Some writers recently claimed President Bush was the worst President in United States history. Understandable, since as we get older, we lose three things: memory, and I forget the other two.
To be the worst, you have to suffer in comparison to others. You have to do something worse than President Clinton did in 1994, when he studiously ignored the slaughter of 800,000 in Rwanda. You also should not notice that more people died in a heat wave in Chicago in 1995 than in Katrina in Louisiana. Of course, you have to forget the excruciating embarrassment of Monica. Finally, I doubt if any Democrats with memories intact forgive Bill and Hillary for the Hillarycare fiasco. Republicans should create a monument to it, as it resulted in Republicans winning both the House and Senate for the first time in forty years.
Worst ever comparisons must also include LBJ. He micromanaged us to defeat in Vietnam (where we never lost a battle), and about as many or more Americans were killed in any four-month period in 1967 through 1969 than have died in three years of fighting in Iraq. Against the widely discredited claim that 100,000 Iraqis have died, the Vietnam War killed over two million Vietnamese.
Who can forget the pathetic presidency of Jimmy Carter? Remember “malaise?” Double-digit inflation, double-digit interest rates, economic stagnation, recession, the 444-day Iranian hostage crisis, and the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan? Jimmy really fixed them when he boycotted the Olympics, didn’t he?
JFK was well on his way to a miserable presidency too, following the Bay of Pigs debacle with starting and escalating the Vietnam War. Given his chance to clean up the mess, LBJ just made it worse.
A Republican could never be the worst President. Democrats already set the bar too high.
UPDATE: In a mano-a-mano comparison of President Bush with President Clinton, President Bush wins in a walk. For irrefutable proof, go to Bush Outperforms His Predecessor, by Matt Nobles.