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tv   Andrew Burstein on Democracys Muse  CSPAN  May 31, 2015 8:00am-9:04am EDT

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society although we start with fdr but it's about the curious, humorous and at times pathetic ways that modern politicians and public figures atop to manipulate thomas jefferson. and they can claim him as you will see for whatever ideological position that they want to embrace your we have the subtitle of the book how thomas jefferson became an fdr liberal a reagan republican, and a tea party fanatic it all the while being dead. [laughter] thank you. [applause] >> thank you steve and books and books and thank you to that lovely young lady. so. we forget the language of american democracy? ..
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well i'm not giving anything away by saying that the left is a known jefferson and in the right doesn't own jefferson. the past owns jefferson.
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every nation needs ennobling national creation story. thomas jefferson is indispensable to ours. i think it is not a scientific measure of anything, but you can learn something by taking note of the cabinet room in the white house where the president meets with his cabinet. and i thought that over the years to look at early photographs and read stories in "the new york times," every four years when a new president comes into office, the cabinet room is redecorated and portraits are hung on its wall. so harry truman placed on the wall of the cabinet room for
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portraits of thomas jefferson, james madison and woodrow wilson. after his retirement from the presidency in 1953 truman remarked to a reporter, thomas jefferson is my favorite character in history. when eisenhower became president, he put up william howard taft and george washington replacing truman jefferson madison. president kennedy succeeded president eisenhower removing task in putting thomas jefferson and andrew jackson facing one another. skipping ahead a little bit. ronald reagan, whom you will hear more but thomas jefferson and calvin coolidge side-by-side. strange fellow.
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you know you are in my enemy when you hear always day. george herbert walker bush had thomas jefferson, abraham lincoln, theodore roosevelt and eight. william jefferson clinton, thomas jefferson, abraham lincoln and george washington. he took down train six. george w. bush returned ike and may not be the worst thing you did as president, but he removed abraham lincoln's picture from the wall. our current president, president obama has put up harry truman, george washington, thomas jefferson and theodore roosevelt. he has lincoln in the oval office. so when it came to hanging
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portraits in the white house cabinet room president number 40 through 44 all had one predecessor in common. thomas jefferson. so the book spans about three quarters of a century, but i am going to start with the winter of 1924-in 1825 when his book was published that had a profound impact on the democratic party and particularly for nt roosevelt who at that time was a failed vice presidential nominee and still eight years from becoming president. he wrote the first and only book review of his life about this book by a man from indiana named claude bowers. the book was called jefferson and hamilton: the struggle for democracy in america.
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roosevelt wrote in this book review, i have a breathless feeling that they lay down this book. hamilton we have today. hamilton was always popular when business was large and business was booming. hamilton we have today. is it jefferson on the horizon. so eight years later, he became what he considered to be a modern incarnation of the principles of jeffersonian democracy. believing he was channeling jefferson in putting together the new deal. in bowers book jefferson and hamilton. hamilton is contemptuous. he uses that word often. contentious that the people at large condescending. he said it was the money who made america great.
