Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Is President Obama Channeling Teddy Roosevelt Speaking Softly While Carrying A Big Stick?

On September 2, 1901, American Vice-President Teddy Roosevelt, in a speech at the Minnesota State Fair, used the phrase, in regards to American foreign policy, that America should "speak softly and carry a big stick."

Four days later President William McKinley was shot by a terrorist assassin, Leon Czolgosz. McKinley died on September 14, 1901, which made Teddy Roosevelt America's president for the first 8 years of the new century.

Sort of a George W. Bush of his day.

Only Teddy Roosevelt exercised America's power in a less noisy way than George W. Bush, who spoke way too loudly and used a big stick way too much.

Tonight America's current president, Barack Obama, is giving a speech from the Oval Office regarding Syria. Regarding Syria, President Obama seems to be sort of speaking softly while threatening to use the big stick.

The speaking softly, while threatening, seems to be having some results. There have been no fresh reports of Syrian sarin gas murders. The Syrian Civil War seems to be taking a bit of a break. There seems to be a lot of international debate going on regarding what to do about Syria, if anything.

Somehow Russia's President Putin has managed to get himself in the role of peacemaker, doing his own version of sort of speaking softly while not carrying quite as big a stick as America carries.

To my way of thinking I prefer the Barack Obama go slow approach, applying pressure, listening to the debate, to the George W. Bush approach of boldly going where no sane president has gone before, invading another nation to "pre-emptively" remove a supposed threat that turned out to be non-existent, and in the process seeing thousands of American soldiers killed, a number in excess of the number murdered in the 9/11 Terrorist Attacks. Not to mention the thousands upon thousands of Iraqis killed during the Iraq War's American use of its big stick, when speaking softly had been working well for years keeping Saddam Hussein from being a bad boy.

I hope Obama's speech tonight hits it out of the ballpark, continuing with that big stick metaphor, but I am not all that optimistic that I am going to like what I am about to hear.

America could really use a Teddy Roosevelt. Or his cousin Franklin. In these troubled times....

No comments: