Richard Davis: We must restore the trust lost when JFK died

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  • Ajax Mapleton, UT
    Nov. 23, 2013 8:45 a.m.

    Reconciliation and unity are the bedrock virtues of a healthy society.

    So why is it that those most adamantly opposed to government so strenuously reject the very principles by which people can truly come to govern themselves?

    Much of value has indeed been lost in the primitive advocacy of the superstition of a “lying” president and the righteousness of divisiveness and confrontation over reconciliation and unity.

  • 2-headed Salt Lake City, UT
    Nov. 21, 2013 5:15 p.m.

    Prof. Davis makes a good point that a "jaundiced view" of gov't institutions supports the current distrust of the U.S. gov’t. One factor he did not mention is the anti-government propaganda conservatives have deployed since the 70s to free business from government regulation.

    Propaganda analysts have identified that campaign in American publications and online media outlets.

    Today’s dysfunctional Congress is a culmination of the GOP’s anti-government propaganda, which paints the House and Senate as a battleground and prescribes obstructionism as the weapon of choice. In this scenario, the GOP hopes to make gov't look bad, confirm its anti-government propaganda, and trap Americans in a virtually inescapable web of disinformation.

  • 2-headed Salt Lake City, UT
    Nov. 21, 2013 3:32 p.m.

    patriot--the President 'did' use conservative ideas for the Affordable Care Act. He based it on ideas developed by the Heritage Foundation in 1989. The text is available online through a Google search. Because of its conservative roots, the ACA is not socialized medicine. It's a market based plan--hence the health insurance exchanges where those without employer-based insurance can purchase their own plans from existing health insurance companies.

  • Anti Bush-Obama Chihiuahua, 00
    Nov. 21, 2013 11:29 a.m.

    Dr Thom.

    "There isn't any hard forensic information or evidence that indicates that's Lee Harvey actually shot Kennedy. Also it's hard to shoot someone from behind and have them hit in the forehead as indicated in the Zabruder film."

    Very true. If the shot was fired from the book depository, the exit wound would've been on the front left side of his face.

  • george of the jungle goshen, UT
    Nov. 21, 2013 8:01 a.m.

    It will take Divine Intervention and I would still be scared that to trust.

  • SCfan clearfield, UT
    Nov. 21, 2013 6:53 a.m.

    10CC America wouldn't have the patience for Romney?

    That must be why we as a country are after 5 years now getting the real Obama. And we have lost patience with the most do ineffective, unsure of himself, inexperienced, lacking leadership skills, and overated person ever to be President. His failure as a President will be monumental. And we as a people are finally seeing that electing a culture pop star instead of a patient, thinking, experienced, proven, and competent man like Romney, was a mistake.

  • Strider303 Salt Lake City, UT
    Nov. 20, 2013 8:54 p.m.

    I was in South America and didn't have to witness the national mourning and hand-wringing that followed in the wake of the assassination. I feel fortunate in that way.

    As to cynicism I place mine on the press, the fourth estate, and somewhat less on poli-sci professors who propped up the image of a noble, youthful, healthy JFK only to see it unravel in books and media in the decades after the funeral was over.

    The press knew JFK had Addison's disease, took a lot of pain medications that could have altered his decision making ability, that he was a philanderer and they kept quiet. No one said much of Joseph Senior's shady business dealings during Prohibition. They were in on the "secret", part of the charade.

    The press was cheek to jowl with the White House in maintaining the image of an American "royal family".

    IMO the press sold their collective souls to pay court to a seamy president just to be on the "A" list for White House function, and to have access.

  • Dr. Thom Long Beach, CA
    Nov. 20, 2013 7:11 p.m.

    There isn't any hard forensic information or evidence that indicates that's Lee Harvey actually shot Kennedy. Also it's hard to shoot someone from behind and have them hit in the forehead as indicated in the Zabruder film.

