The Politically Incorrect Guide to the Presidents, Part 2: From Wilson to Obama

The Politically Incorrect Guide to the Presidents, Part 2: From Wilson to Obama

by Steven F. Hayward

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781621575795
Publisher: Regnery Publishing
Publication date: 01/09/2017
Series: Politically Incorrect Guides Series
Pages: 256
Sales rank: 243,278
Product dimensions: 7.10(w) x 8.50(h) x 0.80(d)

About the Author

Steven F. Hayward is the F. K. Weyerhaeuser Fellow in Law and Economics at the American Enterprise Institute, a senior fellow at the Pacific Research Institute in San Francisco, and the Thomas Smith Distinguished Visiting Professor at Ashland University. He holds a Ph.D. in American Studies and an M.A. in Government from Claremont Graduate School. Hayward has written for many scholarly and popular publications, including National Review , Reason , the Weekly Standard , the American Spectator , the Claremont Review of Books , Policy Review , the New York Times , and the Wall Street Journal. He is the author of The Real Jimmy Carter ; Greatness: Reagan, Churchill, and the Making of Modern Statesmen ; The Age of Reagan: The Fall of the Old Liberal Order, 1964–1980 ; and The Age of Reagan: The Conservative Counterrevolution, 1980–1989.

Table of Contents

Chapter 1 Not What the Founders Had in Mind 1

The Presidency Has Grown-and the Citizens Have Shrunk 4

What Makes a Truly Great President? 5

Measuring Presidents-the Forgotten Yardstick 7

The Constitution Ignored 10

Chapter 2 The Presidency the Founders Created 13

The Electoral College and the Creation of "Deliberative Majorities" 16

The Founders on the Character of the Executive Office 19

George Washington's Republican Modesty 20

Our Early Presidents: Defenders of the Constitution 24

The Birth of the Modern Presidency 29

Grading the Presidents 33

Chapter 3 Woodrow Wilson, 1913-1921 37

Wilson the Conservative? 39

The Revolutionary President 41

Wilsonian "Progress" on a Collision Course with the Constitution 43

Wilson's "Mature Freedom" versus the Founders' "Liberty" 47

Wilson on the President: Visionary Leader, Voice of the People, and Crusher of the Opposition 49

Wilson, Enthusiast for Bureaucracy 51

Arrogance in Office 53

Chapter 4 Warren G. Harding, 1921-1923 57

The Most Underrated Modern President 58

An Unlikely Nomination, a Landslide Election 60

Harding, the Anti-Wilson 61

Solid Achievements in Foreign Affairs 67

Harding on the Constitution 69

Harding's Posthumous Reputation 70

The Scandals 71

Chapter 5 Calvin Coolidge, 1923-1929 77

A Classical American Education 81

Rising Political Star 85

Coolidge in the White House 87

Coolidge's One Supreme Court (Dis)Appointment 92

Chapter 6 Herbert Hoover, 1929-1933 95

Politics Is Not Engineering 99

Hoover Tries to Fix the Depression, Inadvertently Makes It Great 100

Out of Office. Hoover Moves Right 103

Chapter 7 Franklin Delano Roosevelt, 1933-1945 107

The Modern Left Is Far Left of FDR 109

The Paradox of FDR 111

FDR's Living Constitutionalism 115

FDR's Assault on the Judicial Branch 118

FDR's Lasting Legacy: A Supreme Court Unconstrained by the Constitution 122

Chapter 8 Harry Truman, 1945-1953 125

The Self-Taught Statesman 129

Truman's Last Great Achievement: Cold War Strategy 131

Abuse of Executive Power 132

Chapter 9 Dwight David ("Ike") Eisenhower, 1953-1961 135

A Master Manager 138

Not an Ideological Conservative 141

Chapter 10 John F. Kennedy, 1961-1963 145

Kennedy's Recklessness 147

Character and Performance in Office 148

Botching the Cuban Missile Crisis 150

JFK, Supply-Sider 152

Kennedy's Political Legacy 156

JFK's Constitutional Legacy 158

Chapter 11 Lyndon Baines Johnson, 1963-1969 159

The "Great Society" and the "War on Poverty": Johnson Fails at Home 162

The Vietnam War: Johnson Fails Abroad 166

A Low Point in Judicial History 170

Chapter 12 Richard M. Nixon, 1969-1974 173

Nixon's Complicated Character and Forgotten Magnanimity 174

The Embattled President 176

The Folly of Détente 179

Nixon's Liberalism on Domestic Policy 180

Getting Watergate Wrong 182

Nixon's Constitutional Legacy 187

Chapter 13 Gerald Ford, 1974-1977 189

Stagflation at Home 193

Weakness Abroad 194

A Mixed Record on the Constitution 197

Chapter 14 James Earl Carter, 1977-1981 201

Carter's Character 202

Domestic Policy Disasters 203

President Malaise 205

Foreign Policy Disasters 206

President Carter's Constitutional Grade 209

Chapter 15 Ronald Wilson Reagan, 1981-1989 213

Reagan the Restorer 214

Reagan's Unfinished Agenda 217

The Pro-Life President 220

The President's Prerogative Power 221

One Bull's Eye and Two Close Shots 225

Chapter 16 George H.W. Bush, 1989-1993 229

Squandering the Reagan Legacy 230

Bush Abroad 232

A Split Decision 233

Chapter 17 William Jefferson Clinton, 1993-2001 237

By Order of the President 239

Clinton's Monument Valley 242

I Beg Your Pardon 242

From Odometers to Anteaters 248

Things Go Better with Coke 249

Close Enough for Government Work 250

Family Values 251

Rich and Pinky 252

Descent to the Murky Bottom 254

The High Cost of Bad Character 256

Radicals in Black Robes 257

Chapter 18 George Walker Bush, 2001-2009 259

"Events, Dear Boy" 260

More Compassionate than Conservative? 261

Defending America, Enraging the Left 265

Bush and the Constitution 268

Chapter 19 Barack Hussein Obama, 2009-2017 271

Obama's "Fourth Wave" Ambitions 273

The Nature of Obama's Radicalism 276

Obama's Contempt for the Middle Class 278

A Citizen of the World 280

Holding the Constitution in Contempt 285

Conclusion: Taking the Oath Seriously 289

Selected Bibliography 291

Index 295

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