Monday, February 16, 2009


I will start to use Plinky in order to get inspiration for a new "open thread" post in the beginning of the week.

It was my introduction to Ayn Rand's philosophy, Objectivism.

Please tell me about your "eye opener" book!

How did you celebrate Presidents' Day (President's Day, if you mean Washington's birthday.)?

Please read my post, AMERICA'S BEST AND WORST PRESIDENTS, and then give me your suggestions on books on your favorite presidents. Have you read Presidential Leadership: Rating the Best and the Worst in the White House by William J. Bennett?


  1. My favorite "president's book" is Richard Current's THE LINCOLN NOBODY KNOWS. A review is here:

    Best wishes,

    Dennis McDonald
    Alexandria, Virginia USA

  2. Hi Martin - I'm not big on biographies and especially ones having to do with presidents. BUT - My husband and I have been renting the HBO mini-series/movie called John Adams. It comes in 8 parts (I think).

    This is a wonderfully scripted, acted, and presented movie that gives you some insight into America's founding fathers. We noted how very different they appeared from each other, yet the one thing that brought them together was their mutual disdain for aristocracy. I can't say enough about the acting, the script and screenplay is written in what I can only imagine is a combination of the old English they spoke - but a little updated so that we can understand exactly what they mean.

    In the movies you learn that these men were not only brilliant, but flawed. Each experienced numerous failures of their own and made many, many mistakes. Yet they persevered.

    I understand that "John Adams" is also a book - so do look into it.

  3. [Editor's note: I received the following email from Edward Cline. You could listen to my interview with Edward Cline on Solid Vox.]

    Hi, Martin:

    I left this comment on your books and presidents site. I dont know if it's been posted or not:

    If you thought the "John Adams" HBO movie was great, wait until you see the production of "Sparrowhawk." Most of the production values of the Adams movie were superb, but I think it lacked intellectual content. After the first part, when Adams defends the British solders after the Boston Massacre, it was more or less things "happening" to Adams, rather than he taking action. The Jefferson and Franklin portrayals I thought were either wooden or outlandish. I won't gainsay the acting ability of the fellow who played Adams, but overall I was disappointed in the series.
    Ed Cline

  4. Dennis McDonald, Ivana, Ed:

    Thank you very much for your comments!

  5. I can attest to John Adams being a book (as Ivana mentions) -- and well worth reading.

    It's a little long, but it manged to hold my attention during most of it.

    And how about a suggestion for a biography of a prime minister? The Last Lion about Winston Churchil is still one of my favorites. Fascinating man.

    -- Anita