The Nudnik File

Nudnik - n. U.S. colloq. Esp. in Jewish usage: a pestering, nagging, or irritating person

Thursday, April 14, 2005

              Our Worst President
Ned Rice compares Jimmy Carter to the recently departed Pope. Needless to say, Jimmy comes up a bit short.
As our commander in chief, Jimmy Carter consistently displayed three basic characteristics: hapless incompetence, (what a charitable person might describe as) a distaste for confrontation and danger, and - paradoxically, given the first two - an almost cartoonishly inflated ego. In short, Jimmy Carter was the deputy sheriff Barney Fife of American presidents: alternatively bumbling, then petrified, then egomaniacal, then back to bumbling, and so on for four long, surreal years. One of history's true buffoons, Jimmy Carter was, at best, a post-Nixon electoral palate cleanser of a president whose sole contribution to America's legacy was readying the way for Reagan by his own ineptitude. Or to put it another way, Carter was the transitional boyfriend we dated briefly just after Nixon broke our heart and just before Reagan swept us off our feet. I do wish someone would tell Carter that: He still thinks he's the love of our life.

John Paul II, on the other hand, as a young seminarian risked death at the hands of the Nazis to complete his studies - then again later in life in defying not only the puppet government of his beloved Poland, but the Soviet monolith itself. The assassin's bullet he survived was nothing compared to what the Soviets might have done to the world if not for brave men like himself. President Jimmy Carter's naive, appeasement-based foreign-policy views only made that job harder and more necessary. Lucky for all of us the former Karol J. Wojtyla was up to the job.
|| Nudnik 2:52 PM
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