Obama and FDR – I have been saying that we need an FDR, and that Obama has the resolve and the intelligence to be as good a President as FDR. Franklin Delano Roosevelt won by landslides in ’32 and ’36. Herbert Hoover believed in “rugged individualism” and, in ’32, that the philanthropy of the wealthy would solve the nation’s economic problems. He did not pull the U. S. out of the Depression. FDR did, and did it, in part, by creating the safety net and regulatory infrastructure that George W. Bush, and Ronald Reagan have dismantled.
McCain has called Obama “a socialist.” He has also tried to equate Obama with Hoover. If this is correct, then Obama is a “free market socialist,” a “capitalist socialist.” But McCain was wrong on both counts. And it is John McCain whose ideals echo the failed policies of Hoover, along with his predecessors Warren G. Harding, and Calvin Coolidge, and their contemporaries, George W. Bush, Phil Gramm, Dick Cheney.
Describing the Republican Administrations of Harding, Coolidge and Hoover, FDR said “the Nation looked to the government, and the government looked away” and “government by organized mob.” This is what we have seen again during the last 8 years; both abroad and at home. In the war in Iraq and in the response to Katrina, in firing prosecutors, in wiretapping Americans, and in the “signing statements, and executive orders with which George W. Bush and Richard B. Cheney have governed by fiat. And they have not governed well. Maybe they meant well, but that’s not good enough.
We need effective government. As Lincoln said, “government of the people, by the people, and for the people.”