Sunday, September 14, 2008

Which is the War Party?

Many people believe the Republicans are our "War Party", not the Democrats. Is this true? Let's review the historical record since 1900. Here are: the presidents, each's educational background and wars fought during each's administration.

William McKinley: Albany Law School (LS), Spanish-American War, 6 weeks.
Theodore Roosevelt: Harvard College, Columbia LS, no wars of substance (NWOS).
William Howard Taft: Yale, Cincinnati LS, NWOS.
Woodrow Wilson: Princeton, Johns Hopkins PhD, World War I.

Warren Harding, Ohio Central College, NWOS.
Calvin Coolidge: Amherst, NWOS.
Herbert Hoover: Stanford, NWOS.
FDR: Harvard College, Columbia LS, World War II.
Harry Truman: No college, Korea.
Dwight Eisenhower: West Point, NWOS.
John Kennedy: Harvard, Vietnam. In 1963 we had 16,000 men in Vietnam.
Lyndon Johnson: Southwest Texas State Teachers College, Vietnam.
Richard Nixon: Whittier College, Duke LS, Vietnam.
Gerald Ford: U of Michigan, Yale LS, NWOS.
James Carter: Annapolis, NWOS.
Ronald Reagan: Eureka College, NWOS.
George Bush I: Yale College, Iraq.
William Clinton: Georgetown, Yale LS, NWOS.
George Bush II: Yale College, Harvard MBA, Iraq and Afghanistan.

What do I conclude from this, if anything? Most of our larger wars, WWI, WWII, Korea and Vietnam started during Democratic administrations. Only Iraq I and II and Afghanistan started during Republican administrations. WWI, WWII, Vietnam, Iraq I and II and Afghanistan started during Ivy League college graduates' administrations. Only Korea did not. That Obama has Columbia and Havard degrees is no guarantee he will not take us to war. His anti-military procurement bias is an especially ominous omen! Conclusion: if you want war, elect the Ivy League party candidate.

I remember a popular saying during the 1968 election which shows how little a nominee's promises mean. "They told me if I voted for Goldwater, we would have a half a million men in Southeast Asia. They were right! I voted for Goldwater in 1964 and we have a half a million men in Southeast Asia". Laugh! I thought that was funny in 1968!


Anonymous said...

Uh... typically your reasoning is quite good. Have you stepped off the deep end? There seems to be absolutely no correlation between college choice and war outcome, nor should there be.

Moreover, the current positions of the candidates running for office is fairly clear. Obama is decidedly less an advocate of war then John McCain.

Moreover, you didn't distinguish between wars that were necessary and justified (ex ww2) and wars that were frivolous (ex vietnam).

Are you crazy with grief or something? IDK what happened to your brain but it can't be good.

Independent Accountant said...

While I agree,there should be no relationship between a president's undergraduate college and his taking the US to war, at least in this century, there seems to be one.
The positions of Obama and McCain, historically mean nothing. In 1916 Woodrow Wilson ran on the platform, "he kept you out of war". FDR ran on a similar platform in 1940. What did LBJ say in 1964? "I'm not going to send American boys to do the job Asian boys should do". So? See my 21 August 2008 post about Russia which mentions Mauritz Halgren's book. FDR wanted to drag us into a war with Japan from at least 1934. In 1931 Hoover blundered by opposing Japan's takeover of Manchuria. Why do I think Hoover blundered? Japan and Russia fought a war in 1904-05. Japan was afraid that Russia under Stalin would take control of Manchuria and use it as a base to launch a war against Japan. China was too weak to hold Manchuria. Either Russia would take it or Japan would. Japan just beat Russia to the punch! Hoover did not appreciate the geography of Asia.
Thanks for complimenting me for me reasoning. While I agree with you, that we probably could not have avoided entry into WWII, there was no reason for the Pacific War. None at all. I repeat: no matter what platform a candidate professes, it should not be taken seriously. My judgment: if we are to have a major war during the next administration, it is much more likely under Obama than McCain, despite all McCain's bellicose talk.
Why should I be crazy with grief?