Monday, February 15, 2010

Today is President's Day

I just went through my collection of books on US Presidents. Many of them were bought early in the Bush administration during 2001. It was an interest I had developed as during that time we had recently voted for and inaugurated a new President. I didn't necessarily maintain the interest especially in the wake of Obama's ascension to the Presidency last year.

If there isn't an aspect of history or politics that I don't have a healthy interest in other than state/local politics it may well be Presidential politics. The history of the Presidency is interesting in and off itself because it had evolved over the years.

I've developed this conclusion once or twice during the course of this blog. If we rank our Presidents in terms of "great" or "near-great" we largely expect them to be active. If there was an issue during their presidency, how did they meet it or otherwise were they able to meet it selectively. Granted depending upon the historian or the political scientist, there may well be a subjective conclusion attached to it.

For instance is there anyone out there who may not consider Franklin Delano Roosevelt a great President because of his handling of the "Great Depression". That is instead of successfully weathering the storm Roosevelt instead only prolonged any potential suffering during that period of time.

Or was Abraham Lincoln truly correct in engaging in open warfare against the Confederate States of America in order to say force them back into the Union. Although granted, the previous administrations of Franklin Pierce and James Buchanan had only made the sectional strife that led to the Civil War a lot worse by either their actions or inactions.

Either way whether you're a credential historian or merely an history or political buff you may have your ideas. Hopefully you have all the time in the world to debate who you think was the greatest or near-great president of all-time.

Who do you think was a good President?

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