The Gun Debate

Gun legislation must be federalized otherwise guns obtained in states with lax laws will be transported to states with strict laws enabling criminals to still get there hands on them.

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Grover Norquist’s Pledge: Breaking Lifelong Promises

You have to feel for conscience-stricken Republican politicians who cannot bring themselves to break the no-tax pledge that they made to the lobbyist Grover Norquist.

But there is hope. A goodly number of these super-conscientious individuals are divorced, and have found that somehow life goes on even though they–like millions of Americans–have broken the “till death do us part” pledge.

Here’s what Abraham Lincoln, the first Republican president had to say on the subject: “Bad promises are better broken than kept.”

Gene Griessman is author of “The Words Lincoln Lived By” and “Lincoln and Obama”

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Movie Review. Spielberg’s “Lincoln”

By Gene Griessman, author of “Lincoln and Obama,” “The Words Lincoln Lived By,” and “Lincoln on Communication”

Some movies are based on a true story. This Is a true story. And one of the most important stories in history.

As told by Spielberg, history is alive, compelling and thrilling. But is it historically accurate? The answer is yes, even down to Lincoln’s jokes.

(I was delighted at the masterful way Daniel Day-Lewis tells an earthy joke that I just included in “Lincoln and Obama.”)

And, yes, Lincoln told dirty jokes. Sorry about that, hagiographers.

This is not the naive, country-bumpkin Lincoln that has been standard fare in Lincoln movies of previous generations.

This is Lincoln the politician. This is the man one contemporary calls “the purest man in America” aiding and abetting the wheeling and dealing and vote-buying that put an end to slavery in the US forever.

The Lincoln in this movie is the man whom his biographer Carl Sandburg had in mind when he wrote a letter to FDR: “I am glad that you are cunning, as Lincoln and Jackson were cunning.”

And why did Lincoln behave this way? Because he understood if slavery was not completely destroyed, that it would cause yet another civil war down the road. And the hundreds of thousands who had died had died in vain.

Without the 13th Amendment, the most generous thing historians could ever say about Lincoln is that he put down a rebellion.

I’ve performed Lincoln hundreds of times–including twice at Ford’s Theatre. So naturally I wondered about the acting choice Daniel Day-Lewis would make.

He nailed it.

Three supporting actors are in line to get Oscar nominations. David Strathairn (William Seward), Sally Field (Mary Todd Lincoln), and Tommy Lee Jones (Thaddeus Stevens)

The movie invites Lincoln and Obama comparisons. My research has led me to many, many Lincoln-Obama parallels.

And the repetition is not limited to presidents. The people who invented and reinvented America were just like us.

They fought fiercely, were mean and magnanimous, craven and principled, hot-headed and cool. blind and far-seeing, foolish and wise.
They adored and demonized the president. Just over 45% of Americans who voted in 1864 voted against the man whom a later generation carved on Mt. Rushmore.

They made the messy political compromises that make democracy work. Politicians still do that, and some of them get to be known as statesmen.

The arc of history bends toward justice, but that bending is sometimes uncertain, costly and painful.

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Harold Holzer Endorses Gene Griessman’s new book

The Controversial New Book–”Lincoln and Obama”–Gets Endorsement From Renowned Lincoln Scholar.

Harold Holzer is in the same league as Doris Kearns Goodwin, author of Team of Rivals.

Holzer is the author  of many books on Lincoln.  He is the co-chair of the national Abraham Lincoln Bi-centennial Foundation.

Here’s Holzer’s endorsement:

Gene Griessman has done it again–with yet another fast-moving, unexpected, captivating riff on the history we thought we knew. This book sheds new light on what may be the most meaningful presidential relationship that has ever existed across time.

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OBAMA AND LIBYA by Gene Griessman, PhD

Monday night Mitt Romney will almost certainly bring up Benghazi. But it could turn out to be a weapon that harms the user more than it harms the target.

It already inflicted a wound on Romney when he tried it in the second debate.  And who knows, a top-secret Bin Laden-like op is already underway. Then who is going to look silly?

That probability aside, how should Obama respond?

I recommend invoking the name of Ronald Reagan.

Yes, Ronald Reagan.

Something like this.

When Ronald Reagan was president, terrorists attacked the Marine barracks in Beirut; and 241 Americans were killed.

Governor, Do you think this happened because Ronald Reagan was weak, and his weakness invited attack?  Governor, do you think this happened because of an intelligence failure?

