Google+
Close

The Campaign Spot

Election-driven news and views . . . by Jim Geraghty.

Some of My Fellow Righty Bloggers Need a Broader Definition of ‘Worst Figure’



Text  



I can’t believe conservative bloggers put a bunch of garden-variety Democratic politicians so high, when asked to compile a list of the Worst Figures in American History.

The list, compiled from the responses of 43 right-of-center bloggers by John Hawkins:

  • 23) Saul Alinsky
  • 23) Bill Clinton
  • 23) Hillary Clinton
  • 19) Michael Moore
  • 19) George Soros (8)
  • 19) Alger Hiss (8)
  • 19) Al Sharpton (8)
  • 13) Al Gore (9)
  • 13) Noam Chomsky (9)
  • 13) Richard Nixon (9)
  • 13) Jane Fonda (9)
  • 13) Harry Reid (9)
  • 13) Nancy Pelosi (9)
  • 11) John Wilkes Booth (10)
  • 11) Margaret Sanger (10)
  • 9) Aldrich Ames (11)
  • 9) Timothy McVeigh (11)
  • 7) Ted Kennedy (14)
  • 7) Lyndon Johnson (14)
  • 5) Benedict Arnold (17)
  • 5) Woodrow Wilson (17)
  • 4) The Rosenbergs (19)
  • 3) Franklin Delano Roosevelt (21)
  • 2) Barack Obama (23) 
  • 1) Jimmy Carter (25)

I’m no fan of most of the Democrats on the list, and there are some good picks. But most of the modern political figures look ridiculous when we compare their actions to some of America’s most really notorious figures.

No Al Capone? No Machine Gun Kelly or the Lindbergh baby kidnappers?

No Jefferson Davis or anyone else associated with the Confederacy beyond John Wilkes Booth? Speaking of presidential assassins, no Lee Harvey Oswald? (Oh, I know, I know, he was the fall guy for the big conspiracy.) Aaron Burr gets a pass for killing Alexander Hamilton in a duel?

Isn’t Johnny Walker Lindh or Robert Hanssen a more clear-cut case than Jane Fonda or either of the Clintons?

No Charles Manson? Come on. You’re really telling me Al Sharpton and Michael Moore outrank somebody like Jeffrey Dahmer, who ate people? Race-baiting and rabble-rousing outrank cannibalism?

No Jim Jones (cult leader, not national security adviser) or David Koresh?

Not one villain from America’s business world? No ruthless layoff king like “Chainsaw Al” Dunlap? No Ken Lay? Bernie Madoff couldn’t reach the top 20?

UPDATE: A couple readers argue that I’m being a bit unfair, that clearly many of these bloggers using the measuring stick of how far a figure’s bad deeds reached, instead of who committed the most evil acts in American history.

I actually think you can make strong cases for some of the political figures on this list. Anyone who’s read Liberal Fascism understands Wilson’s inclusion, and there’s a lot of supporting evidence to the argument that Jimmy Carter was the century’s worst, or most ineffective president. I think demonizing FDR is as foolish as lionizing him, and as time goes by, I feel less animus towards Bill Clinton, and his signing of welfare reform alone ought to keep him off this list.

But some of these names strike me as ludicrously small time for the scale of this list. Fahrenheit 9/11 and his other crap documentaries put Michael Moore in the top 20 worst figures in American history? I’m not even sure he’s among my 20 least favorite liberals at this moment. Al Sharpton? Soros?

A lot of the list comes across as “the top figures who bug conservative bloggers,” and I don’t think it’s healthy to mix the categories of “people who bug me” and “history’s greatest monsters.” Even if the Simpsons did put Jimmy Carter atop that list first.


Tags: Something Lighter


Text  


Sign up for free NRO e-mails today:

Subscribe to National Review