Doris Kearns Goodwin has given another marvellous historical non-fiction, copiously researched and gripping account of what happened in the political, personal and national level during tenure of Theodore and Taft, presidents of America during the great depression. How they singlehandedly and as a team made it happen – to make America more prosperous and with government regulation and ruthlessly regulating unscrupulous American corporations from using bribery and other tactics to control and manipulate market. In this tapestry of intertwining tales, we have the journalistic tales that transformed America along with the presidents informing and cajoling public to force congress and senate into action. Her skill is displayed when she probes each of the protagonists’ childhood, schooling, tradition, habits that shape their adulthood and how society and education had an impact on future presidents and how overall journalism in the heydays without television shaped a progressive society to become world’s first nation is simply spellbinding. I’ve become a fan of her storey telling. But ‘Team of Rivals’ is one notch above than this and I’m expecting even a better one but it depends on the main character of the story and I believe why Team of Rivals takes that notch is because of Abraham Lincoln. Rivalry lends itself to natural storytelling but has to be handled with care and has to be made more attractive, riveting and yearning for more. So waiting for her next masterpiece…..meanwhile some observations from ‘The Bully Pulpit’:
- Clearly portrays how destiny draws two individuals – one with restless and unceasing energy (Theodore) to a one with a judicial, temperate and amiable predisposition (Taft) to make them rule US of A – during its ascension to world power
- How each gasps at opportunity not forthcoming and how destiny rewards them in due course is vividly pictured
- It captures the early 20th century America full of corruption, money laundering, covert and behind the scene activities, collusion among the money spinners in the name of corporations and individuals benefitting from the corrupt government officials – precisely where the current Asian nations are reeling under same problems and hope they get their benediction to raise their standards and achieve super power status in providing basic amenities and rights to citizens
- I remember reading this: Taft when being president lost one of his personal bodyguards in Titanic mishap
- How genuine journalists can bring about a change in the corrupt democracies is great and this needs to happen in every society
- Every citizen deserves a service oriented corrupt free benevolent peaceful and abundant life – to be made sure by their elected statesmen – and to achieve this in emerging democracies, journalists and magazines have to play their surefire part like what McClure and its journalists played – Baker et al.
- How once in friendlier in terms, both presidents became bitter enemies and reconciled later – is a great story – destiny weaves itself to make changes after changes – ever evolving story line though.