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1. Gerald R. Ford (Getting to Know
2. White House card signed in full
3. American Agenda: Report to the
4. Public Papers Of the Presidents
5. Gerald Ford - The Accidental President
6. Gerald R. Ford The State of the
7. State of the Union Addresses of
8. With Honor: Melvin Laird in War,
9. Character Above All: James Cannon
10. Taking Aim at the President: The
11. Gerald Ford and the Challenges
12. Write It When I'm Gone: Remarkable
13. The Presidents from the inaguration
14. Gerald Ford Facts about the Presidents:
15. Presidents & Near Presidents
16. 31 Days: The Crisis That Gave

1. Gerald R. Ford (Getting to Know the Us Presidents)
by Mike Venezia
Library Binding: 32 Pages (2007-09)
list price: US$28.00 -- used & new: US$10.50
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0516226428
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2. White House card signed in full by the 38th President of the US.
by Gerald FORD
 Hardcover: Pages (1976)

Asin: B001368S3Q
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3. American Agenda: Report to the Forty-first President of the United States of America
by Gerald Ford Jimmy Carter
 Paperback: 289 Pages (1989)
-- used & new: US$24.95
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B000B32AG8
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4. Public Papers Of the Presidents Gerald Ford 1976-1977:Book IJanuary 1- April 9, 1976
by Gerald Ford
 Hardcover: Pages (1979)

Asin: B000JJXJKU
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5. Gerald Ford - The Accidental President (Biography)
by Biographiq
Kindle Edition: Pages (2008-05-19)
list price: US$4.99
Asin: B0019RDXJI
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Product Description
Gerald Ford - The Accidental President is the biography of Gerald Ford, the thirty-eighth President of the United States, serving from 1974 to 1977, and previously the fortieth Vice President of the United States serving from 1973 to 1974. Ford was the first person appointed to the vice presidency under the terms of the 25th Amendment, and became President upon Richard Nixon's resignation on August 9, 1974. Ford was the fifth U.S. President never to be elected for the position of President, but the only U.S. President to not even be elected as Vice President or President. On September 8, 1974, Ford issued Proclamation 4311, which gave Nixon a full and unconditional pardon for any crimes he may have committed against the United States while President. Following his years as President, Ford remained an active participant in the Republican party. Gerald Ford - The Accidental President is highly recommended for those interested in learning more about the life of President Gerald Ford. ... Read more

6. Gerald R. Ford The State of the Union Address (Presidents)
by Gerald R. Ford
Kindle Edition: Pages (2009-07-18)
list price: US$0.99
Asin: B002I61CBK
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State of the Union Address by Gerald R. Ford

Here it is, the State of the Union Address. Every president makes them.

Kids need a quick and easy school report, trying reading these in class.

Need a quote to spruce up any report or presentation then this is for you.

... Read more

7. State of the Union Addresses of Gerald R. Ford
by GeraldR. Ford
Kindle Edition: Pages (2010-09-29)
list price: US$3.98
Asin: B0045OUQJC
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"Twenty-six years ago, a freshman Congressman, a young fellow with lots of idealism who was out to change the world, stood before Sam Rayburn in the well of the House and solemnly swore to the same oath that all of you took yesterday--an unforgettable experience, and I congratulate you all. " ... Read more

