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Thread: Greatest American

  1. #51
    jimi_d's avatar
    Oct 2004
    Birmingham, England
    What, no Robert Moses?

    When we tried this in Britain, the public voted for the top ten in this order:
    1) Sir Winston Churchill
    2) Isambard Kingdom Brunel
    3) Diana, Princess of Wales
    4) Charles Darwin
    5) William Shakespeare
    6) Sir Isaac Newton
    7) Queen Elizabeth I
    8) John Lennon
    9) Horatio Nelson, 1st Viscount Nelson
    10) Oliver Cromwell

    Contests like these are a lesson in the stupidity of the general public. If you'd asked me to rank those ten, I'd probably order them something like: Brunel, Darwin, Cromwell, Newton, Nelson, Shakespeare, Churchill, Elizabeth, Lennon, Diana. More to the point, I'd never have voted Shakespeare, Churchill, Elizabeth, Lennon, or Diana into the top ten in the first place.

    What will be interesting in the American version is how well/badly Dubya and his predecessors do (it's interesting how many Presidents there are on the list). In the British version, Blair only made 67th, Major didn't feature, Thatcher was 16th, and then Jim Callaghan, Harold Wilson, Sir Edward Heath, Lord Home, and Sir Anthony Eden all didn't feature (and for that matter, the only other 20th Century PM to make the list was David Lloyd George in 79th).

    Anyway, my top five Americans would be:
    1) Franklin D. Roosevelt
    2) Rutherford B. Hayes
    3) George Washington
    4) Richard M. Nixon
    5) Woodrow Wilson

    Pity there isn't a contest for worst American (hopefully Martin van Buren would win that one by a mile).

  2. #52
    Cyburbian jordanb's avatar
    May 2003
    City of Low Low Wages!
    You seem to like corrupt individuals. Hayes became president by stealing the election and Nixon lost his presidency by trying to steal an election.

    I agree though that Nixon wasn't an altogether bad guy. He's the last Republican candidate that wasn't a right wing nut job.

  3. #53
    Cyburbian ICT/316's avatar
    May 2005
    Kansas (Lurking)

    There is the “Worst Americans Ever’ thread on about page (posts) 2 of "Friday Afternoon Club", with 46 posts.

  4. #54
    Cyburbian Rumpy Tunanator's avatar
    Dec 2003
    Timothy McVeigh..........

    Made everybody realize that, hate, is still homegrown. It lies in everybody, only some take it to the extreme.........
    A guy once told me, "Do not have any attachments, do not have anything in your life you are not willing to walk out on in 30 seconds flat if you spot the heat around the corner."

    Neil McCauley (Robert DeNiro): Heat 1995

  5. #55
    Cyburbian Floridays's avatar
    Jul 2002
    South FL
    Should they ever make the list, I am prematurely removing their names:

    Allen Gant Senior: invented pantyhose in 1959.
    Mary Phelps Jacob: invented the first modern brassiere to be awarded a patent in 1913.

  6. #56
    Cyburbian Plus
    Jun 2003

    What do 'Greatest Americans' finalist choices say about us?

    From the Louisville Courier-Journal:

    "There are many surprises, depending on your likes and dislikes, in the rest of the tally.
    8. Elvis Presley was a great singer, but come on.
    9. Oprah Winfrey is a wonderful entertainer -- but one of the 10 greatest Americans?
    Given her recent shopping incident ?
    15. Thomas Edison, who turned on the lights in America and gave us movies and records. He finished seven spots behind Elvis?
    21. Muhammad Ali. He deserves to be on the list not so much for boxing as for being an ambassador to the world (as Jimmy Carter certainly should have been for the fine example he's set).
    22. Rosa Parks. Another example of small acts leading to big changes. "

    I like his thinking about these persons place on the list.

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