Dan Walker's Reviews > Theodore Rex

Theodore Rex by Edmund Morris
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Aug 02, 2011

After reading 3 books about Theodore Roosevelt I'm still unclear how he went from being the quintissential rugged individualist to a progressive who is hailed even today by members of that movement. His speech, "the Strenuous Life," (which I read elsewhere), doesn't seem to point to government as the resource to help us lead such a life. What is clear, however, especially in this book, is that Theodore was ready to use his fiery energy, titanic intellect, and masterful political skills to bring about the change that he thought would help the American people. Whether it was putting the federal government in charge of food quality or railroad rates, he was ready to do it and never mind the Constitution. I guess Theodore is an example of why power should not be concentrated. Because once it has occurred, it will be exercised, even to the point of imposing centralized control upon the rugged individuals that the politician claims to glory in. It cannot be helped.
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