8. With Honor: Melvin Laird in War, Peace, and Politics
by Dale Van Atta
Kindle Edition: 648 Pages (2008-02-29)
list price: US$16.95
Asin: B002BDU54A
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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In 1968, at the peak of the Vietnam War, centrist Congressman Melvin Laird (R-WI) agreed to serve as Richard Nixon’s secretary of defense. It was not, Laird knew, a move likely to endear him to the American public—but as he later said, “Nixon couldn’t find anybody else who wanted the damn job.” For the next four years, Laird deftly navigated the morass of the war he had inherited. Lampooned as a “missile head,” but decisive in crafting an exit strategy, he doggedly pursued his program of Vietnamization, initiating the withdrawal of U.S. military personnel and gradually ceding combat responsibilities to South Vietnam. In fighting to bring the troops home faster, pressing for more humane treatment of POWs, and helping to end the draft, Laird employed a powerful blend of disarming Midwestern candor and Washington savvy, as he sought a high moral road bent on Nixon’s oft-stated (and politically instrumental) goal of peace with honor.
            The first book ever to focus on Laird’s legacy, this authorized biography reveals his central and often unrecognized role in managing the crisis of national identity sparked by the Vietnam War—and the challenges, ethical and political, that confronted him along the way. Drawing on exclusive interviews with Laird, Henry Kissinger, Gerald Ford, and numerous others, author Dale Van Atta offers a sympathetic portrait of a man striving for open government in an atmosphere fraught with secrecy. Van Atta illuminates the inner workings of high politics: Laird’s behind-the-scenes sparring with Kissinger over policy, his decisions to ignore Nixon’s wilder directives, his formative impact on arms control and health care, his key role in the selection of Ford for vice president, his frustration with the country’s abandonment of Vietnamization, and, in later years, his unheeded warning to Donald Rumsfeld that “it’s a helluva lot easier to get into a war than to get out of one.”
Best Books for Regional Special Interests, selected by the American Association of School Librarians, and Best Books for Special Interests, selected by the Public Library Association
... Read more

Customer Reviews (6)

5-0 out of 5 stars Finally found--a piece of history
I loved this book!It helped me finally find a piece of history that was missing for me.I was born in 1962 and while I was living during the time period in which most of the events in this book unfolded, I did not have any recollection of them or their significance.I feel like I have a better understanding of my own time period.The book is well written and chocked full of important information.My hat goes off to Dale Van Atta for all of the hard work and effort that must have transpired in order to complete this comprehensive volume.

4-0 out of 5 stars Helps complete the history of the 20th Century
For every Joe McCarthy, there was a Joseph Welch; for every Nixon a Woodward/Bernstein team; etc. We all know about those guys. However, the real story of our nation's history cannot be understood without a record of the decent, hononorable and wise persons who have been present throughout our history, and who have prevented the country from veering so far off course that it can't get righted. (I hope there are at least a few such people left in 2008 to get us back on course now!) My father was a life-long, Democrat who voted for Mel Laird in every one of his elections, because Laird was such an individual, and I wish my parents were around to read this book.

5-0 out of 5 stars What you thought you knew but didn't about Melvin Laird
I grew up in the late 60s and early 70s thinking of bullet-headed Melvin R. Laird as a warmonger who helped perpetuate America's anguish in Vietnam.I was astonished to discover just how wrong I (and many of my friends, as well as much of the press at the time) really were. Though the account is fascinating of how Laird, despite resistance from both Nixon and Kissinger, was actually working hard but finally successfully to get us out of Vietnam, I found the book more valuable for a different reason.

Anyone who objectively reads "With Honor" will learn at least one thing:That it is (or at least once was) possible for Republicans and Democrats to work together and actually realize important goals for our nation and the world.What they accomplished through their efforts, with the integral help of Laird's talent for behind-the-scenes leadership, is nothing short of inspiring.It is a shame that Laird and his Republican allies, together with the Democrats they befriended, aren't working together again, just as this book shows they once did, to salve and solve some of the wounds our nation has endured of late.

But "With Honor" is not just a history lesson that shows us "what could have been," had we true leaders like Melvin Laird and his friends working together again today.Finely written and easily accessible, "With Honor" accomplishes something political biographies often fail at:It manages at once to be a smooth, pleasurable, and entertaining read, yet at the same time sacrifices none of the details, facts, and stories that make this account so rich.And, as the best biographies usually are, the book is chock full of never-before-told anecdotes and facts -- some scandalous, some uplifting, but all interesting.Surprisingly, there is even quite a lot of humor(The story of the smoldering cigar in Laird's suit pocket at the Vatican is worth the purchase price alone!)

Even people not normally interested in politics will find this book both entertaining and compelling -- not to mention hugely educational in the way of showing just how dicey was the birthing of many of the most important institutions of 20th Century America -- hinging as they did on a few key people with their hearts in the right place, working together for the good of all.There are real lessons today's politicians could learn from Mel Laird.Recommend they read it today!

