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Author Topic: 2Tall and FDR - That Squirrel-ly Guy  (Read 92 times)

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Online jone

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2Tall and FDR - That Squirrel-ly Guy
« on: October 18, 2019, 03:27:24 PM »
2Tall had asked me why I thought FDR was 'Squirrel-ly'   I didn't have time to respond at the time, but am taking the afternoon off and thought I'd share a couple of my thoughts.

First, I am an admirer of FDR.   I think he led this country through a very difficult time, with full knowledge that he probably would not see the end of it.  Like Moses and the promised land, he never crossed the threshold into peace, leaving that for The Artillery Captain to do. 

FDR lived his entire political life as a con job.  He conned the American public into thinking he had recovered from polio.  When in reality, he used a set of leg braces and torso movement to simulate the ability to walk.   When he gave the nominating speech at the 1924 Democratic Convention, he 'walked' using braces and crutches - and on the arm of his son.   By 1928, he had mastered his illusion even better, requiring only a cane to walk down the aisle to again give Al Smith's nominating speech.

He was a master at calming our worst fears as to what the future held.  In the midst of the Great Depression, when our entire country was living in fear and distress, he announced his Presidency by stating that 'The only thing we have to fear is fear itself'.

He cast a net over the United States using folksy comparisons.   His socialist programs which were created to get America to work again, instead of a works program, he called them Alphabet Soup.  CCC, etc.

But leading into WWII, he deceived an American public bent on isolationism.   I loved the fire hose analogy whereby he created Lend/Lease.   He said if your neighbor's house is on fire, you lend him your hose, only asking that he bring it back when he puts out the fire.

Shortly before Pearl Harbor, in a radio address, he presented a German plan for the intended division of South and Central America as German states.   The plan was totally false, created by British intelligence.   FDR knew it, but also knew that it would polarize his people.  Hitler was apoplectic, but had no recourse because Hitler was not to be believed.  In Hitler's declaration of war, he alluded to the deception.

My claim to you, Bill, was that he used these deceptions and maneuvers to save American lives.  He refused to give into Churchill's desire for invasions of Greece and made sure that if America committed to D-Day that Stalin would send his armies, also, mitigating the number of German divisions that could oppose US forces.  And when Stalin and Churchill and he met to discuss post war spheres of influence, Roosevelt ignored the entire discussion, pretending to be asleep, so he would not need to commit America to any more resources or manpower.  He said 'wake me up when you want to talk about Germany'.

Roosevelt ultimately knew that he would most likely not survive the war.   Even prior to the 1944 election, he was given shots of digitalis to clear his lungs.   But that did nothing for his over sized heart and high blood pressure.   His blood pressure was regularly at around 240 during times of stress.  The Bethesda Naval Doctor who did the work up on his health was ignored by Roosevelt as he did not wish to hear, although he probably knew, how bad his health was.

The ultimate observation is that when the war was over, America held interests in Europe and Japan as well as many islands in the Pacific.   We were considered the saviors of the world and were rewarded by controlling a good part of the world's economy.   Ultimately, although we lost many good men, we paid a small price for such world domination.   I attribute much of that to Roosevelt's vision of the United State's participation in the war, when to commit and what role we played.

Kissing girls is a goodness.  It beats the hell out of card games.  - Robert Heinlein

 

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