Letters to the Editor

FDR legacy

December 12, 2011


To the editor:

The 70th anniversary of the bombing of Pearl Harbor has passed with our nation paying little attention to this most perfidious of days. The majority of our citizens, busy forgetting September 11, cannot focus on what they view as ancient history.  

The oil still leaks from the Arizona where it lays beneath the waters off Oahu, but the American consciousness remains largely unmoved and uninformed.

The bombing, of course, precipitated World War II and allowed one of our most incompetent Presidents, Franklin Delano Roosevelt, to assume a larger role in history than he deserved. Though told repeatedly by Admiral J. O. Richardson and others that relocating the Pacific Fleet from San Diego to Honolulu would make it vulnerable to a Japanese attack, he chose to move it directly into harm’s way and thus sacrificed the lives of thousands of American military men.

His now-famous “Day of Infamy” speech should have included a mea culpa for this hubristic putridity, his depleting of the American military resources through the lend-lease program, his unnecessary provocation of the Japanese and the aiding of Germany’s enemies who had declared war to protect Poland, a country they would subsequently sacrifice to Joseph Stalin’s Iron Curtain.  

Roosevelt, who would die in a room with his mistress — not his wife — should be relegated to the lower tier of U.S. presidents, a rather despicable creature for whom Hell no doubt would open wide its gates. Herbert Hoover’s recently discovered history of WWII affirms this analysis.


just_another_bozo_on_this_bus_ 6 years, 5 months ago

He sounds like a more successful Obama, or at least people actually believed in him despite living during the time period known as the great depression.

Just last week in his speech in Tonganoxie he listed his top three accomplishments.

  1. Avoiding a second Great Depression
  2. Bailing out the Auto industry
  3. Passing that lousy health care law.

While FDR has certainly been remembered for his active role as a president, Obama will likely be remembered for what he has done. Remember all those campaign promises made three years ago. Remember feeling that we finally had someone that could take a stand on the numerous issues at hand. Now look at him. He's completely on the defense.

Ron Holzwarth 6 years, 5 months ago

A little known fact of history:

Franklin Delano Roosevelt showed his true colors during his inauguration speech, when he uttered these famous words:

"The only thing we have to fear is fear itself."

Those were not his words, he was merely reciting part of a note that Herbert Hoover had left for him.

(source: Herbert Hoover's autobiography)

dwendel 6 years, 5 months ago

Sorry math, nothing personal. but Obama was channeling Teddy, not Franklin during his recent speech in Osawatamie. I know it's just math, but 26 doesn't equal 32. Teddy was a Republican (infallible by definition -- unless of course, you're Mormon). Franklin was a Democrat (I heard he was born in Kenya, kept a prayer mat in the oval office and was really fighting for the Nazis. I read it at www.washingtontimes.com so it must be true).

Math is hard. Maybe you should try history? I recommend books rather than the interwebs.. They have them in places called libraries.

cato_the_elder 6 years, 5 months ago

No FDR apologists out there to respond to a very provocative letter impugning the integrity and reputation of a liberal Democrat icon? Too early in the morning, or have all of the juvenile leftists who post on this forum never heard of FDR?

Kendall Simmons 6 years, 5 months ago

You're dating yourself :-) FDR hasn't been a "liberal icon" for decades. You gotta remember... well over 85% of the people in America today are younger than 65, so FDR was dead before they were born. He's just another dead President to memorize.

As far as this being a "provocative" letter? Well, I personally though it was a pretty screwy letter. I laughed out loud when reading it because it reminded me of the sour old men I knew in my youth who hated FDR and blamed him for everything. (And it sure didn't help the author's cause when he dramatically ends his complaints with FDR dying in his mistress' room...not his wife's. Oh! The horror!!)

I've found that Hoover's earlier Memoirs, the ones published in the 1950s, demonstrated that he apparently hated FDR and the Democratic Party. So now we get to read that he believes that FDR "needlessly drew the United States into WWII"? Well, whoop-di-do.

The thing is, I remember a trip my mom, my daughter and I took to the UK in 1979. There was some sort of WWII commemoration going on, and my mom was told "thank you" countless times by older people her age...thanking us "Yanks" for coming to their aid during WWII. And the stories they shared? Well, Herbert Hoover can have his opinion of WWII. But, after listening to those people, I've got mine.

And I still don't give two hoots about FDR. After all, he's just another dead President to memorize.

Ron Holzwarth 6 years, 5 months ago

Somebody told me the reason our eyes are in the front of our heads is so we can see where we're going, instead of where we have been.

cato_the_elder 6 years, 5 months ago

And as George Santayana said, "Those who refuse to learn from history are condemned to repeat it." You might want to consider that.

