April 7, 2007

At the LBJ Library.

At the LBJ Library, the floors of archives are on beautiful, grand display:

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And there are three floors of exhibits, which pull you through the history and culture of the 1960s, the time when I was a teenager. Did so much more happen then, or does it only seem so to me? Much of what was on display had no real connection to LBJ but intense significance to me as I walked through the depiction of the past:

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The piped in music is The Doors, The Jefferson Airplane -- all counterculture, evocative of hating LBJ. "Did people hate him more than George Bush?" Chris asks. "Yes," I say without hesitation. Remember, there was a draft, and many more people were dying in Vietnam. I watch a little video that quickly documents what happened year by year from 1963 to 1968. So many impressive achievements I counted for little at the time, because of the war. So many sad things -- riots, assassinations. I cry at the one thing that always breaks through my public stoicism: the killing of Bobby Kennedy.

I remember where I was -- standing in the kitchen in our house in Wayne, New Jersey -- when I heard these words:

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I was watching a little black and white TV on the counter and thinking how much I hated that ugly, old man with his ugly, endless war. I hadn't a shred of pity for him, but when he said those unexpected words, I broke down and cried. That poor man. How strange to suddenly see him as human.

Deeply affecting too were the handwritten edits on the short speech he gave on the day of President Kennedy's assassination:

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We saw the many gifts, given by heads of state, most of them perplexingly bad. Only one stood out as truly worthy, from the Shah of Iran:

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That is a terra cotta effigy urn, from 1000 B.C.

There's a replica of the Oval Office:

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And I'm surprised how small and uninspiring it is.

I love all the old buttons:

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Some so mindbogglingly inappropriate as a political statement:

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But the perfect expression of the 1960s.

And don't miss the animatronic, joke-telling LBJ!

59 comments:

bill said...

"Did people hate him more than George Bush?" Chris asks.

Also, giving credit where credit is do, I don't Bush has been accused of sexually assaulting the corpse of a dead president.

Ron said...

Good thing those posies from HHH would have stopped the VC in their tracks! They would see Muskies' tears and retreat in shame!

"In your guts, you know he's nuts!" Outstanding! Manly, Insulting, Alliterative; it's what political slogans should be!

hdhouse said...

Nice work Ann. Very nicely put. I was on campus the night Bobby was shot and the word spread like wildfire. Discretion forbids me from telling where I was when Johnson announced he wouldn't run but we both sat up in bed and cheered.

I wonder if the only difference between the Johnson hatred (that spilled over to Nixon - of course with his help) and the current Bush hatred is the draft and since it was universal it affected everyone while we are involved in something of a sanitized and scaled down version here....but I digress.

One of your better posts I must say. One of your better efforts.

Ron said...

I forgot this...When I was quite young, my parents took me on the White House tour, and we lucked out on a day when LBJ let people come in. I thought he was the most ugly person I'd ever seen, and scowled at him, but my dad's in a picture with him somewhere... He gave my dad a White House ashtray...

Bruce Hayden said...

A bit more than 15 years ago, I first visited the LBJ Library with some very liberal relatives who live in Austin. Being somewhat conservative, I embarassed them by asking quite loudly where was the exhibit where they detailed how LBJ had won that early election by helping stuff ballot boxes.

What is interesting though is that in the time since LBJ left office and when I toured his library, these relatives and I had totally switched sides on him. Back then, I wasn't nearly as anti-war as the relatives were - one was ready to flee to Canada if drafted to fight in LBJ's war, and I was somewhat ambivalent (though actually much more exposed to the draft). But later, as LBJ's Great Society entered into liberal orthodoxy, we switched. I now considered the man evil incarnate, and they began thinking of him as a near great president.

hdhouse said...

yes Bruce. I suppose the civil rights act will always be a bummer for you.

why don't you take the posting Ann made here for what it is...a somewhat sentimental rememberance of a person who was pivotal in history and someone who set out to do good - like him or not.

can't you just enjoy the moment? the canvas Ann painted? Can you put aside your empty heart for a few hours?

