Jimmy Carter, Robert Carol, Richard Nixon discussed on Hugh Hewitt

Automatic TRANSCRIPT

But that was certainly much more than redeemed by his performance during the Cuban missile crisis when this world really wasp on the brink of nuclear annihilation, But if you look around the globe, I mean what he had to deal with Cuba. Berwyn, Southeast Asia. The whole process of decolonization in Africa. It was an extraordinarily eventful time, and I think by and large Kennedy handled the crisis you dealt with, and I think he grew I think he grew in office. I think there's no question he would have been re elected in 1964, the first president to intersect with television and its massive power correct, absolutely, and then that you're with enormous and not altogether healthy impact, not only for the presidency, but I would argue for for American democracy. Generally, it's It's no accident that Kennedy you know, he moved. I can't press conferences and they were. There were television cameras. It was Kennedy who turned them into into a defining moment in the presidency. Now, let's go to LBJ. I preface this by saying. I love the first couple of books by Robert Carol, one of your colleagues in the art, and it is an art of presidential biography. I can't read the master of the Senate because I loathe the LBJ. I just don't like the man Hey, woz and ideals of polarizing figure There's not about but you know what he may have the last word literally because of the tapes that he left. Meanwhile, here's the hypocrisy. People were outraged. Richard Nixon had White House state, but I can guarantee the historians air gratefully left to bind and winning Johnson, who was remember, among other things, not very good at public communications. A great irony, baby. He turns out to be very good at posthumous communications. It was women. Johnson, who, with his heart and soul wanted to fight a war on poverty on who in many ways was consumed by that other war. In Vietnam. Did he ever do anything for the reason he articulated what that would mean Johnson deserves real credit for political sacrifice with the Civil Rights Act and the Voting Rights Act. Remember after Selma when he stood in front of a joint session of Congress, and he said, we shall overcome. He knew in doing that, um, that he was probably Um, kissing off the support of the south. He wants solid democratic south for a generation or more. I mean, remember or whatever. And I agree. There's a lot of God knows where a lot of flaws to this man and I think the I think that the credibility gap I think the pervasive distrust of government generally really is as much winding Johnson's doing. As it is Richard Nixon's, But it is also true that there were moments in his presidency when he showed great political courage and the reason we remember some presidents and forget others is because They're willing to take risks for something bigger than reelection. Heavy run in 68. We've lost, probably to Richard Nixon. Yeah, I think I think so. All right, let's begin with our in. What? Make you of him? Well, Richard Nixon said once that it would be at least 50 years before people could write about him objectively. And, um It may be something to that. I certainly It will be a long time before we have the complete record will never run out of books on Nixon will we know, But you know you need time for emotions to cool. And to gain some kind of perspective. Nixon's a fascinating character in so many ways because he was so miscast for politics. He he described himself as an introvert and extroverts profession. Through sheer will and self discipline. Um, he made himself into obviously very successful campaigner on a man who came back from defeat 1960 in this segment, Richard. We have to get through the end of Nixon, Ford, Carter, Reagan and George the first So I'm gonna let you do that. What? You've got 10 minutes to do. 10 5 presidents. Okay, look, you know greatness is in the eye of the beholder like beauty. But there are presidents that we know. We know whatever we think of them. We know they're important, all right, the president who opened China and went to Russia and find the salt agreement and created the Environmental Protection Agency. That's an important figure quite apart from his historically unique status is the only president to resign, agreed. Now, Ford You know, Ford is often seen as an addendum, You know, kind of the rounding out of the Nixon presidency, and I think that may be inaccurate. I think there's more of a break there than most people think. In some ways. Ford is the first post new deal president. I give you one example economic deregulation today. We take it for granted. In fact, it's beginning to be a backlash against it. But in fact, economic deregulation was an idea that was really introduced during the Ford presidency. The railroads were deregulated, and in fact, Ford had regular legislation to deregulate the airlines already to go, which in fact was then picked up by and successfully championed by Jimmy Carter. So there's more of a break. Actually there and Ford, of course, the only UN elected president, the Orient elected vice president, Ah, man who confronted in some ways the most severe domestic crises, at least since 1933. If not since the Civil War. His historical assignment was basically to restore trust in government. I think most people 30 years later, I think you did a pretty good job of it. He's also was our greatest athlete. As a president. I think Jerry Ford, he probably could have used Relief act. I'll be right back more with Richard Norton Smith to keep going on and finish our President's Day special,.

Coming up next