In a recent opinion article published by Gannet-owned Pacific Daily News, statements on foreign policy by President Barack Obama were unfavorably compared to his predecessor in the White House and archetypical “progressive,” Woodrow Wilson. The authors write:
Even Obama's rhetoric has been disconcerting. Though he has not gone as far as Bush in announcing a crusade to wipe out "evil" in the world, he has echoed Woodrow Wilson's post-World War I description of "America as the savior of the world."
"Unlike the old empires, we don't make these sacrifices for territory or for resources. We do it because it's right," Obama told troops returning from Iraq.
Wilson made the proclamation quoted in the piece in the days following the signing of the Treaty of Versailles that brought an end to World War I.
Obama and Wilson share more than just a penchant for spending American blood and treasure on foreign follies, however. There are a few interesting points of comparison.
Both men, for example, graduated from Ivy League schools. Wilson was a Princeton man while President Obama reports having graduated from Columbia and Harvard Law School.
Before he became a “community organizer,” President Obama was an adjunct law professor. Woodrow Wilson was a professor, as well, before becoming a college president.
There is also a remarkable similarity between the two men’s rapid rise to national political prominence.
A fact that still baffles observers is that Barack Obama served a scant four years in Washington before becoming the national harbinger of hope and change. Prior to his partial term in the U.S. Senate, Obama spent seven years in the Illinois State Senate, during which time he ran a failed campaign for Congress in 2000.
Wilson burst onto the scene quickly, as well. Before being elected governor of New Jersey in 1910, he never held elective office on any level. Somehow, the lack of experience didn’t keep him from winning the White House a mere two years later.
In addition to their belief in war as an effective tool for shaping the world according to their own progressive political views, Obama and Wilson perpetrated their progressive policies on domestic affairs, as well.
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