Peter Palladas said...

Did I see your leg in there Mrs. Robinson?

Internet Ronin said...

I agree with the sentiments expressed in both of HD's comments above. Great post Ann!

(In RE: another comment here: I can't imagine, however, why some people think it appropriate to make a spectacle of themselves in such a place and in such a public manner. But enough said of that.)

Paco Wové said...

"Being somewhat conservative,..."

Hmmm. Didn't know "being conservative" was a synonym for "prone to behaving in a rude and boorish fashion".

That's why I love the internet -- learn something new every day!

Bissage said...

I don’t see what Bruce did that was so wrong that it warrants a scolding and a pile-on.

That’s the sort of sniping I’ve come to expect from hdhouse but I’m truly surprised by the second from the consistently reasonable Internet Ronin.

The way I see it, Althouse invited personal remembrances and Bruce offered one.

I must be missing something.

boston70 said...

I would be interested in seeing that library. I have never been to a presidential library and I live in Boston and JFK's is 5 minutes from my house-sad I know, I need to go.

I thought presidential libraries would be more of a love letter to the ex-president. Interesting to see some of the anti-Johnson pins. The music and Graduate poster is kind of cool.

It will be interesting to see Bush's library. Just think of all of the possibilities....

Paco Wové said...

Well, I was "piling on" as a result of BH's apparent assumption that "being somewhat conservative" meant that of course you mocked people you disagreed with relentlessly, at all times, in all places, with no regard for decorum or the feelings of others.

Personally, I find the idea that political disagreement frees one from the bounds of decency to be both wrong, and far too common.

Bissage said...

Paco,

I wrote a comment to you right after I posted the one to h and IR, but Blogger ate it (maybe because it was processing yours as I sent mine). I'd post it again but it has been made moot.

Anyway, I read Bruce's comment as a confession, not a boast; the politics as representations of fact not of value.

I could be wrong about that.

TalkLeft said...

Great photos, Ann. I've never been to Austin but your photolog this week has made me want to visit. The LBJ library will be one of my first stops.

Jeff said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
madawaskan said...

The day Bobby Kennedy was killed-

That is almost my first memory.

We were flying "home" after spending years in Japan and on the transAtlantic flight-the pilot announced sometime in route that Bobby Kennedy had been shot.

We landed in San Fran or LAX-I'm about four years old or so and this is when the military travelled in uniform.

I remember my Dad racing away from us and I was in a full panic to keep up with him.

I remember Hare Krishnas blocking my path and separating me from my father.

Later my Dad either told us that he had been spit on or was afraid that would happen -so that is why he ran away from me and my younger brother.

I'm pretty sure it was the latter though because-he drove up and down the coast of California that night yelling that he wanted to get us back "home" to Tokyo.

This -America-was no longer it.

Funny how my Dad had done three tours in Vietnam for 'it" or that.


[When I was a teenager years later at the Air Force Academy Barry Goldwater saved me from what till this day was my most embarrassing moment-it's a long story-but I'll always love that guy.]

madawaskan said...

Oops:

I'm pretty sure it was the latter though because-he drove up and down the coast of California that night yelling that he wanted to get us back "home" to Tokyo.

Should read-

I'm pretty sure it was the former-

Kirk Parker said...

Re the relative amounts of hatred--I'm not so sure I agree. It seems the me that the LBJ-hatred was all focussed around the war and the draft, whereas our current BDS seems to spread to the man's very being.

Internet Ronin said...

Kirk: I think you are right. Those who were of draft (and college) age had a different experience than I did, I guess. I don't remember anyone expressing visceral hatred for LBJ at the most unlikely moments as I have witnessed time and again in recent years.

Bissage: I'm sorry you feel that way, but I don't feel it was sniping. It was a comment about what I think was incredibly rude behavior (particularly unexpected given the time frame given). That comment contained no remorse and, contrary to your opinion that it was a confession, it came across to me as bragging about what was done.

happysmileuk-teeth-whitening said...

