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Schmitz, David F. The Sailor: Franklin D. Roosevelt and the Transformation of American Foreign Policy. Lexington, Kentucky: University Press of Kentucky, 2021.

For the American President’s navigation: the rise of Hitler and fascism in Germany, Italy, and Spain; the development of an expansionist imperial Japan; polarization in the United States between the forces of self-serving fascist sentiment related to business and popular interest in the Far Left answers to abuses generated in Far Right circles.

Add the global Great Depression.

I have not yet reached the middle of this eye-opening and insightful history, but the story of Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s “working the issues” rings clear and sound for this day.

I have made much and will continue to make much of the tensions between politically medieval and modern worlds, and my own energies and hopes are with the modern world, its potential great breadth in personal freedoms, and its obligations as steward of the earth and humanity.

Whoever you may be and wherever you are in the world — and whether you enjoy or have to make yourself do this kind of reading (smile) — this volume will set the benchmark for understanding the United States and the western civilizational project in the appreciation and defense of humanity.