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Bully Boy: The Truth About Theodore Roosevelt's Legacy

3.44 of 5 stars 3.44  ·  rating details  ·  39 ratings  ·  10 reviews
What Hath TR Wrought?

“I don’t think that any harm comes from the concentration of power in one man’s hands.” —Theodore Roosevelt

The notion that Theodore Roosevelt was one of America’s greatest presidents is literally carved in stone—right up there on Mount Rushmore. But as historian Jim Powell shows in the refreshingly original Bully Boy, Roosevelt’s toothy grin, outsized
ebook, 352 pages
Published August 8th 2006 by Crown Forum (first published 2006)
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Regular Joe
After reading Jim Powell's book FDR's Folly, I wasn't sure I wanted to follow that one by reading Bully Boy, Powell's critique of Theodore Roosevelt's political life. So, I thought I'd give my brain a rest and just check it out of the library and do a mild overview. Unfortunately, you can't read a Powell book like that, so after reading just the introduction, I was hooked.

Powell's view point in Bully Boy is similar to that in FDR's Folly, but a little less detailed. He provides a strong chronolo
Shane Westfall
At a young age, my mother instilled in me the value of finishing what I start. This is one volume that makes me regret not adding that to the long list of her values that I rejected somewhere along the way! I jumped right into this one, and it took me forever to get around to finishing it. Yes, it is that bad.

I love revisionist history, even when I disagree with the author's thesis. The problem being Powells thesis seems to be as simple as Hey, I dislike Teddy. He attacks from the left, he attac
Decided to read this book after reading "The Rise of Theodore Roosevelt" The Rise of Theodore Roosevelt which did an amazing job showing the great "man" Roosevelt was. However, "Bully Boy" gives you the other side of Roosevelt; Roosevelt the politician. Powell goes to great lengths to point out where Roosevelt the man and Roosevelt the politician differ.

Roosevelt, although a tremendous personage in his personal life, his war mongering antics are still being felt today. His need to usurp the Con
Nolan Gray
It's worth first saying that I agree with most of what Jim Powell is trying to communicate in "Bully Boy." Most people know only three things about Theodore Roosevelt: he was charismatic, he advanced positive progressive reforms, and he inspired the Teddy Bear. At least in my experience, historians have a more nuanced understanding: America was changing, and TR - for better or for worse - represented much of that change. Sure, most of his causes proved to be disastrous - conservation/damming/irr ...more
A takedown of Teddy Roosevelt, this book strains to avoid saying anything possible about him, even when the author manages to find a point of agreement. Powell does make some good points, but they are unlikely to persuade anyone who isn't already in agreement with him. For those, like me, who find a lot to admire in TR's personality and life, it's interesting to see the downside and outright wrongheadedness of some of his policies. Even government interventions in the era of a vastly smaller gov ...more
Doug Hauser
I have read many books about Teddy all of which loved Teddy. This is the first book that really gives another side to Teddy and his policies.He was really the first of the "Progressives" in the line of Woodrow Wilson, FDR, LBJ, and of course our present illustrious leader.
Suzie Quint
A real eye-opener about who Teddy Roosevelt was and how he changed to course of America. His presidency was probably the first of the modern elitists and set our feet on the path of socialism. If you enjoy history, Powell is as clear-eyed as history gets.
Informative, but a little dull in some areas. How none of this ever made it into our history books is a mystery to me.
Craig J.
Bully Boy: The Truth About Theodore Roosevelt's Legacy by Jim Powell (2006)
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