Great post Ann, nicely put. Eccellent blog yet again.


from mike

Gary Carson said...

I was in Vietnam in 1968 and didn't want to be there. I had an intense dislike of Johnson, really intense.

But I never thought of him as evil. I think the Bush lack of respect for the constitution is just downright evil.

Paco Wové said...

Wow, personalized spam. I've never seen that before.

PatCA said...

"Did so [much] more happen then, or does it only seem so to me?"

Good question. I'd like to hear from the 20-somethings on that. I remember where I was and what I was wearing for all the big moments, and for the 1968 Democrat convention, worrying about my sister, a McGovern Girl, caught downtown in the 'police riot'.

I also remember LBJ v. Goldwater, and the nukey warmonger persona they tagged Goldwater with. So we elected a peacemaker and got...more, worse Vietnam. I learned my lesson.

LBJ was a tragic figure--a politician when the times demanded a statesman. An accident of history propelled him into conflicts that defeated him.
Nice post, Ann.

Paco Wové said...

"...a tragic figure--a politician when the times demanded a statesman. An accident of history propelled him into conflicts that defeated him."

I wouldn't be surprised if someday, the same won't be said of Bush II.

madawaskan said...

Damn it-

TransPACIFIC flight.

I blame lack of coffee and my Eurocentricness.

Ya that's it.

toecracker said...

Wayne, New Jersey? So why the lack of Sopranos references on this site?

Where in Wayne? Pines Lake, Packanack Lake, the Valley, Lions Head Lake, Alps Road, etc.?

vnjagvet said...

Interesting posts and comments. I voted for LBJ. I was disapointed when he chose not to run, because I thought he was doing the best he could. I saw his speech on TV in Nha Trang, RVN.

I now believe he made a great mistake listening to Westmoreland and McNamara, but he made a very good decision replacing Westmoreland with Abrams. Abrams turned the war around, and had he had support from Congress, and had Nixon not gutted himself by his post-Watergate machinations, there probably would have been a different outcome in the VN war.

Where Johnson's did some great things, however was in the area of Civil Rights for our African American brothers and sisters.

As Majority Leader of the Senate. his management of the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1957 was masterful. That was followed up by his arm-twisting as President to get the CR Act or 1964 passed.

This legacy is sufficient to overcome some of his personal peculiarities IMO.

Finally, Johnson was a relatively young President. He left office before he reached the age of sixty.

Maxine Weiss said...

It was Nixon's war. Vietnam was already on the books, way back in the Eisenhower administration. Nixon admitted the only reason he went to China was to provoke the Cambodians, and continue the whole thing.

Imagine...if Ford hadn't pulled out, and Mainland China might have fallen....and that was always the real goal: To weaken the People's Republic, North Korea etc..

Ford and Nixon are the most blameworthy.

Peace, Maxine

Beth said...

vnjagvet--thanks for making the point about the Civil Rights acts. It's likely only a Southerner could have pulled that off, and he deserves recognition for choosing that path.

Townleybomb said...

"...a tragic figure--a politician when the times demanded a statesman. An accident of history propelled him into conflicts that defeated him."

I wouldn't be surprised if someday, the same won't be said of Bush II.


I read 'The Best and the Brightest' right before Bush was elected and have always been struck by the similarities between him and LBJ. Tragedy and farce, as they say.

As for the flower button, that's not just something that was limited to a single decade-- I recall that the Mondale/Ferraro commercial I saw most when I was a kid was nothing but the song 'Teach your Children Well' played over footage of missle launches. It's a wonder they didn't do better than they did....

The Exalted said...

i'm too young to understand, what is the significance of the humphrey/muskie button that makes it so inappropriate?

JSF said...