Cant_have_it_both_ways 6 years, 5 months ago

This new bozo is much better than the clueless one we have been blessed with all this time.

beaujackson 6 years, 5 months ago

FDR is remembered (in the press) as great only because 99% of the press is/was liberal Democrat.

lucky_guy 6 years, 5 months ago

We lefties were too busy laughing at this ironic letter. Here the writer is trying to reinvent history he must think that Brownie has destroyed KS schools enough that no one remembers FDR. Alot of the righties are now trying to discredit him, but hopefully the the weight of truth will win out over idiocy, but that is a stretch here in the Brownbackistan.
Might I add that if Newty G is the Repub nominee that you guys will bust guts trying to explain away his little indescretions since given the standards demanded above Newty is already on the 3rd rung of hell. And also what is with the Trolls? Did you righty guys run out of crazy stuff to write that you had to import imposters to write even more crazy stuff.

jhawkinsf 6 years, 5 months ago

He died 66 years ago. I suspect that the grandparents of many posters here don't remember FDR.

Kendall Simmons 6 years, 5 months ago

Well...pretty much nobody remembers FDR. Just how many 80+ year old posters do you think we have here??

Kirk Larson 6 years, 5 months ago

Yeah, so incompetent he was elected four times.

Kirk Larson 6 years, 5 months ago

He was respected and people had confidence in him for pulling the country through hard times.

pace 6 years, 5 months ago

I was taught the reason we remember Pearl Harbor was for the loss of life. I still think of those, 2,402 Americans were killed and 1,282 wounded.

I remember FDR, his programs saved my father's family from starvation. Literally, when my Dad went to CCC camp he gained 40 pounds and grew 5 inches (at 18). He talked about how he wasn't hungry, for the first time, he had enough to eat. Sent money home to his widowed destitute mother. He also was taught a trade, went into business and made a living and created many jobs for others for decades. He said he never gave a paycheck , he paid what he owed someone for working for him. He said FDR gave him a chance at a career and job when it was closed doors for him and those like him at home. You couldn't get a job or training without "pull" . For him FDR was that pull. He drug us kids all over Colorado, showing bridges and buildings he worked on, where he learned his trade. Yes, some people remember FDR.

Ron Holzwarth 6 years, 5 months ago

Some people are remembered for what they built, and others are remembered for what they destroyed.

tomatogrower 6 years, 5 months ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

voevoda 6 years, 5 months ago

Matthew O'Connell is so intent upon smearing Franklin Roosevelt that he ends up implying (see his condemnation of Roosevelt's "unnecessary provocation of the Japanese and the aiding of Germany’s enemies") that it was a mistake for the US to challenge Japanese imperialism in the Pacific and Nazism in Europe. Although I abhor war, I'm glad that we don't live in a world dominated by Imperial Japanese and Nazi militarism and racial policies. I sure hope, Mr. O'Connell, that you wouldn't be happy with that world, either.

STORES56 6 years, 5 months ago

Ah, the leftwing attack dogs are out: they must smell blood! Perhaps the blood of dead Patriots. I notice one thing different about Mr. O'Connell's letter and these babbling bloggers: he presents facts. He demonstrates that the Navy told FDR not to move the fleet. Well, if I am a field commander and my tactical deployment analyst tells me not to put a couple of thousand troops in an unprotected valley and they are subseqeuntly slaughtered, I'll be in a lot of trouble if it ever comes out that I overuled the tactical guy because, well, I was just smarter than him. Same for FDR. He moved the fleet against Admiral Richardson's warnings: Americans were subsequently slaughtered: he bears responsibility. As for the fellow who claims Dr. Roosevelt made this father grow five inches and gain forty pounds? Well, I must have missed that magician's trick in the biographies I read. As for the Germans and the Japanese, a Midwestern Senator counselled that we should let the Germans and the Russians slug it out until they were exhausted and then we could step into the power vacuum. His name was Harry Truman, a rare moment of sense for another of history's nincompoops. Lastly, the Japanese government was loaded with fellows who didn't want to fight but FDR wouldn't give them any support so the more peace-inclined government fell, replaced by the lunatic Tojo. Grew five inches, huh? Ha Ha Ha! I guess we will become a nation of seven-footers once Obama care is fully implemented.

George Lippencott 6 years, 5 months ago

There are historians who suggest that the President took the action he did in order to create the necessary pressure to move a very isolationist country into what he believed was a necessary war. If that was his goal he must have been highly appreciative of the abject stupidity displayed when Germany declared war on us and took the wind out of the isolationist’s sails.
Is there a lesson for today in this issue?

Richard Heckler 6 years, 5 months ago

How much of the letter is true as far as FDR is concerned?

Was the USA involved in discussions with Japan on the matter?

Were the japanese pissed off at the USA government?

How does the FDR situation compare to GW Bush lying to Congress and the world to justify an attack on Iraq? Iraq was no threat to the USA government.

The Bush/Cheney admin proved to be a threat to the USA by destruction of the USA economy.

How much oil is leaking?

What an odd letter?

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