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Opinion: Why Obama's reforms were doomed from the beginning

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Obama: When your time is up, it is time to put country first 04:34
Jeremi Suri holds the Mack Brown Distinguished Chair for Leadership in Global Affairs at the University of Texas at Austin, where he is a professor of history and public affairs. He is the author and editor of nine books, most recently "The Impossible Presidency: The Rise and Fall of America's Highest Office." The views expressed here are his. Read more opinion on CNN.
(CNN)Reading former President Barack Obama's sad and hopeful memoir, one can feel his passionate love for the United States: "The pride in being American, the notion that America was the greatest country on earth -- that was always a given." America is a place for Obama but also a "promise" of a more perfect union, with rights and dignity for all. No other society is so open with possibilities. No other society is filled with young men and women from such diverse backgrounds who love their country so much.

The Best U.S. Presidents of All Time, According to Experts

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The Best U.S. Presidents of All Time, According to Experts
By
Michele Zipkin, Stacker News
AND Peter Richman, Stacker News
On 10/18/20 at 9:00 AM EDT
Since George Washington was sworn in as the country's first president in 1789, United States presidents have made many integral and difficult decisions to help shape this country. Civil and international wars, economic crises, and deep-rooted bigotry are just a few major installments that our presidents have had to tackle. It's common to debate the efficacy, personalities, and politics of these office-holders during their terms, and opinions run far and wide many years later when analyzing past performance.

Where Are We On The Roller Coaster Of History?

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Historian Jeremi Suri is calm. Surprisingly calm, considering what he has to say about the current state of the American democracy. But if we look at our own history, he says discord and disagreement are just part of the deal.
"You know, I'm among those historians who see democracy as a rollercoaster. It goes up and down. It's not a straight line," says Suri, speaking to Charles Monroe-Kane for "To The Best Of Our Knowledge." "We like to think that every generation gets better at this thing called democracy. It's not true. Some generations, because of their circumstances, do better. And some don't." 

The president as parent - consoler, protector or, sometimes, failure

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The president as parent - consoler, protector or, sometimes, failure
Jeremi Suri, The Washington Post
June 19, 2020
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The Hardest Job in the World: The American Presidency
By John Dickerson
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Throughout our history, presidents have played a parental role for our large, diverse nation. George Washington was the humble founding father of our democracy, Abraham Lincoln was the determined father who suffered to protect the Union, and Franklin Roosevelt was the steady, fatherly hand that guided the country through the Great Depression and world war. Citizens referred to these men as national fathers during their lifetimes, and after.
Recent presidents found their strongest voices as reassuring parents for the country in moments of tragedy. They projected confidence, empathy and hope. Think of Ronald Reagan's eloquent address to the nation after the Challenger disaster in January 1986, George W. Bush's indignant visit to Ground Zero in September 2001, and Barack Obama's passionate rendition of "Amazing Grace" after the mass shooting at Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in June 2015. Many citizens feel abandoned today because parental reassurance is completely lacking from our nation's current leadership.

'We the People' trumps 'commander-in-chief'

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Tear gas fired at peaceful protesters outside of White House 01:56
Jeremi Suri holds the Mack Brown Distinguished Chair for Leadership in Global Affairs at the University of Texas at Austin, where he is a professor of history and public affairs. He is the author and editor of nine books, most recently "The Impossible Presidency: The Rise and Fall of America's Highest Office." The views expressed here are his. Read more opinion on CNN.
(CNN)President Trump's brandishing of the US military this week -- particularly his threat Monday to invoke the Insurrection Act of 1807 -- proves his cowardly and undemocratic proclivities.

Book World: When the president is more like a little kid than a leader

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Book World: When the president is more like a little kid than a leader
Jeremi Suri, The Washington Post
April 17, 2020
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The Toddler in Chief
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Our nation's founders knew a lot about unbalanced leaders. James Madison, Alexander Hamilton and others read deeply in the history of Rome's many mad emperors: the countless murders ordered by Caligula, the burning of Rome by Nero and the gladiatorial bloodbaths performed personally by Commodus. The founders also lived under a British monarch, George III, who suffered recurring mental breakdowns. These unbalanced leaders had all inherited their power.
For this reason, among others, the founders rejected hereditary authority. They embraced a republican vision of government that sought to place power in the hands of what Thomas Jefferson called an "aristocracy of talent and virtue," carefully elected by educated, property-holding citizens. The founders designed many limits on who could vote, but they believed that voters were more reliable than genetics in choosing qualified leaders. If anything, the children of wealth and power appeared most likely to become corrupt and foolish because of their privileged upbringing. Revolutionary leader Samuel Adams put it well: "The cottager may beget a wise son; the noble, a fool. The one is capable of great improvement; the other, not."

What Will the History Books Say About This Impeachment?

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POLITICO
What Will the History Books Say About This Impeachment?
We knew how this would end. We asked historians and impeachment experts how it will all look in 50 years.
AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana
By POLITICO MAGAZINE
Link Copied
The monthslong impeachment process that ended Wednesday could feel like a blur of news and political theater all leading up to a foregone conclusion. Donald Trump is still the president. Americans’ confidence in the whole political process, whatever their party, is still dented. So what did we all just live through?
Throughout the impeachment proceedings, POLITICO Magazine convened a panel of experts on the rare and dramatic event called impeachment. In response to the acquittal vote, we asked them to look into the future and offer one more insight: How will the history books look back on this moment? What was it all for—the rhetoric, the ceremony, the investigations, the defense, the taxpayer money?

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