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General Bogosity => General Discussion => Topic started by: Travis Retriever on December 12, 2010, 12:16:00 AM

Title: Best and Worst US Presidents
Post by: Travis Retriever on December 12, 2010, 12:16:00 AM
Who are the best and worst US Presidents?

EDIT:  The best of the best (or worst of the worse) in are boldface.

I was thinking:
Best:    George Washington, James K. Polk, Grover Cleveland, Warren G. Harding
Worst:  Abraham Lincoln, Teddy Roosevelt, Woodrow Wilson, Franklin D. Roosevelt


So what do you all think?
Title: Re: Best and Worst US Presidents
Post by: Virgil0211 on December 12, 2010, 12:48:40 AM
How can Nixon be one of the worst? His stint on futurama has to be worth something! =P:-P=P:-P=P:-P=P:-P=P:-P=P:-D=P:-P=P:-D:-P<3:P:D:]<3:-P:[:-/<3:-P:-):):-]:/:-/:-]:-);-);-):-P<3:-/:-/=/=]=D:-P:-S=]:-D:-D:-)<3:-/<3=P=]:-/:S:-P:-D=]

On an unrelated note, my windows phone's keyboard has a setting strictly for emoticons.

:/:]:D:[:D;-):-S:[:-D:-/:[:-D:-/<3:-D=[=]:P<3:-/:-):-P=/:S:D:D<3:|:P<3:|:-P:-P:'(<3:-D:-/:P:-]:|:[:-P:-S:[:-D=]<3:-/:-D:-S:-/;):-P:-/:S:(:-P:-]:|:-P<3:-]<:-/:-]:-D:]:-/=):-D:-P:-S:-P:-]:-S:-D:D<3:-S:-S:/:/:-]:-D<3:'(<3:-]:-D:-D<3:-/:[:P:-]:-S:-D:-D<3:S:-/<3:-D<3:'(:-S:P<3:-/:]:-D:-/:S:):]:/:-/:-P:):-S:/:[:D:-]:-S:-/:'(:-S:-D:):P:S:-(:/:-S:-]:-P:-P:'(:'(<3:P:]

Title: Re: Best and Worst US Presidents
Post by: Gumba Masta on December 12, 2010, 03:29:31 AM
I did'nt even know america had these many presidents.
But if you ask me I would choose Madison both as best and worst.
He had the gaul to both go to war with canada and loose it.
I bet it's because of video games. I heard he was an avid Fan of the Fallout series.
Title: Re: Best and Worst US Presidents
Post by: MrBogosity on December 12, 2010, 07:04:36 AM
Who are the best and worst US Presidents?

I was thinking:
Best:    Grover Cleveland, Warren G. Harding
Worst:  Abraham Lincoln, Woodrow Wilson, Franklin D. Roosevelt, Richard Nixon

So what do you all think?

I'd add James K. Polk and George Washington to the best list.

Nixon was bad, but I don't think he was as bad as those other three.
Title: Re: Best and Worst US Presidents
Post by: MrBogosity on December 12, 2010, 07:05:25 AM
On an unrelated note, my windows phone's keyboard has a setting strictly for emoticons.

Hopefully it's out of your system now.
Title: Re: Best and Worst US Presidents
Post by: Travis Retriever on December 12, 2010, 11:30:09 AM
I'd add James K. Polk and George Washington to the best list.
Cool.  So they really were small government folks?

Nixon was bad, but I don't think he was as bad as those other three.
I added Nixon because he completely took us off the gold standard (I'm aware that citizens couldn't even own gold, courtesy of FDR and that the only 'gold standard' was the Breton Woods System for foreign exchange, but still...).
So who would you recommend in Nixon's place?
Title: Re: Best and Worst US Presidents
Post by: MrBogosity on December 12, 2010, 12:43:14 PM
Cool.  So they really were small government folks?

Polk, not so much by the standards of his day as he was an expansionist. However, he fought for state rights and got rid of the protectionist tariffs. He also made the Treasury completely independent of the banking system.

Quote
So who would you recommend in Nixon's place?

Oh, I didn't realize we were filling slots. I guess I'd say, either Teddy Roosevelt or US Grant.
Title: Re: Best and Worst US Presidents
Post by: Travis Retriever on December 12, 2010, 12:48:31 PM
Polk, not so much by the standards of his day as he was an expansionist. However, he fought for state rights and got rid of the protectionist tariffs. He also made the Treasury completely independent of the banking system.
Cool. Though I imagine that by today's standard's he was absolutely small government.
I imagine the same could be said of George Washington as well?

