To American Presidents: Put Up and Shut Up?

Stephen Hayward has an editorial in today’s issue of USA Today in which he advocates for less talk from US presidents: fewer speeches, fewer statements, and fewer promises. He compares the public activity of pre-20th century presidents, who were generally a lot quieter, with more recent presidents including President Obama, who seem to pronounce on a daily basis,.

Is Hayward’s argument convincing? I sympathize with what he is saying, and he’s right that candidates in this election year ought to tone down the promises and rhetoric, and just govern effectively if elected. Still, I think Hayward allows nostalgia for period that was less noisy to intrude into his thinking, and this results in his holding modern presidents to an unrealistic standard.

Your views? Here is Hayward’s editorial.


3 responses to “To American Presidents: Put Up and Shut Up?

  1. by the way now you gotta follow me.

  2. Good points, and it also proves his case for Obama when the stock market began crashing each time he spoke!:DI also find that the just of what they say is usually simple answers or ways to avoid answers. They just drone on and confuse people so they are almost intimidated into voting for them:/ I think they should keep it shorter, just because they're bad at keeping it long. Licoln kept it short because he was his most effective at being shorter. In the end, I suppose it's really just how affectual the person can be and whether they cover the right topics, give good answers (no matter how long.) So to each his ownHope that made sense…I'm kinda out of it right now.

  3. He's right really but it's not really the candidates or the president that is at fault but the environment. The media now runs 24 hours a day (CNN, Fox News, etc.) and the media cares much more about sound bites and spicy rhetoric than political substance. Because of this presidents and candidates feel the need to speak more and make more promises to garner voters and "keep up" with the rest of the pack.

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