Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Presidental Rankings.

Seeing as everyone likes lists and my previous post was about ranking US presidents here is my highly authoritative ranking of 20th century Presidents. I won't include any explanations just yet (because it is half past two in the morning) although I have thought through all of them and may add brief explanations tomorrow.
First Rate.

Reagan- After a sustained period of poor to middling government he restored intelligent leadership to both foreign and domestic policy. Faced down Soviets whilst reviving the moribund US economy.
Truman- Plunged in the deep end, but was able to make the right decisions in WW2, and later implemented the Truman doctrine to prevent Soviet expansionism in the face of opposition within his own party. Surprisingly unpopular during his time in office.
Eisenhower- Apart from a fondness for coups his foreign policy was strong in facing up to the Soviets and he oversaw a steady boom period. Also pushed through racial desegregation of the army.
Coolidge- Resisted calls to involve the federal government too heavily in the economy and helped restore the dignity of his office.


Bush- Reasonable domestic policy and handled the major crisis of his tenure, the invasion of Kuwait, brilliantly.
Kennedy- Buggered up over Cuba, but passed big tax cuts which helped invigorate the economy.
Clinton- End of Cold War meant that his weakness on foreign policy was only a limited handicap. Domestically he appointed a good treasury secretary, passed NAFTA and let the Republicans reform welfare.
Taft- Meh.
Nixon- Good on foreign policy but way to the left domestically with policies including Affirmative Action, wage & price controls and the extension of big government.
Ford- Amoral foreign policy combined with average domestic policy.


T. Roosevelt- Started unnecessary wars and demonised business. Almost as overrated as the other Roosevelt.
Harding- Not as bad as he is usually considered, the way he dealt with a severe economic downturn puts Franklin Roosevelt to shame.
Wilson- Buggered peace negotiations after WW1 by failing to keep USA involved in world affairs.
Carter - Only reason he is in the poor rather than disastrous category is because he was too useless even to fuck up properly.


Hoover - Raised taxes and reintroduced massive tariffs into the world economy.
Johnson - Failure in Vietnam, and massive expansion of welfare state and crime levels. In fairness he passed the civil rights act but that was more symbolic than effective.
F. Roosevelt- Prolonged the depression and failed to prepare for war.

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