Sunday, August 20, 2006

L B J

Today is Sunday, 20 August 2006.

For those of us of a certain age and political bent, the life of Lyndon Baines Johnson is a tragedy, in every classical dimension, in a way which the life of Richard M. Nixon is not.

LBJ, stuck in agony to the flypaper of Dwight Eisenhower’s Vietnam War …

When LBJ signed the Voting Rights Act in 1965, he remarked to his press secretary, “I’ve just put the Republican Party in power in the South within your lifetime”.

Young’uns wouldn’t necessarily get that. Yes, the Solid South was once white-supremacist Democratic, not white-supremacist Republican.

So thanks to Prof. Alan Brinkley, for bringing to my attention, in a review in The New York Times today of a book on LBJ, the following quote:

“Let no one delude himself his work is done … While the races may stand side by side, whites stand on history’s mountain and blacks stand in history’s hollow. We must overcome unequal history before we overcome unequal opportunity.”
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Full Disclosure: In 1964, at the tender age of twelve, your author was already politico simpatico, and suggested to his parents that a proper family outing would be the inauguration of the McClellan-Kerr Arkansas River Navigation System in Oklahoma. He shook the hand of Lyndon Baines Johnson.

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On this date in 1968:

The armies of the Warsaw Pact (the USSR equivalent of NATO, and equally wicked), invaded Czechosolvakia, destroying the Prague Spring of "socialism with a human face". As if there were any other kind.

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Free Association Zone: By the by: if you don't own Neil Young's classic R & R album, After the Gold Rush, run, don't walk.

1 Comments:

Anonymous RtR said...

HH...

How about a further elaboration on the theme that the great liberal "Ike," (by comparison to our modern conservative icons and to echo the Burchers of his generation) is the author of of our post WW II imperialist designs that led to our involvement in Southeast Asia.

I am much more sympathetic to the historical view that it was Harry S. Truman, that unsubtle and naive practitioner of the geopolitical art that was persuaded by the Dulles pragmatic (or Machiavellian - choose your own adjective) gamesmanship to renounce the FDR doctrine/commitment that no colonial power would be permitted to recover any colonial possession that the country lost to Axis conquest or internal independence movement.

I believe that the very first test that permitted Truman to implement a renunciation of the FDR post-war global vision was the USE/USSA brokered return of Indochina to French Colonial status, ironically while our OSS was continuing its covert training of Ho Chi Minh's resistance (to the Japanese occupation) fighters begun during WW II under the active encouragement of FDR.

Ho Chi Minh, in recognition of the promise of an egalitarian society that the U.S.A (sans USE/USSA) believe it projected, copied the preamble to the U.S. Constitution verbatim (but for the reference to country) as the Preamble to the new post-colonial constitution.

And the rest, as they say, is history.

9:45 PM  

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