In just the first 18 pages is enough to inspire anyone to love the man we call our 30th President.
Some choice excerpts form the introduction and first chapter:
Under Coolidge, the federal debt fell. Under Coolidge the top income tax rate came down by half, to 25 percent. Under Coolidge, the federal budget was always in surplus. Under Coolidge, unemployment was 5 percent, or even 3 percent. Under Coolidge, Americans wired their homes for electricity and bought their first cars or household appliances on credit. Under Coolidge, the economy grew strongly, even as the federal government shrank. Under Coolidge, the rates of patent applications and patents granted increased dramatically… Under Coolidge, a man from a town without a railroad station, Americans moved from the road and into the air… Under Coolidge, wages rose and interest rates came down so that the poor might borrow more easily.
Coolidge kept government out of the way of commerce.
Indeed, Coolidge was a rare kind of hero: a minimalist president, an economic general of budgeting and tax cuts. Economic heroism is subtler than other forms of heroism.
It was Washington whom Coolidge emulated in his deliberate decision not to seek reelection in 1928.
Without knowing Coolidge, Americans cannot know the 1920s.
Most presidents place faith in action; the modern presidency is perpetual motion. Coolidge made virtue of inaction… “It is much more important to kill bad bills than to pass good ones,” he wrote… In politics as in business, it is often harder, after all, not to do, to delegate, than to do. Coolidge is our great refrainer.
“The Coolidge family recipe collection contained instructions for ‘Scripture Cake’:
One cup of butter. Judges 5:25
Three and one half cups flour. 1 Kings 4:22
Two cups sugar. Jeremiah 6:20
Two cups raisins. 1 Samuel 30:12
One cup of water. Genesis 24:17
Two cups figs. 1 Samuel 30:12
Two cups almonds. Genesis 43:11
Six eggs. Isaiah 10:14
One tablespoonful honey. Exodus 16:31
A pinch of salt. Leviticus 2:13
Spices to taste. 1 Kings 10:2
Two tablespoonfuls baking pow. 1 Cor 5:6
Follow Solomon’s advice for making good boys (Proverb 23:14), and you will have good cake.
Bake in a loaf and ice.
Calvin wrote to his grandmother in 1887 while at boarding school,
“I am in first rate health and I am having a good time but having a good time is not everything to think about in this world.”
I pity anyone who does not appreciate Coolidge, and anyone who believes that emulating the leader of our most successful decade is a poor idea.
If only every president lead like Coolidge did.