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The search for a home for Mr Obama’s library and museum has begun
The Economist ^ | The March 29, 2014 Issue

Posted on 03/27/2014 10:26:20 PM PDT by 2ndDivisionVet

“AT THEIR best, they are lively classrooms of democracy,” says Richard Norton Smith, a historian who specialises in presidential libraries. They are also something of a misnomer. People who wander in expecting to borrow “The Cat in the Hat” tend to find instead a museum, a replica of the Oval Office and many floors of documents.

Last week the Barack Obama Foundation invited applications from institutions interested in giving room to the 14th presidential library. Marty Nesbitt, a member of the foundation board and a friend of the Obamas, says a shortlist of sites will be presented to Mr and Mrs Obama early next year. The foundation wants to create an institution that reflects the commander-in-chief’s values and priorities, as well as serving as a “force for good in the surrounding community”.

Columbia University in New York, the president’s alma mater, is preparing a bid. So too is his birth state of Hawaii. But Chicago, with its strong Obama ties, is assumed to be the front-runner. Mr Obama worked as a community organiser in the South Side, represented the area as a state senator, and was on the faculty of the University of Chicago for 12 years. A number of institutions are vying to make a bid in Chicago, well aware that presidential libraries can spur the local economy. Susan Sher, a former chief of staff to Michelle Obama who is co-ordinating the University of Chicago’s bid, says a number of sites in the South Side, including Bronzeville, are being considered.

The money needed to build the library—possibly about $500m—will be raised by the foundation. This will include an endowment to cover some of the maintenance costs. The rest will come from the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) which is charged with running all the presidential libraries at an annual cost of $70m.

Last year a mere 10,600 scholars used the libraries. By contrast 730,000 people attended public and educational programmes there, and 2.4m people visited the associated museums (see chart). Ronald Reagan’s library in Simi, California was the most visited in 2013, with some 425,000 trooping in to see, among other things, his Air Force One. Online visits are more numerous and growing rapidly. Every library seems to be bigger than the last, but then records and artefacts are accumulating at an ever-faster clip. Herbert Hoover’s library stores 500 gifts; Dwight Eisenhower’s, 25,000; that of Bill Clinton (a man of appetites), more than 150,000.

Since presidents usually live for decades after they leave office, the library becomes a tool for defining—cynics would say, polishing—their legacy. But they also try to continue the work of a president. The Obama Foundation hopes his library will be “the most connected, interactive presidential library in history”. Until the next even-more-wired president, that is.

In the long term, the libraries are most useful for the access they offer to presidential documents, which tell the true story of the man and his times. But it seems that attention to the flashier, exhibition side of things is detracting from NARA’s real work: making documents available for public release. Fully 40% of NARA’s text holdings have not been processed. And they have plenty to reveal. Eisenhower, for example—says Mr Smith—was widely known in his time as a “genial duffer”. When the papers in his library were examined he was seen as far more sophisticated, even ruthless: “Behind the smile was guile.”


TOPICS: Culture/Society; Government; Politics/Elections
KEYWORDS: obama; presidency
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1 posted on 03/27/2014 10:26:20 PM PDT by 2ndDivisionVet
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Mombasa, Kenya.


2 posted on 03/27/2014 10:27:45 PM PDT by fieldmarshaldj (Resist We Much)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Might I suggest Kenya?

Indonesia?


3 posted on 03/27/2014 10:27:47 PM PDT by F15Eagle (1Jn4:15;5:4-5,11-13;Mt27:50-54;Mk15:33-34;Jn3:17-18,6:69,11:25,14:6,20:31;Ro10:8-11;1Tm2:5-6;Ti3:4-7)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

The lower floor of a Chicago brothel would be most appropriate.


4 posted on 03/27/2014 10:29:37 PM PDT by reg45 (Barack 0bama: Implementing class warfare by having no class.)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

5 posted on 03/27/2014 10:31:26 PM PDT by kingattax (America needs more real Americans.)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Joliet.


6 posted on 03/27/2014 10:32:00 PM PDT by P-Marlowe (There can be no Victory without a fight and no battle without wounds)
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To: P-Marlowe

On Thursday night they serve a wicked pepper steak.


7 posted on 03/27/2014 10:36:52 PM PDT by 2ndDivisionVet (I will raise $2M for Sarah Palin's next run, what will you do?)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

As you enter the Obama library, the first display you will see will be an empty suit.