  • patriot Cedar Hills, UT
    Nov. 20, 2013 4:15 p.m.


    nice try but Obamacare NEVER sprang from GOP ideas of the past. This is nonsense. The GOP and conservative America has NEVER wanted a socialized health care system because they knew as far back as 30 years ago with Ronald Reagan that this was the gateway to socialism which is the enemy of conservative principles. Secondly and equally as laughable is your assertion that Obama is a "pragmatic leader". Holy smokes man - Barack is ANYTHING BUT a pragmatic leader. The man is the extreme of far left ideology with a complete absence of common sense and Obamacare is a living, breathing example of that.

  • 10CC Bountiful, UT
    Nov. 20, 2013 3:12 p.m.


    Obama is the most radically left president ever? I think a lot of radical leftists would strenuously disagree, pointing to his continuation of the Iraq & Afghanistan wars, and that he followed a Republican blueprint on healthcare reform (Heritage Foundation, RomneyCare) rather than enacting a single-payer system.

    I suspect Obama got into office and found - like many others - that being president requires a lot of pragmatism. (Presumably on healthcare reform the effort should have just been abandoned altogether, considering how the GOP has disavowed their own ideas?)


    I base my assertion on Romney's likely unpopularity on his troublesome attributes as a candidate - his wealth derived from restructuring companies, his tendency for gaffes (eg, 47% remark) and the fact that any President has very limited ability to alter the economy, and much of our economic problems have to do with globalization, technological displacement of workers, trends that have been ongoing for decades.

    So, Mitt would have repealed Obamacare? And done what about the healthcare problem? "All states do your own thing". That would have been considered lack of leadership.

    Americans wouldn't have the patience for President Romney.

  • happy2bhere clearfield, UT
    Nov. 20, 2013 2:04 p.m.

    I agree. No end in sight. And I agree that many institutions of America have eroding faith. Iam not happy with the way this country is going. The main point I try to make on these sites is that going back and blaming history, or previous Presidents does not accomplish anything. We have to deal with the here and now. President Obama is losing support, and it is because of what he has tried to do. President Clinton, (not my favorite by any means) seemed to understand when the people did not want something (Hillarycare, for instance) he made changes. When they did, (Welfare reform) he signed onto welfare reform, even to the anger of many in his own party. That is what kept him somewhat popular all through his Presidency.

    As for Romney, you say he would be getting beaten up in the polls now too. I'm not sure how you could conclude that, as we have no idea of what the economic numbers would be and I'm certain there would have been no Obamacare going on.

  • patriot Cedar Hills, UT
    Nov. 20, 2013 2:00 p.m.

    re:LDS Liberal

    No one is blaming all that is wrong in Washington on Barack Obama. Certainly the cronyism in Washington is part of both parties but what the polls now show and what the past 5 years has proven is that Barack DOES happen to be the most radically left president to ever serve and combine that with an astonishing level of incompetence and corruption and you have a nightmare in the White House which explains why there is now a poll showing nearly 50% wishing they had elected Romney back in 2012. You see a large and growing number of Democrats wanting to join Republicans in amending Obamacare and an even larger percent of Democrats bad mouthing their president. This is panic time for Democrats.

  • Craig Clark Boulder, CO
    Nov. 20, 2013 1:53 p.m.

    Cynicism is a failure to understand what we’re looking at. Kennedy’s appeal was the quest for excellence, a President summoning the nation to greater achievements as exemplified in his stated goal to put an American on the moon by the end of the decade.

    That was the public JFK who was a master politician. A different side of him showed in meetings behind closed doors. Those he met with saw a hard-edged realist who asked tough questions, demanded informed answers, and often understood deeper issues better than those he consulted.

    Kennedy’s style made America’s hopes unrealistically high. Had Americans seen that other side of JFK, they might have been less spellbound by his idealism. But they could have had stronger reason to feel that their trust in him was justified.

  • 10CC Bountiful, UT
    Nov. 20, 2013 12:48 p.m.


    Obama's lowest approval ratings, along with Congress' remarkable single digit approval rating, along with eroded faith in churches, along with lower birth rates, along with any one of a number of other indicators, suggest the problem is much more fundamental.

    Had Romney won last November, he would be getting beat up in the polls now, and we'll see if Obama can match GWB's twenty-something approval rating, but distrust in government and politicians is deeply embedded in the American DNA. You could say it's our foundational culture, even to the point where Patrick Henry declared "I smell a rat!" on the writing of the US Constitution. At what point does distrust become corrosive, in and of itself?

    The colonists who weren't on board with forming the USA largely went north to Canada, a place where today there's a little more faith in institutions and government, and interestingly, they seem to be doing significantly better than we are, even in areas where we should be prevailing, such as indices of economic freedom.

    We're embroiled in a chronic, low-level, "cold" civil war, with no end in sight.

  • Anti Bush-Obama Chihiuahua, 00
    Nov. 20, 2013 12:06 p.m.

    If JFK ran for office today, he would be considered a right-wing extremist. He hated the wars, hated communists and wanted to end the fed. Sounds just like Ron Paul.

  • Anti Bush-Obama Chihiuahua, 00
    Nov. 20, 2013 11:42 a.m.

    Restore that trust by eliminating secrecy in Government places where there should be none. JFK himself talked about that very secrecy in a speech to the press about 3 weeks before he was assassinated.

    It's hard to restore trust in the Government when they openly spy on people without a warrant. This has been going on for at least 12 years if not longer.

    It's also doesn't strike me as trusting when the Government won't even release all of the documents in the JFK assassination even 50 years after it's happened.

  • happy2bhere clearfield, UT
    Nov. 20, 2013 9:57 a.m.

    LDS Liberal

    I know of no Republicans or conservatives that make a case that Obama is the sole reason for Americas problems. Reid and Pelosi have a lot to do with it too.

    On a little less sarcastic note, polls that compare Congress as a whole, and one man, the President are not really useful for comparsion. Most individules elected to Congress would be liked by their district or state in majority. Otherwise they wouldn't be there in the first place. People like their own guy but dislike Congress as a whole. However, with the President, it is all pointed to the performance of ONE single individule. And that means something.

  • mohokat Ogden, UT
    Nov. 20, 2013 9:55 a.m.

    @LDS Liberal

    " solely on the one black Democrat in the WhiteHouse."

    You are not really Oprah using a screen name are You?
    Typical Progressive response. Play the race card. Why don't you throw the Bush card in there also. You lost all credibility with that one.

  • Hutterite American Fork, UT
    Nov. 20, 2013 9:30 a.m.

    We've become too fragmented and reactionary to get that level of trust back, I fear.

  • iron&clay RIVERTON, UT
    Nov. 20, 2013 9:04 a.m.

    Richard Davis is a good robot repeating as fact the Oswald theory.

    This is just one example of why Davis and the major media in general have lost credibility.

    Back in the decade following the assassination the news media always referred to witnesses accounts of other shots being fired from a 'grassy knoll'. Well, I thought from this description.. how could a shooter fire from a grassy mound/knoll without the cover of trees or fences or retaining walls and get away with the execution of our President.

    So, along comes you-tube and google maps.

    Go to- 466 Elm Street Dallas Texas -on google maps and look at the so-called by the media 'grassy knoll'. There is absolutely no grassy knoll. There is the road embankment up to a fence with trees separating a parking lot from the street. Count the number of concrete steps from the street to the fence. With each step at one foot wide, the fence and trees are only 20 feet away from the curb.
    Was a grassy knoll an accurate description by media of the area from which witnesses say shots were fired?

  • LDS Liberal Farmington, UT
    Nov. 20, 2013 9:03 a.m.

    Gotta the the Obama haters....

    They completely missed the point that Congress has an even lesser level of trust than he does by a factor of 4.

