Monday, September 19, 2011

Open a Book Yourself, Kemosabe

Chris Matthews loves to make fun of Sarah Palin and Michele Bachmann for their their obvious lack of historical acumen; the fact that Bachmann said that the founding fathers "worked tirelessly" to get rid of slavery, the fact that Palin said that Paul Revere was actually trying to warn the British that the British were coming, etc.. He pretty much does it constantly and, while, yeah, it is in fact humorous at times, it's also getting a little sanctimonious, too....................................................................................................And, plus, it isn't like Matthews himself never errs. Just the other night, for example, he throw out that old hackneyed and now thoroughly discredited bromide that Herbert Hoover "did nothing to try and end the depression". If Mr. Matthews actually DID know his history, he'd have known that President Hoover - a) worked with the Chamber of Commerce to set up the National Business Survey Conference (an entity that sought to obtain pledges from business that they maintain wages/undertake new investments), b) set up a new division in the Commerce Department to speed up federal construction projects (infrastructure, Rachel Maddow), c) pushed through a temporary tax reduction, d) worked with Congress to increase, by 400 million (probably a lot of money for back then), public works expenditures (yes, Rachel Maddow, MORE infrastructure!), e) authorized the establishment of the Federal Farm Board (this, to make low interest loans and to purchase grain when prices were falling), f) advocated for and signed (bone-headedly, in the opinion of most economists) the Smoot-Hawley tariff bill, and g) established the Reconstruction Finance Corporation (the attempt being to stabilize the banking system).......................................................................................................Now, this isn't to say that what Mr. Hoover did was either a) effective and/or b) sufficient (conservatives tend to think that he did too much, liberals not enough). It's simply an attempt to show that even somebody as supposedly smart (not to mention, smarmy and self righteous) as Matthews probably shouldn't be casting dispersions by the trailer-load.


  1. Oh, you poor deluded man, Mr. Chris Matthews...

    My prediction:
    In 2012, during the very evening of the Presidential Election, Mr. Matthews, upon seeing President Obama getting creamed in the votes, will go insane on-air and will be dragged away in a white jacket. We will all see it happen live and in color.
    Mr. Matthews is one step away from bat-sh*t crazy, and his borderline homo-erotic love for Mr. Obama is creepy.

  2. No serious historian believes Hoover did anything close to what needed to be done to deal with the Depression. Saying "Hoover did nothing" is a perfectly fair, and widely accepted, assessment. Only rightwingers think differently.


  3. No, Les, it's not typical of me. It is the mainstream historical view of Hoover.

    Yes, there is an argument that Hoover attempted some "progressive" solutions, but they were very small compared to the task, and many of them were anything but "progressive."

    We should also both know too that Hoover was the inheritor of the Great Depression. Coolidge and Harding were much more to blame. Let alone the congresses and courts and banks and press, etc.

    Yes, it happened on his "watch," and yes in his two years with it he was unable to stem it at all, but his policies were simply a continuation of Republican execution.

    It was really just a much worse and more universal version of the 1890's collapse.

    So please, don't patronize me. I doubt you know all this. I do.


  4. jmj - It is historical FACT that Hoover attempted "progressive" solutions that your HERO FDR continued and expanded on.

    So, why don't you and your buddy TAO go stick your heads further in the sand?

    You two are so tedious... So very tedious.

  5. JMJ - I am not patronizing you. I consider you a worthy, albeit delusional adversary...

  6. Jersey, I gave 7 clear-cut examples of Hoover doing SOMETHING. Something = nothing in the progressive warped reality now? Interesting.......And the Depression wasn't caused by any one thing or person. It was caused by a multitude things; debt as a result of WW1, idiotic trade policies (yes, you can definitely blame the isolationist Republicans for that one), incredibly bad decisions by the Fed, etc.. I mean, I know that you fellows like to look for boogie-men and all but, come on.

  7. Will: Never mind JMJ: He routinely defends the cause of economic fascism: that personal economic decisions that are best left to the people should instead be made by ruling elites.

    And you are VERY correct that opposition to free and fair trade had a major bad effect.

    Trade decisions are also best left to the people, not ruling elites.


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