Yes. A Repost. If you do nothing else, please scroll down and listen to the clip. It is hysterical (and real) Even better.
Cheers Y’all and Happy
Saturday Oops! Sunday (is it?)
Lyndon Baines Johnson
Texan, Father, School Teacher, Rancher, & Much Maligned 36th President of The United States of America.
I love LBJ, or as Brother Dave Gardner (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-4E_Nrm0j8k) once called him: ‘Daddy Bird’. Johnson was a divisive entity during his one and a half terms as president—primarily due of course to the Vietnam War—which he inherited. Yes, I realize I am gonna get some push back. Favorably mention ‘LBJ’ even today and you best stand by for some unhappy and contentious words.
The problem I have, in general, when talking to folks about Johnson is that most are ignorant of the man, his history, his upbringing; his good works: Rural electrification for Texas. Medicare, Civil Rights, The Great Society (never really came to fruition, due to Vietnam) and so on.
Once he became ‘The Accidental President’ he took JFK’s dreams and made them reality. Johnson could do that. Why? Because he was the consummate politician—far more effective than Jack Kennedy. JFK’s dreams were hollow pipes. Johnson made them happen. This is historical fact: For those of you who would care to search it out. For those who don’t really care to do that: Just-Trust-Me on this one, ‘cause I am a Texan, and Texans don’t lie (overmuch).
I have read all of Robert Caro’s books (http://www.robertcaro.com/) on LBJ and I have done my own research, and I have my own memories.
During the Sixty-Four election, my Mom, the original Hippy Chick informed me she was voting for Goldwater.
“Goldwater! Mom! Are you serious?”
“Yes Son. He is right for America.”
“‘Right?!’ Right don’t even come close: just to the right of Attila the Hun.” (Even at that tender age of seven, I was politically astute. Honestly.)
Our country does not produce colorful leaders like LBJ anymore. Much of the blame must be placed on the information revolution and the manifestation of the instant sound bite. I am not bemoaning the Information Age. I would not be able to throw my thoughts so carelessly about to the entire world if it were not for this Internet Thing we all embrace. All I am saying is one must ponder how many potential great leaders are out there, but refuse to step up to the plate simply because they do not wish to have every word they have ever uttered tweeted or twerked or posted or face-booked for all to see. Some things should still be classified as TMI. That is just good manners.
What if JFK had had the internet to deal with? We would all have known of his affair with MM. WWBS? What would Bill ‘Oh Really’ Say? We would have been ass-deep in the Cuban Missile Crisis, but Fox and CNN and even MSNBC would have burned more video on JFK’s infidelity. Castro would have loved it. Just sayin’…
My Step-sister worked for Oliver Stone on the film JFK. She was one of the on-set-dressers. We got into a heated argument over the whole conspiracy thing. She was convinced that LBJ was behind it all. I know quite a lot about LBJ as I have mentioned. I have done my research and I love Texas history.
Anyway I asked her upon what she based her unwavering belief.
She said, “That photograph of Johnson taking the oath of office on Air Force One in Dallas.”
“You’re shitting me,” I said.
“Look at that photo and see how smug Ladybird looks in it. You just know then and there, she knew the whole thing.”
“I think I need a drink,” was all I could muster by way of response.
(Oh! And my step-mother worked for Jack Ruby: I know some shit about it)
I am not writing here as an apologist for LBJ. My focus is on the wonderful Texan caricature character he was. His humor, his down-to-earth’ed-ness, his vibrant lust for life, his convictions, and his larger-than-worldly-life persona: His ‘Texan-ness’.
Therein lies the rub for me. Johnson could be a buffoon. He could be portrayed as an idiot. He could be rude, crude, and socially unacceptable. He would be chastised and eventually ostracized.
But he got shit done!
He was a great, moral, honorable man.
No one will ever convince me otherwise (but you are certainly welcome to try)
Watch and listen to the Video Clip. It proves my point (and it is hysterical). These tapes were released a few years back. I have them all.
Priceless they are (His Family Jewels)
Comments would be appreciated here, no matter which direction you lean.
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That’s awesome! 😎
The FBI Had some fun with her in ’63.
Yes. She did, In his Nightclub in Dallas.
Your step-mom worked for Jack Ruby?!
Yup. LBJ was definitely one-of-a-kind. We won’t be seeing another like him, which is kinda sad.
I do love his phone conversations. I believe I have heard most of them. (I bought the DVD when it first came out before I realized they would be available on-line) There are some good ones he had with Jackie. You definitely should check those out.
Here is one in a post from awhile back:
Thanks for your visit!
Oh, and I have seen that book, and have it on my ‘to read’ list. Thanks for reminding me.
Lance – I love the videos you post! Like I do not have enough time in the day as it is, & now I am gonna have to go check out those LBJ recordings 🙂 LMAO at that one – gotta love how LBJ expressed himself! Not sure what I believe exactly about Kennedy’s assassination & the conspiracy theories, but just started reading the book “The Dark Side of Camelot” – think it’s gonna be pretty interesting! (And yes, the contents of the bag sets one free!!!)
I am both shocked and awed!
Okay then, here’s yer damn Like. 😀
Yep. Nixon was Slime (and so was Kissinger) Do a Google Search on Hitchens and his take on ‘Henry Le K’ sometime.
Johnson was (trite) a ‘Man of the People’
I believe this, and trust me Friend, I do know a thing or two about LBJ.
Thank you very much for this discussion.
It is much more refreshing than a simple ‘Like”
Although “Likes Are Nice”
I kinda figger that Vietnam wasn’t something he really wanted to do because it ran so counter to everything else the man stood for, but he did what he did and and that’s what men are judged upon. Every president in my lifetime has done big, consequential things that were the opposite of everything they’d stood for prior to taking office… I find that interesting.
😀 Just hadta say that.
Your are of course correct Sir. Simply saying he inherited the war was slightly disingenuous on my part. Technically, he did, but the escalation was all his. I maintain mostly due to the horrible advice he got from his Cabinet, which were of course all holdovers from JFK.
Cheers, My Friend.
And, yep. I concur about NIxon.
I read about that play with Cranston and watched an interview with him. Wish I could have seen the performance.
Yes, Johnson did get most of his programs through Congress, mostly backroom tactics, but as Molly Ivins said, “Sometimes it is not necessarily bad thing to have a politician in the White House.”
Thanks much for your visit and comments.
LBJ could give most politicians lessons on how to move shit forward. Clinton was pretty good at his but he talked a good game. LBJ knew how to twist and arm. I recently saw a play on Broadway where Bryan Cranston played LBJ. It was fantastic. After three hours of bullet-proof acting, you walked out of the theater knowing that LBJ was more than just the Vietnam war.
I gotta say that I liked LBJ for most everything but Vietnam. To my way of thinking, saying he inherited Vietnam is akin to saying that Oh-blah-blah inherited the GWOT as both statements are technically true but also very misleading in the minds of most Americans — by and large an ignorant, arrogant lot who glorify war and don’t ever question the excuses for it.
I wish LBJ had stuck to his Great Society programs and extricated the US from the war in Vietnam when he had the opportunity to do so. That said, it took great commitment to country to let go of Nixon’s balls when he had them in his hand and he should be forgiven for not knowing what would come from not ripping them clean off as history indicates he probably should have.
Yep. Nuthin’ wrong with Lyndon…
And not much wrong with Penny Lane either.
He just wanted his britches didn’t cut his nuts and enough space for his butt-hole! Not a thang wrong with that.
Down to earth fella he was.
You know my favorite part about Almost Famous?
Will was the only one who knew Penny Lane’s real name.
Love this post.