Tag: LBJ

Dismal Education: The Head Start Failure

Whenever government takes on a task for which it is ill-suited, failure ensues. Nowhere is this failure more evident than in the realm of education. I always begin with a Biblical analysis, and in this case I find no basis in Scripture for civil government to be in charge of education. That is primarily the responsibility of parents. Historically in America—prior to the development of the public school system—parents, churches, private academies, and local townships dominated education, and we were… Read more »

The Diversionary President

Presidential campaigns are rarely things of beauty. In my course that covers the second half of American history, I show some videos of campaign ads. Some of the worst come from the LBJ campaign against Barry Goldwater in 1964. When I say “worst,” I mean in the sense of misleading. The message communicated by the Johnson team that year was that if we elected Goldwater, he would blow up the world. Literally. The most famous/infamous ad was of a little… Read more »

One of the Greatest?

CBS’s 60 Minutes aired an interview with President Obama Sunday night, but they edited out a most interesting portion. Near the end of the interview, he was asked how his presidency stacked up to previous presidents. His response? He concluded that only three other presidents in American history had done more for the country in both domestic and foreign policy than he had. First of all, that’s a lot of hubris—but I’m kind of used to that in this man…. Read more »

A Historian’s Perspective on Bad Times in American History

I don’t think there’s really any disagreement about how pessimistic the majority of Americans are about the future. Currently, all the polls reveal that pessimism.  As I survey the scene—the spiritual/moral, political, and cultural aspects [what does that leave?]—I have grave concerns as well. I plan to expound on those concerns in tomorrow’s post. But for now, I’d like to offer a historian’s perspective. Since I teach American history, I have a more in-depth knowledge of what has transpired previously…. Read more »

Battles in the Budget [and Philosophical] War

The budget battle has only begun, and one very important part of that will be the debt ceiling. House Republicans had their first vote on it last week, denying the Obama administration its desire to raise the limit. It was only the first shot in this war. More will be forthcoming. Then there’s the ongoing fight to repeal Obamacare. It’s really quite amazing how something that was billed as great for everyone has become the focal point of many groups… Read more »

Does Anyone Remember?

Today used to be George Washington’s birthday. Yes, I know it still is, but how many people are aware of it nowadays? Instead, we have Presidents Day, always celebrated on the Monday of the week and apparently dedicated to all presidents regardless of merit. Washington had merit; some of the others have had very little. I mean, do I really have this urge to celebrate the presidencies of Millard Fillmore or Chester Alan Arthur? Am I supposed to rejoice in… Read more »

Party of Which People?

I’ve always found it somewhat comical that the Democratic party refers to itself as the party of the people. Historically, it has been the Democrats who have pushed the idea that the government, not individuals, knows best. It started with Woodrow Wilson. He was devoted to the idea that the Constitution was a “living” document that politicians and judges could alter at will. During WWI, Wilson took almost complete control of the American economy, even to the point of nationalizing… Read more »