The Presidential Difference: Leadership Style from Roosevelt to Clinton
Simon and Schuster, 2001. gada 28. febr. - 288 lappuses
As Americans choose and install a new president for a new century they could do no better than to read this work by one of our keenest observers of the modern presidency. Drawing on a quarter-century's immersion in the presidential record and scores of interviews, Fred I. Greenstein provides a fascinating and instructive account of the qualities that have served well and poorly in the Oval Office from Franklin D. Roosevelt's first hundred days to the end of the Clinton administration.
Greenstein offers a series of bottom-line judgments on each of his eleven subjects and a bold new explanation of why presidents succeed or fail. Previous analysts have placed their bets on the president's political prowess or personal character. Yet by the first standard, LBJ should have been our greatest president, and by the second the nod would go to Jimmy Carter. Greenstein surveys each president's record in public communication, political skill, vision, cognitive style, and emotional intelligence. He concludes that the last is by far the most important.
According to Greenstein, FDR provides endless positive lessons but is a source of warnings. Truman let his bizarre readings of history lead him astray. Eisenhower was wise but failed to communicate a vision. Kennedy had no vision. Reagan was Carter in reverse. It is Ford who is most unappreciated and genuinely interesting. Ford balanced many conflicting demands, kept his poise, and left the office much stronger than he found it.
Presidents can avoid failure if they are willing to accept the warnings of failures past and act accordingly. But it is not only presidents who should read this book with care. Some flaws cannot be overcome no matter how otherwise talented the man. Only three of Greenstein's eleven modern presidents were "fundamentally free of distracting emotional perturbations." When we choose our presidents, we will do well to listen to Greenstein and "Beware the presidential contender who lacks emotional intelligence. In its absence all else may turn to ashes."
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59. lappuse - Let every nation know, whether it wishes us well or ill, that we shall pay any price, bear any burden, meet any hardship, support any friend, oppose any foe to assure the survival and the success of liberty.
11. lappuse - This great nation will endure as it has endured, will revive and will prosper. So first of all let me assert my firm belief that the only thing we have to fear is fear itself nameless, unreasoning, unjustified terror which paralyzes needed efforts to convert retreat into advance.
92. lappuse - No they were doing this quite deliberately and they are asking for it and they are going to get it. We have not used the power in this first four years as you know. We have never used it. We have not used the...
20. lappuse - Suppose my neighbor's home catches fire, and I have a length of garden hose four or five hundred feet away. If he can take my garden hose and connect it up with his hydrant, I may help him to put out his fire. Now, what do I do? I don't say to him before that operation, "Neighbor, my garden hose cost me $15; you have to pay me $15 for it.
76. lappuse - I do not believe that I should devote an hour or a day of my time to any personal partisan causes or to any duties other than the awesome duties of this office the Presidency of your country.
75. lappuse - All I have I would have given gladly not to be standing here today. The greatest leader of our time has been struck down by the foulest deed of our time.
80. lappuse - First, no memorial oration or eulogy could more eloquently honor President Kennedy's memory than the earliest possible passage of the civil rights bill for which he fought so long.
111. lappuse - Constitution, have granted and by these presents do grant a full, free, and absolute pardon unto Richard Nixon for all offenses against the United States which he, Richard Nixon, has committed or may have committed or taken part in during the period from January 20, 1969, through August 9, 1974.
16. lappuse - I shall ask the Congress for the one remaining instrument to meet the crisis - broad executive power to wage a war against the emergency as great as the power that would be given to me if we were in fact invaded by a foreign foe.
11. lappuse - So first of all let me assert my firm belief that the only thing we have to fear is fear itself nameless, unreasoning, unjustified terror which paralyzes needed efforts to convert retreat into advance. In every dark hour of our national life a leadership of frankness and vigor has met with that understanding and support of the people themselves which is essential to victory.