Poor politician barely kept the Mayans fed
It’s sobering to imagine. The thought of how often our nation has approached the precipice…and lurched into the abyss. We seem determined to festoon Chinese anthropological museums, and would be content to do so if only the inscription above our exhibit would read: They weren’t racist. A piety that the cultures subsisting in our stead will scoff to consider. Just as we today titter at the silly superstitions of peoples now largely passed. Though it is worth recalling a few of the more infamous swan dives into rocks far below. And how tantalizingly close to remaining rooted we were.
Probably no cohort in history ever so primly drew a blade across their own posterity’s neck than the sententious suits of the 88th and 89th congresses. The 1964 act eliminating white freedom of association, and its immigration equivalent one year later will see their centennials celebrated by a vanishing white minority. It was all a hilarious inter-generational knock out game. The blow struck in service of ‘freedom,’ ‘liberty,’ and ‘human dignity.’ Pompous invocations in which our ‘privileged’ children will undoubtedly find safe refuge.
Would but for Mr. Oswald’s remarkable shot (and having lounged on the grassy-knoll in person, an amazing shot it truly was), Kennedy would have been the president of that time. So it’s interesting to ponder whether the civil rights baby would have ever been disgorged from Rosemary if brain matter had remained off his lapel.
Certainly JFK was an advocate for both pieces of legislation, though what he originally proposed for CR in 1963 was a far milder version of the implacable edifice erected today. When Kennedy’s bill was first referred to committee, a congressman named Emmanuel Celler (Perhaps you will recall the name) set about adding rows of serrated teeth. As our friend recently wondered: can anybody explain to me why at Ground Zero of any atomic bomb deployed against traditional culture, you can always find a Jew dialing in the coordinates?
And yet despite Mr. Celler’s enthusiasm, Rules Chairman Howard Smith from Virginia (you didn’t expect him to be from somewhere like Vermont, I presume) indicated his intention to let the bill marinate in committe until men had colonized Pluto. And in an ironic twist, that may have actually been possible in the absence of those two laws. But the bill was immobilized there until the impromptu swearing-in of LBJ, a president every bit as awful as the man who selected him as running mate feared he would be.
President John F. Kennedy was so “worried for the country” about the prospect that Vice President Lyndon Johnson might succeed him as president that he’d begun having private conversations about who should become the Democratic Party’s standard-bearer in 1968, Jacqueline Kennedy recalled in a series of oral-history interviews recorded in early 1964.
She said her husband believed strongly that Johnson shouldn’t become president and, in the months before his death in November 1963, he’d begun talking to his brother, Robert Kennedy, about ways to maneuver around Johnson in 1968.
“Bobby told me this later, and I know Jack said it to me sometimes. He said, ‘Oh, God, can you ever imagine what would happen to the country if Lyndon was president?'” she said.
I have a good idea what would happen actually. And part of what would happen is the deployment of Kennedy’s assassination as morality impetus for the CR bill’s passage. Quoth the Johnson:
No memorial oration or eulogy could more eloquently honor President Kennedy’s memory than the earliest possible passage of the civil rights bill for which he fought so long.
And with that air behind his sails, Mr. Cellar assiduously resumed his labors filing an almost unprecedented petition with the House to move the bill out of Rules Committee. On the cusp of gaining the required signatures from northern congressmen pure as their snow, Mr. Smith eventually relented. And the rest of the story is told by your corporate Diversity Department. The point being that with no lift from a hearse, it’s very uncertain whether CR would have arrived at its current location.
One can ruminate similarly, and equally macabre in its own way, on the chance ascension of the Bush political dynasty. For it was anything but foreordained.
At the 1980 Republican convention in Detroit (savor that anachronism, a political convention in Detroit) nominee Ronald Reagan was working against time. By accounts, he was due to announce his running mate within literally hours–with no determination of whom he would select. Former President Ford was reportedly the first choice. Though having tasted authority’s apogee, Mr. Ford was loath to accept a subordinate position. He vigorously sought to negotiate a contrived power-sharing arrangement with Reagan, which was tantamount to a co-presidency. Surpringly Reagan didn’t dismiss this suggestion out of hand, though he was at the time tense in the polls and needed a publicity spark. And so the parley with Ford shambled forward against a hard deadline.
At the 11.5th hour those negotiations finally collapsed. And Reagan was bereft a running mate. One of his aids-de-camp suggested George Bush. An unlikely selection given that he was widely reviled within the inner circle as a
moderate liberal, and Reagan himself felt personal affront at Bush’s campaign insults and refusal to concede the nomination until very late in the primary season. But with no other viable options on the table, and time elapsing quickly, Reagan exhaled with resignation and said in some paraphrase “Fine. Get him on the phone.”
Choose in haste, lament at leisure.
For without the VP, there is no first President Bush.
And without President Bush, there is no name propulsion for his mashed-potato-mouthed dauphin.
And without that inept, universally reviled presidency, there is no Obama White House.
And without father and son, there is no candidacy for the Bush Holy Ghost.
J.E. Bush would be selling insurance in Miami if Reagan had simply developed contingency plans 35 years ago. Instead plutocrat industrialists are consuming $100,000 meals in hopes of purchasing another pliant neo-con to reside at 1600 Pennsylvannia. And if you’d care to learn–for perhaps those six people who do not know–where III’s loyalties lie. Here’s a few noteworthy remarks.
They’re [immigrants natch] more entrepreneurial, they set up more business, they buy more homes, they’re more family-oriented, they work in jobs that in many cases are jobs that have gone unfilled
I think Detroit would do real well if we started repopulating it with young, aspirational people. [Native aspirants not being sought]
We have people that mope around thinking ‘my life is bad, my children will not have the same opportunities that I had.’ What a horrible notion in America, the most optimistic of places, and I think an economically driven immigration plan . . . would lift our spirits up dramatically.
[If you thought your children being dispossed was sobering, just wait to see how great you feel when my donors become rich off it!]
The one way that we can rebuild the demographic pyramid is to fix a broken immigration system. . . . If we do this, we will rebuild our country in a way that will allow us to grow. If we don’t do it, we will be in decline, because the productivity of this country is dependent on young people that are equipped to be able to work hard….Immigrants create far more businesses than native-born Americans over the last 20 years. Immigrants are more fertile, and they love families and they have more intact families.
Contra actual Americans, The Immigrant People love their families. They also work very hard, as in Honduras. The results of which are self evident. Though I’m eager to be reminded why we are obliged toward concern for a demographic pyramid that doesn’t include us. And for greater precision of language, it is not the immigration system that is broken, but rather the deportation one. The former being manifestly lubricated to a blur.
All of which leads me to pause in amazement at such a political appeal. A candidate seeking to cultivate votes by explaining that his supporters are defective components that must be replaced for the sake of an efficient Economy. It is something remarkable to behold. Most poignantly because he presumes (with surely some degree of accuracy) that it will all work swimmingly.
Would giving Ford a few agencies to play with have really been so bad?