McNaughton’s Group

Special thanks to the eagle eyes at Wonkette, who’ve spotted a big one.

Extraordinarily cheezeball artist Jon McNaughton has brought forth a gathering of greats, as the ghosts of presidents past hover around sullen, stand-offish looking Barack Obama, variously annoyed or aghast at his literal TRAMPLING ON THE CONSTITUTION!

McNaughton is the kind of crank who rambles along in incoherent Founderspeak for numbered paragraphs, passive aggressively concluding:

“The information is historical. If it is not familiar to you – Google it.

Cramming all these figures into the frame seems to have skewed McNaughton’s perspective.  Small but perfectly formed James Madison is so upset at Obama’s boot-heel to our liberties that he’s bent over pleading, but appears to be almost Obama’s height.   The Forgotten Man is a giant seated on a toy town bench. Such is the occasion that Franklin Roosevelt walks.

McNaughton’s painting doesn’t leave much to chance, featuring ominous clouds, flags at half staff, and an accompanying video lush with  piano chords of doom.

Re-Burying Buchanan

Bye Bye For Now!   Scott 1081 - The 3¢ Wheatland - Home of President Buchanan

President’s History Day Month has only furthered the obscurity and disrespect of “America’s Only Bachelor President,” James Buchanan. First, C-Span’s poll of presidential history guys ‘n gals on the go confirmed his spot at te bottom of the POTUS opinion sweepstakes.  And now his Pennsylvania estate has had to collapse itself into the arms of a local historical society in order to stay afloat.

Buchanan’s Wheatland estate’s staff had dwindled to two, and its membership to 500, when the Lancaster County Historical Society beckoned. The deal is  being presented as a marriage, but Wheatland is now just an option on the Society’s web-page.

Buchanan’s administration is recalled for his staying very still as the Civil War approached, and for the invention of the ghastly title “First Lady,” which in his case was his niece.


Lady In Question   2009-03-03-harrietlane.jpg




An exciting future of failed president reenactors lies ahead!


ford-cover-updike-memories-of-the-ford-administration.jpg Oh, How We Laughed

It was a simpler era. America was at peace, thanks to Congress tying the President’s hands.

Then the passage of time dimmed memories, and somehow allowed a bland two year interregnum to become America’s lost years of innocence.

ford-cover-extraordinary-circumstances.gif Now an exciting new coffee table book of Ford Era photos is offered up for your page turning pleasure.

ford-richard-norton-smith.jpg Richard Norton Smith, Presente!

[and what’s the deal with him being on the White House web site?]

The Votes Are In!

greatness-schlesinger-sr.jpg greatness-schlesinger-jr.jpggreatness-tribune.jpg

Schlesinger, Schlesinger Junior, the Chicago Tribune, all have surveyed Presidential Greatness.

Now Norman Markowitz joins the line of hero searchers.

Blogging at “Marxist-Leninist-Stalinist-Maoist*,” Brother Markowitz asks and answers, “George W. Bush: The Worst President In US History?”

He places Bush just above James Buchanan in the Presidential Badness Sweepstakes, and sinking fast:

“It is purely from an “American Centric” position that Buchanan maintains a slight lead over Bush. And of course (the second caveat), the Bush administration still has around 20 months left to overtake Buchanan. Let’s do Bush a favor. The broad left, the labor movement, the anti-Iraq war movement, all progressive movements and the Democratic Party should act now to prevent a discredited administration from extending its disastrous policies. By using constitutional means to get rid of the Bush administration and the “Reagan legacy” in terms of policy, we can keep Bush below James Buchanan on the list of “worst presidents” in American history. To conclude this article on an explicitly Marxist note, which asked a conventional question and used a presidential comparison model to answer it, we should remember that a revolutionary civil war followed the Buchanan administration.”



*”dedicated to ideologies of great communist leaders Karl Marx, Friedrich Engels, Vladimir Lenin, Joseph Stalin, Mao Zedong, Fidel Castro and Kim Il Sung”

The Greats Give Back


The Washington Post today takes note of a Manhattan Institute study exploring and deploring the decline in public schools named for Presidents and other Greats.

It’s all about the civic virtue, they claim. By Naming Names we ritually affirm the greats who’ve gone before and the superior system they represent, although the linkage of this with the surprising numbers of schools named for Millard Fillmore or James Buchanan unclear.

St. Louis boasts the McKinley Classical Junior Academy, “Home of the Goldbugs.” goldbug3.jpg

Their continued pressing down upon the brow of labor is to be admired, but what do they actually learn by it?

The Manhattanists claim to be puzzled more schools aren’t named for Martin Luther King what with all the multicuturalness and all. They seem disappointed they can’t beat that familiar dog once more.
That the Institute is a magnet for right wing oddities goes unmentioned in the Washington Post article. One leading light is Myron Magnet, a Martin Van Buren reenactor myron-magnet.jpg whose Big Idea is that hippie LSD consumption in the 60s led to those black folk signing up for welfare[“The Dream and the Nightmare]. The Washington Post laid out this crackpot’s influence on George Bush before the election in 2000, so we can’t say we weren’t warned.