Sunday, November 14, 2010

Treasures found while cleaning my scrapbooking space!

I am finding all sorts of "lost" items while organizing/cleaning my spaces this weekend. Probably the most fun item is a paper I wrote while a Senior at Hood for my course in "The American Presidency" with Dr. Elfin.

The paper is titled "Significance: It Was Time for a Change" - and it has additional significance to me now, at this point in my life:

  1. I was working on writing this paper when I met Bruce. I turned it in on December 12, 1984, and I met him on December 1, 1984. I distinctly remember talking with him about the subject matter - the Presidential race between Adali Stevenson and Dwight D. Eisenhower in 1952. It's when we knew that we were, at least, compatible on the level of politics!
  2. As I read through my work, I am blown away by the similarities between how the US was dealing with issues such as wartime (Korea), the economy, and blatantly ferocious "patriotism" being bandied about by the conservative right in order to make the left look unpatriotic.
  3. Stevenson lost by a landslide to Eisenhower. I am praying that during the next Presidential election, history does NOT repeat itself as it seems to do over & over again. Whoever said that the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over & over again but expecting a different result must have been a soothsayer - We, as a people in general, are truly acting as if we are INSANE!
I got an A- on the paper. It is yellowing within its plastic report cover, and was typed on a Selectric typewriter rather than on a computer. It features hand-numbered pages and a handwritten chart on the last page of the Appendix highlighting the percentages of the populous who voted for each candidate, broken down by gender, race, education, occupation, age, religion, political party, and region of the US. It is extremely interesting, if I do say so myself!

Here is my concluding paragraph - I had to laugh when I read it-26 years haven't changed me much!

"As I began to put together an overall picture of the campaign and election in my mind and on paper, I began to feel that the American people had been cheated out of a very fine, intelligent President in Stevenson.....I have come to realize throughout The American Presidency course and through writing this paper that politics and the political road to the Presidency are one huge game of chance, luck, money, and personality - I saw that this year in the Reagan/Mondale race and my ideas were enforced by my research on the Eisenhower/Stevenson race of 1952."

And here are Dr. Elfin's notes on my work:

"I like this paper and rate it well-researched & presented. I would, however, have emphasized (another contrast-compare with Reagan/Mondale) the ferocious patriotism and negative quality of the GOP campaign which soon turned into McCarthyism."

WOW - see where we're headed? If McCarthyism doesn't scare people and wake them up/help them become less insane, I don't know what would!!! And see why I loved studying Political Science at Hood? I loved Dr. Elfin, Dr. Lewis (God rest her soul), Dr. McKnight, Dr. Latkovski, and my other PoliSci/History profs. God, how I loved Hood in the 1980's!!!

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