When Blustering Bullies Blow It

In a letter to Henry L. Sprague dated January 26, 1900, President Theodore Roosevelt wrote “Speak softly and carry a big stick; you will go far.” For many years that statement seemed like the credo of American foreign policy. However, speaking softly is not the modus operandi of brazen bullies and bellicose braggarts.

Starting in the 1930s, radio audiences would thrill to the voice of Orson Welles as he growled “Who knows what evil lurks in the hearts of men? The Shadow knows!” Political consultant Rick Wilson titled his 2018 book “Everything Trump Touches Dies.” While…