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Running Alone: Presidential Leadership from JFK to Bush II -- Why It Has Failed and How We Can Fix It ePub download

by James MacGregor Burns

  • Author: James MacGregor Burns
  • ISBN: 0465008321
  • ISBN13: 978-0465008322
  • ePub: 1214 kb | FB2: 1570 kb
  • Language: English
  • Category: Politics & Government
  • Publisher: Basic Books; First Edition edition (September 1, 2006)
  • Pages: 288
  • Rating: 4.5/5
  • Votes: 352
  • Format: lrf azw lit lrf
Running Alone: Presidential Leadership from JFK to Bush II -- Why It Has Failed and How We Can Fix It ePub download

Running Alone: Presidential Leadership from JFK to Bush II - Why It Has Failed and How We Can Fix It. ISBN.

American presidents have become increasingly isolated from the parties that brought them to power. Democratic presidents-Johnson, Carter, and Clinton-did tremendous damage to the Democratic Party by abandoning its core principles. Republican presidents have managed to lead more effectively in isolation, but have imperiled the nation in the process. Running Alone: Presidential Leadership from JFK to Bush II - Why It Has Failed and How We Can Fix It.

James MacGregor Burns is a distinguished and well-published student of the American presidency and leadership. The more than twenty books he has authored have been careful, largely non-polemical, and well received

James MacGregor Burns is a distinguished and well-published student of the American presidency and leadership. The more than twenty books he has authored have been careful, largely non-polemical, and well received. He received both a Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Award in 1971 for his Roosevelt: The Soldier of Freedom (New York: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1970). In Running Alone, Burns returns to these familiar topics. However, this effort more avowedly reflects Burns's distinctive political sentiments, experiences, and subjective judgments.

In Running Alone, the distinguished political scientist and leadership expert James MacGregor Burns finds the .

In Running Alone, the distinguished political scientist and leadership expert James MacGregor Burns finds the origin of the problem in John F. Kennedy’s presidential style-and its influence on his successors in the Oval Office. Kennedy rejected collective leadership in favor of a highly personalized executive branch, run by a small group of hand-picked advisors. Burns charts the decline of genuine leadership in the Oval Office and offers practical proposals for restoring the kind of transforming leadership that this country so desperately needs. With unsurpassed knowledge of American history and politics, Burns shows us the way forward.

Running Alone : Presidential Leadership - JFK to Bush II - Why It Has Failed and How We Can Fix I.

Running Alone : Presidential Leadership - JFK to Bush II - Why It Has Failed and How We Can Fix It. by James MacGregor Burns. In his 1960 campaign, John F. Kennedy turned his back on the Democratic Party

Since mid-century, America has witnessed an ominous decline in presidential leadership, culminating in the failing .

Since mid-century, America has witnessed an ominous decline in presidential leadership, culminating in the failing presidency of George W. Bush today. How did this happen? In Running Alone, the distinguished political scientist and leadership expert James MacGregor Burns finds the origin of the problem in John F. Kennedy's presidential style-and its influence on his successors in the Oval Office.

Running alone : Holdings. Burns, James MacGregor. Published: New York : Basic Books, 2006. Running alone : presidential leadership-JFK to Bush II : why it has failed and how we can fix it /. Saved in: Main Author: Burns, James MacGregor.

Running Alone: Presidential Leadership - JFK to Bush II: Why It Has Failed and How We Can Fix It (Basic Books, 2006). Packing the Court: The Rise of Judicial Power and the Coming Crisis of the Supreme Court (Penguin Press, 2009)

Running Alone: Presidential Leadership - JFK to Bush II: Why It Has Failed and How We Can Fix It (Basic Books, 2006). Packing the Court: The Rise of Judicial Power and the Coming Crisis of the Supreme Court (Penguin Press, 2009) Fire and Light: How the Enlightenment Transformed Our World (St. Martin's Press, 2013) with Gerry Docherty: Hidden History: The Secret Origins of the First World War. Edinburgh: Mainstream Publishing, 2013.

How did this happen? In Running Alone. This was an interesting book

How did this happen? In Running Alone. This was an interesting book. I would recommend it because James MacGregor Burns writes about how presidents over the last 50 years run without support from their own party, thereby inhibiting their own success even when they belong to the majority party in Congress. This situation is applicable to today's political world and thinking in this context allows you to understand why Obama has sat back and let Congress take the lead on certain legislation like the stimulus and upcoming healthcare bill.

James MacGregor Burns appeared on the Diane Rehm Show to talk about his book Running Alone: Presidential Leadership, JFK to Bush II, Why It Has Failed and How We Can Fix It, published by Basic Books. He said that President Kennedy changed American politics by running and governing with a group of trusted friends rather than working with the Democratic Party. He also said that most presidents since have followed that example, to the detriment of the democratic process and growth of the imperial presidency, except for Presidents Johnson and Reagan.

A disastrous war in Iraq, prisoner abuse, secret wiretaps-the presidency of George W. Bush represents a crisis in American democracy. Kennedy turned his back on the Democratic Party. He relied instead on his personal charisma and his family's vast wealth to win office. Once elected, he governed much as he had run: alone.

