Tuesday, February 17, 2009

In four short years he met his every goal

Yesterday in honor of Presidents Day C-SPAN released its 2nd poll of historians ranking the leadership qualities of the former presidents -- polling a "cross-section of 65 presidential historians [who] ranked the 42 former occupants of the White House on ten attributes of leadership," as they put it. I was pleased to see that James K. Polk finished again at #12 (or #13, as he appears to have the same number of points as Andy Jackson).

And why, do you ask, my interest/concern in James K. Polk? Yes, I'm a social studies teacher, but it all comes down to They Might Be Giants. See the performance below and check out the kids who can't quite figure out if they're supposed to be rocking out on this one or not. Lyrics, by the way, should definitely be read and internalized at your leisure.


Michael said...

Definitely one of my favorite TMBG songs.

Jung Hickory said...

I read Borneman's "Polk: The Man Who Transformed the Presidency" and I swear, TMBG got an amazing amount of the information across to me in a much more toe-tapping fashion. Still, it was a well-written book but I'm glad TMBG was so thorough. Tell the children!