Ann, I live in the Southern California basin where I am close to two Presidential libraries. Reagan's is much more decorative (Hey, it even has it's own Air Force One) then Nixon's. But both are worth the tour. I've been to JFK's in Boston and Wilson's in NJ as well. As far as the current BDS v. JDS, it is a spillover from Overtime 2000. The people who will not get over it now run the "tolerant" party. And they inhabit the producers chairs in newsrooms.

Internet Ronin said...

Didn't anyone else notice the misspelling on one of the buttons?

toecracker said...

Ann--how long did you live in Wayne and where?

I commented how little you mention the Sopranos, but you also do not mention Foutains of Wayne (the band named after the store--which was also shown in an episode of the Sopranos). You are hip and young enough to know about them.

Eric said...

Ann, this is a great post. Love the pictures!

The numbers on the LBJ/GWB hatred issue, though, tend in the opposite direction from your assurance to your son.

(BTW, Ann may not be blogging Fountains of Wayne, but I am!

PatCA said...

"I wouldn't be surprised if someday, the same won't be said of Bush II."


Paco, I go back and forth: I fear you're right, and I pray (to the deity and to Petraeus) that you're wrong.

Michael Farris said...

I once had a teacher in American History who claimed that LBJ was the most effective president in terms of getting legislation passed in the 20th century.
He knew where the bodies were buried and didn't hesitate in using that knowledge to get his program enacted.
He was also way ahead of the learning curve in terms of civil rights.
If not for Vietnam, he might be remembered very, very differently.
Unfortunately, his Vietnam policy was wrong in just about every way it could be wrong and by the time he realized that it was too late to do anythin beyond hand it off to the next office holder.

ps I didn't notice the typo on the button, though once alerted there was a typo somewhere I found it easily enough.

Joe said...

Maxine, you can't be serious. Ike had US military advisers in VN. JFK and LBJ were responsible for greatly expanding our role in that war - they sent vast numbers of American troops to do the actual fighting. Nixon was scum mostly for running on a platform of a "secret" peace plan in 1968 and 1972, which was no more than his ploy to get elected twice. The Democrat in 1968, Humphrey, was the pro-war candidate.

pablo H said...

I always love hearing about LBJ because it shows the liberal mind at work.

He lied us into a completely useless war that resulted in the death of 50,000 americans and houndreds of thousands of SE asians. Not to mention tearing this country apart, and giving the military and patriotism a bad name.

But to liberals its different. In their eyes, LBJ helped pass the Civil Rights act, (which would have passed anyway) and Medicare, so he was OK after-all.

To me, LBJ is one of the worst president of all time. Period. And I don't care that he got bad advice, or cried himself to sleep at night over all the deaths he caused.

Cedarford said...

A very nice vignette from Ann, and like Hdhouse, I appreciate it for revealing what a tour of a museum or Presidential library or military facility or foreign nation should do.

Set people to reflecting and appreciating and thinking.

But I will say one observation of Prof Althouse does make me seek to comment:

And there are three floors of exhibits, which pull you through the history and culture of the 1960s, the time when I was a teenager. Did so more happen then, or does it only seem so to me?

Four of the 5 Presidents that followed FDR were consequential Presidents. The most impactful on changing US history was LBJ, and nearly so, the tragic "near-great" Presidency of Nixon. Both men were responsible for dozens of significant initiatives that reshaped America. Truman and Eisenhower also were consequential.

I think that the reason "so much more happened then", and happened quickly, is the country worked better then, and allowed a decent or competent leader to create and implement major policies in a short period of time. Congress, back then, while it could be fiercely partisan, also was full of men that took the long view and took responsibility for addressing major problems and needs. "Doing nothing and foisting it on others to take the heat and grief on it later" - was not an option. They also believed that once they agreed - solutions to critical problems had to be implemented FAST, not "as the leisure of the courts of Congressional leadership see fit".

Now America is cursed with extended litigation and post-Vietnam/post-Watergate political gridlock. Congress is captured by organized special interests groups designed to stall action or make something intended for the good of the people "even more good for our
moneymen and group members".

