Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Politicians Say the Cutest Things....

"Part of what being a leader does is to instill confidence is to demonstrate what he or she knows what they are talking about and to communicating to people ... this is how we can fix this," Biden said. "When the stock market crashed, Franklin Roosevelt got on the television and didn't just talk about the princes of greed. He said, 'look, here's what happened.'"

From here. It doesn't deserve quite as much snark as it has been given, since Biden might mean 1937 rather than 1929 (and one hopes he does!), but that's still way too early to be seeing Roosevelt on the small screen (since his first television appearance was, I think, in 1939 at the World's Fair), and it really wouldn't have done much good, anyway, since at most a handful of people could have seen it. It was apparently off the cuff, so he can be given a break for misspeaking, but it is extraordinarily funny; it's the sort of thing you would expect to find in a comic movie about politics: "Part of being a leader is instilling confidence that you know what you are talking about. A good example of this is [something false, stated as if it were true]." It's as funny as when Howard Dean said his favorite book of the New Testament was Job, and how in some books of the New Testament Job has an alternative ending; he later came back and corrected himself, but it was funny nonetheless. Or when Humphrey said, "No sane person in the country likes the war in Vietnam, and neither does President Johnson." Or the one I've seen attributed to Eisenhower, "Things are more like they are now than they ever were before."

But it does raise the question of what Roosevelt's public response to the Roosevelt recession was; and you can read it in a transcript of the relevant Fireside Chat (radio, not TV!).

No comments:

Post a Comment

Please understand that this weblog runs on a third-party comment system, not on Blogger's comment system. If you have come by way of a mobile device and can see this message, you may have landed on the Blogger comment page, or the third party commenting system has not yet completely loaded; your comments will only be shown on this page and not on the page most people will see, and it is much more likely that your comment will be missed.