    Re-read the article --
    It's schools,
    It's the media,

    But leave it to the Ditto-heads and AM radio "informed listeners" to blame everything that's wrong in AMERICA solely on the one black Democrat in the WhiteHouse.

  • SCfan clearfield, UT
    Nov. 20, 2013 8:55 a.m.

    As a political science professor he could try this. Ask more liberal students to write an essay on what has caused the division. Do the same with the more conservative students. I'd bet that he would get two very different opinions of why the division. The liberals may say things like Fox News, Rush Limbaugh, Bush (lied and people died), WMD. ect. and maybe, if they know enough history, go back to Nixon, Watergate, Vietnam. On the other hand, those of us more conservative might go back to when the Democrats began going left, (compared to Kennedy times), with McGovern, and haven't stopped moving left since. My personal view is that things began getting really partisan when the Democrats realized they lost the media control of information with the advent of powerful conservative talk radio, and the (Ditto-Head Congress of 1994) and Speaker Gingrich. And of course Fox News. Prior to that the Democrats had control of the House for 40 some years, and pretty much the Senate too. That is when, in my opinion, the liberals got really mean, and it carries over to today. However I'm sure many liberals would disagree with me.

  • patriot Cedar Hills, UT
    Nov. 20, 2013 8:32 a.m.

    My mother was a life long Republican but she voted for JFK and loved the man. She trusted JFK when he spoke and so did the rest of the nation. We were proud to see him speak overseas to represent America and we honored him in being a WWII vet himself. Today we have done a complete 180. We have a president that nearly 70% of America does NOT trust and who has lost all credibility. We have a president whose entire presidency is built upon a Mount Everest pile of lies and deceit...and getting worse every passing month. Scandal after scandal after scandal.... How to fix it? The problem isn't just with Barack Obama - the entire Democrat party is infested with 30 years of decay in principle and honor. This party is all about POWER and how to retain it ...nothing more. As with Obamacare - the best solution is just to scrap it and start over. Trust is LOST in this county between the people and the government as never before in its history. A recovery will take years - perhaps decades but first the barrel full of bad apples has to go.

  • mohokat Ogden, UT
    Nov. 20, 2013 7:40 a.m.

    Reagan said trust but verify. Hard to do when the government is so entrenched in dishonesty and deceit. And at the top the Dear Leader's pants burst into flames almost daily. No I think we should always distrust the government and always be very skeptical of what it tells us. Recent events have proven they are not to be trusted.

  • procuradorfiscal Tooele, UT
    Nov. 20, 2013 7:22 a.m.

    Re: "We must restore the trust lost when JFK died"

    Never going to happen. Nor should it. We've now learned we were wrong to trust JFK, and nearly all his predecessors.

    And, we've certainly learned the hard way not to trust the current crop of liberals in power, particularly the President.

    It's actually critically important for us NOT to trust politicians. The self-centered, self-dealing, self-aggrandizing personality of this self-selected group is legendary. The members of this suspect class should always be held at arms length.

    Particularly any of them that insist we should trust them.

    What's actually important is for politicians to be open, honest, and transparent enough in their dealings with us and each other that we can sufficiently "trust, but verify" their intent and actions, to allow us to lend them our vote.

    Anything more is asking for trouble. And any political "scientist" suggesting political trust is important should be rejected as the ingenue or propagandist he obviously is.

  • mohokat Ogden, UT
    Nov. 20, 2013 7:02 a.m.

    Lost Trust? Hard to regain with a President who has a habit of lying. If you like it you can keep it. It was caused by a video. The first time I knew about it was when I read it in the newspaper. Trust has a pretty hard time competeing with him.

  • cjb Bountiful, UT
    Nov. 20, 2013 6:30 a.m.

    "We must restore the trust lost when JFK died"


    His death wasn't the only cause of loss of trust and probably wasn't the main cause, (think Vietnam and other wars and the lies that got us and kept us there).

    The point is ... this trust should be restored only if government integrity were to rise to deserve such trust. Otherwise a healthy skepticism is .. healthy.