Historians question White House presidential bios


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They're biographies on the White House website for goodness sake. Of course they are going to downplay things. I wouldn't expect going to Microsoft's website and reading a biography of Bill Gates and his drunk driving conviction or how Windows ME was really crummy.

If I want to read in depth about Millard Fillmore, I'd go buy a an actual book about him.

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Short profiles of nat'l leaders on gov't websites should be exciting to readers and students of history, but most are simply partisan or dull to merit a second-look.

I'm a big admirer of US Presidential biographies, and Doris Kearns GOODWIN is obviously associated with essays/biography of the Roosevelts. Although I'm not quite sure why Ms. GOODWIN panned the semi-biographies of US presidents on the White House website.

Harry Truman’s does not mention his 1948 upset victory over Thomas E Dewey, while George W Bush’s offers no detail about the prolonged election of 2000, which ended with a 5-4 decision by the U.S. Supreme Court. Ford’s includes some of his comments upon succeeding Nixon, but leaves out the most famous words: “Our long national nightmare is over.”

Agreed. I believe a group of White House historians--including GOODWIN and Robert CARO-- recently published a collection of short biographies of US Presidents. The collection included essays on US elections, results and the major candidates (primaries and nat'l). The writer of this article must be thinking of the book when writing this piece.

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'George W Bush’s entry, for example, makes no reference to Hurricane Katrina, a disaster many thought his administration handled poorly, or the economic collapse of 2008, but it does find room for the names of his dogs.'

This is biographical information. Please author, before you write any more words, learn the meaning of them. I mean as much as I hate Bush, I see nothing wrong with the biographical entry on him. Please, put down the pen.

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Some are examples of blatant boosterism and outdated scholarship. Others are oddly selective or politically incorrect.

Sounds pretty much how the mainstream media reports pretty much everything

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But the White House biographies offer an unusual history lesson. Some are examples of blatant boosterism and outdated scholarship. Others are oddly selective or politically incorrect.

These are WHITE HOUSE bios. What do you expect? Maybe she prefers the communism self-hatred spewed by "oh I was never communist but merely realist" historians? Maybe Eric Foner, Nicholas DeGenova and Ward Churchill should write the bios?

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Maybe "historians" want Hamas to write the bios for us?

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