Younger Than Springtime
I love this. Via Maha, I see that right wingers are now arguing that Obama is too young to be president. The man is 47 years old. Old enough to be a grandfather. (But hey, I'm only four years older than him and I've been feeling pretty damned old lately so this is good news. I feel young again!)
U.S. Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer, argue[s] that in choosing between different interpretations of the Constitution, we should select the one that will produce the best consequences. This method too suggests that Obama should be understood to be constitutionally barred from serving as president by reason of his age. We have had three presidents out of 43 who were younger when they took office than Obama would be on Jan. 20, 2009: Bill Clinton, John F. Kennedy and Theodore Roosevelt. All of them committed serious rookie blunders because they were too young.
Clinton's first two years in office were marked by a series of major overreaches, from his gays in the military plan to Hillary's failed health-care proposal. In 1994, the American people responded by putting Clinton on a tight leash with the first all-Republican Congress in 40 years.
Kennedy is widely known to have blundered in his 1961 summit in Vienna with Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev. Kennedy's show of weakness led to the Cuban missile crisis and brought the world to the edge of annihilation.
Roosevelt engaged in gunboat diplomacy with Latin American countries such as Panama that tarred America's reputation in that part of the world for the next 100 years. We are still living with the legacy of T.R.'s youthful foreign policy excesses.
Well heck, at least none of them sat on their asses while being warned daily that the nation was going to be attacked and then invaded a country that had nothing to do with it. Just the sheer scale of the blunders ... oy.
I think, frankly, we should stop worrying about age and gender and race and the rest and start thinking about IQ. Bush is quite clearly on the lower end of the scale, no matter what age he is, and I'm seeing some quite serious signs that McCain's lousy record at the Naval Academy wasn't due to his carousing.
I'm not saying you have to be a genius to be president but you should have to meet some kind of intellectual thresh hold to be considered for the job. We've see how badly it can turn out when you ignore the fact that the president is a blithering idiot, no matter what the age. I'll take a thoughtful, intellectual, young person over a hidebound, rigid, intellectually deficient older jackass any day. They are, after all, the ones who have fucked things up to kingdom come.