Dragonslayers: Six Presidents and Their War With the Swamp
A promise to “drain the swamp” is arguably one reason Donald Trump was elected president. Whether he was successful or not, we leave to you. But he wasn’t the first president who went to war with the federal bureaucracy. Abraham Lincoln, Grover Cleveland, Teddy Roosevelt, John F. Kennedy and Ronald Reagan were five other presidents who took on institutions like lobbyists, trusts and the CIA over the past 150 years ... with varying degrees of success. Why do swamps exist and why are they so hard to defeat? Historian Larry Schweikart will address this question in this talk about his latest book, Dragonslayers.
Larry Schweikart, a native Arizonian, graduated from Arizona State University with a BA in Political Science, then went on the road with several different rock bands, opening for such ’60s/’70s acts as Steppenwolf. He abruptly switched gears in 1976, receiving an MA from ASU in history, then a Ph.D. from the University of California, Santa Barbara. From 1985 to 2016 he taught at the University of Dayton. In his career he taught every grade from 7th through college.
He is the co-author, with Michael Allen, of the New York Times #1 bestseller A Patriot’s History of the United States, as well as the books Seven Events that Made America America, How Trump Won with Joel Pollak (completed before the 2016 election), A Patriot’s History of the Modern World in two volumes and Reagan: The American President. He has been on almost all media, from Al-Jazeera to Glenn Beck, from Tavis Smiley to Rush Limbaugh. Since 2009, he has been a film producer. His documentary, Rockin’ the Wall, appeared on PBS along with the sequel Other Walls 2 Fall. In 2019, he founded the Wild World of History curriculum.