A disastrous war in Iraq, prisoner abuse, secret wiretaps--the presidency of George W. Bush represents a crisis in American democracy. How did this happen? In Running Alone the revered political scientist and commentator James MacGregor Burns sets the imperial presidency of George W. Bush in the context of half a century of presidential politics. In his 1960 campaign, John F. Kennedy turned his back on the Democratic Party. He relied instead on his personal charisma and his family's vast wealth to win office. Once elected, he governed much as he had run: alone. He ignored the Democratic platform and instead sought counsel from a small group of hand-picked advisors, including his own brother. Kennedy fundamentally reshaped the role of President, and each of his successors has built on this model. American presidents have become increasingly isolated from the parties that brought them to power. Democratic presidents--Johnson, Carter, and Clinton--did tremendous damage to the Democratic Party by abandoning its core principles. Republican presidents have managed to lead more effectively in isolation, but have imperiled the nation in the process. Drawing on his own personal letters, interviews, and recollections of America's presidents, Burns charts the decline of genuine leadership in the Oval Office and offers a stirring vision of what the presidency can and should be. America deserves better leaders, and with unsurpassed knowledge of American history and politics, Burns shows us the way forward.
Froststalker
The venerable historian reviews the history of the Presidency since the election of JFK. His perspective is best on Kennedy, as they were personal friends. The rest of the presidencies receive cursory treatment, at best. Nonetheless, Prof. Burns provides significant insights into the process that led to the presidency's current dysfunctional state. At the conclusion, he advances a theory of how the process can be reversed. It's debatable whether he is correct in his assessment, but the book is still worth reading.
Jorad
First thing to mention: The author of this book is a liberal Democrat. He admits it out front. Thus, he is looking at things from the glasses of being a liberal Democrat.

Does this alter his premise? No. His contention is that from JFK, most of the presidents have been trying to hard to please everybody and have cut themselves from their own party as a result. He points out there are differences in the way these presidents run alone, but they still run alone.

While, as I said, Burns has his bias, he still has a valid point, and tries to be as balanced as a partisan can be. He covers eight of the nine most recent presidents, with Ford being the exception. In pointing out ones that were exceptions to running alone, he cited both a Democrat (LBJ) and a Republican (Reagan).

Burns feels that party polarization is a good thing. He believes that the parties should stand for something, and polarization gives the voter a real choice. I remember a Senate race here in Indiana, where the eventual winner, Evan Bayh seemed to be the twin of his lesser known Repbulican competitor Paul Helmke. He feels that it is a weakness to try to govern from the middle.

The strength of this book is dealing with how to improve presidential leadership. If I wrote the book, I would have put more emphasis on moving to personal experience, using the presidents as models for the rest of our lives, which Burns does not do.
Dakora
Burns' short book should be a considered a good corollary to Arthur Schelsinger's "The Imperial Presidency." The authors hardly surprising thesis is that for the better part of forty years, the executive branch has usurped power from the other two branches, thus constituting, for all intents and purposes, a one branch government. Burns traces the genesis of this phenomenon to the breakdown of the party platform system and that platform being a meaningful part of a presidential campaign. Instead of running on a either right or left wing partisan stage, every President since Kennedy has instead adopted a mostly centrist message. So, if a candidate runs alone on his and his beliefs only during an election year, it does not take much for that elected President to now govern alone. Nevertheless, Burns' thesis is diffused later on in the book when he returns to his theory on the differences between transformational and transactional leadership. Surprisingly, for a person who seems, by all outward appearances, to be the paragon of the liberal intelligentsia, Burns considers Ronald Reagan to be the best combination of the transactional (the ability to work with all sides cohesively) and transformational (leading a group/branch to change the country in a profound way.) This is indeed surprising for Burns to praise Reagan when he writes that Reagan's ideological heir, George W. Bush, has "consolidated personal power to an extent unprecedented in American history, and he has used that power to evade responsibility."

Another beginning primary cause of the growing aggrandizement of executive authority was Kennedy's reliance on Richard Neustadt's theory on the Presidential power. The author writes: "In a series of memos, he (Neustadt) counseled Kennedy not on how to deal with Congress, but rather on how to master power within the executive branch." Thus, as Neustadt wrote: "a reasonable President would need no power other than the logic of his argument." Thus, what many people consider the arrogance of the current administration may have it's roots in this Neustadtian logic.

This growing Presidential power continued unabated under Johnson and Nixon but was interrupted briefly by the relatively weak administrations of Ford and Carter. Meanwhile, however, the previously marginalized right wing coalesced under Ronald Reagan, who paradoxically became one of the most powerful presidents while espousing a radical shrinking of the federal government. Reagan's successors, George H.W. Bush, however, did not govern on the conservative ideals that Reagan did. Therefore, one of the reasons for Bush's 1992 defeat was because he took a centrist stand instead of the hard right positions that his predecessor governed from. In the same way, Bill Clinton ran and governed from the classic central ideology. Clinton came to realize this of course, when he said to his staff one day that "I hope you're all aware we're all Eisenhower Republicans. We're Eisenhower Republicans here, and we are fighting Reagan Republicans...Isn't that great!!!"

Finally, the heir to the Reagan revolution, George W. Bush is a conservative in name only, Burns asserts. Burns writes that "Reagan was a strong president, of course, but for the purposes of weakening government. Now there was Reagan's heir, Bush II bulking up government and his own powers." Burns does not address the argument that maybe the reason for this power grab was a response to a massive and chaotic terrorist attack.

Overall, Burns concludes that in order to decrease the power of the executive branch, voters must be given a clear choice between ideologies on Election Day, and not two candidates that stand for the same thing. Only then, can voter apathy decrease and a rejuvenated American electorate will demand more executive accountability.
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