Wednesday, April 04, 2007

Lincoln and Bush....Of COURSE!

This was a while back, but it was funny... go and take a look.


Jon Stewart: I'm joined now by Senior Comparative Presidential Historian, John Oliver. Uh, Bush and Lincoln? Clearly the pundits are trying to make that comparison. Is this a fair comparison?

John Oliver: It's not a comparison at all, Jon. It's an opening bid. The first salvo by the President in the negotiation over where he'll rank among his predecessors. Obviously, he's starting high. He knows he's not going to GET Lincoln; it's just part of the game. Bush opens with Lincoln; America comes back with Harding. Bush says, "Harding? You're killing me here! I'm at least Eisenhower!" America says, "I'm sorry, we can't go any higher than Hoover." And so on and so forth, until we all settle on something in the low "Van Buren" range.

Jon Stewart: Are there any similarities, historically, between Bush and Lincoln?

John Oliver: There are some, Jon. Both men presided over civil wars. One ours and historically inevitable; one someone else's and ridiculously evitable. Both men suspended the writ of habeas corpus, although Lincoln did mention it publicly. And, of course, both weren't afraid of the grand gesture: we all remember Lincoln on the deck of the U.S.S. Monitor hailing the end of Civil War combat operations three years before the South actually surrendered.


Kate said...

months ago, i read an interview w/ laura and w in which the first teacher mentions going to the library of congress to read the history of "unpopular" presidents when they need to put in perspective the feedback on this current administration. she used lincoln as an example...

Kate said...

my error, it's not the library of congress... here's the link to the article.
note bush's reading material.