Obama vs. Carter: Who's Worse?

So far, President Obama has been a failure. His stimulus has been a bust, the economy far worse than he projected things would be without that huge expenditure. His constant TV appearances only turn people further against whatever he is pushing. On foreign affairs, he's seen no positive movement, with Iran getting ever closer to being a nuclear threat and Obama flummoxed on how to stop that. And what seemed to be Obama’s only strength -- his worldwide popularity -- was proven completely useless in his unsuccessful bid to bring the Olympics to Chicago, the International Olympic Committee apparently getting Obama to drop everything and fly to Copenhagen just so they could laugh at him to his face.

Our economy is in shambles, foreign threats are growing, and America is a laughingstock. So people are asking the question: is Obama as bad as Carter?

That's not a question to take lightly, as we should not accuse someone of being like Jimmy Carter without good cause. There are millions of Americans who still feel the pain of living in the Carter era, and to invoke Carter's name frivolously is extremely insensitive to them. Still, we often forget that Carter is just a man (and not misery and human failure given the form of a man, as many have come to believe), and if we are not careful, it is possible to have another just like him -- and who knows how long it will take us to recover from that?

I was born in 1979, so I don't really know the Carter presidency firsthand. I first found out about Carter when as a child I realized there was a four-year gap between the end of the Ford presidency and the beginning of Reagan leading us from the darkness. Curious, I asked my parents, "Who was president from January '77 to January '81?"

"We don't speak of that!" I was promptly told. My father promised to beat me mercilessly if I ever brought it up again. This only made me more curious, so I snuck out to the library (this was where information was locally stored in the pre-internet age). Most of the newspaper microfilms and magazines from those years were also gone, but I found a few clippings and some further information in books in the occult section. Soon I pieced together a portrait of the man known as Jimmy Carter.