History Buzz January 17, 2013: JFK White House staffers reunite

HISTORY BUZZ: HISTORY NEWS RECAP

History Buzz

HISTORY BUZZ: HISTORY NEWS RECAP

JFK White House staffers reunite

Source: Boston.com, 1-17-13

Some arrived in the afternoon drizzle with the aid of canes. Others steadied themselves on the arm of a spouse. But they were as determined as half a century ago when they were the foot soldiers of President John F. Kennedy’s New Frontier.

A handful of surviving members of the 35th president’s White House staff came together Wednesday to relive those heady times that have long since passed for American myth. They were invited for a private tour of the exhibit, “To The Brink: JFK and the Cuban Missile Crisis,” on display at the National Archives….READ MORE

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Political Headlines January 17, 2013: Happy Birthday, First Lady Michelle Obama

POLITICAL HEADLINES

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OBAMA PRESIDENCY & THE 113TH CONGRESS:

THE HEADLINES….

Happy Birthday, Michelle Obama

Source: ABC News, 1-17-13

ht michelle obama kb 130117 wblog Happy Birthday, Michelle Obama@FLOTUS/Twitter

First Lady Michelle Obama is ringing in her 50th year with a bang. She debuted a new hairdo, and fresh set of bangs, in a photo posted on her new @FLOTUS Twitter account today.

Before the inaugural festivities get underway, the Obama family celebrates another important milestone: the first lady’s birthday.

Michelle Obama turns 49 today and, if previous years are any indication, President Obama will likely take his wife out to dinner in Washington tonight….READ MORE

History Buzz January 17, 2013: Inauguration 2013: The stormy history of Inauguration Day weather

HISTORY BUZZ: HISTORY NEWS RECAP

History Buzz

HISTORY BUZZ: HISTORY NEWS RECAP

The stormy history of Inauguration Day weather

Source: USA Today, 1-17-13

Temperatures in the 30s are likely for President Obama’s inauguration.

inauguration 00003
William Howard Taft, center, watches the parade after his inauguration as the 27th president March 4, 1909.(Photo: AP)

Story Highlights

  • In 1985, the coldest Inauguration Day in history forced President Reagan’s ceremony inside
  • President William Harrison died a month after an outdoor Inauguration Day in miserable weather in 1841
  • Heavy snow fell for President Kennedy’s inauguration in 1961

So what does the weather have in store for President Obama’s second inauguration Monday, which will occur at noon on the steps of the U.S. Capitol? Most likely, chilly, windy conditions, thanks to a cold front barreling through the eastern U.S. that should put an end to the relatively mild weekend weather….READ MORE

Here are the records for inaugural weather since 1937, the first January Inauguration Day, according to the National Weather Service:

  • Warmest: 1981. President Reagan’s first inauguration. Noon temperature: 55 degrees.
  • Coldest: 1985: Reagan’s second inauguration. Noon temperature: 7 degrees. The inauguration was moved indoors.
  • Rainiest: 1937. President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s second inauguration, when 1.77 inches of rain fell.
  • Snowiest: 1961. Eight inches of snow fell the night before John F. Kennedy was sworn in.
  • Warmest non-traditional date: (Aug. 9, 1974) – Gerald Ford; 89 degrees, with partly cloudy skies and hazy conditions.

History Buzz January 17, 2013: President Barack Obama’s Second Inaugural Address: Can Obama Speak to History?

HISTORY BUZZ: HISTORY NEWS RECAP

History Buzz

HISTORY BUZZ: HISTORY NEWS RECAP

Can Obama Speak to History?

Source: New Yorker, 1-17-13

packer-comment-inaugurals.jpgWhy are so few inaugural addresses memorable? This American-history junkie can immediately call to mind phrases from fewer than ten: Jefferson’s first (“We are all Republicans, we are all Federalists”); Lincoln’s first (“When again touched, as surely they will be, by the better angels of our nature”) and second (the entire speech glows transcendently); F.D.R.’s first (“The only thing we have to fear is fear itself”) and second (“I see one third of a nation ill-housed, ill-clad, ill-nourished”); Kennedy’s (“Ask not what your country can do for you…”); and Reagan’s first (“In this present crisis, government is not the solution to our problem; government is the problem”). I also remember George W. Bush’s second inaugural (“When you stand for your liberty, we will stand with you”), only because it made promises and claims that exploded in his face before he had left the podium.

I also remember five words from Obama’s first: “A new era of responsibility.” If his 2009 inaugural had a theme, that was it. And it was a good theme, coming at the depths of the recession, amid the ruins of an era of profligacy and “I want it now.” But I doubt that its signature phrase will enter the ages. Obama isn’t a phrasemaker….READ MORE

History Buzz January 17, 2013: Michael Kazin: A Short History of Meaningless Inauguration Speeches

HISTORY BUZZ: HISTORY NEWS RECAP

History Buzz

HISTORY BUZZ: HISTORY NEWS RECAP

A Short History of Meaningless Inauguration Speeches

Source: TNR, 1-17-13 

Here’s a bit of advice when considering Barack Obama second inaugural address on January 21: Don’t take anything he says very seriously.

For all the hype they receive, inaugural addresses rarely foretell what a president will accomplish in office. In fact, the men who utter grand principles and make big promises every four years often contradict them, willingly or not, soon after they begin their terms. Take a few of the more celebrated quotations:

We are all Republicans, we are all Federalists.” — Thomas Jefferson

We are not enemies, but friends. We must not be enemies. Though passion may have strained, it must not break our bonds of affection.” — Abraham Lincoln

First of all, let me assert my firm belief that the only thing we have to fear is fear itself—nameless, unreasoning, unjustified terror which paralyzes needed efforts to convert retreat into advance.” — Franklin Delano Roosevelt 

Let every nation know, whether it wishes us well or ill, that we shall pay any price, bear any burden, meet any hardship, support any friend, oppose any foe, in order to assure the survival and the success of liberty.” — John F. Kennedy

READ MORE

Political Headlines January 17, 2013: Denis McDonough to Be Obama’s New Chief of Staff?

POLITICAL HEADLINES

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OBAMA PRESIDENCY & THE 113TH CONGRESS:

THE HEADLINES….

Denis McDonough to Be Obama’s New Chief of Staff?

Source: ABC News Radio, 1-17-13

The White House | Pete Souza

Deputy National Security Adviser Denis McDonough is the likely choice to be President Obama’s next chief of staff, replacing Jack Lew, who has been nominated to be Treasury Secretary.

White House officials say the president has not made a final decision, but informed sources say they expect McDonough will be chosen….READ MORE

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