Oh, I didn't realize we were filling slots. I guess I'd say, either Teddy Roosevelt or US Grant.
I was kinda trying to keep it with an equal number of bad republicans as democrats and an equal number of good ones of each (if possible). :P
The reason for this was to keep people from saying, "See?  Libertarians are actually [Liberals/Conservatives]" Or some other crap like that.
Title: Re: Best and Worst US Presidents
Post by: Gumba Masta on December 12, 2010, 01:08:29 PM
Polk, not so much by the standards of his day as he was an expansionist. However, he fought for state rights and got rid of the protectionist tariffs. He also made the Treasury completely independent of the banking system.

Been listening to They Might Be Giants again?
Title: Re: Best and Worst US Presidents
Post by: MrBogosity on December 12, 2010, 01:22:54 PM
I imagine the same could be said of George Washington as well?

George Washington was nothing short of one of the greatest minds who ever lived. Yes, he stood up for smaller government and the rights of the people, but (unlike Jefferson) he did it without honking off the Federalists. He stood up to them and didn't let them get their crap through, while still making them realize that they were all on the same side.

Adams didn't fare so well. Even though he was against the Alien and Sedition Acts as much as anyone, he caved to the Federalists to try and avoid political backlash. And Jefferson didn't avoid any backlash at all--he had it pretty much all through his presidency.

Adams and Jefferson had brilliant minds, too, but as great as they were as men they were mediocre presidents at best.
Title: Re: Best and Worst US Presidents
Post by: Travis Retriever on December 12, 2010, 01:38:57 PM
Neat.
So, for now, the list is complete.

A few things worth pointing out.
1) I recall you saying in a YouTube comment that generally, the more famous a president, the worse a president he was.  I guess Washington was an exception to that rule.
2) Notice how, on average, the good presidents tend to be before the bad presidents.  I guess as government grows and gets more power, it tends to attract people who are even more attracted to that kind of thing (e.g. Sociopaths of sorts).
3) So how many people would crap themselves at seeing Abe Lincoln (and FDR) not only on the bad list, but boldfaced as one of the worst of the worst?
Title: Re: Best and Worst US Presidents
Post by: MrBogosity on December 12, 2010, 02:00:54 PM
I once made a thread on the JREF forum called "Grade the Presidents." I went through and gave each President a grade, A-F. Two of them (Polk and Washington) got As, two (Lincoln and FDR) got Fs. I wrote a paragraph about each explaining why. I also invited others to do the same, with their own grades, and explain why.

I was immediately flamed by the worshippers of the Holy Saint Lincoln. People who are (or at least claim to be) skeptics just could not tolerate anyone criticizing their prophet. None of them (nor anyone else) took me up on their invite.

After a couple of weeks of this, the thread mysteriously vanished. Neither the moderators nor the system administrator claimed to know anything about what happened to it.

One of the many reasons why I no longer post there.
Title: Re: Best and Worst US Presidents
Post by: Travis Retriever on December 12, 2010, 02:11:20 PM
I once made a thread on the JREF forum called "Grade the Presidents." I went through and gave each President a grade, A-F. Two of them (Polk and Washington) got As, two (Lincoln and FDR) got Fs. I wrote a paragraph about each explaining why. I also invited others to do the same, with their own grades, and explain why.

I was immediately flamed by the worshippers of the Holy Saint Lincoln. People who are (or at least claim to be) skeptics just could not tolerate anyone criticizing their prophet. None of them (nor anyone else) took me up on their invite.

After a couple of weeks of this, the thread mysteriously vanished. Neither the moderators nor the system administrator claimed to know anything about what happened to it.

One of the many reasons why I no longer post there.
Good god...

I just found this thread:  http://forums.randi.org/showthread.php?t=35316 Where the fun seems to be beginning.
I didn't know you were a peanuts fan.
Title: Re: Best and Worst US Presidents
Post by: Travis Retriever on December 12, 2010, 02:20:50 PM
I'm reading through this thread and damn...it's kinda reminds me of the League of Reason all over again.
Title: Re: Best and Worst US Presidents
Post by: Gumba Masta on December 12, 2010, 03:15:37 PM
Funny how they started to call you crazy after a while.
You did'nt even start to foam from the mouth in that one...much.
It does remind me of a woman I knew who started to treat you like shit the second she realized that you did'nt swoon about her like a bunch of moths around a candle.
Title: Re: Best and Worst US Presidents
Post by: AHPMB on December 12, 2010, 03:35:57 PM
Picking bad ones is hard just because there's such a massive list of bad presidents.  I would probably choose Grant, although to be fair to him, he has bar-none the best Presidential memoir (his is the only one with a shred of honesty).  Followed behind him may well be Truman.  Truman, despite being lauded by so many politicians was a small man, with a small mind.  Destroyed Hiroshima and Nagasaki explicitly to blackmail the Russians, unleashing apocalyptic weaponry for the worst possible reasons.  He was a consummate red baiter that bears much of the responsibility for McCarthyism, and he propped up many of the most unnecessary New Deal programs.  I honestly don't know why people think he was any good.  Eisenhower actually made our nuclear policy worse by instituting an automatic first-strike policy against ANY foreign aggression.  Personally I think Presidents that think they have veto power over the existence of the human race don't deserve to be counted among the best.

