[March 27, 2015] While the beginning of Spring finally arrived, it certainly doesn’t mean that the warmer weather gives me any less time to read. Over the Winter I grew more fond of reading the political lessons of players on the world stage. That is why the book today is about what will become one of the classic political stories of the modern U.S. political landscape. James Baker III’s book targets the key issues of the day, all of which are applicable to leaders at the most senior level.
Work Hard, Study … and Keep out of Politics, James A. Baker, III and Steve Fiffer, 2006.
“Politics ain’t beanbag,” writes Baker. Neither is heeding the advice of his grandfather who lends the title to the book about how best to succeed in life. The book is a long one, 445 pages not including the index, but every page was filled with the history and inside story of many presidents that Baker was honored to serve. Baker changed from Democrat to Republican to help his tennis partner and later U.S. president George Bush help win an election. It served Baker well as he had the grit, determination, and clarity to help many Republican presidents. He also had something that politicians don’t usually possess enough of and that is blatantly telling the truth. The fast-paced autobiography doesn’t provide as much about Baker’s personal opinions as one would think but it does cover considerable ground and is a boon for historians and those, like me, curious about the thinking of why certain decisions are made … including some about the Iraq war. Highly recommended for your bookshelf.
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