5-0 out of 5 stars Melvin Laird
This biography of Melvin Laird was written in a style that makes one not want to put the book down. For anyone who lived through the turbulent 1960's and or are veterans of the Vietnam War, this book is a must read to clearly understand the politics and actions of our government during that period.For others, the story of Melvin Laird is an inspiring history lesson of a dedicated and influential elected official and Secretary of Defense that gives the reader insight into the Lyndon Johnson and Richard Nixon presidential policies and decisions. Having read most of the self serving memoirs of the top players of the 1960's, I thought this book was the most balanced view of the major political and military decisions of that time in our history.

4-0 out of 5 stars With honor, indeed
There are three story lines in this authorized biography. The most prominent and both best and least known is getting out of Vietnam. It is surprisingly timely as Laird's warning to Bush Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld--"It's a helluva lot easier to get into a war than it is to get out one"--plays out in 2008 headlines.The almost eerie coincidence is that the Laird book was released the week that the generals were telling Congress that they needed more troops and more time. According to this book Laird [who removed General Westmoreland who asked him to "send me 500,000 more men" as Vietnam commander] would have (a) done the testifying himself and (b) would have asked "Did you expect the military to ask for fewer troops and less time? "
During his entire four years as Nixon's Secretary of Defense Laird was if not the sole the most prominent advocate of what came to be known as "Vietnamization," his plan to disengage from that ill conceived and unfortunate military adventure. Everyone else in the administration was either opposed to or ambivalent about "getting the hell out" in Laird's words. President Nixon was alternatively both of the above, and Henry Kissinger, his main adviser on foreign policy wanted a peace treaty first, which put him more in the Nixon camp than on the Laird bandwagon.
One of the most cogent quotes from the book was Laird's advice to the military, the White House, and anyone else who would listen that "time has run out."
When President Bush invited all the living ex-secretaries of defense to a show and tell session at the White House it quickly became obvious that his administration which had unanimously been, in Laird's view, "bent on war" was really looking for affirmation not advice.
One of the questions the book answers is how Laird got away with something verging on insubordination that no other Secretary of Defense has even attempted. Forty years later it is easy to say "because he was right," but that wasn't evident then and there are some who will argue the point even now. The real reason is that Nixon needed Laird more than Laird needed Nixon. This was obvious at the outset when Nixon gave him a free hand [in writing, on a napkin] to make all the "presidential" appointments in the Pentagon to convince him to abandon the Congress, which he loved, for the most unpopular and difficult job in the government. It was confirmed continuously over the four years Laird served as Laird won every vote from the Congress that he asked for Defense and the administration.
The second story in the book is the gossipy one about Laird's relations with Nixon and with Kissinger which will attract the attention of the gossip addicted. The non-stop one-upmanship encounters on matters large and small with Henry Kissinger are given extensive play in the book. What is underplayed is that the two remain great friends and mutual admirers. Their struggles were a kind of gamesmanship it seems even though they involved a very high stakes game.
What will titillate is what the book has to say about Laird's relations with Nixon starting with the quote: "...sometimes orders that came at night were not good orders to follow" and the fact that Nixon lied to him about Watergate to get him to come to the White House and try to salvage a crumbling administration.