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so that was hamilton. jefferson was the first in american history to contest artificial privilege, to fight the money made to disagree with the cozy alliance that hamilton had put in place under george washington administration, the alliance between business and government. so bowers and roosevelt jefferson hamilton dichotomy was simple. who spoke for the rich who spoke for ordinary people. why is this book so important? because this would never happen anymore. at the democratic national convention in houston in the teen 28 the author of jefferson hamilton claude bowers gave the keynote address. fdr introduced the candidate
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kyl smith of new york who went down to defeat herbert hoover. but this keynote address delivered before 10000 in the houston arena and millions more by radio was claude bowers, a national celebrity a famous order from roosevelt appointed ambassador to spain and later ambassador to chile. so fast-forward a bit bit to thomas jefferson's 200th birth day. april 3rd teen, 1943. on that day franklin roosevelt, president roosevelt dedicated the jefferson memorial on the tidal basin in washington d.c. he had been personally instrumental in the dome design, in approving the sayings are
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quotes from jefferson that encircled the memorial. he said down with the architect in the white house. he pushed the jefferson memorial. he wanted to own thomas jefferson overall time for the democratic party which jefferson along with madison. on the 200th anniversary of jefferson's words roosevelt read from the word that still is circled the interior of the dome. i have sworn on the altar of god eternal hostility towards every form of tyranny over the mind of man. we understand by jefferson's languages is endured two centuries after he wrote it. at the time, 1943 those were
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were delivered in your face to hitler andism. it was meant to be a support for america in a time of war. jefferson defined the emotional genius in emotional terms. he's the emotional number of the founding generation. william jefferson clinton literally shares the founders named as a rare copy of jefferson in 1787 notes on the state of virginia. the only book that jefferson wrote. clinton began his 1993 inaugural
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address or inaugural schedule with a private tour of monticello. astronaut turned senator john glenn of ohio is you majestic reflection on the life of mr. friend robert kennedy, said of robert kennedy he often quotes thomas jefferson decided to us to work, every man must have his voice heard in council of government. every man must have his voice heard in the councils of government. that is what democracy literally means. but have we ever had that in this country? if the greed of a minority tries the economy, do they live in a democracy at all? this is why as a political player the historical jefferson
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remains part of our national political conversation today. can anyone say that jefferson would do if you were president today? get a symbolism is such that america gages its ability to a pulp local virtues by invoking his name. readers of my previous books have e-mailed me with questions like where we jefferson stand on gays in the military. it is very often remarked on both sides of the i/o on capitol hill reading through the congressional quarterly if jefferson were alive today where would he stand? how do we know what jefferson democracy jefferson -- jeffersonian democracy would look like since it the quintessential value of the american nation.
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so what inspires this book were not those questions e-mailed to me for which i didn't have an answer, but seeing the ikea next-line i lived by president kennedy in 862 when he spoke before white house banquet of 49 nobel laureate. normally president kennedy delegated to press secretary virtuous wife, jackie responsibility for putting together social events at the white house. in april 1962, kennedy took a hands-on approach to this sign. he really cared about it. i saw in washington d.c. the national portrait gallery at the time his handwritten notes on the nose sorensen had given to him. you probably know the quote that he had lived -- i lived at the
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white house banquet. with the possible exception of when thomas jefferson dined alone. there was a 10 page spread in life magazine about the noble laureate white house dinner just as there is a 10 page spread in life magazine in mid-april 1943, when they designated the jefferson memorial. so jefferson's words express the universal desire for individual freedom. that is why he stays with us. when we say jeffersonian democracy, we tend to mean something on the order of human
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rights. barack obama when he first took office in 2009 was asked at an earlier press conference how he envisioned the future of iraq and the words out of his mouth where we don't expect a jeffersonian democracy because it's a different culture. but we expect something that we might call a jeffersonian democracy in this country. that is what i'm trying to investigate in this book. just utter the word jefferson and you are giving a synonym for the emotional component of american democracy. and it's not just in america. it is across the world. in a 93 when he visited monticello, jefferson tom mikhail gorbachev told the executive director, dan jurgen
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that he had studied jefferson's principles of democracy as a college student in moscow many years before. as a trusted member of the communist party of the soviet union, he had access to that kind of literature. he said in the night t. davies says he was conceiving political reform in the soviet union a liberalization, he went back to the principles of jefferson, to the very taxi ride is a college student and that they meant a lot to him. ronald reagan cap notebooks private notebooks that he referred to when he was looking for sayings to use body was president and even before. instead of facing a never meant for publication, president
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reagan revealed jefferson to be his views by equating him to reagan's political idea -- idea of an open society. these are reagan's words that jefferson meant to have an open society. he used those words in contradistinction that the soviet model directly. so here was break-in attacking the evil empire. and gorbachev alike at the same time responding to the inspirational thought of thomas jefferson. reagan i should emphasize founding jefferson a lover of small government. reagan frequently quoted from
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jefferson's first inaugural asked a democratic president who came before him. because of jefferson's first inaugural are both liberal humanists and small government elements. but reagan liked was the line that said -- spoke in favor of a wise and frugal government that leads men to regulate their road disputes of improvement. we translate that into economics. he says let s. be capitalists. don't tax well. all men pursued happiness equally and it's not government's business to level the playing field. jefferson is the closest flesh and blood among the founders. more flash senses dna turned out in a surprise finding of 1998.