If Eisenhower did not build the Interstate highway system, and Reagan had proposed it in 1988, even in 2008, few road miles would have been constructed in the face of homeowner and environmental litigation. (indeed, unfinished pieces intended to have been completed in the 70s are still in the courts, unbuilt).

If LBJ had neglected to think of the Voting Rights Act, and Clinton proposed it, it would have died in gridlock as Republicans AND Democratic incumbents, perfectly happy with the status quo revolving around them raising money, getting reelected, and rewarding friends and family with taxpayer pork - would have blocked Clinton.

Indeed, compared to Nixon or LBJ, the "successful Presidencies" of Reagan and Clinton were only so because they recognized the impossibility of doing 20 major things like LBJ or Nixon could do - and focused on only 3-5 major things.

And like from Ford on, kicked the major problems and needs America has down the road for future governments and generations to deal with. It is our special interest and lawyer-dominated system. It is Congress addicted to short-term thinking.

If we were honest?

Nixon & LBJ should get their Libraries as built. Reagan should get a small mansion-sized place. Bush I, Clinton the space of a 4 bedroom colonial. Carter and Bush II's accomplishments and record housed in a single-wide trailer.

The average Congress Rep's noted papers and accomplishments since around 1975 in a postal mail box sized edifice.

Joe said...

Cedar, the absence of additional major terrorist attacks in this country ought to count for something. The recovery of the economy too.

An Edjamikated Redneck said...

I just recently reread White's Making of a President 1964 . A mojority of the book was about Johnson's work on the 1964 CR Act.

What struck me was,and this was the contemporary, 1965 edition, was how Johnson seemed to consider Civil Rights in a pragmatic sense, as a political stepping stone, a way, rather than for the mean itself.

White was a Kennedy man, if I'm not mistaken, and seems to have accepted Johnson, but had no compunction about the warts. His view of Johnson was as a complete political animal; he would have passed any legislation if he thought there were a vote in it, and vetoed anything that would not have.

One other thing that reading White's book has lead me to believe; had Kennedy been shot 10 months earlier Johnson would not have won in '64, and may not have been even nominated by the Democrats.

Annie said...

I cry at the one thing that always breaks through my public stoicism: the killing of Bobby Kennedy.

Me too.

For someone who was not in the war, that seemed like the single greatest trauma of that time, and the "road not taken" moment. We can't begin to guess what would have been down that road (and it would be stupid to idealize it), but RFK seemed to me to be the last politician who held the generations together, held the minority, student, and blue-collar constituencies together, and held idealism and realism together. After that there was no one who could hold it together, and it all flew apart.

dick said...

Strange how distance changes events. I was stationed in DC at the Pentagon all during the Kennedy admin and also worked there as a civilian during the LBJ admin. Kennedy was not a popular president while in office, nor was he a particularly successful one at getting his policies passed. Most of what he is given credit for was passed by LBJ after Kennedy was shot. The Civil Rights act would not have passed in 1964 if Everett Dirksen and Charlie Hallett had not brought the republicans to vote for it. In fact the republicans voted for it in higher percentages than the democrats did. The ad of the little girl with the flower that labeled Goldwater as a warmonger was the creation of BIll Moyers of sainted public television fame. In fact Goldwater would have been a far better war leader than Johnson had he been elected. Instead they slammed him with that campaign ad and then the next year we had LBJ and his Gulf of Tonkin lies to pump up the military.

As has been said history is written by the victors and we are still paying for that one!!

Ann Althouse said...

toecracker: "Wayne, New Jersey? So why the lack of Sopranos references on this site? Where in Wayne? Pines Lake, Packanack Lake, the Valley, Lions Head Lake, Alps Road, etc.?"

Packanack Lake! 33 Mountainside Drive.

Re "The Sopranos," I did blog about them when the show was on, but I don't feel any particular connection to that culture... though there were many Italian-American kids at my high school. Not that anyone seemed mob-related!

Michael Farris said...

