Presidential terms

English: Grover Norquist at a political confer...

English: Grover Norquist at a political conference in Orlando, Florida. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Barack Obama is US President number 44 and when he finishes his term in January, 2017, 44 US Presidents will have served a total of 228 years or an average of 5 years and 2 months each. There will have been only 14 presidents who have served two full terms or more. They are in order:

  1. Washington
  2. Jefferson
  3. Madison
  4. Monroe
  5. Jackson
  6. Grant
  7. Cleveland
  8. Wilson
  9. FDR
  10. Eisenhower
  11. Reagan
  12. Clinton
  13. GW Bush
  14. Obama

President Obama will be the 14th two-term President unless Grover Norquist and some Republicans have their way and impeach him for being President while black. GW Bush has the distinction of being number 13 on the list, an unlucky number for the country.

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Where the right went wrong

Dwight D. Eisenhower photo portrait.

Dwight D. Eisenhower photo portrait. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Why did the GOP, the party of Lincoln and Teddy Roosevelt and Eisenhower, go so far off the rails and lately threatening to walk off a cliff?

The GOP has always been the party of the wealthy, but they were wise enough to realize that there were not enough votes to keep them in power if they counted only on the votes of the rich. Thus the smart money in the GOP, pun intended, welcomed minorities and a variety of opinions. Those days are long gone.

The GOP now represents a Christian denomination that says my way or the highway. Nostalgia for the past now dominates the GOP, and fear of difference beliefs and histories and ethnicities power their programs. He/she doesn’t look like us.

The 1% created the TEA Party to disrupt the adoption of the Affordable Care Act, Obamacare. Now the 1% have lost control of the TEA Party members of Congress. The tail is now wagging the dog, to the dog’s discomfort and to the dismay of more rational voters.

There has always been a tug-of-war in society between the conservative and the liberal, between a patriarchal view that father knows best and a liberal view that children need to grow by exercising responsibility and judgment. Historically, both parties have included both views. Now the GOP is in the final stages of purifying itself by eliminating liberal and moderate members. You are either one of them, or you are a RINO and pushed out of the party.

Presidential trivia

Seal of the President of the United States

Image via Wikipedia

This is the start of a regular feature that will continue as an Aside. I enjoy sharing bits of Presidential trivia.

Thomas Jefferson preferred the written word over the spoken word. He gave only two speeches during his eight years as President, his first and second inaugural addresses.

Teddy Roosevelt was a voracious reader and writer. He read all 47 of Anthony Trollope’s books in one year.

Woodrow Wilson’s first name was Thomas.

U. S. Grant’s first name was Samuel. When he applied to West Point, his first and second names were reversed and he never changed their order. Grant was a close friend of Mark Twain.

LBJ earned the nickname Light Bulb Johnson by turning out the lights in the White House when not in use.

JFK suffered migraine headaches if he did not have a sexual encounter every three to four days.

Jimmy Carter immersed himself in the details of his office. He personally scheduled the use of the White House tennis courts.

Dwight Eisenhower was noted for his sometimes convoluted speech. He did this on purpose to confuse his questioners in the press.

Andrew Johnson was so highly regarded by the voters of his time that he was regarded as a second Andy Jackson.