He also told Nixon that he would get along with the Congress better if he didn't make them feel he was smarter than they were. "You can't get a vote if you start on a pedestal," he told him.
What is most admirable about the book is the third story, the often too short descriptions of his accomplishments over an extraordinarily wide range and the very high regard in which he was held in many important places. What he really wanted was something he never got and something he gave up when he took the job at Defense. He wanted to be Speaker of the House of Representatives. His name did show up on several short lists for jobs he neither sought nor wanted. He was regarded as a possible candidate for president or vice president. He might have been commissioner of baseball, and could have been chief executive of a large assortment of large, important corporations. The author does not say why he didn't pursue any of these. He was 50 when he left the Defense Department in 1972. My own observation was that he had aged 20 years in the time he was in that job. I was told that will happen when for 4 years every time the phone rings, it's bad news.
The dichotomy is that when you consider what he did before, during, and after his stint in Defense, perhaps we lost more than we gained because of this important and perhaps indispensable diversion. We could, after all, be almost halfway to our 100 years in Vietnambut for Mel Laird.
But still.
Laird and his great friend and ally Rhode Island's Democratic Representative John Fogarty on the Health subcommittee of the House Appropriations Committee can single-or double-handedly be credited for making the National Institutes of Health and Center for Disease Control into major institutions. They were also responsible for creating 13 "Lairdettes" on campuses across the country including the McArdle Center at UW-Madison to do cancer research. They did all of this over the dead bodies of notable fiscal conservatives in the Congress and the White House including President Eisenhower.
Eisenhower, as well as his two immediate successors John Kennedy and Lyndon Johnson, named Laird the US representative to the annual conferences of the World Health Organization.
His unprecedented base closing record while at Defense, incidentally, indicates he didn't abandon his own fiscally conservative roots altogether.
He introduced Nixon to the Wisconsin concept of revenue sharing whose initiatives gave that idea a short and not so sweet run at the federal level.
Talent was at the head of his criterion list when recruiting for the Defense Department.Of the 68 top jobs there, a little over half were filled by Republicans, the rest by Democrats, Independents, and a few "unknowns" which may have been "unasked." This worthy idea was discarded by the Reagan administration and hasn't surfaced since.
He put his most trusted recruit Bob Froehlke in charge of a reorganization of the several intelligence agencies whose reports he always regarded with something approaching suspicion. The project improved inter-agency communication and reduced costs, which was either hoped for was what they got.
He was always open with the press and the public and told his staff that the way to deal with bad news is to expose it. When he left the Pentagon, the Washington press corps presented him with a football inscribed Laird 194 Press 0.
He is responsible for the military's medical school which has supplied most of the doctors needed by our forces in times of trouble.
He and Bob Froehlke took the lead on designing and promoting a post-Vietnam amnesty program for young people who eluded the draft.
He ended the draft.
New York's Democratic Governor Hugh Carey gave him credit for saving New York City from bankruptcy.
He orchestrated the appointment of Gerald Ford to the vice presidency fully aware that Ford would soon be president, because Laird knew that Nixon had lied about his involvement in Watergate and could not survive the ensuing ongoing cover-up.
The book doesn't make the claim, but it is hard not to believe that he also got President Ford to name Nelson Rockefeller to the vice presidency. So at one time in our country's history, the man from Marshfield had a major role in filling the two top jobs in the country.
He and Senator Adlai Stevenson crafted a presidential nominating plan that would limit the number of primaries to 16 and give a more important role to something now known as "super delegates" which is further proof that the law of unintended consequences cannot be repealed.
He and fellow Wisconsin Congressman John Byrnes worked with the National Football League to preserve their monopoly, distribute their soon to be riches democratically and evenly, and, not so incidentally, save the Green Bay Packers.
His dogged demands for diversity were rewarded with the unprecedented promotions of large numbers of minorities and women to flag officer status in all branches of the military.
What we will never know is where else Mel Laird would have gone or what else he would have done if events and pressing national needs had not altered his own best laid plans. What we do know is that he did what he did with, as the book's title claims, honor.

... Read more

9. Character Above All: James Cannon on Gerald Ford andMichael Beschloss on George Bush (Character Above All , Vol 8)
Audio Cassette: Pages (1996-10-01)
list price: US$16.00 -- used & new: US$1.79
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0671574019
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Editorial Review

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The bestselling author of Time and Chance: Gerald Ford's Appointment with History joins the author of Kennedy and Roosevelt: the Uneasy Alliance to lend their unmistakable voices to the groundbreaking Character Above All audio series with their illuminating examinations of two of America's most recent Presidents.

Recorded live at the LBJ School of Public Affairs at the University of Texas at Austin, James Cannon and Michael Beschloss continue a series of lectures delivered by a team of historians, biographers and journalists assembled by Robert Wilson to explore the Presidential character. Sharing their insight into the Presidents they have written about, these authors and scholars address the larger issue of the impact of the Presidential character on leadership and the creation of trust.

Cannon tells how Gerald Ford, chosen because of his character to replace the disgraced Agnew and subsequently, Nixon, restored stability to the federal government -- but his pardon of Nixon cost him the presidency. Beschloss shows how George Bush was fated to be President in a Republican party lurching far to his right. He avoided unveiling a domestic vision, absorbing himself in foreign affairs, but when he ran for reelection, the voters decided that character and foreign policy triumphs were not enough.