The most Romney can say is to claim the Obama people did a coverup, which can be easily refuted.  You can be sure that Romney will say nothing to  besmirch the legacy of Ronald Reagan.

The comparison is apt.  And the lesson is obvious: sometimes the enemy succeeds.

Our enemies are not all stupid, and Americans are not omniscient.  The enemy succeeded at Pearl Harbor and on 9/11.  And they will again, hopefully later, not sooner–no matter how diligent and wise the occupant of the White House may be.

Abraham Lincoln is on Mount Rushmore,  but in his day there were intelligence failures and military blunders and battles lost.  Lincoln
had to deal with blamers all the time. What counts most is not who wins a battle, but who wins the war.

Gene Griessman, Ph.D. is a sociologist who studies high achievement. His books include “Lincoln and Obama, “” The Words Lincoln Lived By, and “Time Tactics of Very Successful People.”  His website is www.lincolnandobama.com.

Take advantage of this amazing promotional offer!

Help spread the word.  The first five hundred people who order Lincoln and Obama for $19.95 will receive the amazing  “99 Ways To Get More Out Of Every Day” (retail $14.95) with our compliments. .

That’s a total value of $39.90 for just $15.95!

Plus you pay absolutely nothing for shipping within U.S.

Start reading Lincoln and Obama on your E-reader in under a minute.

eBook  Amazon KINDLE:http://www.amazon.com/dp/B009AIE15S

 eBook Barnes &Noble NOOK:http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/lincoln-and-obama-gene-griessman/1112294491?ean=2940015672855

 eBook Apple:http://itunes.apple.com/us/book/lincoln-and-obama/id562132442?ls=1

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Politifact, the Truth-O-Meter and Obama

What You Say When You’re Asked About Politifact and the Truth-O-Meter
by Gene Griessman, Ph.D.
From the forthcoming book Lincoln and Obama.

We recommend you say that it can’t always be trusted.

The U.S. does  need a fact-checker, an honest-to-God, informed resource where Americans find the truth. Actually there are several. Snopes.com and MediaMatters.com come to mind. But people on the right don’t trust those fact-checkers.

Enter Politifact, a project which aims to please the right and the left by fact-checking political statements.

Sometimes it’s good at it.  But, like the little girl who had a little curl right in the middle of her forehead, sometimes it is horrid.  When it’s good, it wins awards. It even wins the Pulitzer

But when  it’s bad, Politifact reads like truth invented by a committee. Sorta like everybody who had an opposing view got to write their own paragraph.  To cap things off, somebody who apparently doesn’t get to read the article adjusts the “Truth-O-Meter.”

Some Politifact columns which find only a minor point to disagree with would lead you to expect a rating of “Mostly True.  But surprise!  It will read, “Mostly False.”

Here’s one about Obama. Obama makes a speech, and states, “Women (are) paid 77 cents on the dollar for doing the same work as men.”

Politifact acknowledges that the U.S. Census does report that in 2010, women working full-time, earned 77 cents for every dollar earned by men working full time.

Politifact doesn’t like Obama’s statement because Obama says “doing the same work as a man.” Politifact goes into a long dissertation about outside factors, such as men being in higher paying occupations.

Politifact contacts the White House about the statement.  The White House responds: “No matter how you look at it, women make less than men—at the same job, at different jobs, weekly, annually, and by occupation.”

Politifact acknowledges that the White House is correct:  “Nothing in our analysis suggests that gender discrimination doesn’t exist. In fact, the experts we consulted agreed that no matter how much you adjust the models to equalize for outside factors, a difference in pay between men and women remains, and it’s one that can’t be explained away.”  (Italics added by WYS.)

That should do it.  Politifact agrees with the experts. You expect the lowest rating the Truth-O-Meter could possibly be is “Almost correct”

But you would be wrong.

The Truth-O-Meter reads “Mostly False.”    Eeeeeeek!

Here’s one more Truth-O-Meter story about Obama.  It reads, “GOP keeps Guantanamo pledge.”  Rates it “promise kept.”

Now for the story. Obama pledges that he will close Guantanamo within a year. Says Guantanamo hurts the American image abroad, helps al-Qaeda recruit terrorists.  He reminds people that nobody has ever escaped from an American maximum-security prison, he says.  Just doesn’t happen. So, why not bring them to an American maximum-security prison.  Try them before tribunals. The Standish maximum-security prison in Michigan, is closing down because of budget cuts.  The local people want it to stay open. Don’t have a big problem with who’s inside it.

