Lyndon Johnson's dire warning is more important than ever


It is not at all obvious to me that we are in a better place than we were in the 1970s.


Ask any LGBT friends about that. I share the frustration, we can see where we need to be, just can’t get there yet. But look to what we have achieved. How many women, Black, Muslim, Native American, LGBT people were in Congress, governors offices, state legislatures. We are not where we should be, but we really are better than we were. At least i choose to believe so, because it helps me sleep at night.


I agree that there have been pockets of genuine progress, especially LGBT rights, and far more women in office (though not necessarily representing a progressive side). In everyday life there seems to me to be regress in the form of acceptance of avarice and intolerance, and politically far less a sense of society versus tribalism. I worked hard for democratic candidates in the early 70s, but liked some of the republican politicians I knew, they seemed to be genuinely interested in improving the country and the world. Even criminal and anti-semite Richard Nixon ended the war and created the EPA. I don’t even like the democratic politicians that are around today.


Yeah, I got nothing. Those are absolutely true statements.


Biographies of Robert Caro about Johnson read in this order:

The Path to Power
Means of Ascent
Master of the Senate
The Passage of Power




So you want to place their vote to insure it is spent wisely? Are you really that good?


His campaign’s “Southern Strategy” is also one of the main factors that helped the GOP morph into the racist cesspit of no-holds-barred partisan politics it is today.


Sure. I didn’t raise the example to defend Nixon, just to question how much political progress there has been.

Since this is an LBJ thread, it is worth pointing out that much of the heavy work in getting civil rights legislation passed, not only the Act of 1964 but earlier legislation that started the ball rolling in the late 1950s, was due to my own Republican senator, the otherwise very conservative Ev Dirksen.

Politicians used to be able to cut deals with one another. That’s what politics is. Or was.


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