THE SPINE MAY 20, 2007
Jimmy Carter has been one of the least-liked and least-respected American presidents in
modern times. Still, when he speaks he speaks with the surety of
ex-cathedra authority. This is a joke. He was turned out of office after
one term during which the economy hit bottom, hit bottom at least as low as
any time since the great depression. Unemployment and inflation were at
post-war highs. That's what I mean by hit bottom. Fifty-five Americans
were held in captivity in Tehran while Carter told us to put yellow ribbons
on our lapels as antidote. He had basically made the military
dysfunctional by starving it of resources. He mistook the country's outrage
at him for a malaise.
And now he comes to pronounce a verdict on George Bush, "the worst in
history." I'm no fan of Bush. But the same people--and Carter among them--also pronounced Ronald Reagan's presidency the worst in history...or even
worse. Weren't there "impeach Reagan" bumper stickers and T-shirts around
But his most haughty pronunciamento was against Tony Blair. I am a fan of
Tony Blair. And he is not abominable. It is Jimmy Carter who is
abominable...and small-minded, provincial, self-centered, incompetent and
also someone who imagines himself a saint.
The story is on Reuters.