The comparisons of 2012 to 1979 continue to grow, especially with the recent Middle East uprisings seeming to mirror the circumstances President Carter was faced with in his battle against Ronald Reagan. I have read pundits arguing both ways, that this point and time closely resembles 1979 while others argue it is completely different for a number of reasons.

Report from the Times and Democrat:

In 24 hours, beginning with the 11th anniversary of 9/11, all hell has broken loose in the Middle East. Our diplomatic missions in Egypt and Libya have been attacked, with the U.S. ambassador to Libya among those brutally murdered by Islamists.

Much will continue to be said about this, but the similarities to Iran 33 years ago are striking. And make no mistake about it, rightly or wrongly, this is now a major political issue in our presidential election, as it was in the 1980 presidential election. Just like that, in one explosive burst, foreign policy is on the front-burner in the 2012 campaign.

Over the last four years, longtime authoritarian Arab leaders in Egypt and Libya have been deposed, supplanted β€” we fear β€” by longtime extremist Islamic movements. In Egypt, Hosni Mubarak is gone. In Libya, Moammar Kaddafi is gone. Neither man was, by any stretch, a democrat. And yet, we worry that they have been replaced by something much worse.

Well, something similar unfolded in Iran 33 years ago, when a longtime authoritarian leader and close U.S. ally, the Shah, was replaced by an extremist Islamic movement headed by the Ayatollah, producing the world’s worst, longest-running theocratic/terrorist state. The moment was dramatized on Nov. 4, 1979, when the U.S. embassy was seized and more than 50 American hostages were captured and held for 444 days. Like in Egypt, it all seemed to begin, at least visually, symbolically, with the burning of the American flag at our embassy.

So, what do you think? Are we re-visiting 1979 with geopolitical forces now front and center in the national debate or is this an entirely different beast?

Side note, on my way to work this morning, I noticed gas jumped a good 10 to 15 cents in the pat 48 hours. Now $3.95 for regular and perhaps rising.


  1. Big Difference.

    In fact, I think any similarity is technically called “tortured.” This Paul Kengor obviously was not around 33 years ago.

    (1) Carter was seen as ineffectual, because our people were being held captive for more than a year. He did try a rescue, but our military didn’t figure out that if you land a helicopter in a desert, you’ll kick up sand. By contrast, Obama has overseen several successes in the area, including the two countries involved.

    (2) In Iran, the “students” were really government agents. In this case, the new Libyan government is horrified and embarrassed by hooligans.

    (3) Iran was taken over by extremists. Neither of these countries are being run by extremists.

    (4) Carter’s problem was that nothing was happening. Today, problems are suddenly popping up. Americans rally around our president in such times. Remember that the public was overwhelmingly against war in Iraq, but once we got into it, the public rallied behind Bush.

    But more importantly,

    (5) Carter was seen as ineffective. In today’s election, Willard is clearly ignorant of the world and international politics. So if this effects the election at all, it will be to the benefit of Obama.

    (6) In 2008, Bush acted in foreign affairs. Obama did not contradict him. Obama said, “There is only one president at a time.” Most Americans agree. So Willard’s trying to run a separate foreign policy, and sniping at a president in time of trouble, is NOT going to be well received by the electorate.

    Just like that silly post comparing of this year with 1980 and 1984, this comparison makes no sense.

    • None of these countries are being run by extremists and they’re all totally embarrassed of this behavior? Really? Are you sure about that? Might want to double-check points 2 and 3.

      The Muslim Brotherhood is nothing more than a bowling league, right? Nothing “extreme” about it.

      I’m not equating 2012 to 1979, you can debate that all day.

      But some of your points regarding who is really in charge in these war-town nations are weak!

      • Nate:

        I am beginning to wonder if you were alive in 1979.

        Point number 2 is obvious. The Libyan government is profoundly grateful to us and the Europeans. But they are not stable and they are not perfectly organized. And by all accounts, this attack was hooligans.

        [See third link below]

        Point number 3 is about the Iranian revolution. The so-called “students” were really an integral part of their new government. Their purpose was to hold hostages to avert another American coup, as in 1953–which overthrew democracy there, putting the Shah in power as a tyrant. (“WE did such a thing??”)

        There is NO evidence that either of the recent attacks were government agents. In fact, BOTH governments have apologized and said they would seek to punish those involved.



        And, this is from your buddy, Sun Myung Moon’s Washington Times:

        Nate, I know you’re a NeoCon and would love to send in the troops everywhere, but “different” really does not necessarily mean “enemy.”

        Teddy Roosevelt said, “talk softly and carry a big stick.” By contrast, NeoCons want to “shoot their mouths off and beat that stick until it is totally depleted.”

