Monday, February 18, 2013

Tip Your Hat to Teddy Roosevelt

Happy Presidents Day. Today we honor the men who have served the United States as president. I’m certain not all of them are worthy of esteem, but the more I observe of the current political climate in Washington and the positions taken by both political parties, the more convinced I am that Theodore Roosevelt was our best president ever. If he were alive today, he’d gather all of the political leadership in Washington and run them through with a sword.

Democrats, emboldened by the recent election and the popular notion that demographic trends will give them automatic majorities in future elections, are brazenly offering to disarm law-abiding citizens while at the same time flooding our shores with more illegal immigrants and then offering those immigrants paper citizenship. They want to send more children to government day care with money we don’t have. Maybe the Chinese bond investors who are keeping this show afloat for now will oblige them for a little while, but borrowed money doesn’t last forever, and we’ve dug ourselves a big hole. They’re following the same predictable script that failed them in the 1960s and will fail them today.

Republicans are a party fixated on abortion and homosexuals, a sordid example of what Nietzsche said about chastity becoming its own perversion. They are complaining about budget deficits and government overreach of power now that a Democrat is running up deficits and grabbing for our guns. But they were remarkably silent when the most recent Republican president was running up the deficit, tapping our phones and throwing Americans in jail without trial. They seem to be stuck either rehashing the talking points of Ronald Reagan’s first presidential campaign or trying to offer Democratic-lite overtures. They are unprincipled money men doing the bidding of their corporate masters. They are vacillators who poop their collective pants when someone accuses them of racism.

I’m standing with Theodore Roosevelt. If there was one U.S. President who was a man among men and was the most take-no-bullshit of any president, it was Teddy.

T.R. was a president who would take no quarter with the anti-intellectualism of today’s Republicans or the effete snobbery of today’s Democrats. He was a Harvard graduate who read a book a day and was brave in battle and on safari. He refused to be bought by special interests, even after taking their money (a ballsy move). He once gave a speech after being shot. He was as politically shrewd as he was personally bold, yet he ended his career as a third-party candidate, shaking his fist at the sellouts who came in after him.

So this Presidents Day, I tip my hat to Theodore Roosevelt. May we someday see a leader like him in the White House again. 

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