Character Above All is incomparable audio, crackling with the energy and excitement of a great mind at work and the intellectual urgency befitting a topic of lasting national importance. ... Read more

10. Taking Aim at the President: The Remarkable Story of the Woman Who Shot at Gerald Ford
by Geri Spieler
Kindle Edition: 256 Pages (2008-12-23)
list price: US$24.99
Asin: B002BZDDLK
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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"I'm not sorry I tried...if successful, the assassination...just might have triggered the kind of chaos that could have started the upheaval of change." --Sara Jane Moore in 1976

Journalist Geri Spieler met would-be assassin Sara Jane Moore while she was in prison; Taking Aim at the President is based on over two decades of interviews as well as independant research. Spieler follows Moore's actions from her childhood in a small West Virginia town to her release from prison in December 2007. Moore's life was never conventional, and along the way she entered and dropped out of the military, was married five times, and was both a political radical and an FBI informant. Focusing on the complex psychology and motivations of a quintessentially desperate housewife and the only woman to ever fire a bullet at an American president, Spieler delivers a nuanced portrait of an elusive person and a fascinating glimpse back at a turbulent period in American history.

... Read more

Customer Reviews (11)

1-0 out of 5 stars History Lite - This is not the whole story
Geri Spieler has taken her unique relationship with Sara Jane Moore and cashed-in with the only book out now about
this complex and troubled woman. Spieler, with her "inside" access creates the illusion we are getting the full story
about the bizarre life of Sara Jane Moore. What's bizarre here is the way she manipulates what we are allowed to know.

After looking deeper into this book I found some very strange errors and omissions. A completely inaccurate story about an
amnesia episode then Sara Jane Kahn had in Washington, DC in 1950. According to Spieler Sara was touring the White House alone and without identification.
A richly detailed account follows of her then collapsing on the White House lawn complete with Secret Service Agents
rushing to her and taking her to Walter Reed for treatment. Nurses finding hidden photos of Sara in her dress then used in
papers all over trying to identify the mystery woman with amnensia. Her mother in North Carolina and her estranged husband in Pennsylvania
seeing the photos and rushing to her bedside to ID her. "Suspicious" FBI wondering about her. Suspicious indeed!
Funny thing is when you read the newspaper account that Spieler loosely cited on this
yarn, the story doesn't match except it was Sara and she did have some sort of weird loss of memory episode. All the rest of Spieler's over heated
fabrication resembles almost nothing of the newspaper reports written about this in 1950. It's a lot more involved in items left untold in this fable,
but there's only so much space available here to report the holes in this story.

It leads one to wonder what other flights of fancy are in this book?

Then the things she doesn't tell you...

After countless pages making it clear it was the Patty Hearst kidnapping that put Sara Jane on a road to shoot Ford -
she leaves out the incredible irony that the two women met in prison! After Patty's capture and Sara's arrest for the assassination attempt.
They shared a wing and were across the hall from each other for a few days. They met and talked according to the
Warden of the prison to The New York Times and other papers.

Spieler makes it clear that Sara is a roller coaster of emotions. She's self absorbed, select in her memories, a control freak and
Spieler selects the comments made by a couple psychiatrists regarding Moore after her examinations to see if she was sane to stand trial in 1975.
Six doctors examined her.

It's curious that she neglects to mention or share what the renowned Dr. William Menninger, yes THAT Menninger, had to say to the Judge, newspapers and TV concerning the hearing on her sanity.
She was sane enough to stand trial but had a past that's not to be found in this book. Dr. Menninger had some critical history to tell.
That Sara Jane Moore from 1950 - 1975 had 7 times received mental illness treatments, including a stay at Bellevue in 1954 for being psychotic and out of touch with reality.

Why leave that out? Not even a footnote? Could it be if the reader was completely told all the findings they'd think maybe Sara's bouts of bizarre behavior had an explanation beyond
being really odd? There might not be a story here that is as interesting? Oh, there's a story here but you won't get it all in this book of select and even contrived information.

Sara held an important job not mentioned that ties into things she said about herself after her arrest. Sara had step children not mentioned and a home life not completely described. Sara had a female roommate of 3 years who was very close to Sara apparently. When were they roommates? During Sara's missing 8 years? Did Sara separate from her last husband for 3 years and live in Pasadena? Who knows?

One thing you will know after reading this is too much about the author and that's always a red flag.

Spieler, in this book, controls the horizontal and the vertical -the resulting picture is full of snow.