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george washington is a marvel of is how we best envisioned him imagine him statuesque. washington isn't known for any name he says. james mattis in this scene and server both terms alone, although madison and jefferson had tried to alter that perception, we see madison is a very act give engaged political parties and then there's a reason why madison comes before jefferson in the title of our book. but he has come down in history wrongly is this merely cerebral man who's not particularly quotable. john adams. you all remember him from hbo. colorful, often press and, but not inspirational. don't remember his language either.
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alexander hamilton may be in the process of being revised as they have pop star. but the historical hamilton was too full of himself had no room for popular pc azimuth anytime look down on the people in the shows of this writing which is thick and unpretty. so we are left with jefferson who called america the world's best hope. most to play a role in modern american politics that conceived of this world's best hope is a reiteration of the post world war ii rescuing on the devastating your present economy and a solid footing that could read those strict nations were transported the japanese and you need into a staunch ally america has the perfect model for human community. it was jefferson who could teach
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democracies is a fantastic must america's moral back home. what did jefferson mean that the world's best hope? he uttered those words in 1801 as a lifelong farmer shaped by conditions prevailing in an agrarian age and entire opposition to urban crowding and disease transmission. it is an existential statement about of largely empty cotton with 1100th of the population of america today. so that is our problem. but did he jefferson mike liberty, like freedom. words that we use all the time but don't precisely defined other pursuit of happiness is part of that triad from the
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declaration that has a beautiful but amorphous quality. but i can say this much. but thomas jefferson meant by the pursuit of happiness was building america as a moral community in which individuals had opportunities to find content and in their life. but how does that translate to today? what is government's role? he doesn't tell us. we tapped the founders to pronounce america's substance the way the chinese axiomatically talk about 5000 years of continuous history that make the people great as simple as nation. that doesn't explain the blood lost in chinese history and
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society photography, the institutional cruelty. they don't express their national identity through impersonation the way we do. the colts have melted down and side. george washington and the cherry tree honest abe benjamin franklin and in his homily and quirky axiom the fund founder. we need person principal persons to describe profound life lessons about political democracy. so just like george washington
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and the cherry tree admit jefferson is a crutch. the dreamy democrat, the insatiable solid incomparable words and all of a sudden he is a healthy imagination and their way sure what to do with that. let's be clear about one thing. when we say original meaning, is peeking out as a professional historian, we need to find in the founders the truth about their real lives their land hunger they're dangerous financial speculation, heavy debts, unpoliced sex and far less social mobility than we imagine or wish. that is how our hero of the
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founding generation lived and acted. rampant speculation heavy dad and far less social mobility than we would like to see. we practiced a civil religion that the jeffersonian script supports. it is this obsessive idea that the american republic came into existence because of a fault in old world europe and that we were somehow didn't even come at the new jerusalem. these are the terms they use in their rhetoric and propaganda around the time of the american revolution. but we were the antidote to all political tyranny was a message of hope promise individual substance and strength, the light of a mind that is free.
