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Wednesday, December 17, 2008

5 Presidents Worse Than George W Bush

The majority of the American public seems to think George W Bush is the worst president of all time. Well that may be true someday, but not enough time has passed to make that proclamation. Maybe in fifty years Dubya is hands down the worst president ever. For right now, however, here are five presidents that were worse than George W Bush.

Franklin Pierce (1853-1857)

Franklin PierceThere were a lot of shitty presidents in the middle of the 19th century and Franklin Pierce was the first of them. In such a trying time in our country's history, it's amazing how many idiots we had holding the highest office in the land.

Pierce lived an interesting early life. He was only 27 years old when he became a congressman, at 31 he became a senator. He resigned in 1842 and decided to return to his home of Concord, New Hampshire to practice law, mostly because his wife, Jane Means Appleton, absolutely hated Washington. He turned down nominations to be Governor of New Hampshire and Attorney General of the United States, seemingly perfectly content to spend the rest of his life adhering to Jane's anti-political wishes. But soon after, Pierce up and decided to join the army and fight in the Mexican-American war. After serving in the war he decided it was time that he ran for President of the United States. Maybe he was just really sick of life with Jane.

Pierce faced one problem when he decided to run for President, no one knew who the hell he was. Pierce, however, had the ultimate trump card: he was good friends with famous author Nathaniel Hawthorne. Hawthorne, who was writing best sellers like they were going out of style, penned a biography of Franklin Pierce that was embellished to an extreme degree. Hawthorne was so popular that no one cared to check and see how true this actual story of Pierce was, and Pierce won the Presidency in a landslide. While president-elect, Pierce's train car derailed and his 11 year old son was killed. Jane saw the accident as God's way of punishing Pierce for becoming President.

Why He Sucked

Pierce refused to be sworn into the White House, instead choosing to be affirmed in and placing his hand on a law book instead of a Bible, which almost every other president did. This doesn't bother me, but I am sure it caused a lot of people in the country to freak out. Pierce also appointed Jefferson Davis as his Secretary of War. Davis was, you know, only the most famous traitor in American history. Pierce signed the Kansas-Nebraska Act, which repelled the Missouri Compromise and led to Bleeding Kansas, which was kind of like a "warm up" for the Civil War. Who was in his ear during this crucial time? Mr. Jefferson Davis of course.

Pierce holds the distinction of being the only incumbent President in United States history not be nominated for a second term. Hey, even Dubya got nominated for a second term. Upon leaving the White House, Pierce was quoted as saying "there's nothing left to do but get drunk".

He did have one victory in office though; he presided over the Gadsden Purchase. So if you live in the most southern part of Arizona, you can thank Pierce for being an American, sort of.

James Buchanan (1857-1861)

James Buchanon

America was still reeling from the Pierce administration, yet we got an even worse President to follow in his footsteps! Fresh off of telling Franklin Pierce to get the fuck out, the Democratic Party nominated James Buchanan because he wasn't around when the country was coming to blows over the Kansas-Nebraska act. He was in London at the time, and the Democratic Party figured that he was not tainted by either side, so he was the perfect candidate. The only problem was that Buchanan had no desire to be President, but he decided to accept the nomination anyway.

Why He Sucked

In his inaugural address, he said he wasn't going to run for a second term. Basically he was quitting before he ever started! I guess this is what you can expect when you nominate someone who doesn't want the job in the first place. He lobbied the Supreme Court to uphold the right of owning slaves in the Dred Scott Decision. He was accused by Abraham Lincoln as being a key figure of Slave Power, which was a movement to get slavery legalized in the United States. If that wasn't enough, he got into an all out war over control of his party with Stephen A Douglas, suffered through the Financial Panic of 1857 and went to war with Utah. By the time his turn as President was up, the country was ready to go to Civil War.

It was also widely believed that Buchanan was gay, but that had nothing to do with his crappy executive skills.