        • You’re personal attacks and generalizations against me are a waste of my time. Just trying to spur discussion. You don’t know my views so don’t paint people in boxes to argue against things they didn’t say. You’re quick to go personal, especially against people who you have a quarrel with. Lighten up, stick to the topics.

          I didn’t attack you personally in any way above yet you go there instantly. With that attitude, I’m not sure you were alive in 1979 either, or maybe 1999? πŸ˜‰

          • Nate:

            The “personal attacks” you are recoiling from are–what?

            (1) saying you clearly didn’t know 1979
            That’s not personal, since someone who lived through it could not possibly compare it to today.

            (2) saying you’re a NeoCon
            You have taken NeoCon positions, so how is that personal?

            It’s easier to characterize it as a “personal attack” if you can’t argue with the documentation of the points.

            • First, I have read a few writers who lived through 1979 who are comparing it to today and a few writers saying the opposite. Just various opinions like yours and since you don’t own the truth, I think it is OK to investigate all angles.

              Second, I have not taken “NeoCon positions” so that is a lie.

            • Nate:

              OK, so now we’re getting down to it. Of the two charges I made which you labeled as “personal attacks,” you now acknowledge one to be true.

              And you claim the second to be a lie, saying you have not taken NeoCon positions. Could you take a look at this and point out a NeoCon position with which you do NOT agree?


            • Nate:

              And, back to the point of this thread, while I take your word for it that some people have tried to twist the facts to say today’s situation is at ALL like 1979 [Well, um, it occurred in the Middle East. . .a Democrat was president. . .um, they must be the same].

              Any comparison of the two events is as shallow and wrong as if someone said the civil war in Syria is “strikingly” like the civil war in the United States. Pfffft.

            • Gee Nate, nothing wrong with it, just stand up for it rather than denying it. I may have the wrong definition but your post seem to fit squarely within the definition as I know it.

      • The real difference here is that Obama is just as hawkish as anyone else. Obama has already started a war with Iran. So what is Mitt going to say?

        BTW, Mitt’s rebuttal was absurd. No one who actually listened to that is going to see Mitt as the hawk that can protect America. It was a pile of befuddled sophistry: “The embassy said one thing, then the White House said they didn’t agree with it. We’re sending mixed messages to the world!” It did not make Mitt look like a leader, nor hawkish, he just came across as combative.

        • Ryan:

          REMFney’s flailing about regarding foreign policy, trying to look like he belongs at the “big people’s table” really doesn’t enhance his credibility.

          The fact that he’s trying to “backseat drive” the current crisis makes him look petulant and petty.

          Look up the acronym “REMF” and a picture of Willard is right next to it. . . .

          • I guess if you don’t know what you are doing it might be better to follow or better yet do nothing. A great substitute for experience might be a good track record. Kind of like RP never having a baby himself but having a great track record at delivering them.

            • Billy: Yeah. Remember when Carter tried that helicopter rescue of the hostages in Iran? It was a comedy of errors, but Reagan DID NOT SAY A WORD.

              There can be only one president at a time, and now Ryan is getting into the act. He’s a kid, so I guess we should forgive him. And Willard is a moron, so I guess we need to pat him on the head and just ignore him. Still, foreign leaders must wonder why REFMney and his pet boy are carping.

            • Lot of common ground here between the Carter and Obama missions. Using 20/20 hindsight both were Rube Goldberg. Both were based in luck a lot more than skill.

            • Billy:

              Are you talking about Carter’s helicopter mission to free the Iranian hostages? That was a farce, for sure, but on the other hand, Carter was not on the ground. How could our military not know that sand flies in the wind?

              We actually ran into the same sand trouble more than ten years later, in Poppy’s Gulf War, but we just had such a huge force, that if some equipment failed, there was plenty more to take its place.

              What mission for Obama? The only mission Obama approved was the bin Laden mission.

            • Yes I was. Both times the helicopter crashed and looking back the helicopter was huge liability. I have flown helicopters and they are a bitch to fly. When landing or taking off from any confinement (walls) the tail rotor wash becomes a real nightmare. The main rotor wash bounces off the walls and you need the reflexes of a cat to maintain control. Don’t think there are many guys who would have tried that landing in the day time in and empty compound let alone with the threat of a guy with an RPG standing on the balcony or behind some window.

              With Carter’s mission I think it was a case of vision more than anything as night vision goggles can’s see through a sand storm from the rotor wash. Carter’s team could have bought tickets on a commercial airline as customs was almost non existent in Iran during that time. The team could have rented a car and driven out into the bad lands, picked up their weapons, and had the bellhop carry then into their rooms.

              As for Obama’s mission a pizza truck crashing through the gate would have yielded the same results.

  2. This country is run like a plantation. The elected official try to extract the most amount of profit from the citizens by shifting wealth from one class to the next while extracting a piece of the action for themselves and those who invested in putting them into office.

