by Inoljt, Wed Dec 16, 2009 at 08:08:34 PM EST
Imagining what the Founding Fathers would think about our nation today always constitutes an interesting exercise. America's strength and enduring democracy probably would have delighted many of them. On the other hand, its political parties and many foreign alliances might have raised an eyebrow or two.
In fact, if one reads George Washington's farewell address, its quite amazing how much of his advice was not followed. "Avoid...overgrown military establishments" (nope); "steer clear of permanent alliances" (nope); "preserving the Union" (the Civil War ruined that one); "avoiding...the accumulation of debt" (funny, that); "party dissension...is itself a frightful despotism" (stopped following that advice even before his death).
Because this is a politics blog, however, the question here is what political party Washington would have belonged to.
On the surface, things look muddled. Washington's personal beliefs don't fit one particular mold. His commitment to isolationism, for example, wouldn't have made either the Democrats or the Republicans look appealing. He supported democracy and liberty - but doing that isn't exactly a Democratic or Republican-only thing.
We know that Washington held Federalist sympathies; thus his support of Alexander Hamilton. Hamilton strikes one as a modern-day big-business supporter; perhaps Washington might therefore have leaned Republican.
The truth, however, is actually fairly obvious. Demographics provide the answer. If we look not at policy but at identity, we can tell what party George Washington would have belonged to.
Think about it for a moment. George Washington was a married rich rural Southern slave-owning Protestant straight white male who in all probability would not have voted for a black man. Sounds like a Republican to me.
by Beltway Dem, Mon Feb 02, 2009 at 02:26:51 AM EST
(Cross-posted at C4O Democrats)
The Washington Post has an interesting article this morning that suggests historians are taking an entirely new look at the first First Lady of the United States. Historian Patricia Brady is telling an entirely new story about Martha Washington, who it turns out was not a frumpy and plump dimwit but an 18th century hottie.
by Left Right and Center, Thu Jul 03, 2008 at 01:04:01 PM EDT
The first half of today's show was about patriotism, and it was juicy. The second was about Barack Obama's shift to the center and John McCain's Campaign Shake up.
A substantive discussion amongst the panelists about what patriotism means. Bob Scheer expounds on George Washington's farewell speech; Tony Blankley talks about how the theme plays out politically; Matt Miller shares thoughts by Peter Beinart of Time Magazine that the right says "America's great," the left says, "Here's what would make America great;" and Arianna Huffington mentions the USA Today poll that says 2/3 of Americans think that protesting is patriotic. Are Obama's moves toward swing voters going to win him votes or just the animosity of his base? And will John McCain's campaign recover its footing with new guy, Steve Schmidt, at the helm.
by WeDemocrats, Wed Mar 14, 2007 at 09:04:35 AM EDT
I saw "The Inconvenient Truth" and then read several hatchet articles by right wingers that attempted to refute it, they failed to do so. One even went to far as to say that Gore was trying to be a biblical prophet since he was predicting vast worldwide flooding if the present trend isn't reversed. Utter nonsense.
The one thing that impresses me about Al Gore is that he is a man with an open mind, he is willing to think as Thomas Jefferson did, not close his mind as George W. Bush has done. Does this get him into trouble, probably, but he is willing to step back up to the plate and take another swing towards a different direction if required. Unlike bulldozer Bush who only knows "stay the course", and who believes in the words of Adolf Hitler, "What luck for rulers that men do not think."
by Bob Schacht, Sat Feb 17, 2007 at 10:12:12 AM EST
There is a nice report on NPR this morning about how George Washington treated enemy prisoners that stands in brutal and stark contrast with Butcher Bush. If you missed it, you can find it at
In brief, Washington decided to make it a policy to treat enemy prisoners well, and made friends out of enemies. He did this against the norms of his day.
Program intro in the extended entry below.