5-0 out of 5 stars Who is Sara Jane Moore? And why? Many interesting things here
Maybe there is no "core" to Sara Jane Moore, but, psychologically speaking, Geri Spieler gets about as close as you can. Moore clearly has some sort of mental health issues -- histrionic, narcissistic, and a neurotic version of borderline personality disorder, perhaps. But why? Her family of origin seems all relatively normal, not just her parents but her siblings.

But, you can see instability, as well as a narcissistic self-focus, histrionically played out, through multiple husbands, multiple life changes, abandonment of children, unrealistic self-views and more.

Eventually, Moore winds up working in radical movements in San Francisco and as an FBI informant at the same time, then, crazier yet (pun intended) telling both sides she was actually working for the other side.

That eventually led up to the fateful 1975 day, in which (which I did not know before) due to a gun with a bad sight, Moore missed Ford by only six inches.

Spieler wonders if the final group with which she associated, Tribal Thumb, didn't put her up to the shooting, if only indirectly. But, because Moore pled guilty without going to trial, nobody could be subpoenaed. And, given the screw-ups of lack of communicationbetween Secret Service, FBI and San Francisco PD, Spieler speculates they were all likely glad there was no trial either.

That said, we may never know too much about Sara Jane Moore. She eventually became uncooperative with Spieler, and nobody else will likely even get that close. So, this is your best shot.

5-0 out of 5 stars A real page-turner
A real page-turner.This is a fascinating account of the strange life and mind of Sara Jane Moore. It is an equally fascinating account of the social and political protest movements of the 1970s.Any student of that era of American history should consider it required reading.

5-0 out of 5 stars Lots of value in content beyond the main story
When Sara Moore took aim at President Ford, I was yet to be born 5 years later in Europe. Even after living in the San Francisco Bay Area for a few years, I knew very little about the assassination attempt, until I came across this book that shed light onto the events from the many perspectives of the police, FBI, media, Sara Moore, her acquaintances and even the author. Equally fascinating to me was the unexpected content of the book. Geri Spieler introduces the reader to the many radical left movements in the Bay Area of the 70s that played a big part in Sara Moore's life. I don't know where else I would have been able to experience this historical time in such an authentic way. The second unexpected gain reading this book provided was the chance to see inside the heavily convoluted mind of Sara Moore, who when interacted with for only short periods of time, must have appeared completely normal. It made me aware of the many other 'Sara Moore's' that must be out there, that we interact with daily, and just maybe will, maybe will not cause harm one day. For the way this book brought my attention to topics that I would have otherwise missed, it gets my definite recommendation and 5 stars.

5-0 out of 5 stars Best of the Best!
Full blow by blow description of the event and the planning involved.Remarkable journalistic project taking years of research.Should get a PhD for scholarly research as well a medal for putting up with Sarah.Ten stars! ... Read more

11. Gerald Ford and the Challenges of the 1970s
by Yanek Mieczkowski
Kindle Edition: 480 Pages (2005-04-22)
list price: US$45.00
Asin: B002TSA74K
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

Product Description
For many Americans, Gerald Ford evokes an image of either an unelected president who abruptly pardoned his corrupt predecessor or an accident-prone klutz who failed to provide skilled leadership. In Gerald Ford and the Challenges of the 1970s, Yanek Mieczkowski reexamines Ford's two and a half years in office, showing that his presidency successfully confronted the most vexing crisis of postwar era.

Viewing the 1970s primarily through the lens of economic events, Mieczkowski argues that Ford's understanding of the national economy was better than any modern president, that he oversaw a dramatic reduction of inflation, and that he attempted to solve the energy crisis with judicious policies.

Throughout his presidency, Ford labored under the legacy of Watergate. Democrats scored landslide victories in the 1974 midterm elections, and within an anemic Republican Party, the right wing challenged Ford's leadership, even as pundits predicted the GOP's death. Yet Ford reinvigorated the party and fashioned a 1976 campaign strategy against Jimmy Carter that brought him from thirty points behind to a dead heat on election day.

