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This Is Why I Read History

December 17, 2015

Current events are obviously something I follow very closely.   But when it comes to real reading pleasure each day—well, that is found in books that often take me back in time.

I had time for a cup of freshly brewed coffee Wednesday and as luck played out the sun just happened to shine brightly and the temperature had climbed to 49 degrees.  We brought out the Adirondack chairs a week ago so to be able to enjoy spring-like weather this winter season.    In other words there was no doubt where I would sit and read for a bit.  So with a jacket on and my cup and The President’s Club in hand I headed to our lawn.

I was reading while flipping pages and then read the passage below and burst out in laughter.    A lady who lives not so far away was walking her large dog and stopped.  After mentioning that I must be truly wanting sunlight to be outside reading as if it were June then asked what was so funny.

The backstory is the release of the Pentagon Papers in 1971 and President Nixon’s desire to have the press concentrate on past Democratic presidents who were involved with events in Vietnam.  He was hoping for President Johnson to take a more aggressive and public role in denouncing the leak, and therefore was trying to find ways to have others make that point with him.   Then came the part that made me laugh heartily.   From page 276……

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Kissinger was every inch an operator and interested in political control  as Nixon.    The White House operator deadpanning her line to Colson is a perfect summation of the way Kissinger worked.

The President’s Club is a grand read about the days from Harry Truman to the events that Barrack Obama experiences in his dealings with those who sat in the Oval Office before him.  A most unique way to look at the past decades from the White House.

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