Wednesday, 30 June 2010

Caro Diane

Diane Abbott has had a pretty disastrous Labour leadership campaign so far. But she probably made the best choice of favourite book, film and TV programme:
The book that I would recommend is one of the best political biographies ever, Robert A Caro's The Years of Lyndon Johnson. My film would be The Godfather. And for the TV box set, no contest: it would have to be the incomparable West Wing.

That's the choice of someone who's a serious student of power and its workings. But good students don't always become good practitioners. Nevertheless, for what it's worth (not a lot, I would think), she goes up in my estimation. Anyone who appreciates Caro's staggering achievement - his series is the best biography of anyone, ever - has something going for them (Banana Boy's choice of the Gruffalo, not so much).


worm said...

still hate her.

might check out that book though.

Gaw said...

From what I gather you've got a bit of a reading backlog. This 'book' - it's actually three weighty volumes - will make that backlog look a lot bigger. But I would urge you to read them nevertheless. It's one of those works that changes the way you see the world. If you read it, you'll have made yourself pretty well-informed about US politics since the 1930s, but it's a lot more than that.

worm said...

oh dear, my backlog is, as you correctly surmise, rather large. three whole volumes of something may push me over the edge. I'll just have to satisfy myself by putting it on my desert island discs reading list so I can impress Kirsty Young when she's interviewing me about my exciting life as the marketing manager of a small firm based in the west midlands.

Brit said...

Re Diane, it takes a thick hide indeed not to let any of Portillo's good sense rub off on you, especially when you spend so much time literally rubbing your thick hide up against Portillo on an unnecessarily small red sofa.