8 posted on 03/27/2014 10:38:07 PM PDT by Octar
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To: LucyT

Ping.


9 posted on 03/27/2014 10:38:34 PM PDT by Jet Jaguar
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

A 2 hole outhouse, one for obama and one for mooshell.


10 posted on 03/27/2014 10:39:13 PM PDT by dalereed
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To: reg45

Isn’t he still a paid-in-full member of Man’s Country?


11 posted on 03/27/2014 10:40:31 PM PDT by 2ndDivisionVet (I will raise $2M for Sarah Palin's next run, what will you do?)
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To: fieldmarshaldj

Kenya sounds good. There must be some space under an outhouse over there, that could be donated.


12 posted on 03/27/2014 10:44:51 PM PDT by DoughtyOne (Immigration Reform is job NONE. It isn't even the leading issue with Hipanics. Enforce our laws.)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Obviously either Kenya or Saudi Arabia....


13 posted on 03/27/2014 10:50:55 PM PDT by Nifster
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Got to be Kenya.


14 posted on 03/27/2014 10:51:08 PM PDT by matthew fuller (No, I don't miss GWB- I miss Dick Cheney and Don Rumsfeld.)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

15 posted on 03/27/2014 10:52:23 PM PDT by bigbob (The best way to get a bad law repealed is to enforce it strictly. Abraham Lincoln)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

If it’s still standing, the Darling and Company building on 42nd and Ashland in Chicago would make a good site for it - its olfactory properties would be a great fit to the BO legacy.


16 posted on 03/27/2014 10:52:48 PM PDT by Stosh
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

I have a suggestion....

The South Indian Ocean.


17 posted on 03/27/2014 10:57:28 PM PDT by Cold Heat (Have you reached your breaking point yet? If not now....then when?)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
With a special display for the menus from their various hotel stays and the room service bills?


18 posted on 03/27/2014 10:59:03 PM PDT by shibumi (Cover it with gas and set it on fire.)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

It will be built completely through Chinese donations.

19 posted on 03/27/2014 11:05:25 PM PDT by Slyfox (When Jesus sees a momma holding her little baby, it reminds him of his own momma.)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

20 posted on 03/27/2014 11:06:21 PM PDT by marjiwoj
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Frankly

The largesse this entails today for any president is utter bullshit

Of the past century only Magnus and Eisenhower deserve it


21 posted on 03/27/2014 11:13:28 PM PDT by wardaddy (the real battle is what do we replace America as we knew it with....and will we fight..literally)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

There has to be an “Office of the President de-elected” president....complete with great seal and appropriate staff.


22 posted on 03/27/2014 11:15:28 PM PDT by spokeshave (OMG.......Schadenfreude overload is not covered under Obamacare :-()
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Let’s see. There’s gotta be a good place to build Obamas combination Library, Mosque, Gentlemens Bath house, Abortuary..but where? Not even Detroit really wants it.


23 posted on 03/27/2014 11:17:43 PM PDT by lee martell
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Documents, eh? What documents? We don’t need no stinking documents!!!!!!


24 posted on 03/27/2014 11:28:27 PM PDT by faithhopecharity ((Brilliant, Profound Tag Line Goes Here, just as soon as I can think of one..))
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

NOT HAWAII !


25 posted on 03/27/2014 11:28:48 PM PDT by LeoWindhorse
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Save the tax money. Anything he’s shown us so far can be appropriately housed by this already- existing museum at no cost to us: Yin.arts.uci.edu


26 posted on 03/27/2014 11:33:52 PM PDT by faithhopecharity ((Brilliant, Profound Tag Line Goes Here, just as soon as I can think of one..))
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

We have a pool and a pond. The pond would be good for your library.

0bamaaaaaaa!

27 posted on 03/28/2014 12:03:57 AM PDT by TigersEye (Stupid is a Progressive disease.)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
Clearing the land in Detroit has begun by the DNC


28 posted on 03/28/2014 12:06:43 AM PDT by Daffynition ("If you think you can do a thing or think you can't do a thing, you're right." ~ Henry Ford)
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To: faithhopecharity
All his executive orders will need a home...and a copy of Otramacare, for posterity


29 posted on 03/28/2014 12:09:53 AM PDT by Daffynition ("If you think you can do a thing or think you can't do a thing, you're right." ~ Henry Ford)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

30 posted on 03/28/2014 12:14:38 AM PDT by TChad (The Obamacare motto: Dulce et decorum est pro patria mori.)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Just don’t put it in Fort Worth. I don’t wanna have to go to jail for destruction of property. Heh.


