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24 Oct 2012, 6:51 pm

I might be the only person who thinks this, but does anyone think that former US president Jimmy Carter has autism? I think so. He likes to avoid confrontation (every president since him has brought America to war) and people seem to like him if they actually got to know him instead of just judging him. He actually won the Nobel Peace Prize and thinks that his presidency was a mistake. That's why I've decided to never run for office. Chances are that I can't do a Max Braverman.


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AardvarkGoodSwimmer
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24 Oct 2012, 9:09 pm

Yes, I think former President Jimmy Carter is on the spectrum. :D And like any aspect of a person's personality, I think it is both a strength and a weakness of his.

Now, for persons still living, I generally prefer the approach, "A creative individual who marches to his or her own drummer. Maybe on the spectrum, maybe not. And either way is perfectly." That is, I don't want to 'out' someone ahead of their own time schedule. With presidents I think we can relax this. They are so much in the public eye, and make the decision to expose themselves to this scrunity, I think it's okay to speculate.

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And the really interesting thing, and this is an amazing coincidence of human history if true (and maybe people on the spectrum were the first people to really figure how to use television), the case can be made that both President Nixon and President Reagan were also on the spectrum.

Nixon and Carter are almost a slam dunk. Yes, they're Aspie. The really interesting case is former President Ronald Reagan. From the book The Reagans: Portrait of a Marriage by Anne Edwards, I got the idea that Ronnie was really a cerebral, intellectual guy who was very internally directed. And after he left the California governorship in January 1975, he withdrew to a cabin in the California mountains to have his alone time. From other sources, I got the idea that Nancy was his only real friend. He had loads of colleagues and supporters, but as far as actual friends, she may have been his only one.

If this theory is correct, it means from the twenty years from January 1969 to January 1989, for seventeen and a half years, the chief executive officer of the United States was a person on the spectrum. Wow.



naturalplastic
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24 Oct 2012, 9:30 pm

Am usually skeptical of the claim that any politician could be an aspie or an autie. But have long thought that if an aspie were to get into the oval office his/her presidency would look much like that of Jimmy Carter's who had aspie traits. And indeed he might well have been an actual aspie.

Carter and Reagan are thought of as polar opposites in personality, and in governing style. But have heard things like what your talking about-the distant withdrawn side of Reagan.



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24 Oct 2012, 9:49 pm

Former President Jimmy Carter has played to strength in a number of ways:

He left office in January 1981, and he began helping with Habitat for Humanity around 1983. And the sheer fact that he picked up a hammer. That he himself personally pitched in. (not to mention getting some interplay going between theory and practice, that it wasn't all high falutin theory like so many things)

Jimmy has successful worked toward the eradication of guinea worm disease in rural areas of West Africa. The fact that he could study one topic in depth, and also gentle persistance with other presidents and probably with UN funding agencies. I think this is now close to a medical success story, but don't want to slack off and get overly optimistic, want to still play a strong end game.

And his peacemaking efforts. I think with gentle persistance, he kind of reminds people of the better aspects of themselves, that war and revenge isn't always the answer. And I think, like a skilled poker player, he allows them to use himself as a face saving means.



auntblabby
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24 Oct 2012, 11:53 pm

ronnie raygun was uber NT.



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25 Oct 2012, 1:26 am

Ronnie was a conventional guy, but . . . he was intellectually intense in his areas of interest, with arguably patchy social skills, very good in some areas, not so good in others.

The book The Rebellion of Ronald Reagan shows him as a sincere guy who moved forward to end the cold war when he had the chance. He learned the Russian translation of "trust but verify" which he took to often repeating. (didn't read the whole book, but I feel I read enough)

The Tax Reform Act of 1986 with its basic approach of fewer loopholes-lower rates was probably a good thing. This Act also modestly increased Earned Income Credit.

And the bi-partisan Social Security commission in 1983 which helped put social security on more sure financial footing was probably also a good thing.



Cornflake
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25 Oct 2012, 5:15 pm

[Moved from Autism Politics, Activism, and Media Representation to Random Discussion]


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japan
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25 Oct 2012, 10:36 pm

Maybe. I'm extremely skeptical of the idea that an autistic could hold such a high office in government. :? I know carter was introverted and didn't show much of a sense of humor.

I've wondered for years if Richard Nixon was an aspie. He seems to have the most aspie traits of any U.S. president.



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26 Oct 2012, 12:31 am

japan wrote:
Maybe. I'm extremely skeptical of the idea that an autistic could hold such a high office in government. :? I know carter was introverted and didn't show much of a sense of humor.

i doubt he had more than isolated traits. but his sense of humor was on full display when dizzy gillespie and his band played for carter at the white house back in the late 70s- dizzy had carter sing along with his tune, "salt peanuts!" where during the breaks, carter would have to shout "SALT PEANUTS! SALT PEANUTS!"" which carter did with obvious schoolchild glee. :oops:

japan wrote:
I've wondered for years if Richard Nixon was an aspie. He seems to have the most aspie traits of any U.S. president.

he was smarter than FDR but totally lacked FDR's EQ. EQ is often more important than IQ in the office of POTUS. his powers of organization [of thought] were very high, reminiscent of bill gates, whose EQ also was not notably high.