Searching for Gerald Ford’s Legacy

It’s probably a pathology that infects most bloggers.  I have actually thought “I wonder how I will blog the death of Gerald Ford”.  And then I have formulated, in my head, proposed blog posts about Gerald Ford.

One of the thoughts on the proposed blog posts upon the death of Gerald Ford was the preceeding paragraph.  Also the proceeding paragraph.  This paragraph, I can honestly say, has never crossed my mind in such stray thoughts.

If you line up the five presidents before Gerald Ford and the five presidents following Gerald Ford, what you will find is that Gerald Ford leaves less of a mark than all of them.  And that answers the question, “How will history record Gerald Ford?”  The answer is it won’t.  It’ll skip right past him.  Note him and move right along.  That’s not to say that notable things didn’t happen with Ford — there are precursors and post-cursors everywhere, and certainly during the Ford Presidency — which had ideolouges formulating the “Unitary Executive” theory of governance, for example.  But Ford will never be associated with such items.

Pop culture-wise, Ford’s administration represents a bleak time in American pop-cultural history.  The year 1974 strikes me as horrendous.  Ford’s tenure brings me to mind Pet Rocks.  It’s weird how I have mental snap-shots in my head, and it’s weird how any redeeming qualities from the era commonly known as the 60s fade away right in the year 1974 — as though We no longer have Nixon to kick around, and so there’s nothing to counter-act except blandness, which we must as a culture merge into.  It was a tacky time, and I don’t know if I can pin it entirely on economic hard times or if something else was at play.

The conventional wisdom — pardoning Nixon was good — may not be right and may have set bad precedents for further political chicanery.  Or it may have been good.  Debate amongst yourselves.  I myself hate that conventional wisdom has gelled so perfectly — it is a sign of the establishment forcing something which may or may not be true and probably is only half so down our throats.

So there you have it.  Gerald Ford.  Dead.  Was he in your “dead pool”?  By the 100 minus year rules you would have seven points.  If you already calculated your Dead pool points, run back and add seven points now.  Maybe it’ll be enough to pull you into the lead.

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