In early December, President Obama delivered a speech in Osawatomie, Kansas which tried to seize the mantle of Republican hero, Theodore Roosevelt.
As the President noted, TR visited that same small town to deliver his famous “New Nationalism” address, calling for more activist government to curb corporate power. What Mr. Obama never acknowledged, however, is that Roosevelt spoke in 1910, nearly two years after leaving the presidency, and just months before the ill-fated, radical 1912 campaign that led to his departure from the GOP and ignominious failure of his third-party bid.
Moreover, TR warned against precisely the kind of “war against owners of property” that Obama now preaches. “Capital has its rights, which are as worthy of protection as any other rights; property is a positive good in the world,” Roosevelt said, quoting Lincoln.
“Let not him who is houseless pull down the house of another, but let him work diligently and build one for himself.”