Nine Brave Leaders and How They Changed America 1789-1989

By Michael Beschloss

Summary/Analysis by Walter Antoniotti 2/20/24

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in the House of Bush

Part 1 Building a Nation Part 2 Guiding the World

1) G. Washington
made voters unhappy with the Jay Treaty and Taxes
See Do You Want a Revolution? and The Revolution 1774-76


took an unpopular stance by planning for war but still reelected.
Great Depression was FDR first major problem then WW2
Safety Net Deficits like war deficits prove attractive
2) J. Adams avoided a Quasi-War with France  which cost him reelection.
See The Master of Monticello 1809 to the End and
The Leader of the Opposition
7) HT made tough decisions like quickly recognize the new sate of Israel
in the face of pressure from all sides.
3) A. Jackson Took On Eastern Oligarchs to Serve Rural America.
From a Constitution to Manifest Destiny
Andrew Jackson - Good Evil & The Presidency
8) JFK push school integration despite potential political opposition.
See JFK Avoids Vietnam, and
1973 Finally Brings Faster Track Civil Rights
4) A. Lincoln required freeing the slaves  as a condition of saving the Union.
Apocalypse To Civil War and Reconstruction
A Divided Nation from the 1862 Battle of Antietam
9) R. Reagan hastened the end of the Cold War with deficit spending.
RR Closes an Evil Empire and Federal Deficit increases used to hasten
 the fall of USSR a re still feared by many.


5) T. Roosevelt took on corporate RR trusts for consumers and farmers.
 TR Continues Manifest Destiny and War With Spain
mean Manifest Destiny Rides again.

Editor's Note


2000 Another Contested Election

Preface: The electoral college is a 12th century medieval construct  where specific influential noble princes were chosen to elect the Holy Roman Emperor. They were given the hereditary title of “elector.”

Election of 1800 was decided in the House of Representatives.
The soon to be replaced Federalist Congress would make the decision. Alexander Hamilton worked behind the scenes to helped Jefferson, the lesser of two evils. One delegate from each state voted 4 for Jefferson, 4 for 4 Burr, and 2 made no choice.
It was the first peaceful transition of political power between opposing parties in U.S.

1824 was House decided when no candidate received a majority. Jackson had 43 percent  to 30% for Adams. The House elected John Quincy Adams over Andrew Jackson. Some felt Clay, the Speaker of the House, had made a Corrupt bargain with Adams who would appoint Clay his Secretary of State. Jackson had refused the offer.

1876 Election was contested when electoral college vote went to Samuel Tilden by 19 votes with 20 votes from four states unresolved: in Florida, Louisiana, and South Carolina.  An informal Compromise of 1877 awarded all 20 electoral votes to Hayes in return for  Republican agreement to ending Reconstruction by withdrawing federal troops from the South.

1888 Election again had Benjamin Harrison a popular vote loser. It is noted for the Blocks of Five corruption scandal.

1960 election had a 0.17 percent winning margin though Kennedy easily won the Electoral College. Winner of the popular vote is complicated by ambiguous Alabama results. Some Republican legislators and journalists, claimed voter fraud, especially in Texas, where Lyndon B. Johnson was senator, and Illinois, home of Mayor Richard Daley's powerful Chicago political machine.

2000 Election went to Bush 2 after a Florida recount requiring Supreme Court intervention.  The court vote followed party lines and the Green Party adversely affected Democratic Al Gore.

See A history of contested presidential elections, S. Tilden-A. Gore

Who Invented the Electoral College?









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One-page U.S. History

20th Century U.S. Decade Ranking

Decade Ranking 1900 - 2019 Best, Worst?

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Part 3 Quick Notes Political Economy

Political Economy

US Political Economy

Political Eras 1788 to 1892   pdf
Political Eras 1896 to 2016   pdf

U.S. Political Economy 1788-2016
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Return to
Political Economy Historical Summaries


Historical Analysis
One-Page History 
Building America's Democratic Federalist
Capitalist Republic
1619 to 1973

Economic Concerns
Federal Deficit    

Income Stagnates    
Lack of Good Jobs
Economic Wellbeing 
Will Stagnate Income Hurt Children?




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