Congress won’t authorize funds to modify that prison or any other one in the U.S. And just to make doubly sure that nothing Obama promises happens, it authorizes no funds to transport the prisoners either.

What has happened is the Bush and Obama administration release over 600 men of the 779 once held there.   But over 160 men remain in Guantanamo without a trial, or any hope of one. Among them is a group of Chinese Ulghurs who, evidence now shows, are not terrorists and should never have been imprisoned in the first place. (NYRB June 7, 201 63)

It is true that Republicans did prevent Obama from keeping his promise by keeping theirs. Politifact calls it a promise kept.  And it is a promise kept.

But isn’t that sorta like saying somebody who promises you won’t have the highest bid at an auction, and then  steals your wallet so you can’t make a bid, has kept his promise?


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Andrew Jackson and Abraham Lincoln Criticize the Supreme Court

Special announcement

During the next few weeks I will cut back on my posts and tweets.   Am hard at work on a new book about Lincoln, and hope that you will continue to visit the website.

As a way of thanking you, you will be the first to know about the book, and we will provide you with a special discount.

Now, here’s an excerpt from the new book.  There’s a lot of interest in what the US Supreme Court will do about Obama’s health care plan, so it is a post about Abraham Lincoln and the Court.

What Presidents Say Publicly When the Supreme Court Makes a Bad Decision by Gene Griessman, Ph.D.

Relations between the U.S. Supreme Court and the President are often strained.  And for good reason.  The potential is always present for unelected justices to overrule the wishes of the people, as expressed by their elected leaders.

Alexis de Tocqueville, in his classic analysis of democracy,  mentions this as an ever-present threat.  And Lincoln in an early draft of his first inaugural address writes about the “despotism of the few life-officers composing the Court.”  Lincoln is persuaded to take those words out of the final version of his speech., but that’s what he thinks even if it is strong language.

Three decades earlier, the fights between Andrew Jackson and Chief Justice Marshall are titanic. The gnarled old hero of the Battle of New Orleans believes that the President has just as much right to interpret the Constitution as the Court does, thank you very much.  When the Supreme Court rules in favor of the Cherokee Indians in a case involving the State of Georgia, Jackson, according to some reports, says John Marshall has made his decision, now let John Marshall enforce it.   We do not know for sure if Jackson actually says that.   But we do know that Jackson does not enforce the ruling, and it comes to nothing.

That happens in 1832.  Now it’s 1857.   The Supreme Court has a new Chief Justice by the name of Roger B. Taney.  The Taney Court, in a 7-2 decision, rules against granting the slave Dred Scott and his wife their freedom.  It is a momentous decision.

The court rules that African American slaves or their descendents have no rights as citizens under the Constitution.  But the Court goes further.  It rules that the Missouri Compromise is unconstitutional, because it deprives an owner of his property. Moreover, Congress has no right to restrict the spread of slavery into federal territory.  It is the first time since the Madison administration that the Supreme Court rules that an act of Congress is unconstitutional.  (That happened in 1803 in Marbury v. Madison, the very first time that the Supreme Court ever ruled whether an act of Congress is constitutional.

Taney explains the Court’s decision: “It is difficult at this day to realize the state of public opinion in regard to that unfortunate race which prevailed in the civilized and enlightened portions of the world at the time of the Declaration of Independence, and when the Constitution of the United States was framed and adopted; but the public history of every European nation displays it in a manner too plain to be mistaken. They had for more than a century before been regarded as beings of an inferior order, and altogether unfit to associate with the white race, either in social or political relations, and so far unfit that they had no rights which the white man was bound to respect.”

How’s that for enlightened thinking by the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court!

Whatever the intent of the justices might have been, the consequences of the decision are profound.  Dred Scott gives America the Civil War. The delicate compromises that have been laboriously stitched together are torn apart. Angry quarrels and killings begins.

And Dred Scott gives the world Abraham Lincoln.  When the firestorm spreads to the prairies, Abraham Lincoln, who hates slavery, is aroused to action.  It is not what he expected.  Lincoln expected slavery to die out eventually in the cotton states, but now knows it will spread into the West if something isn’t done to stop it.  He decides to re-enter politics.

Dred Scott gives America the Republican Party. Meetings are called for everyone to attend who opposes the spread of slavery.  Those meetings turn into an organization, and that organization comes to be known as the Republican Party, the GOP.