  3. Carter’s weakness and ineptness – Obama’s weakness and ineptness.

    Those two similarities alone are enough.

    Next, are increasing gas hikes and the rise in food, materials and whatever other costs associated with transportation and harvesting, etc., triggering a recession and deeper inflation woes.

    • Both these guys had an agenda to make us energy independent. As they couldn’t come up with an idea to make their products competitive they chose to drive up the price of that they were competing against. Businesses do it all the time via lobbyist. I worked with DOE (grant) at start up and like every other agency they started out great and I think came real close but then became just another bureaucratic monster that completely lost its way. Friends, there is a way to store vast amounts of wind energy. Just wish I could remember how it was done. LOL

      • Billy Malone —“…Friends, there is a way to store vast amounts of wind energy. Just wish I could remember how it was done….”

        Simple — put politicians on pylons with their mouths wide open….

      • Billy:

        Reminds me of the joke you will appreciate:

        There are three simple rules to pleasing a woman. Unfortunately, nobody knows what they are.

        • LOL, my late wife use to tell me just give me everything I want and I won’t ever get angry. My reply was I wish I could as you then might end up like Christina Onassis.

  4. Nate — all of these comparisons with their multitude of politico gurus convoluted “explanations” are designed only to confuse the people and send them into a tangent (“foreign policy is MOST important NOW”) thus, diverting the voters attention from the REAL issues of Sound Economy and Personal Liberties!

    Therefore, just like in mathematics, an over-complicated theorem needs to be reduced to the final simplest equation (in order for the problem to be solved easily)!

    Here is the solution for our troubles to be over:

    Bring the Troops Home, stop all undeclared Wars and Foreign Aid (Israel can protect itself), shut down the alphabet soup of unconstitutional Government Agencies that have sprung up (like the TSA and many more), End the Federal Reserve and peg the US Dollar to its original Gold Standard.

      • Gee, could that be the only Patriot left in Office…Ron Paul…!

        Write in Ron Paul is finally online!

        Vote and spread it like wildfire!

        partial powerful info (read all):

        β€œβ€¦This is a WIN-WIN strategy for all voters. It is the way to address the issues of electronic election fraud. All people desire that their votes be counted. Write-in Elections achieves this by assuring a permanent, verifiable paper trail, which is lacking in the current voting system. This is through the emphasis on the use of absentee ballots, which are photocopied, along with affidavits….”

  5. Looks like the Ron Paul Fan Site is under attack by Mitt’s cyber goons, again!

    Try and go there β€” β€” and you get nothing but waiting to load ONLY!

    Since the INFO to WRITE Ron Paul IN was posted there β€” Rmoney’s Team worried that their master won’t win, are pursuing all venues, to shut Ron Paul down, like they did at their OWNED Tampa Convention!

    • Surfisher:

      Maybe there’s another positive explanation:

      –So many people are trying to get the information at once that it’s overloading the server?

      • Goethe Behr — yeah, right…at midnight they all are flocking to ….LOL!

        This site was hacked many times before — and now, that PERFIDY Mitt is facing Zero chance to win, his cyber goons are most likely at it again!

        • Surfisher:

          Well, you know I always like to give Willard the benefit of the doubt. . .

          That boy is going down like Leonardo DiCaprio in TITANIC, only he’s flailing and floundering as he’s foundering.

          You know, if we could get a solid write-in campaign going, with the power of the Internet, Ron Paul actually could win, and in doing so, he could create a new party.

          That would make Willard the “Winfield Scott” of the Republican Party–that is, the guy who killed it.

          • Billy: I don’t think an Obama screw up is his risk, since Willard is so prone to doing/saying exactly the wrong thing.

            I think the handlers will tell Willard to stick EXACTLY to his talking points–or just hide out.

            I just heard that Willard’s thugs are going to come in with an OBSCENE amount of propaganda money. All they have to do is hope people forget that the alternative to Obama is an empty suit with weird hair.

            • Obama has money too and as we saw in the primary it takes many times the amount the other guy has to make any difference.

            • Billy:

              I dunno. In the primaries, not only did Willard spend as much as 17 times as much as his opponents, but the opponents wasted their energy quibbling with each other.

              Willard has a huge money advantage now (getting much bigger), but up to this point, Obama has spent more and they’re still, basically, tied. I just don’t get that, especially since (getting back on-topic) Willard keeps showing what he doesn’t know. In his speech, he felt the need to NAME middle eastern countries, as if to prove that he had the names memorized.

              His awkward performance this week was clearly meant to appease the NeoCons, but even a lot of his supporters said it was unseemly, at best. Yet, he still hasn’t been laughed off the stage.

    • They may have owned it but they got “0” bounce from it. Guess the people are not ready for the police state just yet.