Andrew Johnson (1865-1869)

Andrew Johnson

We were finally blessed with a competent president after the Pierce/Buchanan fiascos with the election of Abraham Lincoln. Lincoln is widely considered as the best President in United States history. Sadly, he was assassinated by John Wilkes Booth and I am about 100% sure Booth did it because he knew Andrew Johnson would do his best to screw up anything good Lincoln did.

Why He Sucked

Andrew Johnson was all talk. He was once quoted as saying he would be in favor of hanging all Confederate traitors, but when he succeeded Lincoln he got all buddy buddy with them. He pardoned a ton of Confederate leaders, let them remain in control of the South and continue to fuck with black people. He passed the Black Codes, which made Freedmen second class citizens. He even welcomed back many prominent, ex-confederates into congress. His plan for Reconstruction was pretty much the exact opposite of Lincoln's.

Johnson was hated so much he was actually impeached twice, the second time he was only one vote shy of being the first President to ever be kicked out of office. His last act in office was to grant amnesty to all Confederates on Christmas Day in 1868, basically his way of flipping the bird to the North on his way out.

Warren G. Harding (1921-1923)

Warren G Harding

Warren G. Harding was a puppet. If you look closely at old pictures of him you can actually see the strings controlling his body. In all seriousness though, Harding was a puppet for big oil. He got into office behind the big pockets of Jake Hamon and Henry Sinclair. This was important for Harding because, like Franklin Pierce, no one had any idea who he was when he ran for President. He was kind of like Barack Obama, except nowhere near as cool or competent.

Why He Sucked

Well, I already mentioned he was in the pocket of Big Oil. Dubya used to get a lot of criticism about this, but he was nothing compared to Harding. Harding's right had man was Albert Fall, the Secretary of the Interior, but he basically ran the show. Fall was the Dick Cheney of his time, and used all his contacts to get fertile, federal owned oil fields into the hands of private oil, all while taking major kickbacks. Albert Fall ended up going to jail, and the mastermind of the entire project, Henry Sinclair, was found guilty was well.

Now Harding didn't do any of this, but like I said, he was a puppet and turned his head the other way as it was happening. So what was Harding doing in the White House? He was having a grand old time. He threw poker parties that lasted all night. The men at these parties drank a lot of alcohol even though Prohibition was currently in effect. This would be the equivalent of a modern day President hitting the bong while in office. He did everything short of turning the White House into one of those Old West brothels. If you are one of these people who are mortified over Bill Clinton's actions in the White House, your head would literally explode at some of the stuff Warren G Harding did.

Herbert Hoover (1929-1933)

Hoover was part of the Harding Administration, serving as Secretary of Commerce, so we should have known what we were in for. As Secretary of Commerce, he faced a major crisis when the Great Mississippi Flood struck. Hoover gained national acclaim for how he handled the situation. What was overlooked was that Hoover and his relief efforts treated African-Americans terribly. But back in the 20s there was no Kanye West to go on MTV and say "Herbert Hoover doesn't care about black people". Hoover was able to keep the incident involving black people out of the public eye by promising African Americans unprecedented access when he was elected President.

Why He Sucked

Upon being elected to office he broke his promise he made with African-Americans, which caused almost all of them to defect to the Democratic Party. While Republicans continue to strategize on how to get the "black vote" today, they can thank Herbert Hoover for putting them in this situation in the first place.

Of course we all know why Herbert Hoover really sucked; he led the country into the Great Depression. Hoover is often, inaccurately, accused of being in love with Laissez-faire economics and doing absolutely nothing to stop the Great Depression. This is untrue, he introduced lots of different legislation to try to prevent the Great Depression, they just all failed. That leads us to the question: would you rather your President didn't try or would you rather him fail every time he tried?

Hoover also sent the military to fight civilians in the Bonus Army incident. He will forever be remembered for "Hoovervilles", which is what all the unemployed, homeless people called the shacks that they lived in. Give Hoover some credit though, he decided to run for re-election even though he didn't want to. He figured he was the best suited Republican to deal with the economic crisis. He was soundly defeated by FDR.

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