This isn't a review, it's too hot and I'm out of practice with reviewing. Well, even with reading something longer than a blog post...
Hardball by Chris Matthews is a book about politics. In each chapter he discusses a method or technique and then follows up with personal observations of examples and non-examples. It's a very balanced book as it doesn't matter what party the examples and non-examples are. We can tell he is democrat, but many of his examples are of successful republications. He also has non-example democrats. Some of the people mentioned I knew, and some I did not. It would have been better to know them all, but even so I was able to get past that and to take peek into the thinking of a very intelligent person. The book was about others, but in the writing I learned more about Chris Matthews and a life style that is very different from mine. I would not want to be in the business of politics, but it sure would be fun to be the business of having such intelligent conversations!
I recommend the book and look forward to other books by Chris Matthews. We were back in San Diego and missed a book talk he did on his newest book Tip and the Gipper: When Politics Worked at the Cambridge library. To think I could have walked to this event earlier in the year. Another reason to be back in Cambridge!
Part I Alliances
1 It's not who you know; it's who you get to know
- Arrange life so you meet people (RR brushing teeth story)
2 All politics is local
3 It's better to receive than to give
- People have more support/loyalty when they have contributed something - can't buy support.
4 Dance with the one that brung ya
- Commit to the right person
- What have you done for me lately? Can't live on past experiences, have to keep things fresh.
- Spread out support, keep yourself necessary
Part II Enemies
5 Keep your enemies in front of you
6 Don't get mad; don't get even; get ahead
- Keep your focus on what you want
7 Leave no shot unanswered
Part III Deals
8 Only talk when it improves the silence
- Story of Winston Churchill and how he became PM
9 Always concede on principle
Part IV Reputations
10 Hang a lantern on your problem
12 The press is the enemy
13 The reputation of power