Wednesday, October 8, 2008


Marc Abraham, Guardian, UK - Scholars like to celebrate the leadership genius of President George Bush - scholars named Carolyn B Thompson, James W Ware, Marvin Olasky and Ken Blanchard.

Thompson and Ware wrote a book called The Leadership Genius of George W Bush: 10 Common Sense Lessons from the Commander-in-Chief. Published during the early years of his presidency, it begins with these words: "George Bush may not hold himself out as a genius, but as the book closed on the 2002 midterm elections, it became abundantly clear that he is a brilliant leader."

The authors remind us that, before Bush was made US president, political commentators held him in low regard: "In their eyes he was a lightweight worthy of little but scorn and contempt."

Thompson and Ware say: "Something was wrong with this picture. As authors and consultants in the field of leadership, we were knowledgable about the subject ... We asked ourselves: what makes him so effective? How does he do it?"

Their chapter titles highlight the keys to Bush's brilliance:

Can I Trust You? Become Credible.

Bring in the Right People, part 1. Don't Be Afraid to Hire People Smarter Than You.

Bring in the Right People, part 2. Leave 'Em Alone!

Give It to 'Em Straight. Communicate.

Intuitive Wisdom. Trust Your Instincts.

Getting Results. Hold People Accountable.

These are the very qualities for which Bush later came to be celebrated - his trustworthiness, his persistence in hiring the "right" people and scrupulously not micro-managing them, his approach to forthrightness and honesty, his inarguable gut reactions, and his practice of always holding other people accountable.

Thompson and Ware point out that Bush named his campaign plane Accountability, and that he said: "There is a concept that you are responsible for your behavior. You can't shirk off your problems on somebody else."

They remind us that Bush is just like Albert Einstein. "For Einstein," they explain, "intuition was more important than knowledge."

Abraham is the editor of the Annals of Improbable Research


At October 8, 2008 3:27 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

This description of Shrub is incomprehensible to me. Has Abraham perhaps migrated over from a parallel universe? He certainly doesn't isn't describing the behavior of the actual Bush administration in this universe.


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