As for best it's really hard to choose because there have been so few good ones, they all have glaring misdeeds that outweigh the good.  T.R. was great on domestic policy but he also vastly expanded the military out of an imperialism born from a small-man complex.  Kennedy had the incredible guts to stand against his generals, especially that fuck LeMay, who would have surely sent us lurching headlong into World War III during the Cuban Missile Crisis, but in many other respects was a terrible President.  Andrew Jackson was a great President in many ways.  He handled the nullification crisis like a pro, yet he was an Indian killer.  Jefferson made the Louisiana Purchase, and successfully prosecuted the Barbary War but he also signed the Embargo Act.  Wilson for all his idealism was an inveterate racist, vastly restricted the 1st Amendment, and got us into a War that we had no business being in.  Polk is sort of my ideal President because he ran on a set platform, accomplished those in one term and then promptly left office.  I've always sided with Jefferson.  Presidents should be barely trusted, always treated as potential tyrants.  So maybe in the end the best President was William Henry Harrison, because he dropped dead before he could do any damage.
Title: Re: Best and Worst US Presidents
Post by: Travis Retriever on December 12, 2010, 03:53:11 PM
I did'nt even know america had these many presidents.
But if you ask me I would choose Madison both as best and worst.
He had the gaul to both go to war with canada and loose it.
I bet it's because of video games. I heard he was an avid Fan of the Fallout series.
That's going in fav quotes!
Title: Re: Best and Worst US Presidents
Post by: MrBogosity on December 12, 2010, 04:26:50 PM
You'll notice how I was the one constantly being accused of derailing the thread, when all I did was post my thoughts on Lincoln (exactly as the OP asked us to do) and after that was just responding to everyone else jumping on me about it.
Title: Re: Best and Worst US Presidents
Post by: MrBogosity on December 12, 2010, 04:36:57 PM
Aw, geez...I forgot about them jumping all over Sushi because he called the Japanese-American internment camps "concentration camps" even though that's what FDR himself called them.

Really, you can get better skeptical discussions on most gaming forums than you can on the JREF forum.
Title: Re: Best and Worst US Presidents
Post by: Travis Retriever on December 12, 2010, 04:45:16 PM
You'll notice how I was the one constantly being accused of derailing the thread, when all I did was post my thoughts on Lincoln (exactly as the OP asked us to do) and after that was just responding to everyone else jumping on me about it.
Yeah, I saw that.  That was pretty lame.

Aw, geez...I forgot about them jumping all over Sushi because he called the Japanese-American internment camps "concentration camps" even though that's what FDR himself called them.

Really, you can get better skeptical discussions on most gaming forums than you can on the JREF forum.
And note how Sushi was banned...Hmmm.

Then I read your posts on this thread: http://forums.randi.org/showthread.php?t=19190
Wow.  You were taking a quite a bit from crap from them.

The worst part?
That they didn't seem as bad as the LoR forum, where you could only handle about 130 posts, compared to 15,990 on the JREF forum.
Title: Re: Best and Worst US Presidents
Post by: VectorM on December 12, 2010, 05:28:03 PM
Really, you can get better skeptical discussions on most gaming forums than you can on the JREF forum.

I visit a lot of gaming forums and trust me, you are wrong.
Title: Re: Best and Worst US Presidents
Post by: Travis Retriever on December 12, 2010, 05:34:27 PM
I visit a lot of gaming forums and trust me, you are wrong.

One of many reasons I prefer sticking to smaller forums like this one.
Title: Re: Best and Worst US Presidents
Post by: Gumba Masta on December 12, 2010, 06:11:14 PM
I visit a lot of gaming forums and trust me, you are wrong.

Master Chief is Lord!!!
Title: Re: Best and Worst US Presidents
Post by: Travis Retriever on December 12, 2010, 07:05:52 PM
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Historical_rankings_of_Presidents_of_the_United_States#Scholar_survey_results
See what I mean?
Look how many rate Lincoln as the best or second best president, along with guys like FDR right up close?
Or guys like Warren G. Harding as among, if not the worst?  I mean, he only saved the economy...

*Sighs* This is one of many reasons I have trouble taking state-educated historians and political 'scientists' seriously...

At least they seemed to agree with you on Washington and a bit on Polk.
Title: Re: Best and Worst US Presidents
Post by: Gumba Masta on December 12, 2010, 07:19:05 PM
Don't worry, when our people get into power we tell them how WE want them to remember history!
Muahahahahahaha! Jet propelled Steambot Hitler, here we come!