Hero President and Your Humble Servant
March 25, 2010 7:30 PM   Subscribe

Among nominations for the least-accurate political memoir ever written is Douglas Brinkley's suggestion: James Buchanan's wildly disingenuous "Mr. Buchanan's Administration on the Eve of the Rebellion" (1866). Buchanan had the gall to shirk all responsibility for the Civil War. He blamed everybody but himself for the dissolution of the Union. A pathetic memoir aimed at trying to exonerate himself from serial wrongheadedness and flatfooted policy initiatives. What Buchanan wrote was revisionist blather.
posted by jjray (12 comments total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
I suspect history will repeat itself sometime in the next few years.
posted by sallybrown at 7:34 PM on March 25, 2010

Oh and obviously I agree with Christopher Buckley:

Hands down, I'd have to give the prize to "Gandhi, An Autobiography." A tissue of lies, from start to finish. You won't find anything in here about his wild partying, wet T-shirt contests, binge-eating, Sacred Bull riding or Swiss bank accounts.

That doesn't even take his internet poker addiction into account.
posted by sallybrown at 7:36 PM on March 25, 2010 [1 favorite]

However, the book Buckley is referring to is the unauthorized autobiography of Gandhi.
posted by Flashman at 7:50 PM on March 25, 2010 [2 favorites]

Can i nominate the first nomination for most inaccurate nomination ever?
This strange detachment from reality is matched by Stockman's contempt for and misperception of Reagan, whom he found shallow and extreme -- judgments that subsequently appear poorly founded. As he wrote in his book, "I would never be comfortable with what I viewed as the primitive, right-wing conservatism of my grandfather or Goldwater -- or Reagan." And this: "I considered [Reagan] a cranky obscurantist whose political base was barnacled with every kook and fringe group that inhabited the vasty deep of American politics."
posted by ennui.bz at 7:56 PM on March 25, 2010 [1 favorite]

James Buchanan, the first gay president?
posted by modernserf at 8:32 PM on March 25, 2010

The man who saved Bush from being Worst President Ever.
posted by Ironmouth at 8:51 PM on March 25, 2010

Good Lord, James Buchanan is John Lithgow. Or the other away around, perhaps.
posted by yhbc at 8:58 PM on March 25, 2010

John Lithgow is the first gay president?

John Lithgow stars in Brokeback Hill, the story of a President, a Vice-President, and a forbidden love that caused Andrew Jackson to call them Miss Nancy and Aunt Fancy.
posted by sallybrown at 9:05 PM on March 25, 2010

James Buchanan: Collar-popping douche.
posted by dirigibleman at 10:54 PM on March 25, 2010 [1 favorite]

In my neck of the woods, James Buchanan is said to have had a hunting camp near a little village called Lucinda.

The area was host to some of the routes of the Underground Railroad, but then again in the early 20th Century, the Ku Klux Klan was popular.

And in the early 21st Century, a man named Morgan Jones from Lucinda was indicted for being a domestic terrorist (he sold an automatic rifle to an undercover agent) by a US District Attorney named Mary Beth Buchanan.

But Mary Beth was a Bushie, and like so many Bushies and her namesake James, she got a lot of things wrong, Ol' Morgie was no militia leader, but an eccentric ex-science teacher who liked to hold parties where the boys would throw quarter sticks of dynamite into the woods and Morgie would demonstrate his home-built flame thrower and shoot lightning bolts from his Tesla coil.

It's our little town's connection to history
posted by tommyD at 4:00 AM on March 26, 2010

Ted Sorenson recently reviewed Karl Rove's memoir calling it dishonest and George Weigel fired back on the web site of National Review amusingly (and viciously) questioning the honesty of Sorensen's memoirs:
Ted Sorensen, Invincibly Ignorant or Just a Jackass? [George Weigel]

Amidst this weekend’s numerous examples of perfidy, moral treason, cowardice, and self-serving, all in aid of passing Obamacare, let’s not lose sight of a brief “review” of Karl Rove’s recent memoir, penned by Ted Sorensen for the March 21 Outlook section of the Washington Post. Sorensen averred that Rove’s was likely among “the least accurate of all political memoirs,” for he had “served a presidency known for prevarication.”

Well, that takes what the Italians call palle corazzate (which I translate, for the sake of easily shocked readers, as “cast-iron cojones”). “Least accurate of all political memoirs”? This, from the author of Kennedy, from which one would never learn that the White House had been turned into something resembling a seraglio, or that the official story of the deal that concluded the Cuban Missile Crisis was a fabrication? This, from the real author of Profiles in Courage, an admittedly nifty book, but one for which the Pulitzer Prize ought to have gone to Sorensen, not to his employer, John F. Kennedy, for whom he wrote it?

After a half-century of Kennedy apologetics, the only interesting question about the apologists is whether they suffer from a variant of that disease known to classic moral theologians as “invincible ignorance.” In this instance, it would mean that you’ve bought your own baloney for so long — the baloney that, in Sorensen’s case, he helped grind — that you actually believe it, and are therefore not morally culpable for propagating it further.
posted by Jahaza at 9:58 AM on March 26, 2010

This, from the real author of Profiles in Courage, an admittedly nifty book, but one for which the Pulitzer Prize ought to have gone to Sorensen, not to his employer, John F. Kennedy, for whom he wrote it?

This is a pretty weak attack to imply that someone is omg-equivalent-or-worse than Karl fucking Rove. I'll have to live with the consequences of my assumption that the National Review is stupid trash and this is not worth reading any more of.
posted by fleacircus at 10:43 AM on March 26, 2010

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