"The Civil Rights act would not have passed in 1964 if Everett Dirksen and Charlie Hallett had not brought the republicans to vote for it. In fact the republicans voted for it in higher percentages than the democrats did."

Yes, also republicans who voted against it were mostly not motivated by antipathy towards non-whites but theoretical issues of property law. Nothing personal, they said, but Woolworths as a private commercial establishment should be free to not serve blacks (which uncharismatic position libertarians have taken up in recent years).

Democrats who voted against it mostly were motivated by antipathy against non-whites and many (maybe most) of them subsequently became republican.

Pre-civil rights act, the republican party was market oriented and moderately socially conservative (with plenty of room for less social conservative members). The democratic party was less market oriented and socially it was an unwieldy almagamation of the most liberal and conservative elements of social policy.

The civil rights act ended up drawing the hardcore social conservatives from the democrats (making them more uniform) to the republicans (making the party larger and more unweildy in terms of social policy, ultimately driving out or marginalizing the more socially progressive).

hdhouse said...

Michael Farris said...
"Democrats who voted against it mostly were motivated by antipathy against non-whites and many (maybe most) of them subsequently became republican."

Michael, aside from the fact thatI incidentally may know you which would be an amazing coincidence...

"antipathy" is not the word. Those democrats who bolted as a result shouldn't be described as antipatical. They were a far worse and more dangerous breed. There was a marvelous book published in the 70s called "Southern Ladies and Gentlemen" by Florence King.

I think to fully understand that behavior ethic of the southern good old boy democrat turned republican, that book is a must read. When the civil rights workers were abducted and shot in Mississippi, when governors and other elected officials were front and center leading the charge back against the civil rights movement (not confined to blacks...any up east liberal jew was fair game..for that matter any eastcoast liberal) one great bit of strength was LBJ who forwhatever motivation..be it self power, good, votes..whatever, brought the full weight of his office to bear and he beat these chuckleheads into their rightful place.

I just speak back against your post as you give these people too much credit for motivation when they bolted to the "welcoming republican party". Although a number of them "found God" or had the come to Jesus moment which is fine and forgivable, a number didn't and frankly as recently as 2000 when visiting my mother in a senior citizens home (free to come and go...not medical) I watched a woman who was my mom's friend for perhaps 30 years refuse to accept the service of her breakfast from "that nigger" and demanded her plate be taken back, cleaned and a proper white woman give her the meal. No kidding.

Not saying that is the south all over as that gal is an ass, but it is indicative of what LBJ faced 40some years ago, not only by political opponents but by a segment (not the majority! hurrah) of the south.

That takes balls.

Michael Farris said...

"aside from the fact thatI incidentally may know you which would be an amazing coincidence..."

any clues?

As for the rest, I fully agree, I was underselling the case in the cause of being 'diplomatic' and following the house rules that social conservatives must not be criticised (even... no _especially_ when they're totally wrong).

I too am a fan of Ms King's magnum opus though my copy is in storage on another continent. IIRC though it's mostly about sexual politics and not racial policy.

I can easily believe the story about your mother's friend though I bet she either wasn't originally from the south or if she was then she was from the lower social classes, somewhere between common and trash - upper class southern whites generally had no problems eating food prepared and served by blacks.

Fatmouse said...

Re: LBJ's legacy.

To me, Johnson's greatest folly wasn't Vietnam, but his asinine socialist experiment called The War on Poverty, which has cost more and ruined more lives than The War on Drugs.

hdhouse said...

Michael Farris said...
"aside from the fact thatI incidentally may know you which would be an amazing coincidence..."
any clues?

Tulsa. Energy Law. FERC....just a thought...same name....

Kedar said...

Just a sidenote: The Oval Office in the LBJ Library is a scaled down model.

Michael Farris said...

"Tulsa. Energy Law. FERC....just a thought...same name...."

Nope. The longest I've been in Tulsa was less than a week (in I think 1971) and no connection to Energy Law or FERC.

hdhouse said...

my error although you had a namesake who was dean when i was ghosting papers there...anyway. Sorry to have caused you the angst in other's minds that you would have been known to that upeast liberal hdhouse.

