leuven claims that President Obama is "the sorriest president we ever had." While there are a number of things about this administration with which I disagree, her assessment reflects a remarkable amnesia regarding some recent presidents.
Let's not forget George W. Bush. The second biggest collapse of the US economy took place on his watch. The roots of this crisis were due in large part to deregulation policies spearheaded by President Ronald Reagan and condoned by democratic and republican presidents alike over the last 20 years. Let's not forget how President Bush, after an initial strike against the perpetrators of 9/11 in Afghanistan, deceived the American people into pursuing a disastrous war in Iraq. This has led years later to the current quagmire in Afghanistan. All of this was of course at the cost of trillions of unfunded dollars.
And then there is Richard M. Nixon, whose blatantly criminal activities nearly destroyed the constitutional validity of the presidency.
Underlying much of the rabid criticism of President Obama is that his programs are somehow socialist. Compared to Presidents Franklin Roosevelt (social security) and Lyndon Johnson (The Great Society, the Civil Rights Act, Medicare), Obama's policies are downright middle of the road. One of the reasons that I voted for President Obama was that he had the vision that the United States should join the ranks of the rest of the leading industrialized nations by providing health insurance for all citizens. This is not a radical idea, and Obamacare is far from a radical plan. In the current media frenzy over significant start-up problems with Obamacare, what is forgotten is that the current plan is a conservative "free market" compromise supported to a large extent by the big insurance companies.
I think that our nation is more polarized politically than it has been since the time of the Civil Rights Movement, Richard Nixon and the Vietnam War. We are divided by fundamental views on the role that government should play in our lives and the responsibilities that the "haves" in this society have toward the "have not's." There are definitely plenty of valid criticisms of the current group in Washington. But "the sorriest president we ever had ..." Oh, hardly.
I was at home last Friday, calmly minding my own business, when kerlop, the Downey Patriot landed on my driveway.
Well, what do you know, there is another long, right-wing rant by Elsa Van Leuven residing on page five.
Ring, ring, hey it's my doorbell, and wouldn't you know it, it's my favorite UPS driver dropping off a package. Well, of all things, it's the package of air-sick bags I ordered from Southwest Airlines. They couldn't have arrived at a better time.
Talk about serendipity!
Published: Nov. 28, 2013 - Volume 12 - Issue 33