“Bully Pulpit”

The Presidential “Bully Pulpit” From TR To Obama: Our Greatest Moments!

Theodore Roosevelt, the first President of the 20th century, came up with the term “Bully Pulpit” to describe his efforts to draw attention to emerging national issues that needed our attention, with him leading the charge from the White House, and the Presidency was never the same after that!

TR led the struggle against monopoly capitalism; for conservation of natural resources; for improvement of labor conditions; and for government regulation of our food and drugs–all as important national goals. He appealed to our “better angels” in his campaigns on these issues.

Franklin D. Roosevelt led from the “Bully Pulpit” on the need for government activism to deal with the Great Depression, and in getting us ready for the challenge of international Fascism’s threat to the democracies by Nazi Germany, Fascist Italy, and Imperial Japan.

John F. Kennedy led us from his “Bully Pulpit” on the need to deal with civil rights as a moral crusade, and also the significance of learning to coexist in the world, so as to avoid an ultimate war that no one could win during the Cold War era.

Lyndon B. Johnson led from his “Bully Pulpit” on the issue of civil rights, and also on the reality of poverty in America and the need to take serious action on these issues.

And now Barack Obama has used the “Bully Pulpit” to address the issues of gay rights and the role of race in our society, and what he has done is draw attention and stature to issues that have long been ignored or overlooked as too controversial to deal with on the White House level, but he has the courage and principle that TR, FDR, JFK, and LBJ had before him!

So Barack Obama, with all of the positives and negatives that we find in any President, will be long remembered for challenging our better nature with his leadership on gay rights and race. And it is good already that New York Times conservative columnist David Brooks and 2008 Republican Presidential nominee, Senator John McCain, have endorsed his message on race as recently as the time when this author is writing this entry!

Barack Obama FINALLY Acting As Harry Truman In 1948, And Elements Of TR And FDR Too!

After three years being “nice” and trying to work with the Republican opposition, and being constantly rejected and repudiated, President Barack Obama is set to run a campaign reminding us of Harry Truman in 1948, when the odds were heavily against him, and yet he defeated not only Republican nominee Thomas E. Dewey, but also regained both houses of Congress for his Democratic Party!

Truman gave the Republican 80th Congress “hell”, campaigning against their negativism, and looking back, that 80th Congress accomplished more than the 112th Congress has done!

Even if one argues that the Senate is Democratic controlled, the reality is that the Republicans, utilizing the filibuster or the threat of it, and have effectively controlled the Senate as well as having actual control of the House of Representatives.

Obama’s change in strategy seemed to have started in Osawatomie, Kansas, when he invoked Teddy Roosevelt, who used the Presidency as a “bully pulpit”!

Obama will now combine TR’s “bully pulpit” with Truman’s “give them hell” and Franklin D. Roosevelt’s welcoming of the opposition of conservatives and the wealthy in his 1936 campaign. And Obama can also invoke FDR complaining about the Republicans attacking his dog Fala in 1944, as now they have attacked the fact that Obama spent an hour shopping for his dog Bo!

So, President Obama, use the campaigns of TR in 1904, FDR in 1936 and 1944, and Truman in 1948, and the GOP will not recover from such an assault!

President Obama Finally Asserts Himself With Congress By Use Of Executive Orders: Long Overdue!

President Obama has finally decided to pass by Congress and utilize executive orders to take action on the economy.

This week, he has done the following by executive order:

1. He will take action on the issue of homeowners and foreclosures.

2. He will assist college students with high levels of education debt.

3. He will help veterans of our wars to obtain employment, emphasizing their sacrifices for our nation.

There is bound to be outrage by Republicans in Congress, and they will accuse him of playing to his base, and campaigning for reelection, and the answer is: So what?

After all, the Republicans have been campaigning to undermine Barack Obama, act as obstructionists, and made it clear from the beginning that their goal was to make Barack Obama a one term President.

So let them criticize him; let them continue to demonstrate that they do not care about the high unemployment rate and the high foreclosure percentages; and Barack Obama will act as a stronger President in the mold of Theodore Roosevelt, who used his office as a “Bully Pulpit”; Franklin D. Roosevelt, who welcomed the hatred of the wealthy elite; Harry Truman, who gave the Republicans “hell” in 1948; and Lyndon B. Johnson, who used ultimate executive influence to gain his Great Society accomplishments.

This is the time for Barack Obama to solidify support for the long term economic future of the United States, and if the Republicans try to stop him, let them gain a further negative image among the American people!