anonymous asked:

Besides Obama being ranked higher, the top 3 being the same, and Buchanan in last place, what else can we expect in July from your next presidential rankings?

If I told you now there wouldn’t be any reason to do it in July. Plus, I haven’t really started on the updated rankings yet.

One thing to remember is that Presidential Rankings are basically subjective. And, as I’ve said many, many, many times, I don’t think we can truly rank Presidents who served in completely different times with dramatically different definitions of Presidential power. It’s a popular and interesting project, but I’m not a big fan of any type of Presidential Rankings because there’s no set of metrics that allow us to accurately rank the Presidents of the United States. Honestly, it can be like comparing the performance of leaders who not only have been holding a position that’s been continuously changing for 228 years but might as well have been doing so on different planets. I do the Presidential Rankings because my readers enjoy it and I try my best to remain objective and accurate, but there’s really no right or wrong way of doing it – and that actually bugs me because it results in rankings that are, at best, well-informed personal opinions and, at worst, a popularity contest.

More importantly is that Presidential legacies don’t shift overnight, so there are few major changes in Presidential Rankings, especially when they are done so frequently. I did it for the first time in 2012 and updated them in 2014, but have added an extra year between updates because I didn’t like the idea of doing them in election years and because Presidential legacies just don’t change that quickly. I doubt there are going to be a bunch of dramatic differences between this year’s rankings and the 2014 version. I don’t want to change things just for the sake of changing them just because it seems like it freshens everything up. It takes decades for significant shifts to be noticed and understood when it comes to Presidential performance. A President’s legacy is always-evolving along with the country itself. We’re still recognizing differences in the legacies of our early Presidents just as much as we are seeing them with recent ones. And the recent ones need even more time because we’re way too close to their time in office to see how their legacies will truly play out.

(Also, I’m guessing that this has been the absolute worst way to promote my upcoming updated Presidential Rankings. I’m sure it’s not exactly stirring up excitement for me to say “BTW, they’ll probably be the same as last time, I don’t like doing it, I don’t really like when other people do it, I don’t think it makes sense, they’ll probably be wrong, and they’ll all change when we’re dead anyway”. Way to get your audience to look forward to the project that you’ll spend two weeks putting together, Anthony.)

anonymous asked:

I noticed you didn't answer my ask about FDR. Typical.


First of all, it’s not a question, so there’s nothing for me to answer. Secondly, I don’t care about your opinion. Start your own blog, get a few thousand readers who are invested in what you say, write or think, and do your own Presidential Rankings. I’ll rank the Presidents when and how I want – that’s why people follow me. Even if you were right – and you’re not – nobody tells me what to do, especially when it comes to this. Share your meaningless opinions elsewhere. I have absolutely no interest in them, and I’m pretty sure my readers don’t come to my blog to hear some random, anonymous person’s idiotic ramblings. They come here to read my idiotic ramblings.

And, and if you want a typical response from me, here you go: fuck off. That’s typical me.

2014 Presidential Rankings: #9

42nd President of the United States (1993-2001)

Full Name: William Jefferson Clinton (Born: William Jefferson Blythe III)
Born: August 19, 1946, Julia Chester Hospital, Hope, Arkansas
Political Party: Democratic
State Represented: Arkansas
Term: January 20, 1993-January 20, 2001
Age at Inauguration: 46 years, 149 days
Administration: 52nd and 53rd
Congresses: 103rd, 104th, 105th, and 106th
Vice President: Albert Arnold “Al” Gore, Jr.
Age at Death:

2012 Dead Presidents Ranking: 10 of 43 [↑1]

Ask many of those Republicans who called for Bill Clinton’s impeachment or fought against so many of the Clinton Administration’s achievements whether they miss Bill Clinton today and I think they’ll tell you “Yes!”.  Were we better off during the Clinton Administration?  Absolutely.  Was Bill Clinton a talented political leader?  Definitely.  If not for the Twenty-Second Amendment would Bill Clinton either still be President or running for President today?  I would hope so, and considering Clinton’s reputation for being endlessly energetic, I can’t imagine him sitting on the sidelines if he could be in the game.  Many Americans in 2014 would have to look up the definition of a “budget surplus” to understand what it is.  We enjoyed three straight budget surpluses during the Clinton Administration.  Even when he was being impeached and on trial in the Senate, his approval ratings were high, and no President’s approval ratings were higher upon leaving office.  A decade without Clinton in the White House has done more than anything to make us miss having Clinton in the White House. After the 2016 election, we very may well have another Clinton in the Oval Office – and an exceedingly brilliant and capable one – if finally Hillary shatters that glass ceiling and wins the Presidency. But no matter how good Hillary might be (and I believe she’ll be fantastic if elected), she might not even be the best President sleeping in her bedroom because, as the years pass and she is in the midst of building her own legacy (if elected), Bill Clinton’s Presidency will continue to be remembered as a time of prosperity that millions of Americans remain nostalgic for. Bill Clinton’s personal failures and flaws may have been embarrassing to him, humiliating to his family, and uncomfortable for the American people, but the fact that Americans crave a leader like him in the White House is a testament to his skill as a politician and the strength of his Administration’s achievements.

1948: Schlesinger Sr./Life Magazine:  Not Ranked
1962: Schlesinger Sr./New York Times Magazine:  Not Ranked
1982: Neal/Chicago Tribune Magazine:  Not Ranked
1990: Siena Institute:  Not Ranked
1996: Schlesinger Jr./New York Times Magazine:  20 of 39
2000: C-SPAN Survey of Historians:  21 of 41
2000: C-SPAN Public Opinion Poll:  36 of 41
2005: Wall Street Journal/Presidential Leadership:  22 of 40
2009: C-SPAN Survey of Historians:  15 of 42
2010: Siena Institute:  13 of 43
2011: University of London’s U.S. Presidency Centre:  19 of 40

2014 Presidential Rankings

Alright, the 2014 Presidential Rankings are complete. Thanks for checking them out and following along. I’ll be sending out free PDF copies of my book to anybody who guessed my Top 15 correctly.

