Conservatives are mocking the Obama administration yet again this week due to the White House’s alteration of many presidential biographies. Beginning with Calvin Coolidge, facts about the Obama administration’s actions are linked with the actions of previous presidents through a Did You Know? section at the bottom of the webpage.
Many of the links made between Obama and previous presidents are inane and meaningless where real policy is concerned. For instance, under Herbert Hoover’s biography, the addendum mentions that Hoover signed the bill that created the Department of Veteran Affairs, and that Obama is ‘committed to serving the needs of veterans’ by modernizing health care benefits.
The Did You Know? under Calvin Coolidge’s biography notes that Coolidge was the first to make a public radio address, and somewhat lamely points out that Obama is the first president to hold virtual meetings online.
Many of the links to Democratic figureheads are the most obscure. For instance, the Did You Know? section under FDR’s biography notes that FDR signed the Social Security Act, noting that Obama is working to ensure Social Security will be there to protect future generations.
Obama’s link to JFK is his celebration of the 50th anniversary of the Peace Corps, which JFK helped create.
LBJ is noted for having signed Medicare into law, which the White House claims Obama strengthened by signing Obamacare into law.
Gerald Ford’s biography has not been altered so far.
But perhaps the most outrageous claim, is Obama’s supposed link to Ronald Reagan. The Did You Know? under Reagan’s biography reads:
In a June 28, 1985 speech Reagan called for a fairer tax code, one where a multi-millionaire did not have a lower tax rate than his secretary. Today, President Obama is calling for the same with the Buffett Rule.
In Reagan’s speech, no mention of secretaries is mentioned. Reagan mentioned that a bus driver shouldn’t pay more in taxes than a millionaire. Of course, he was strictly talking about income tax, not comparing capitol gains rates to income tax rates. In fact in the same speech, Reagan advocated against raising taxes and instead closing loopholes and cutting taxes across the board.
Also noted- Reagan declared Martin Luther King Day a national holiday, which the first and second families celebrate by participating in service projects.
Michelle Obama is also mentioned for her Let’s Move initiative to ‘promote healthier lifestyles’. This is mentioned in conjunction with President Eisenhower’s Council on Youth Fitness.
The Obama adminstration’s attempt to insert itself into every moment of American history has spawned a Twitter hashtag, #ObamaInHistory, which is being used to mock the biographical alterations.
A few examples:
@JohnSantorelli: Christopher Columbus discovered the New World in 1492 and Obama was there to apologize and bow to the natives. #ObamaInHistory
@EthanMyers007: 30,000 Americans died on the Oregon Trail due to lack of health insurance. #ObamaInHistory
The widest criticism of the biographical alteration is drawn from a speech Michelle Obama gave during the 2008 campaign. She mentioned that Barack knew they were going to have to rewrite history- and to many, it appears that this is exactly what Obama is doing. For more, go to whitehouse.gov/presidents.