All of Urquhart's Comments + Replies

Schelling fences on slippery slopes

How they're viewed has little to do with these decisions. Harding is seen as a weak President who was manipulated by those around him and who allowed corruption to flourish in his administration. The most famous example of this was The Teapot Dome Scandal. He may also, much like his successor Coolidge, have become associated with the boom that preceded the Great Depression.

Wilson is, unfairly I think, rewarded for leading America during WWI. This is in spite of the fact that he promised to keep America out of the war and managed to lose the peace that followed. Besides upholding sedition laws he did a number of other thoroughly un-liberal things.

How they're viewed has little to do with these decisions.

That is true, literally speaking. The point, however, is that the qualities that got Wilson celebrated and Harding forgotten or despised in the century since then were actually the same ones that led the former to fill jails with political prisoners and the latter to consider it unacceptable to preside over a country whose jails are filled with political prisoners. Besides, compared to the way things were done under Wilson, holding these petty corruption scandals as a heavy sin against Harding sho... (read more)