Live from Havana: Larry Summers: Castro Is Dead: "History will judge the US embargo policy a total failure...
...There is a huge lesson here in the dangers of isolating a nation rather than engaging with it.... It’s instructive to contrast the President-elect... with America’s response at other epochal moments. After Stalin died at the height of the Cold War, President Eisenhower’s reached out to the Russian people emphasizing our common humanity under God. Or one can consider President George H.W. Bush’s carefully modest and non-gloating response to the fall of the Berlin Wall. The goal of Presidential statements should be to advance US interests not to settle scores or score points. I hope the that President-elect Trump will adopt a different tone once in office.
On Donald Trump--well, what can we say?
On George W. Bush, we have David Rubenstein: "His name is George W. Bush.... If you [had] said to me, name 25 million people who would maybe be President of the United States, he wouldn’t have been in that category..."
On Ronald Reagan, people are divided between those who think that in the late 1970s Ronald Reagan was well-qualified to be president and those who think that he was just well-qualified to play the president on TV. But after the assassination attempt by John Hinckley, well:
Ronald Reagan Diary: Feb 17 1983: "Jeanne Kirkpatrick reported on her trip to Central America. A grim story. Our Ambas. Hinton under the direction of the same kind of St. Dept. bureaucrats who made Castro possible are screwing up the situation in El Salvador. I'm now really mad. Bill C. is bringing George S. up to date and then I'm determined heads will roll, beginning with Ambas. Hinton..."
Ronald Reagan Diary: Jun 9 1983: "Ambas. Hinton just relieved as Ambas. to El Salvador, stopped by. He's a good man and did a fine job under extremely difficult circumstances. I hope he can convince some of our left leaning Congressmen how wrong they are..."
Duncan Black: "Back when Reagan was president members of the press knew that the man had some form of dementia, that he was not actually fit to run the country, and they covered it up because the feefees of America would be hurt because Reagan was the most popular president in the history of the universe. Of course he wasn't the most popular president by any reasonable measure, but the press loved him so America loved him and they added 10 extra points to his popularity rating in their minds. They did that for Bush II, also, too. I don't expect Trump will ever be an especially popular president for a variety of reasons, but with the 10 bonus points traditionally granted to Republican presidents, who knows what must be kept from America. Because of our feefees."
And on Richard Nixon, no comment necessary.
Since World War II, only two of the six Republican presidents have been among the most qualified 25 million people to be president.
That is a very broken party indeed.