Twitter Twatter: Memorial Day
I did a little homework on Eisenhower this morning. His West Point graduating class of 1915 was called the class "that the stars fell on." Of it's 164 graduating members, 59 became generals: the highest number ever recorded in one class in West Point's history. I also didn't know he injured his knee playing football there.
I have no idea why Eisenhower came to mind, or West Point, over say...Eisenhower's affair with Kay Summersby during the war, or the ambition it takes to claw through Army hierarchy to general, or how often ambition is overlooked in seeking the Presidential seat in government. People rarely think of Abe Lincoln as anything other than Father Abraham, but he was consumed with ambition and the fear he wouldn't reach his goals. I think it safe to say any man that seeks power at this level is consumed with the desire to win.
From West Point I thought about generals who became President. Twelve of them. Washington, Harrison, Taylor, Grant, Hayes, Garfield, Arthur, Harrison, Eisenhower, Jackson, Pierce and Andrew Johnson. Two Whigs, Three Democrats, Seven Republicans.
"The jellybeans are mine. ALL MINE! brarahhahaha."
And from generals who become Presidents, I then had this visual image of Dick Cheney in a wheelchair at the Inauguration, and how other people jumped on that one, screaming "Doctor Strangelove!" which of course is exactly what I thought. The movie's full title is Doctor Strangelove: Or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb. What a grave fear I felt knowing Cheney could be President. Who remembers Alexander Haig rushing into a news conference after Reagan was shot declaring, "I'm in charge here," when he was anything but. George Bush the Elder was in charge, as Vice-President, as every schoolboy knows. Haig later complained "I'm being undermined by weenies and second-rate hambones." His insecurities and low self-esteem doomed his future, and that one gaffe became the defining moment of his career.
The Alien Hand Syndrome
And this is why I wonder what value Twitter has to me, holding my thoughts to 140 characters, including spaces. How do you contain the wandering mind which can be a compost pail of mishmashed thoughts. Throw them on the heap. See what they make. Think how crazed men can become in suppressing their desires in meeting the strangleholds of duty and hierarchy.