Monday, February 20, 2006

# Posted 8:19 AM by Patrick Belton  

WORST. FEATURE. ON. A. WHITE. HOUSE. WEBSITE. EVER. 'Today in Presidential History: What happened on this day in 1990 during George H.W. Bush's administration?'
(if you're curious, on February 20, 1990, President George H.W. Bush meets with President Vaclav Havel of Czechoslovakia.)
(At www.whitehouse.gov/history/presidents.)

Compare with the Foreign Office's roster of former Foreign Secretaries:
Lord Hawkesbury, 1801-1804, evidently not a successful Secretary of State; 'He lacked imagination and was of so nervous a temperament that Huskisson referred to him as the grand figitatis'.

Lord Mulgrave, 1805-1806: like Harrowby he was little more than a functionary whose personal loyalty to Pitt was his outstanding characteristic. In the Office he immersed himself in minutiae and composed an ode upon the battle of Trafalgar, which was set to music by Arne.

Earl of Iddesleigh, 1886-1889: confessed to the British Ambassador in Berlin that he did not 'pretend to fathom the secrets or understand the abstruse diplomacy of the day', a serious disadvantage when dealing with Bismarck.

Herbert (later Lord) Morrison, 1951: did not quite have a diplomatic touch: he once joked 'Foreign policy would be okay except for the bloody foreigners'.
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What are they going to say on January 8th?
No one of us is better than all of us

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