Books. Bikes. Boomsticks.
"The right to buy weapons is the right to be free." -A.E. van Vogt
“Who’s your favorite president, Tam?”
“Coolidge? Why? What did he do?”
Actually, Coolidge short-circuited the depression of 1920 and paved the way for the Roaring Twenties. After that, ignorance was no longer an excuse.
The lack of activity probably explains the fact my high school completely ignored him in history class.It's truly frightening how much more history I learned after school.
Grover Cleveland was another who stood out as sticking to Constitutional limits, and also being mostly ignored by my history books growing up.
My tag line in my emails at work is "Nobody ever listened themselves out of a job." -Calvin CoolidgeIt's funnier if you're on the Inside of the call center business.
Great concept; a President who held legislators accountable for Constitutional authority. "Checks and Balances" anyone?
Coolidge is certainly this History Major's tops for the 20th Century. He didn't really do nothing. He (and Harding) cut spending, paid down debt, and lowered taxes. He also seemed to call Hoover a fool on a regular basis. Unfortunately, the Republicans weren't listening.
What's that? No Constitutional authority. Be still my heart
He's my favorite too, and people just look at me weird when I say so. My belief that one of the underlying tenets of the constitution is that it is the role of the government to largely leave the people alone probably influenced my choice, but there it is.
One of my very favorite presidents too."Silent Cal" was also known for his terseness, presumably living by the words: "Better to be silent and be thought a fool than speak and have it confirmed."My favorite Coolidge anecdote was Mr. C at a state dinner (which it is said, he loathed) and some political wife nearby him was going on and on while he stolidly pretended to be politely interested.Eventually, having received no verbal encouragement she wound down, and stated that she had a bet with her husband the senator that she couldn't make the President say more than 3 words. (I.e. Mr. Senator has said no you can't and the voluble Mrs. Senator had said "sure i can")Mr. Coolidge looked at her, eyes twinkling, SMILED very happily, and quietly said: "You lose."
I've been meaning to read Amity Shlaes new biography of Coolidge, this just moved it up my list.
Well, Washington did have the coulda-been-King-but-wasn't thing going on, but "Nothing to report" is a fine exit speech for a POTUS.Cleveland was pretty cool this way, too. Refused to let people harness the government for personal enrichment and so got voted out (before he got voted back in).
I'm still a fan of Jefferson abolishing the national bank (which needs to happen again, NOW), but Coolidge is a favorite for sure (especially given the time period).
Well, that just cements a project I've been putting off for sometime. I've been meaning to go through and study our dear leaders in more depth than was ever covered in my history classes. That just gives me the motivation I needed.
I'm reading Shlaes's book right now. I can't look it up, but Coolidge said something to the effect that he has had a lot less trouble from the things he didn't say than from the things he said.
I'm fond of William Henry Harrison. Jacob Sullum wrote that he was an excellent president "because he left office before he could do much damage."
I just started listening to the audio version of the new Amity Shlaes book this evening. I liked her previous book. She describes this as kind of a prequel.
@DanH — Boomers and those younger have all grown up and were educated under the influence of intellectuals who worshipped FDR. For them, the New Deal put smart technocrats back where they belonged, at the core of a federal government that was in charge of ever-larger parts of the society. Many New Dealers got their first taste of what we today call liberal fascism when they worked in the Wilson administration. Wilson was the first president to systematically, and with malice of forethought, subvert the constitution, precisely because of the limits it placed on the state.The most influential historians were those who celebrated the "bold, energetic experimentation" that FDR proclaimed — and which did so much to make the Depression Great.In these historians' eyes, Coolidge was a do-nothing nonentity — and that verdict colored all the American history you have ever been taught in school.
Where are you now that we need you, Silent Cal?Plymouth Notch CemeteryPlymouth, Windsor County, VT
Relevant speech by Amity Shlaeshttp://www.hillsdale.edu/news/imprimis.asp
"There is no right to strike against the public safety by anybody, anywhere, any time." - Massachusetts Governor (later President) Calvin Coolidge on September 14, 1919, regarding the striking Boston Police Department where two-thirds (some say three-quarters) of the officers went on strike and were fired. President Ronald Reagan followed Coolidge's example with the 1981 PATCO strike.http://townhall.com/columnists/calthomas/2011/02/22/coolidge-reagan-walker/page/full/
Coolidge was da man, without a doubt. If only more of the current crop of carpet-baggers were like him.
News report: Calvin Coolidge DeadWill Rodgers: "How can they tell?"
I've always had an affection for Harrison's administration, myself.
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