—Gene Griessman is an award-winning professional speaker, actor, and consultant. His video “Lincoln on Communication” is owned by thousands of corporations, libraries, and government organizations. He has spoken at conventions all over the world. To learn more about his presentations, contact us at 404-435-2225 or abe@mindspring.com Learn more about Gene Griessman at presidentlincoln.com and atlantaspeakersbureau.com

Don’t leave yet. Check out more articles. You’re already here. Why rush off? Whatyousay.com is a gold mine. We guarantee you’ll be a better communicator if you spend time here.

And consider making a donation to promote and sustain Whatyousay.com. Whatyousay.com supports the PRESIDENTLINCOLNFUND that takes Lincoln to schools and libraries.

“Dramatically change your life for just $9.95! You will learn how to complete important projects, find more time reach elusive goals, see your dreams come true, have success in your career, and feel inner satisfaction. These 99 principles tap into powerful sociological and psychological forces. Based on the best-seller Time Tactics of Very Successful People.”

99 WAYS TO GET MORE OUT OF EVERY DAY [Kindle Edition] $9.95

“Do just one of these time tactics for just one week, and we guarantee that you will more than pay for the price of this book. If it doesn’t happen, let us know and we will cheerfully refund your money.”–Gene Griessman

99 WAYS IS AVAILABLE ON KINDLE AT THE LINK BELOW

AMAZON.COM: GENE GRIESSMAN: KINDLE STORE


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Review of Edward Klein’s THE AMATEUR.

Abraham Lincoln author and Lincoln expert reacts to The Amateur

Gene Griessman, Ph.D., author of several Lincoln titles, including The Words Lincoln Lived By, and a one-man play on Lincoln, compared Edward Klein’s harsh exposé on Obama to contemporary comments about Lincoln.

Here is the book blurb on Amazon for The Amateur:

“In this stunning exposé, bestselling author Edward Klein—former editor-in-chief of the New York Times Magazine—pulls back the curtain on one of the most secretive White Houses in history. He reveals a callow, thin-skinned, arrogant president with messianic dreams of grandeur supported by a cast of true-believers, all of them united by leftist politics and an amateurish understanding of executive leadership.”

Without changing one single word,this description of the Obama White House could be used to describe the Lincoln White House. The charges that Klein makes against Obama–secretive,Messianic dreams, leftist-leaning, amateurish understanding of executive leadership, etc.–were all said about Lincoln.

And look what all those words got Lincoln–a spot on Mount Rushmore.

—Gene Griessman is an award-winning professional speaker, actor, and consultant. His video “Lincoln on Communication” is owned by thousands of corporations, libraries, and government organizations. He has spoken at conventions all over the world. To learn more about his presentations, contact us at 404-435-2225 or abe@mindspring.com Learn more about Gene Griessman at presidentlincoln.com and atlantaspeakersbureau.com

Don’t leave yet. Check out more articles. You’re already here. Why rush off? Whatyousay.com is a gold mine. We guarantee you’ll be a better communicator if you spend time here.

“Dramatically change your life for just $9.95! You will learn how to complete important projects, find more time reach elusive goals, see your dreams come true, have success in your career, and feel inner satisfaction. These 99 principles tap into powerful sociological and psychological forces. Based on the best-seller Time Tactics of Very Successful People.”

99 WAYS TO GET MORE OUT OF EVERY DAY [Kindle Edition] $9.95

“Do just one of these time tactics for just one week, and we guarantee that you will more than pay for the price of this book. If it doesn’t happen, let us know and we will cheerfully refund your money.”–Gene Griessman

99 WAYS IS AVAILABLE ON KINDLE AT THE LINK BELOW

AMAZON.COM: GENE GRIESSMAN: KINDLE STORE

Take advantage of this amazing promotional offer!

Help spread the word.  The first five hundred people who order Lincoln and Obama for $19.95 will receive the amazing  “99 Ways To Get More Out Of Every Day” (retail $14.95) with our compliments. .

That’s a total value of $39.90 for just $15.95!

Plus you pay absolutely nothing for shipping within U.S.

Start reading Lincoln and Obama on your E-reader in under a minute.

eBook  Amazon KINDLE:http://www.amazon.com/dp/B009AIE15S

 eBook Barnes &Noble NOOK:http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/lincoln-and-obama-gene-griessman/1112294491?ean=2940015672855

 eBook Apple:http://itunes.apple.com/us/book/lincoln-and-obama/id562132442?ls=1

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Delegation Advice From “The Good Wife”

Word Power in Action: What you say when you delegate authority but want to stay involved
By Gene Griessman, Ph.D.

