July 13, 2015 Sam Pryor
Book Review – On Deaf Ears: The Limits of the Bully Pulpit
This book is a bold work by George C. Edwards in which he shares his views of the political system in the US and how it has evolved over time. He has touched almost every president since the 1930s and brought to light some interesting details about how presidents have followed patterns and used their own style of actions to meet their unique objectives. The book describes in detail the attitudes of presidents and reflects his views on presidency. For instance, he has expressed three premises about presidential leadership: public support is used as a social resource by president, presidents must take interest in the problems of the people in order to actually garner support rather than just delivering speeches, and the public can be mobilized successfully by permanent campaigns.
Thus, he draws the attention of readers by explaining how campaigns are not what precede the election results but a continuing mechanism through which the presidents continuously keep in touch with the public in order for their images to stay fresh and active among public. He challenges the views of other prominent social scientists who have expressed strong views on president’s power to change public opinion. Furthermore, he argues that even rhetorically skilled presidents have found it
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On the Inauguration Day of every president of the United States of America, the country looks to one man to govern the nation to prosperity. A great trial begins for the new president that will judge his ability to lead and manage a country. How he performs will determine the legacy he will leave behind. The imperative skill of strong leadership, particularly in times of tension and disaster, is needed in order to make smart decisions and compromises for the good of the nation. Sound leadership provided by a president gives the people of the country a figure to guide them through trying times. When analyzing presidencies, it is also important to assess the domestic accomplishments that took place during that particular president’s term(s), that is, the political, economic, and social changes pertaining to the United States that positively impacted the people and upheld the values within the constitution. Rutherford B. Hayes (1877-1881) and George W. Bush Jr. (2001-2009), although serving as president more than a century apart, have both left legacies that transcend history. Overall, Bush has had more influence on the United States when assessing his domestic, economic, and foreign actions; however, a majority of these decisions have had a negative impact on the prosperity of the US. Hayes had more influence on minority groups, specifically African Americans and Native Americans, but the rights of these two groups were not protected. Hayes was less influential regarding
When elected, each President enters office with the goal of aligning public policy with his objectives and most often also with the goals of his party. The starting point is the understanding of Neustadt’s observation that our government is by the design of the Founding Fathers “separate institutions sharing powers” and therefore, the President must be willing to work with Congress in order to accomplish his (or her) goals. It is often said that no man is an island—that certainly includes the
Governing the U.S. is a hard endeavor, and thus the founding fathers aw fit to establish the constitution in such a way that divides the powers of governing into three branches. Of these three branches it can be argued that either congressional power or executive power is appropriate for governing the nation, however it is my opinion that the executive branch is the best choice of leadership. The central thesis for this paper is, do to the “separate intuitions, and sharing powers” portion of the constitution, the president is best suited to leadership do to his abilities to negotiate and in turn implement good strategies. The structure of congress and the president is largely different, where congress is governed by multiple individuals
Throughout history, presidents have or have not wielded the powers and tools available to them to further their goals. Examining presidential power and success is to understand presidential leadership. These top-tier individuals elected to the presidency uses the resources and personal characteristics to lead them to success and greatness, in some cases, some more than others. I have provided a case study between Presidents Van Buren and Roosevelt to show how the internal and external factors lead one president to be one of the greatest and most successful presidents in U.S history, while the other is regarded as one of the more unsuccessful and worst presidents. Presidential success is distinguished between internal and external factors. We should care about presidential success and greatness because it significantly impacts the state of nation. I argue that both internal and external factors are most important in determining presidential success.
Public approval has always been an essential part of the American Presidency. But times have changed and today U.S. Presidents make public appearances to make sure that the public approval rating of them is favorable. These public appearances allow the president to show off positive characteristics like integrity and courage which makes the President likeable to the American people. The president’s public displays to the American people has essentially turned him into a spectacle. The change of the Presidential image into to a public spectacle is being used by modern presidents as a propaganda tool that helps them to implement each U.S. president’s national policy.
