The Other Half of History Daily Blog

Thoughts on modern politics from a historical perspective.

Obama Channels FDR on Stimulus

As military history buffs know, one of General George Patton’s many idiosyncrasies was that he believed in reincarnation. He used to bore his aides, and anyone else willing to listen to him, with tales of his exploits as a military leader in his earlier lives.

I have never believed that God allows human beings to come back to Earth for a second shot at life, and I still don’t, although President Obama is forcing me to give the idea at least a cursory second look. The Obama presidency is so similar to Franklin D. Roosevelt’s that I’m half tempted to think that General Patton was on to something.
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Obama Channels FDR on Valerie Jarrett

Author Edward Klein has written an interesting column on Valerie Jarrett, the White House power broker who seems to be able to control access to the President. Klein, who just published a book about the Obama presidency, claims that the power Jarrett holds via her personal friendship with the Obamas is unprecedented in US history.

Klein is wrong about one thing. The amount of influence Jarrett seems to have with both the President and the First Lady is unusual, but it’s not unprecedented. As in so many other things, President Obama is channeling FDR.
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Friday Links and Notes May 25

It’s been another busy week in the news. National Review is reporting that Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker is beginning to win his PR war with the public employees’ unions. The latest polls show that he’s increased his lead to eight percentage points in the recall election the unions engineered against him. And public opinion is swinging his way on many of the specific issues as well.
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