31 posted on 03/28/2014 12:16:02 AM PDT by BuckeyeTexan (There are those that break and bend. I'm the other kind. ~Steve Earle)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Should definitely be built in South Chicago where the Bloods can burn it down without a second thought.


32 posted on 03/28/2014 12:17:13 AM PDT by Veto! (Opinions freely dispensed as advice)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

“The foundation wants to create an institution that reflects the commander-in-chief’s values and priorities, as well as serving as a ‘force for good in the surrounding community’.”

So, they’re going with ACORN then?


33 posted on 03/28/2014 12:18:52 AM PDT by BuckeyeTexan (There are those that break and bend. I'm the other kind. ~Steve Earle)
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To: Cold Heat

South Indian Ocean? Cold Heat, you are very funny. LOL


34 posted on 03/28/2014 12:24:32 AM PDT by Veto! (Opinions freely dispensed as advice)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Just take it out to the edge of the world and cast it adrift.

35 posted on 03/28/2014 12:44:13 AM PDT by fella ("As it was before Noah so shall it be again,")
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To: Veto!

Well thanks, it was the only place I could think of where nobody would ever find it..


36 posted on 03/28/2014 1:34:43 AM PDT by Cold Heat (Have you reached your breaking point yet? If not now....then when?)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

There’s a star in the Book of Liars by his name.


37 posted on 03/28/2014 2:10:33 AM PDT by equaviator (There's nothing like the universe to bring you down to earth.)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Detroit.


38 posted on 03/28/2014 2:14:05 AM PDT by stilloftyhenight (...staying home isn't an option.)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Won’t take long and it will not cost much to build an Obama Residential Library. An outhouse with an upstairs and downstairs toilet, because everyone knows BM flows downward.


39 posted on 03/28/2014 2:36:17 AM PDT by hondact200 (Candor dat viribos alas (sincerity gives wings to strength) and Nil desperandum (never despair))
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To: reg45
reg45:" The lower floor of a Chicago brothel would be most appropriate."

I would suggest the lower floor of a bathhouse in Atlantis

40 posted on 03/28/2014 3:31:26 AM PDT by Tilted Irish Kilt (Enlightened statesmen will not always be at the helm. -- James Madison)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Chicago Stock Yards or an Iowa pig farm.


41 posted on 03/28/2014 4:11:14 AM PDT by Lion Den Dan
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Search no more! I have a section of my back yard where my dogs make deposits on a daily basis that is prime realestate for this useless empty building


42 posted on 03/28/2014 4:21:34 AM PDT by ronnie raygun (Im missing a jumbo jet with 235 passengers has anyone seen it?)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Hopefully, there will be enough money to send exactly half the content of the library to Africa. Then, we can send the entire content halfway...


43 posted on 03/28/2014 4:25:31 AM PDT by ArtDodger
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Any Federal prison he eventually resides in could probably use a decent library.


44 posted on 03/28/2014 4:46:13 AM PDT by clearcarbon
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Have the checked out Kwajalein?

That is remote enough to prevent Obama pollution of history


45 posted on 03/28/2014 4:52:00 AM PDT by bert ((K.E. N.P. N.C. +12 ..... History is a process, not an event)
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To: bert

There are a few vacant house in Detroit. Personally, I’d rather see in located somewhere Kenya.


46 posted on 03/28/2014 4:59:59 AM PDT by DaveA37
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To: Octar
As you enter the Obama library, the first display you will see will be an empty suit.

Standing next to an empty chair and in front of a teleprompter!

47 posted on 03/28/2014 5:01:57 AM PDT by CAluvdubya (Molon Labe)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Antarctica might be suitable.


48 posted on 03/28/2014 5:08:42 AM PDT by arthurus (Read Hazlitt's Economics In One Lesson ONLINEhttp://steshaw.org/economics-in-one-lesson/)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

library + museum = temple


49 posted on 03/28/2014 5:10:10 AM PDT by Fresh Wind (The last remnants of the Old Republic have been swept away.)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Death Valley


50 posted on 03/28/2014 6:59:54 AM PDT by Vaduz
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