I look forward to all of the people who are outraged and want to either debate all 43 rankings and/or just call me an idiot even though I’ve said on many occasions that ranking Presidents is completely subjective and any version of Presidential Rankings is totally arbitrary.

As I’m weeding through all of those messages into my inbox over the next few weeks, here is a list of the complete rankings for 2014 (with links to each individual entry):

43. James Buchanan (43rd in 2012 [↔])
42. William Henry Harrison (42nd in 2012 [↔])
41. Andrew Johnson (41st in 2012 [↔])
40. Franklin Pierce (40th in 2012 [↔])
39. James Garfield (38th in 2012 [↓1])
38. Millard Fillmore (37th in 2012 [↓1])
37. Warren G. Harding (39th in 2012 [↑2])
36. George W. Bush (36th in 2012 [↔])
35. Jimmy Carter (34th in 2012 [↓1])
34. Herbert Hoover (33rd in 2012 [↓1])
33. Zachary Taylor (32nd in 2012 [↓1])
32. Benjamin Harrison (35th in 2012 [↑3])
31. Rutherford B. Hayes (27th in 2012 [↓4])
30. Barack Obama (28th in 2012 [↓2])
29. Martin Van Buren (29th in 2012 [↔])
28. Ulysses S. Grant (30th in 2012 [↑2])
27. William Howard Taft (31st in 2012 [↑4])
26. John Quincy Adams (26th in 2012 [↔])
25. Calvin Coolidge (25th in 2012 [↔])
24. Richard Nixon (24th in 2012 [↔])
23. Chester A. Arthur (23rd in 2012 [↔])
22. Grover Cleveland (22nd in 2012 [↔])
21. John Tyler (19th in 2012 [↓2])
20. Woodrow Wilson (20th in 2012 [↔])
19. Andrew Jackson (17th in 2012 [↓2])
18. Gerald Ford (21st in 2012 [↑3])
17. Ronald Reagan (15th in 2012 [↓2])
16. John F. Kennedy (14th in 2012 [↓2])
15. James Madison (12th in 2012 [↓3])
14. Thomas Jefferson (11th in 2012 [↓3])
13. John Adams (16th in 2012 [↑3])
12. William McKinley (18th in 2012 [↑6])
11. George H.W. Bush (13th in 2012 [↑2])
10. Harry S Truman (8th in 2012 [↓2])
9. Bill Clinton (10th in 2012 [↑1])
8. Dwight D. Eisenhower (9th in 2012 [↑1])
7. James K. Polk (7th in 2012 [↔])
6. Theodore Roosevelt (5th in 2012 [↓1])
5. Lyndon B. Johnson (6th in 2012 [↑1])
4. James Monroe (4th in 2012 [↔])
3. Franklin D. Roosevelt (3rd in 2012 [↔])
2. George Washington (2nd in 2012 [↔])
1. Abraham Lincoln (1st in 2012 [↔])

2014 Presidential Rankings: #1

16th President of the United States (1861-1865)

Full Name: Abraham Lincoln
Born: February 12, 1809, Hardin County (present-day LaRue County), Kentucky
Political Party: Republican
State Represented: Illinois
Term: March 4, 1861-April 15, 1865 (Assassinated)
Age at Inauguration: 52 years, 20 days
Administration: 19th and 20th
Congresses: 37th, 38th, and 39th
Vice Presidents: Hannibal Hamlin (1st term: 1861-1865) and Andrew Johnson (2nd term: 1865; Assumed the Presidency upon Lincoln’s death)
Died: April 15, 1865, Petersen’s Boarding House, 516 10th Street NW, Washington, D.C.
Age at Death: 56 years, 62 days
Buried: Oak Ridge Cemetery, Springfield, Illinois

2012 Dead Presidents Ranking: 1 of 43 [↔]

There was a time where I could consider Washington or FDR as #1 instead of Lincoln, but not anymore.  The more that I read about everything that Abraham Lincoln had to overcome in order to hold the North together so that the Union could fight the Civil War combined with all of the personal struggles that Lincoln faced – not just growing up and somehow becoming President, but AS President – makes him the closest thing in my eyes to a miracle.  If a religious person wants to make an argument for God, don’t do it with Jesus or Moses or the Bible, instead talk to me about Abraham Lincoln and what he did during the Civil War and how his time on Earth ended as soon as the war came to a close.  That’s an argument I might listen to if you want to talk to me about destiny.  Lincoln was the greatest President, the greatest American, one of the greatest people in the history of the world.  And he’s undoubtedly my #1.

1948: Schlesinger Sr./Life Magazine:  1 of 29
1962: Schlesinger Sr./New York Times Magazine:  1 of 31
1982: Neal/Chicago Tribune Magazine:  1 of 38
1990: Siena Institute:  2 of 40
1996: Schlesinger Jr./New York Times Magazine:  1 of 39
2000: C-SPAN Survey of Historians:  1 of 41
2000: C-SPAN Public Opinion Poll:  1 of 41
2005: Wall Street Journal/Presidential Leadership:  2 of 40
2009: C-SPAN Survey of Historians:  1 of 42
2010: Siena Institute:  3 of 43
2011: University of London’s U.S. Presidency Centre:  2 of 40