On August 27, I wrote a blog entitled, “A Government is Not a Business.” Recently, writer Todd Purdam echoed similar sentiments in the September issue of Vanity Fair, but he added one observation that escaped me: that a business, like the military, is a hierarchical institution where the CEO calls the shots. Purdam questions whether or not someone accustomed to this type of structure would make a good leader for the world’s most prosperous democracy.
Of our current list of Presidents, past and present, only three — Hoover, Harding and Carter — were successful in business and none, according to Purdam, served a second term in the Oval office. By way of contrast, Lincoln and Truman failed in business but steered the country to safe harbor during turbulent times. Only Eisenhower, a career military man and 5 star general, managed to make a successful leap from a hierarchical institution to the messier forum of democratic politics.
The Oval Office isn’t the corner office. I agree with Purdam’s assessment that the country needs a president with character more than business experience.
“Conquering adversity could be said to be the essential job description of the presidency.” (“The Hiring of the President,” by Todd S. Purdam, Vanity Fair, 9/12, pg. 224)
(Courtesy of sanandshield.wordpress.com)