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in the enlightenment found fulfillment in the united states of america. jefferson stood tallest at the start of our national experience. in describing the power of the liberated individual the conscience that is free. so he is their beacon of hope. but he claimed that america didn't have poor people are outrageously rich people. it was the world's best hope perhaps when monarchs ruled the earth. but you can't get away with such sweeping statements except among those proponents in these days of the christian nation ideology christian conservatives for god uniquely
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blesses america. you've all heard the spoken in political circles. for this reason the jeffersonian script i describing this about terms is most potent today within the republican party. part and parcel of the republican message. so my focus as much about the fragility of history and the malleability of thomas jefferson and the malleability of political memory. that's what we're really talking about. jefferson can be adopted by new deal liberals by thinking conservatives and by libertarian activists. the quintessential thomas
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jefferson. when connecting the day blew up the federal building in oklahoma city, he had the unfortunate jefferson quote about the tree of liberty needing to be refreshed with the blood of picture its entire reds imprinted on his t-shirt. campaigning for the republican nomination in 2012 newt gingrich responded to a voter's question about legalizing weed by saying if jefferson caught you with party with prosecute you to the full extent of the law. talk about updating the founders with precise historical evidence to do that. jefferson was cited at eleanor roosevelt frequently generally in favor of investment in public education and jefferson was literally ahead of its time when it came to that. democracy cannot function without an educated electorate
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and eleanor roosevelt lake outland. jefferson has been cited by ron paul is a further gold standard, by jesse helme in opposition to the payment of union dues, by ronald reagan to put the brakes on spending. others were possible to obtain a single amendment to the constitution, taken from the government the power pirate thomas jefferson 1798. the republicans loved that over and over. jefferson did write that in a very different context. in 1987 when reagan invoked it and by the way, madison disagreed strongly with the concept of taking away and borrowing heavily to fight the war of 1812 when he was president.
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thomas jefferson's words can be quite dangerous. he wrote in 1810 a strip to observe that thomas is doubtless one of the high duties that a good citizen, but it's not the highest. the laws of necessity, saving our treachery when in danger or a higher obligation to lose our country by scrupulous adherence to two law would be to lose the war itself, to lose our country by scrupulous adherence to written off would be to lose the law itself. president nixon used that jefferson quote to invoke executive privilege and justify congress. so politicians have this nasty habit thinking they can bring him up today. it's what i call a jefferson abuse. the research department at monticello has someone in charge
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of tracking down serious jefferson quotes on the web and exposing what are not jefferson quotes what are combinations of jefferson quote used to change the context. so that is all part of the thing that caught jefferson abuse. in 2001, the texas congressman spoke before the house on tax cuts. he said mr. jefferson never called himself a democrat. he called himself a republican. the party committed to the preservation of the american republic the core principles that made this country great reducing the size power and cost of the federal government. mr. jefferson sat with is the highest property with the income tax. president mugabe introduced a federal income tax.
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but the republicans -- the jeffersonian republicans of 1800 with the republicans of the modern era i just don't know where to begin. 2012 another texas republican easy pickings right? and ted poe quoted jefferson saying that democracy will cease to exist when you take away from those willing to work and give to those who are not. powerful. the jefferson never cited or anything like it in the "washington post" because they called out the congressman. it turns out the quote was from a 1986 encyclopedia political encyclopedia published by libertarian group and the author of the quote was actually somebody by the name of john baltz, which is taking from the ayn rand novel, fictional hero.
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president nixon has said his favorite jefferson quote was we act not just for ourselves, but for all mankind. he wrote that in one of his postpresidential books and a fitted a few other times. in the white house. we act not just for ourselves, but for all mankind supporting the idea of american exceptionalism. this is how the jeffersonian script is used to advance this idea that america owes it to the rest of the world to bring our form of democracy, as in ameliorating political attack of a civilizing effect. so that is not a conspiratorial we are custom to. not every president i told you
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about roosevelt about truman reagan. not every president was thomas jefferson. teddy roosevelt, the strenuous life that thomas jefferson was a wind and wasn't afraid to say it. anyway democracies and uses the story of how the democrat inadvertently see jefferson to the republicans during the last third of the 20th century and into the 21st. at the 1992 republican national convention which occurred shortly after democrats nominated bill clinton ronald reagan said this fellow they've nominated claims he's the new thomas jefferson. well, let me tell you something. i knew thomas jefferson. he was a friend of mine. governor you are no thomas
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jefferson. i still think lloyd jefferson the original version of that was passed with you while in 1988. senator, you're no jack kennedy. do you have once again with kennedy, reagan and clinton white houses and for all i know blake benson's better model had in common thomas jefferson's portrait on the wall. again, break and placed his next two calvin coolidge. so ergo jefferson the most malleable of figures. for liberals, jefferson's words reflect the cosmopolitan concern for human progress. for conservatives, his words appeal to a harmonious home life, safe secure and fairly homogeneous moral community. the new deal that jefferson
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defined -- the jeffersonian idea of freedom is having grown out of the self-evident truth during jefferson's words sacred and undeniable truth that all are created equal with equal access to the national economy and of course the reagan revolution said that freedom is the freedom -- the jeffersonian idea of freedom is the freedom of every individual, the right to master the economic environment without government standing in the way or imposing unfair regulations from the center. so property plus hard work plus innovative thought. there you have the modernization of jeffersonian economic plan in if you will. here is reagan in his second inaugural address 1985.