Two partners at a big law firm are on the phone in a new episode of the CBS hit show “The Good Wife.” One partner is tied up in arbitration and can’t get free to hear all that’s involved in discussions with a prospect.

“I might be able to sign them,” one partner says.  “I can decide for both of us?”

“Yes. Just keep me in the loop.”

This is an efficient, courteous, business-like way to proceed.  You shouldn’t try to do everything, so you do need to delegate. 

But you must make it your business to be kept informed.  (Look at the section on delegation in my book Time Tactics of Very Successful People for further information.)

“Keep me in the loop” is a terrific power phrase to help make that happen.

—Gene Griessman is an award-winning professional speaker, actor, and consultant. His video “Lincoln on Communication” is owned by thousands of corporations, libraries, and government organizations. He has spoken at conventions all over the world. To learn more about his presentations, contact us at 404-435-2225 or abe@mindspring.com Learn more about Gene Griessman at presidentlincoln.com and atlantaspeakersbureau.com

Don’t leave yet. Check out more articles. You’re already here. Why rush off? Whatyousay.com is a gold mine. We guarantee you’ll be a better communicator if you spend time here.

And consider making a donation to promote and sustain Whatyousay.com. Whatyousay.com supports the PRESIDENTLINCOLNFUND that takes Lincoln to schools and libraries.

“Dramatically change your life for just $9.95! You will learn how to complete important projects, find more time reach elusive goals, see your dreams come true, have success in your career, and feel inner satisfaction. These 99 principles tap into powerful sociological and psychological forces. Based on the best-seller Time Tactics of Very Successful People.”

99 WAYS TO GET MORE OUT OF EVERY DAY [Kindle Edition] $9.95

“Do just one of these time tactics for just one week, and we guarantee that you will more than pay for the price of this book. If it doesn’t happen, let us know and we will cheerfully refund your money.”–Gene Griessman

99 WAYS IS AVAILABLE ON KINDLE AT THE LINK BELOW

AMAZON.COM: GENE GRIESSMAN: KINDLE STORE

Take advantage of this amazing promotional offer!

Help spread the word.  The first five hundred people who order Lincoln and Obama for $19.95 will receive the amazing  “99 Ways To Get More Out Of Every Day” (retail $14.95) with our compliments. .

That’s a total value of $39.90 for just $15.95!

Plus you pay absolutely nothing for shipping within U.S.

Start reading Lincoln and Obama on your E-reader in under a minute.

eBook  Amazon KINDLE:http://www.amazon.com/dp/B009AIE15S

 eBook Barnes &Noble NOOK:http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/lincoln-and-obama-gene-griessman/1112294491?ean=2940015672855

 eBook Apple:http://itunes.apple.com/us/book/lincoln-and-obama/id562132442?ls=1

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History Lessons on Memorial Day

History Lessons on Memorial Day
By Gene Griessman, Ph.D.

A nation that does not know its past is ignorant,
Teach it.

A nation that lives in its past is asleep.
Awaken it.

A nation that does not learn from its past  is in danger.
Warn it.

A nation that understands its past, but is not bound by it, is destined for greatness.
Follow it.

—Gene Griessman is an award-winning professional speaker, actor, and consultant. His video “Lincoln on Communication” is owned by thousands of corporations, libraries, and government organizations. He has spoken at conventions all over the world. To learn more about his presentations, contact us at 404-435-2225 or abe@mindspring.com Learn more about Gene Griessman at presidentlincoln.com and atlantaspeakersbureau.com

Don’t leave yet. Check out more articles. You’re already here. Why rush off? Whatyousay.com is a gold mine. We guarantee you’ll be a better communicator if you spend time here.

And consider making a donation to promote and sustain Whatyousay.com. Whatyousay.com supports the PRESIDENTLINCOLNFUND that takes Lincoln to schools and libraries.

“Dramatically change your life for just $9.95! You will learn how to complete important projects, find more time reach elusive goals, see your dreams come true, have success in your career, and feel inner satisfaction. These 99 principles tap into powerful sociological and psychological forces. Based on the best-seller Time Tactics of Very Successful People.”

99 WAYS TO GET MORE OUT OF EVERY DAY [Kindle Edition] $9.95

“Do just one of these time tactics for just one week, and we guarantee that you will more than pay for the price of this book. If it doesn’t happen, let us know and we will cheerfully refund your money.”–Gene Griessman

99 WAYS IS AVAILABLE ON KINDLE AT THE LINK BELOW

AMAZON.COM: GENE GRIESSMAN: KINDLE STORE


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