Brian Birdnow

Fred Eckert is a prototypical unsung hero of the conservative movement. Eckert paid his political dues in upstate New York in 1968, organizing local Republican support for the presidential candidacy of Richard Nixon, standing in opposition to the native New York liberal GOP hero, Nelson Rockefeller. This baptism of fire led Mr. Eckert to a series of increasingly responsible positions in New York municipal, county, and state government, most notably as a state senator for ten years, 1972-82. Eckert, a staunch conservative, who endorsed the Reagan presidential effort as early as 1975, served as U.S. Ambassador to Fiji from 1982-84. He then won a seat in the 99th Congress, serving as a Republican and representing a district based in Rochester, New York. He finished his calling in public life, serving as a second U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Agency for Food and Agriculture during 1987-88. In many ways Fred Eckert exemplified the American ideal of citizen-politician.

Today, nearly a quarter of a century after returning to private life, Fred Eckert is still serving this great republic. Recently, he completed his sixth book, entitled, “That’s A Crock, Barack”. Don’t let the hyperbolic nature of the book’s title fool you. This is a very sober and mature study of the deleterious effect of the Obama Presidency on the United States. Eckert uses Obama’s own words and shows the 44th President as a man prone to arrogance, duplicity, and exaggeration. In his short volume Eckert makes the case that President Obama should no be re-elected this coming November.

Mr. Eckert divides his new work (Beestone Books, ISBN: 9780985005504, c. 2012) into nine separate chapters beginning with Obama’s pre-presidential speech on the night of June 3, 2008 when he clinched the Democratic nomination for the presidency. The nominee made the astounding claim that “…this was the moment when we began to provide care for the sick and good jobs to the jobless. This was the moment when the rise of the oceans began to slow and our planet began to heal.” This overweening, even breathtaking arrogance on the part of then-candidate Obama serves as a touchstone for much of the first part of the volume, and leads directly into the second chapter, entitled, “How Great Thou Art, How Great Thou Art.”

Brian Birdnow

Brian E. Birdnow is a historian and teaches at a university in the St. Louis area.