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Tue Nov 13, 2012, 09:52 PM

Presidents Lincoln and Obama [View all]

Make sure you read Lincoln Lesson #3.....include the last Paragraph!

He suggests that Lincoln Lesson One might be: Make your enemies into friends.

Bray notes that Lincoln had an enormous talent for turning around even his fiercest opponents. "He was able to keep his eye on the prize," Bray says, "which means he was able to disassociate himself from personal attacks." No matter how cruelly his foes savaged him, Lincoln repeatedly rose above the fray, using humor and warmth to disarm his enemies and refocus everyone on the agenda at hand.

Instances of his temper showing, Bray notes, were rare.

Lincoln Lesson Two: Be firm, but play nice. Lincoln was no pushover. Despite his legendarily laconic style, Bray says Lincoln had a single-minded ability to steadily exert political pressure on others, inexorably pushing them toward the action he wanted, or rather he felt the nation needed. And yet, he did so in a way that left others feeling unthreatened. "He could talk without anger," Bray says. "He could talk without heat to his political opponents."

Lincoln Lesson Three: Take the long view. Lincoln clearly saw the future in a way that many of his contemporaries could not. He imagined not merely the end of slavery, but also the repercussions that would follow for freed African Americans, southern citizens, and northerners as well. He knew resolution might take many years, and yet he tried to point the politics of the day in the proper direction. "He believed firmly, I think, that if we put our heads to it and we put our wills to it, the American people could be that shining example of equality for the world," Bray says.
Color me a bit confused by this advice. Because those three things seem to describe President Obama to a tee...already. As a matter of fact, they are the very things I have been trying to highlight about him for years. They are also the things some on the left has been criticizing him for since the 2008 primaries.


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sheshe2 Nov 2012 OP
graham4anything Nov 2012 #1
satxdem Nov 2012 #2
sheshe2 Nov 2012 #5
satxdem Nov 2012 #7
sheshe2 Nov 2012 #12
cleduc Nov 2012 #3
flamingdem Nov 2012 #4
sheshe2 Nov 2012 #6
flamingdem Nov 2012 #8
sheshe2 Nov 2012 #11
lillianyang Nov 2012 #9
Canuckistanian Nov 2012 #10