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these were golden years with the american revolution was reborn, when freedom came for freedom came through last, when america reached for her best. you see jefferson's first inaugural reader. in reagan's second. again, the idea that god loves america the american exceptionalism a deal through jefferson. countering his predecessor reagan as a plus for fdr jefferson represented in positive change. jefferson was an agent of progressive change. in april 1993, president clinton presided over the ceremony is at the jefferson memorial elsewhere honoring the 250 anniversary of the birth of thomas jefferson and he referred back to the 200
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called franklin roosevelt in modern jeffersonian. but he said -- clinton said at the jefferson memorial in april 1993, we can offer on her jefferson's dad by honoring our own role in governing ourselves in our nation to change before it is only in change to preserve the timeless values for which thomas jefferson gave his life over two centuries ago. only in change we preserve timeless values. in the year 1993 alone president clinton and the jefferson on 25 separate public occasions. so i repeat what i said at the outset now that we've been through all this. the left does jefferson. the right doesn't have jefferson. the past does.
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let me pose this question. if there's very little in modern politics that we can call a jeffersonian and our politics not about restoring the founding vision because too much has changed, why do politicians and why does the supreme court pretend that our mission is to recover the founding vision when it seems to have gone off track. what was jefferson write about? what was he wrong about? that's what historians address. i read about a group that exists to protect the reputation of thomas jefferson against all who mean it by claiming he had a relationship with this house serving sally hemings. i'm not interested in reviving the debate. i read about it at length in a
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previous book jefferson's secrets. here a moment interested in exploring why does he read the dna up against it from the shift to two remote jefferson whose moral no one feels any need to protect. why are those in the randolph did at camp booth to call those in the town as it hoaxers. what is the hoax? why are these aggrieved people invariably political conservatives? why are political liberals to imagine jefferson might've loved sally hemings is mixed race slave. why are americans at all interested are invested in the libido of our founders were the emotions of a man who lived more than two centuries ago. they are not interested in james garfield adulterous
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relationships. why is james madison sex life of interest to no one. he didn't marry dawley until he was passed 43. was the child lives father of the constitution a version at its birth? we don't want to go there. and the book of america's janice says we don't want there to be any carnal beings. we prefer our founders changed. the jefferson controversy remains a hot button issue because of how special jefferson is in the american imagination. but we finally meet today we finally mean today when roofer to a jeffersonian democracy is our best imaginable america a
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fantasy moment when the american dream is anything to. it is a golden age with a utopian experiment designing policies that serve the public good that harmonize the population to remove barriers and the domination of one of the class over the rest. the best jefferson dream of a world in which democracy triumphs over tyranny. liberals and conservatives both tend to be more interested than they are in understanding them the truth about history. every time they making the founding generation that ship with their own is conservatives in particular craved models of authority. for tea partiers are constantly
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quoting the founders of washington, jefferson. they love them. they belong to the vernacular to a new fashion political moralism that combines relief in american exceptionalism with belief in the power of self-expression, even if the individual self-expression is conspiracy driven and disconnected from actual historical experience. so our politicians flatten out history and many people just go along. we know that the president is disorganized. we don't like to think of the founding era as disorganized but it was. there's another term i used in the book called founder of fundamentalists whom i say are not really interested in history by a kind of redemption through
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history of upholding moral standards that was never realized in the old days are represented a faith that turns the greatest generation into its not perfect people perfectible people through whom we can somehow live our lives. i can't visit the jefferson memorial without recurring in my mind two d. images i have seen in the old papers and magazines of roosevelt dedicated the jefferson memorial in april 1943. if you leave the panel inside the memorial, you will see what fdr's hand-picked award came up with. they were a combination of politicians, historians people
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from the artistic community and yes they make jefferson into the arch democrat who stood strong against tyranny wherever it would rise. but through a clever manipulation of partial statement over decades of his life this jefferson was enshrined as an abolitionist. so does the jefferson of the 30s, 40s and up to the time of john f. kennedy. he could do no wrong. he was morally pure. he was universally adored. that was the thomas jefferson that mikell gorbachev also adored. as much as jefferson represents an optimistic strain in american liberal thought jeffersonian
