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Character Above All For Oval Office

October 8, 2016

In 1995 Robert Wilson edited a series of lectures from notables about various Presidents of the United States.  The book was titled Character Above All.  I bought it and also the series of live lectures which accompanied the text.   This morning, in light of the news from over the past 24 hours, I pulled it from the shelf over my shoulder in the den, and plan to read it once again.

On Sundays soon after the purchase, when traveling home to Hancock to be with the parents for the afternoon, I played the tapes in the car.  They span the years of FDR in the White House to those of George H. W Bush.  The story of how Gerald Ford as a teenager and football star stood up to his biological father and how that solid foundation was to be a part of his life as a politician has always resonated with me.  The stories are endless and the lessons important to our nation.  Over and over the presenters from the likes of Doris Kearns Goodwin to Tom Wicker underscore why character is a primary qualification for high public office.

I would strongly recommend this book as a grand example of what we need to know about those who served in the Oval Office and what we as a nation should demand going forward.

This morning I read online the best line from the many which fill my email box following the trashy Trump mess.  John Avlon stated it most plainly about character.

Character is what you do when nobody’s looking. And this video captures Trump in the middle of day, sober, a few months after being married, talking with a man he barely knows, bragging about sexual assault, while wearing a microphone.

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