I went to the FDR memorial awhile back for a night-time, guided tour. The “tour” ended up being me–alone–with a Park Ranger and a boombox. He played one of Roosie’s fireside chats and said, “Well, I guess that’s about it. Enjoy the park.”
Actually, we had a little bit more of a chat after the boom-box chat. I was pretty surprised, actually, at what he said.
Me: [And again, keep in mind that this guy and I are sitting in front of a boombox, in front of an FDR statue–alone–at 10 p.m. in the dark.] So, how did FDR’s policies help during the Great Depression?
Ranger Mike: Well, the main thing they did was keep people optimistic.
Me: And they turned the economy around, right?
Ranger Mike: No, they were a failure.
Me: [Dumbfounded silence.]
RM: They failed to reach their goals. They didn’t help the U.S. get out of the depression.
Me: I couldn’t agree with you more.
I then proceeded to take pics of Tommy J, the Washington and WWI Memorials, and planes making their final descents into Reagan National.