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stating features are regularly demented whenever generation poses the same fearful question, can the american dream be safe? however you view it, jeffersonian some presupposes the existence of an american dream and the viability of an american dream. we have for a long time been trying to make our purpose in the world sounds simple. we have been unable to make thomas jefferson simple. i think i will stop there and invite questions. thank you very much. [applause] i know it is late, but if anyone has a question. >> when fdr -- during the
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depression he left around and said people have a right of the new deal. when reagan came to power he said they cut all those programs from the same president. [inaudible] >> both. jefferson is powerful because his language reaches across the centuries. jefferson is confusing because his language reaches various audiences and tells the different audiences what they want to hear. both reagan and roosevelt tapped
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johnson's first and not really dress which is arguably the most elegant and i think it is the one inaugural address that all presidents keep coming back to as they reviewed. there is actual evidence of this. but they are looking for having an impact. jefferson's harmonious script, which is what the first inaugural address is about. this script spoke of harmony and affection subsisting within a politically divided nation so that we are all americans. we are all republicans. we are all federalists but you could translate that into gear of democrats, we are all republicans. by invoking thomas jefferson both roosevelt and reagan
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believed that they were ended last interest of the greatest majority of the american people and that is probably the best way to answer that one. yes. >> any reason you feel jefferson is the most famous founder after washington? in a particular reason? >> well as i've been trying to emphasize, he is the only one who's writing still speaks to us. you know, it would be hard to say there is eloquent than any thing of washington's. his inaugural address as an example which she didn't really write himself. madison wrote for him, was kind of dried prosaic and no one ever said george washington.
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the beautiful sentiment. he was not exactly a sentimental guy. he was a nasty landlord decides. and so since we are looking to develop a national creation story or myth that elevates our founders, what speaks to us better than the language they preserved that we see in hollow attacks that schoolchildren can memorize. its language from the area that speaks to us because we don't have images that have great meaning. what you see in the various images of the various founders from the paintings that we have in our newsstand they are so different because each reflects
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the style of the painter. i think one of the reasons we look at abraham lincoln and we can imagine him as a living breathing being, yes he was eloquent, but you look at the photographs the age of photography was well underway in 1860 and you see how he age of the day he arrived in washington and the end of the civil war before his assassination nec the shallow face, and the melancholy look in his eye and you feel the kind of emotion for him that you can only feel for jefferson among the founders based on the way jefferson emotional script continues to speak to us. and yes, we do as a culture, as the people in need to identify with a past that makes us deserving of good things.
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we don't like to think americans are essentially conservative. we don't want a revolution. we want something to believe in that is universal transferable. you know, national pride. every nation has say. but i've been critiquing here is american exceptionalism as a new political dogma that has taken jefferson language and made it much more aggressive than what it was intended to be. still it is important for us to trace back the idea of american exceptionalism to jefferson in 1776 and the founding document. you know, that is a bit of historical speculation on my
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part. i think in expecting jefferson as the emotive founder we learn a lot more about the genealogy of some of our most hallowed ideas and it seems american exceptionalism, although jefferson didn't call it that is traceable to have and has a powerful hold on the political landscape today. yes. [inaudible] >> that is a very good question. that is an historical question, not a modern politics question. in brief, jefferson recognized the louisiana purchase was extraconstitutional. but he was so concerned about the amount of time it took to conduct diplomacy then. napoleon software might not last for three months it might take
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to send letters to diplomats in france and come back. he feared a lengthy congressional debate that would lose us the chance for what he thought would be, you know the one purchase that would not only double america's landmass but the text does from the threat or the fear he had a future european invasions come either from napoleon in the french or the british or the spanish. so he acted in haste and in concert with madison recognizing that is one of the earlier posts i gave you sometimes you had to defy the law for the sake of national security.