James Barber presents an intriguing method into uncovering and analyzing the presidency. As Barber explains, “To understand what actual presidents do and what potential presidents might do, the first need is to see the man whole—not as some abstract embodiment of civic virtue, some scorecard of issue stands, or some reflection of a faction, but as a human being like the rest of us, a person trying to cope with a difficult environment.” The President’s personality amplifies in world affairs. Ultimately, James Barber’s breakdown of the presidential character is semi-credible/reliable, offering a unique perspective into Barack Obama’s presidential character that can be described as generally active-positive and passive-positive,
‘Great presidents’ inherently ‘possess’ a visionary leadership role; that is they know the direction in which they want to steer the country to, where it came from, and where it currently is. They are leaders with a moral compass in a sense, as they are able to clarify and quantify the ‘needs‘, wants, and ‘anxieties’ of the American citizenry during a particular
President Ronald Reagan is known in the history of the United States as one of the notable presidents who transformed the country. He not only appealed to the Americans, but the rest of the world as well. The success enjoyed by President Reagan was mainly due to the leadership qualities that he possessed (Reagan, 2009). This paper will look at the leadership qualities that enabled Reagan to be successful with analyzing how his leadership was viewed by the Americans and the entire world. The paper will also look into some of the important social views surrounding his leadership as President of the United States.
This expansion of executive authority represents the rule rather than the exception in American Politics. As a nation, we expect our president to do nothing less than solve all national problems and unite the country. Anything less is a failure. To match that responsibility Presidents must increase the rather limited power granted onto them by the constitution. This relationship forms the crux of the thus vicious cycle that has defined the Presidency: wherein expectation dictates expansion that in turn dictates more expectation. Presidents who refuse to act in this manner are regarded by history as mediocre and prompt the regime change discussed by Skowronek in his theory of Presidential leadership.
The President of the United States is often referred to as the most powerful person in the world. This position offers presidents a unique opportunity to reach a large audience and to command its attention. Presidents frequently use this advantage as a “bully pulpit” to persuade citizens and to vote for favored legislation.
Throughout the course of American political history, the presidential office has always been envisioned as a position of tremendous power and liberty, capable of making change and fulfilling promises to the American people for the ultimate betterment of their lives. Elected president in 2008, President Obama was faced with the hope and expectations of significant reform to combat the present discontent and struggle of the American public that remained at the end of Bush’s presidency. Surprisingly, while most Americans and the general public believe that the American president is capable of change and essentially rewriting history, Stephen Skowronek, in his book, The Politics Presidents Make, contends that presidents rarely have the opportunities to enforce drastic change. Rather, he states that presidencies are marked by life-cycles in respect to the “rise and fall” of political regimes and hence, these presidencies are characterized by their given moments and opportunities in history. Within this definition, the Obama presidency is restricted to an ongoing Reagan regime, limiting the Obama presidency to a preemptive role. Thus, in my paper I will expand upon the notion that Obama is a preemptive president rather than a reconstructive one based on Obama’s given political time by examining the Obama presidency in relation to the previous regime and the specific status of that regime.
The presidency occupies a unique position in all systems of government including the American system of government. The formal powers and the constitutional position occupied by the institution of the presidency are at the core of all national and international politics (Alexandrova & Timmermans, 2013). The President can serve as Commander-in-chief, nominate and appoint ambassadors, just to name a few of the powers of office. However, there is another power that is often overlooked by most, the power of agenda setting. The Constitution does not directly state this power, but it is heavily implied. This paper scrutinizes the institution of the presidency in line with agenda-setting literature. The agenda setting process relates to a series of streams, circumstances, or activities within public policy institutions and processes. The agenda setting process has three streams that incorporate the problem stream, the policy stream, and the politics stream. The problem stream relates to potential policy problems that may have different magnitudes attached to them. The policy stream associates with an agglomeration of potential solutions to policy problems (Eshbaugh-Soha, 2010). Additionally, the politics stream links to those policy issues and solutions that
The President has an overpowering influence on agenda setting in Washington D.C. in regard to the fact that as chief executive, he is someone the people most likely would look upon to seek a solution to the current dilemma of the country through presidential speeches, for instance. Although the Speaker of the House and Senate majority have a greater influence in passing laws and bills, the president implement his political policies and persuade others of his agenda through social media. The importance of his role represent a complex system of a direct democracy that essentially reflects upon policies to gain the people’s
To make the world a better place, in today’s more rapidly changing society, we need a leader that can serve our needs.The president has a significant social responsibility. In the 20th century, the only way to improve the life of citizens is to solve the problems which don’t function in modern society. The president know that his decisions will never be fully supported, as there will always be those that oppose them. So the president should think from the perspective of the people to secure the most support possible, mainly on economy. The president needs to understand that our economy is in grave danger; mainly on trade, jobs, and financially.
Lastly, let us now analyze the role of political communication on the impact of American politics. Though it may obvious, the President is one of the most important topics for the news media. Almost everything he does can at least garner some amount of news coverage. Similarly, the President can become one of the guiding figures in influencing public opinion on public issues. People tend to rally towards figures of authority, whose message would spread quite easily with news coverage. Thus, if people support his agenda, it could impact American politics.