Anyway, for those devoted to figuring out the LBJ/Dixiecrat mindset, I again recommend the florence king "southern ladies and gentlemen"...you can buy it used on Amazon for about a quarter. Mine isn't for sale at any price by the way.

I was at an Easter dinner potluck yesterday and I just incidentally asked about what people thought about LBJ as we were in a non-Easter fight about Bush generally. Everyone remembered him as we are of the "age". The view of him was remarkably passive - not reverant -but something of the well meaning fellow with immense skills visions who somehow got caught up in a mess and, like tarbaby, couldn't get out of it. I remember tarbaby cartoons that double entendre'd his civil rights/vietnam situation.

Anyway it helps to revisit the timelines of Vietnam when talking about Johnson, realizing that he was out of office in the first quarter of 1968 and the war had 6-7 more years to play out and we were more than a few years into it.

I turned 18 when LBJ called for a half millon troops to be sent to Vietnam and was a month late registering for the draft. My draft board "chief" was Edith Shark (no kidding) and I was in the draft office actually writing 500 times "I won't disreagard the selective service system and I will respond in a timely manner...da da da" (this is the absolute truth) when the LBJ news conference was broadcast on TV when he announced the buildup.

I also remember when the draft went to lottery and was in a high rise dorm with some friends when a #3 birthday was picked and the fellow got up, walked out on the balcony (14th floor I think) and went right over the the edge to his death..just like that.

I'm glad Ann took us to the LBJ Library. It is, as she conveyed, a remarkably strained place and I am glad those in charge brought in all segments of society and the cross currents evident there.

There may not be a more poignant rememberance of I think late 1967-68 then cleaning the tables in the Student Union at Michigan State, big carved tables full of greek letters and dates, just at closing with almost pure ammonia so to drive out the diehards with the fumes, Sgt. Pepper on the sound system, rich philosophical discussions in a few booths and deep feelings everywhere. I hated the times, went through 3 straight years of draft physicials and the idea of Canada was well researched.

perhaps we need to consider that LBJ was president at a time of documented and conflicted political times and many of us lived in a time when our emotions and our daily angst over our existence came back to the surface when retrospecting though Ann's post.

Ann Althouse said...

"he was out of office in the first quarter of 1968"

You mean 1969.

Michael Farris said...

"Sorry to have caused you the angst in other's minds that you would have been known to that upeast liberal hdhouse."

Liberal I'm fine with (I'm the kind of diehard social liberal that only the segregated and deeply sexually-hypocritical south could produce) but up??? Does that mean you're from the (gasp) North?

(awkward silence)

hdhouse said...

yes i did mean 1969. i started working in the student union in the fall of 1968. beg your pardon.

so midwest socialist quasi insurgent finds his way to nyc and columbia where more turmoil unfolded...a few washington marches, some threatening visits from men in black and then here i am

traditionalguy said...

The stupidity of sending 500,000 troops into South Viet Nam to bluff the North Vietnamese, who had already fought the Japanese Empire and The French Empire to a standstill, was obvious. It took a cadre of Harvard know it alls to be that stupid.

traditionalguy said...

In early June 1965 we awoke to headlines that LBJ had sent 500,000 troops into South Viet Nam to require the North Vietnamese to surrendering. That was stupid on its face. The North Vietnamese had recently fought the Japanese and the French Empires to a standstill in 20 years of war. It took a cadre of Johnson's Harvard professor know it alls inherited from JFK to be so stupid.

traditionalguy said...

In early June 1965 we awoke to headlines that LBJ had sent 500,000 troops into South Viet Nam to require the North Vietnamese to surrendering. That was stupid on its face. The North Vietnamese had recently fought the Japanese and the French Empires to a standstill in 20 years of war. It took a cadre of Johnson's Harvard professor know it alls inherited from JFK to be so stupid.