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[inaudible] >> well i don't know that reagan -- ray. there is a direct correlation. [inaudible] it wasn't part of the discourse at that time. i will take one more question. i know it's getting late. [inaudible] [inaudible] >> well, simply the dsm that jefferson madison and washington and others
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expressed -- franklin yes. right. john adams and jefferson were actually very close in thinking about -- [inaudible] >> yes. very dsm expressed a belief in god. god is a workman creator who created the earth come of the universe but was no longer directly involved in human affairs and he would consult reason rather than buy into the preachings of christianity that he felt had been defaced over centuries. jefferson thought the marriage of science and religion would provide more answers than just adhering to the faith of one set to another.
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organized religion was extremely skeptical and in fact the tyranny over the mind that is wrapped around the interior that the jefferson memorial was not about political tyranny. it was a letter to benjamin rush, who is like jefferson libertarian and the difference between them was rush believed in the divinity of jesus and jefferson did not. he never said he was defined. that letter that quote was about the politicization of jefferson's religion and the accusation he was an atheist in 1800. he was saying tyranny over the mind of man that they had nothing to fear from him.
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they have nothing to fear from him as a president. he was not going to burn bibles as they fear. all he believed in was the rights of conscience and all he opposed was tyranny over the mind for the kind of tyranny he thought was afflicted on parishioners by a certain breed. [inaudible] >> rage. yeah i have an entire chapter on the hijacking of jefferson by the evangelicals. [inaudible] >> right. direct quote from jefferson pa it is kind of the oddest
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transmigration of jefferson's sole into our time is this idea that he prayed every day and he believed god was involved in our lives constantly and again by cherry-picking quotes certain evangelicals particularly the young trained historian david barton who wrote a book called the jefferson wise which is pretty quickly pulled from the shelf. but he was very influential among evangelicals in that book i believe just came out around 2012. try to take jefferson back because the texas school book controversy of just a few years earlier declaring jefferson was an atheist and therefore needed
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to be expunged from school textbooks. jefferson is still very much alive in the culture wars. ..
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thank you c-span, for being here. [applause] [inaudible conversations] >> booktv is on twitter and facebook, and we want to hear from you. tweet us booktv, or post a comment on our facebook page booktv. >> from heritage foundation former new york city police commissioner bernard kerik talks but his career in law enforcement and the time he spent in prison nothing convicted of tax fraud and making false statements. that's next on booktv. >> good morning. welcome to the heritage foundation. we welcome them to join us on all of these occasions on our website. we would ask our guests if it be
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so kind to silence your cell phones as we begin with a great courtesy to all of our speakers. and, of course, our internet viewers are reminded you can send questions or comments at any time since commuting us at we will of course post the program following today's presentation on a website. leaving our discussion today is john malcolm who serve as the ed gilbertson and cheered lindbergh gilbertson senior legal fellow at heritage, also director of the edwin meese center for legal it just -- legal and judicial studies. he has served as deputy assistant attorney general in the criminal division at the u.s. department of justice. is an executive vice president in charge of anti-piracy operations at the motion picture association of america and the of served as the general counsel as the u.s. commission on international religious freedom.
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please join me in welcoming my colleague, john malcolm. [applause] >> thank you. our guest today bernard kerik currency in the criminal justice system to vantage point that few of us have seen. mr. kerik has been at the pinnacle of all enforcement kinard having started out as a military police officer and to beat cop. he rose through the ranks to corrections commissioner where he is credited with significantly improving what had once been thought an ungovernable prison, riker's island. even served as new york city's top cop police commissioner was duties included for example, overseeing the nypd's response to the 9/11 attacks on the twin towers. he was one of nuke cities most decorated police officers among the many awards they received were 30 medals for excellent meritorious and heroic


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