ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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The Tall Man

The Tall Man LYNDON JOHNSON'S presidency has been distinguished by preoccupation with manipulations of power politics. This has rendered him incapable of a style of statesmanship and leadership so essential in a mass society. Despite his political ineptitude Eisenhower gave an image of paternal aloofness; Kennedy's legislative failures did not detract from his grace and dynamism which endeared him so well at home and abroad; and Truman always represented the slam bang fighter that was the true product of the mid- western culture. Johnson, on the other hand, is a political craftsman with authoritarian overtones. He is a master of compromise and consensus, setting pragmatic intermediate goals that fail to display even a semblance of ideals. He has surrounded his office with a "credulity gap" which has systematically eroded the respect of the liberals and the intellectuals that he inherited from the late Kennedy. His advisers are colourless and mediocre (with one or two exceptions) nervously watching the slipping popularity of their master.

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