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Where Have All the Leaders Gone? Paperback – Bargain Price, April 15, 2008
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Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
Top Customer Reviews
Iacocca then goes on to provide clear and credible recommendations for each of these problems, and along the way offers his own framework (eg. curiosity, creative, courage, competent, common sense) for describing/evaluating leadership and then uses that framework to succinctly assess Bush II and the major candidates vying to take his place.
Another major "Where Have All the Leaders Gone?" suggestion is that Congress take a year off and pass no new legislation - instead evaluate programs that already exist. Iacocca points out that the "War on Drugs" has consumed about $1 trillion, while little, if anything has been accomplished. And what has been accomplished, he asks, of maintaining an on-going decades-long feud with Castro?
The "bad news" is that Iacocca once considered running for President, but was talked out of it by then House Speaker (and friend) Tip O'Neill. O'Neill told Iacocca that the job would drive him nuts - too hard to get anything done (basically the same comment President Truman offered then General Eisenhower). Nonetheless, the "good news" is that Iacocca's lessons in leadership skills couldn't help but be invaluable to moving America forward.
Now he criticizes the Bush administration, the Democrats, the young, and the rest of us -- and he is absolutely right in every respect. Bush is a disaster; the Democrats have no courage; the young are over-entertained; and the rest of us fail to demand that our political leaders lead us in sensible directions.
The book opens with a discussion of the nine C's of leadership: Curiosity, Creativity, Communicator, Character, Courage, Conviction, Charisma, Competency, and Common Sense. In evaluating the current crop of candidates for President, all fail with the exception of Joe Biden for President and John Edwards for Vice President.
He stresses people and prioities, and for the first time in any book I have read, he calls for all presidential candidates to appoint their Cabinet BEFORE the election so the people can evaluate the team and not just the Man. This is something I have advocated since 2000, see the original documents at Citizens-Party.org.
His comments on Bush-Cheney cronism are devastatingly on the mark. He points out that the insider game excludes top talent.
He finds Congress to be failing at the five top issues for all Americans: Iraq, Jobs, Health Care, Education, and Energy.
He is critical of the Executive for telling lies to get a war with Iraq, for condoning torture, and for being reactive instead of proactive.
To make his point, he notes that for what we have spent in Iraq, we could have instead hired 8 million teachers, 8 million police, fire, and medical support specialists; funded 25M college scholarships, and given every citizen a year of free gas and health care.
In criticizing the Iraq strategy, he points out that unlike Gulf I, there are no Arab nations in the coalition this time, and that is the truth-teller. He specifically laments the loss of "America the Good" in the eyes of the world.
Among the top issues he personally focuses on in the book are Energy, Fair Trade vice Free Trade, restoration of moral capitalism and an end to the CEO looting of companies at the expense of workers; the protection of the middle class, the reduction of medical (and I would add, educational) bureaucracies, and the US brain gap--South Korea, Japan, and Singapore are getting a reverse brain drain from the US, as well as training their own better than we are.
He slams James Carville for representing the worst of the structured political process, where a candidate is told what their policies will be based on political consultants and focus groups.
The book closes with a discussion of four traits he learned from others: Optimism; Common Sense; Discipline; and--from his mother--Love.
At the end, he calls America to action, asking each of us to give something up, put something back in, and elect a LEADER.
I do NOT agree with those who are critical of either the author or the book. This is an easy to read totally straight-up book that is now, along with "All Rise" and "The Tao of Democracy" among my top-rated Transpartisan books. See my varied lists on Transpartisan, democracy, immoral capitalism, impeachment of Cheney, etc.
If he will help form a Sunshine Cabinet, and Reuniting America can raise $500M a year ($20 from 25 million Americans, or $100 from 5 million Americans) we can close down the Republican and Democratic partisan machines that have corrupted our democracy, and we can restore informed engaged democracy. We need this man's common sense now more than ever.
All Rise: Somebodies, Nobodies, and the Politics of Dignity (BK Currents)
The Tao of Democracy: Using Co-Intelligence to Create a World That Works for All
Society's Breakthrough!: Releasing Essential Wisdom and Virtue in All the People