Studying the U.S. Presidents

Everyone should study the presidents of the United States. American history is fascinating, and a study of the presidents provides a glimpse into important periods of time.

Unfortunately, your typical history course gets it all wrong. Most historians praise presidents who had “great accomplishments”—which includes starting wars and signing unconstitutional legislation and executive orders. Thus Abraham Lincoln, Woodrow Wilson, Franklin Delano Roosevelt, and Lyndon Johnson are listed as some of the greatest presidents in history. 

Thankfully Brion McClanahan is here to save the day. McClanahan does not rank presidents by wars and executive orders. Rather, his standard is their oath of office—to “preserve, protect, and defend the Constitution.”

This standard changes how one views the presidency. So in evaluating someone like Abraham Lincoln, we must ask the question whether his war against the South was constitutional or not. And just to give a little tease, McClanahan does not rank Lincoln near the top. Nor does he rank FDR or Wilson near the top. In fact, they may be some of the worst presidents on his list. But you will have to listen to his course to get the details!

And the great thing here is that McClanahan’s course on “the Presidents: 10 Worst and 10 Best” is completely FREE. Just go to

This is a great course for adults wanting to listen in the car. But it is also a great course for students, and it works well for homeschooling. The lectures can be supplemented by some of Dr. McClanahan’s books on the subject, including 9 Presidents Who Screwed Up America: And Four Who Tried to Save Her. Dr. McClanahan also has an excellent book on The Politically Incorrect Guide to the Founding Fathers and The Founding Fathers Guide to the Constitution.

And if you like McClanahan’s course (which I’m sure you will), be sure to check out Liberty Classroom, of which this course is a part. Liberty Classroom provides excellent courses on economics and history (including Western civilization and U.S. history). But this is not the politically correct version you were taught in school. This is history and economics as they should have taught you—from a libertarian and genuinely conservative perspective. (Here is my full review of Liberty Classroom.)

The great thing is that you can get a subscription to Liberty Classroom for less than $90 per year. You can watch the lessons as videos or just listen to the audio. This is a great resource for adults and students. So subscribe and enjoy!