Bismarck for President

In an election year, it's easy to find cheerleaders—but America needs chess players in order to succeed.

Issue: Mar-Apr 2008

DIPLOMATS HAVE been referred to as "honest men sent to lie abroad" and hardly anyone is surprised when politicians take liberties with the truth. Former President Ronald Reagan, an icon among Republicans who well understood the power of a good story, was not above a little mythmaking. And former-President Bill Clinton could look Americans in their collective eyes on national television and lie without particular damage to his long-term standing among Democrats. But while we may be able to get away with lying to foreign governments, and even to one another, the price of continuing to lie to ourselves could be staggering.

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