Presidents Day 2014

MartinVanBurenFrom JEOPARDY show 6666: MY “SON”, THE PRESIDENT (each answer has the word “son” in it)
*Chronologically, he was the first who fits the category
*He was preceded & succeeded as president by the same man
*He beat Clinton–DeWitt Clinton–in 1812
*For refusing to shine the boots of a British officer as a child, he got a saber across the face
*He whipped 2 former presidents in the same election by an electoral score of 435-88-8

Another quiz question: Who was the last president to outpoll non-voters in a presidential race?

Some music trivia: What blues legend, who performed under a pseudonym, was actually named after a US President?

(Answers at the end)

Nixontapes.org is the only website dedicated solely to the scholarly production and dissemination of digitized Nixon tape audio and transcripts. We have the most complete digitized Nixon tape collection in existence–approximately 2,300 hours spread over 2.5 terabytes of hard drives that contain more than 7,000 audio files. This is the only website in the world that makes the complete collection of Nixon tapes available directly to the public in a user-friendly format, free of charge.” There are a total of 3,700 hours of tapes, so the job is only 2/3s done!”

The song The ’68 Nixon (This Year’s Model)- Denver, Boise & Johnson [LISTEN]. And here are the LYRICS.

Thomas Jefferson’s Silent Armies. Also, re TJ: Esopus Spitzenburg and the Newtown Pippin.

James Garfield: good at math.

Former President George H.W. Bush and his wife, Barbara, were the official witnesses of a marriage between two women in Maine last September. “Several other notable Republicans have voiced support for gay marriage, including Bush’s son, former President George W. Bush.” That last sentence I did not know; didn’t seem evident during his administration.

If Hillary Clinton becomes President, will she name Bill as Secretary of State? No, she can’t, unless they get divorced. And I gather the law banning it was in reaction to John Kennedy naming his brother Bobby as Attorney General.

“Expansionism and intervention are oppressive forms of activism. From that perspective, it’s easier to arrive at the four worst Presidents.

Five-year-old kid who knows more about US Presidents than most people I meet.

And a 12-year-old girl who showed that all the Presidents, save for one, have a common, royal, ancestor; that would be 42 of 43 Presidents, despite what the article headline reads. And there is only one President whose native language was not English, and that would be that same outlier, the guy pictured.

ANSWERS –
Who was:
Thomas Jefferson
Benjamin Harrison
James Madison
Andrew Jackson
Woodrow Wilson

and Theodore Roosevelt.
I had guessed LBJ, who beat Barry AuH2O badly in 1964. Dan reminded me that “Johnson got the highest vote total of the century, but the non-voters still beat him. Goldwater’s veep went to Albany Law School. He was also the first Catholic veep nominee for the Re-pubs. His name? [which I DID remember] ‘Here’s a riddle, it’s a killer/ Who the hell is William Miller?’ His daughter is comedienne and talk show host Stephanie Miller.”

The musical answer is Howlin’ Wolf, who was born Chester Arthur Burnett.

Oh, the guy pictured: Martin Van Buren, whose native language was Dutch. This was a quiz on ABC’s This Week with George Stephanapoulous earlier this year, and NONE of the panelists got it right.

Presidents Day – coins and candidates

We may have other chances at a candidate born in the fifties, but Paul will certainly be our last chance to select a Depression baby.

 

They blew it. The US Mint is dropping the $1 US Presidential coin. Well, not entirely. Those entities that sell them to collectors will receive some, but I can’t, in good conscience, BUY a $1 coin for $3 or more. Lost history, plus a chance to drop the dollar bill missed. Plus they ended the public run with an assassinated President, James Garfield, and dissed poor Chester A. Arthur, who would have been released this month. Hey, if you happen across any of them, post-Garfield, please let me know.
***
I was looking at the 2012 Republican field for President and realized that I should be supporting Ron Paul!

I jest about that, but if Ron Paul were somehow elected, he would have a quality that no other U.S. President has had: he would be born in the 1930s; his birth was in 1935. We’ve never had ANY President born in the 1930s, OR the 1950s, for that matter. Barack Obama was born in 1961, both Bush II and Clinton in 1946, both GHW Bush and Carter in 1924, and Reagan, Ford, Nixon, and Kennedy all in the 1910s.

Looking at the potential field, some of which never got traction, and others who dropped out, we have, besides Paul:

Newt Gingrich, Buddy Rohmer 1943
Herman Cain 1945
Willard “Mitt” Romney 1947
Rick Perry 1950
Gary Johnson 1953
Michele Bachmann 1956
Rick Santorum 1958
Jon Huntsman 1960

We may have other opportunities to select a President born in the fifties, but Paul will certainly be our last chance to pick a Depression baby.

Lists of best and worst Presidents tend to engender partisan debates. Here, then, is Salon’s Who’s the worst president of them all? It’s really difficult not to have Buchanan in the bottom three, at least.

Richard Nixon’s Watergate grand jury testimony. Watergate was a pivotal moment in both my life and the country’s.
***
A little off-topic: This year is the 100th anniversary of “Melody in A Major” by Chicago banker Charles G. Dawes, later Vice-President under Calvin Coolidge. You might recognize the song, with lyrics added decades later, as It’s All In The Game.

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