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Psychological Analysis - James Madison Negative Lyndon...

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Psychological Analysis Psychological approaches seek to understand the inner workings of the president’s mind and how they affect decision-making. Some psychological accounts are simplistic, but others are serious studies of presidential character. James Barber’s bivariate typology is a prominent example. Barber argues that presidents should be evaluated based on how active a role they should play in initiating policies (active or passive) and how they view themselves and their status as president (positive or negative). Combining these two variables, we get four categories of presidents: passive-positive, passive-negative, active-positive, and active-negative. Barber claims that active-positive presidents are likely the best, whereas active-negative can be disastrous. BARBER’S CATEGORIZATIONS OF PRESIDENTS Active Passive Positive Franklin Roosevelt, Harry S Truman, John F. Kennedy Ronald Reagan, William Howard Taft,
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Unformatted text preview: James Madison Negative Lyndon Johnson, Richard Nixon, Herbert Hoover, Woodrow Wilson George Washington, Dwight Eisenhower, George H. W. Bush Historical Comparison Some scholars compare presidents by the role they play in history. For example, some see FDR as particularly significant because he framed the terms of debate in the United States for decades to come. Other studies examine the lasting impact a president had by studying how much of what he did survived their presidencies. Again FDR is significant under this criteria because his New Deal still exists. The Best and Worst Scholars and historians debate about the best and worst presidents in American history. Although there is no consensus, there is a general agreement as to who should be considered great. This list includes Presidents Abraham Lincoln, Franklin D. Roosevelt, George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, and Theodore Roosevelt....
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