Thursday, May 23, 2019

Fear: Trump in the White House by Bob Woodward

My book for May is Fear: Trump in the White House by by Bob Woodward. Larkin mentioned that he and Cindy were reading the book when we were at the Petersen Shootout and I decided to read it.

Some general observations about the book include:
  • I have always wondered about Jared and Ivanka's roles. You get a little bit of a glimpse in the book that they have their fingers in things more than I expected.
  • I came away with more respect for both Mattis and Tillerson. In particular, it seems like Mattis worked very hard to be the adult in the room.
  • There are an astonishing number of quotes from people in key meetings. I am amazed that Woodward was able to get and use these quotes... Frankly, while I don't doubt Woodward, I have become a little leery of quotes.

I have noted before that Trump is very thin-skinned and that he plays fast and loose with the truth. There is a third issue highlighted in this book. As a leader in a big organization, I believe that you need to willing to listen to everyone's feedback and challenge your own world view. Trump is portrayed as being very dogmatic about a number of his core beliefs...

This is not a great book. I would give it a "B-" at best. I feel like the book tends to wander from anecdote to anecdote. It is an unsettling view into what is going on in the Executive Branch today.

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