    I just heard the news that YouTube has blocked the showing of the Mohammed video in Egypt and Libya.

    As a Net-Freedom kinda guy, I am glad to hear it.

    I just heard an anti-censorship person pull out the old “slippery slope” argument. She notes that no government asked YouTube to pull the video, but then she also argues that since they have set the precedent, governments will seek censorship.

    Bull crap. Governments ALWAYS seek censorship. The fact that YouTube has it’s guidelines and THEY made an exception is not bowing to a government. It is simply saving the lives of more Americans.

    The fact that lives have been lost makes the action appropriate. I would not have agreed to have them ban the video if there were no lethal reaction to it.

    This just strikes me as intelligent and responsible self-censorship by a private company, which is a good argument for not getting governments involved.

  7. Yesterday, I was thinking this was all about Muslims feeling that their prophet was being ridiculed.

    Someone Should ask Romney how he feels about HIS prophet–Joseph Smith–being ridiculed.

    After all, Mohammed started a new religion based on his revelations, and Joseph Smith started a new religions based on his revelations.

    Aren’t Islam and Mormon equivalent?

    • Write in Ron Paul for 2012 President is online!

      Vote and spread it like wildfire!


      A vote on principles is much better than a No Vote β€” and a trillion times better than voting for what one perceives as the β€œlesser of two evils”!

      My take:

      This election has been reduced again to voting for the β€œlesser of two evils” (but which one is the β€œlesser”?).

      All indicators point that Rmoney is the CHOSEN ONE by the NY and London Banks (the International Banksters that control the Federal Reserve) and by Israel.

      Since their goals are directly opposite to the well-being of our Nation, by deduction this Bought-And-Paid-For-Mitt-Mutton-Puppet MUST NOT win!

      [[Should Rmoney win — expect the US to start an all out war against Iran to protect Israel from a possible single atomic bomb being developed in…10 years from now…? (certainly not to protect the US from such silly and nonthreatening remote eventuality) within a week of this creature taking office.

      What’s even more worrisome, is this Creature’s Control of the GOP (forcing a fraudulent “Aye” vote at the RNC convention), thus assuring It won’t be opposed to win a 2nd term!

      Eight years of Mutton-Mitt will mean a COMPLETE AND TOTAL DESTRUCTION OF THE USA — when wars will be started at a drop of an Israeli Hat (sorry, meant to say: yamaka), when the US Constitution will become null-and-void, when the US Dollar will finally become utterly worthless, by a phone call from his Banker Masters (who’ll call in their chips).]]

      On the other-hand β€” the BO Creature will have 4 more years to further plunge us into Socialism and suck us dry through more taxation and further devaluation of the US Dollar and the attempted destruction of our Constitutional Rights.

      This creature will, however, be hampered by some republican wins in both Houses, thus having most of its venomous teeth pulled during its 2nd term.

      [[However, should the BO see itself not as a clear winner, it will assure its reelection by attacking Iran with two weeks to go (mid-to-late October) — since a “patriotic” War always guarantees the “Commander-and-Chief” a sure win!]]


      Either subhuman will get us into never ending wars and ever closer to loss of All Liberty, All Prosperity and the eventual Total End of Our Nation as Free People!

      For which β€œlesser evil” will you vote, now?

      I, for one (and my family and friends) will not be party to such infamy! If either of these Horrible Creatures wins, at least we’ll have a clear conscience that we did not compromise our principles by acknowledging their existence in the voting booths!

      We will vote our Conscience β€” Writing In Dr. Ron Paul!

  8. This string started with are we back to 1979? In truth, we are and in greater trouble. In 1979, we still had a relatively strong manufacturing backbone, the general US citizen was not a Socialist. Reagan was able to assure the international community that we would control the economy and financial markets and thus our national power not only as a military but as a financial powerhouse was felt by all. As I have heard others joke, the USA is now the USSR of 1979. “Socialist States” of America. Obama, was a small time politician, whom rose to position way too fast and with way too little experience in business. We are loaded with politicians that are Lawyers not policiticians that are historically “Economist / Accountants / Business people”. Replace Congress with law makers that are skilled in Making and saving money. A President that is skilled in Making money and building business. We dont have the industrial nor financial purse strings in our hands. we are borrowed into submission, other countries own US lands, more as an investment. Soon enough the manufacturing jobs will come back to the States, but that will be when our national living standards are so diminished and we have truly become a socialist state that you are provided housing by the government, provided food chits (stamps) by the government, provided equal medical care “depending your family status” by the government. Pause and look at yourself, look at your neighbor and look at those countries that the USA has fought for years to defeat and know, unless we change, then we have changed and the jokes about USSA United Socialist States of America will have come true. God Bless America!!

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