Mieczkowski draws on numerous personal interviews with former President Ford, cabinet officials, and members of the Ninety-fourth Congress, and he skillfully weaves into his discussion such 1970s cultural phenomena as the spoofs about the president on Saturday Night Live. The first major work on Ford to appear in more than a decade, Gerald Ford and the Challenges of the 1970s combines the best of biography and presidential history to paint an intriguing portrait of a president, his times, and his legacy. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (3)

5-0 out of 5 stars A great political work
This is an excellent book not only for summarizing the presidency of Gerald Ford but also for understanding of how the 1970's changed America. For those who wish to understand 2008 and the problems facing the election and the country they only have to look back to this time in history where unbridled disgust of the government and economic woes were abound.As past reviewers have stated this book does an excellent job of looking at how the Ford presidency shaped the America and provides a necessary reevaluation of the times.While Truman got his mythical bounce during the Ford era it may be in the times of the 2008 election and George W Bush that Ford may see his redemption. Ford faced a challenge unlike many presidents and as the author states "Ford may have been elected at the most unlucky time in history" with a host of internal political strife, economic woes of inflation and soon to be rising unemployment, as well as falling world prestige. He approached these problems with honesty and common sense providing leadership that saved the Republican Party and possibly allowed the country to heal from the rifts. Despite not wining reelection Ford shaped the future by marshaling the economic forces of the time trying to give the Carter administration a policy to work with. As you read the energy policies in this book they smack of the very things being discussed in 2008 from CAFÉ standards to development of alternate energy standards.In all this is a fascinating book to read and I recommend it to all students of political history.

5-0 out of 5 stars A good look at the Ford presidency in the context of the 1970's
This is a very good book that looks back at the Ford presidency in an unbiased way and examines almost every aspect of Ford's term in office, including his foreign policy and leadership style. Ford actually understood economic policy better than any postwar president, having spent fourteen years on the House Appropriations Committee in Congress - his actual goal had been to be Speaker of the House. Facing unprecedented increases in inflation and the rate of unemployment, Ford insisted that controlling inflation would serve the country better in the long run than trying to reach full employment. Therefore, he fought hard to decrease government spending and deregulate industry rather than promoting jobs programs or accepting the price controls advocated by many in Congress, which his predecessor had attempted with disastrous results. Before he left office, inflation had been cut by more than one half and the number of Americans without jobs was declining. However, it was not enough to save him from defeat in the 1976 elections.Only after the disastrous Carter administration did the federal government and the nation actually have the political will to implement Ford's original suggestions more fully during the Reagan years - and they worked.

The book does a good job of detailing how the energy problems and inflation that plagued Ford were not of his making, and would have caused problems for any president. Also detailed are the unparalleled expectations of the American public at that time, having just finished exiting the unprecedented 25 year-long post-war boom as well as the radical nature of the Congress that Ford had to work with that was ushered in during the 1974 elections almost immediately post-Watergate. The author makes a good case that if you had members of this Congress trying to introduce legislation that would outlaw the spanking of children by their own parents, it is unlikely that Ford would be able to get this bunch to compromise on Congressional spending. The author's analysis also points to the need to consider Ford's presidency in the context of other threads of conservative thought, such as the rise of the religious right and the later growth of the GOP. I would recommend this well-written book to anyone wanting to understand Ford's presidency in the context of the unique decade of the 1970's. Recognize, however, that this is not a biography of President Ford. It's entire focus is his presidency.

5-0 out of 5 stars A necessary re-evaluation of the Ford Presidency
An entertaining and historically necessary re-evaluation of one of our most underrated Presidents. Largely remembered for falling down, Mieczkowski shows how Ford's personal honesty, lack of arrogance or secrecy and willingness to let Congress, despite their largely successful attempt to thwart Ford's policy initiatives to regain their sense of power after four terms of an "Imperial Presidency" was exactly what America needed after the trauma of Watergate and Vietnam.

Ford never had any interest in seeking the Presidency. He was happy to stay in Congress, dreaming of being Speaker of the House. As Mieczkowski mentions, it takes a pretty big ego and a lot of ruthlessness to decide to run for President, make through the primaries and come out on top in November. As an "accidental" President who was never elected, Ford has perhaps the unique distinction of having smallest ego of any sitting President, an important bending of the stick after years of Nixon and Johnson.

Ironically despite being one of the most open Presidents when it came to press, he was mercilessly ridiculed by them, leading to his klutzy reputation. After Watergate and the 60's rebellion, no one was willing to trust anyone in authority and Ford had the bad luck to come into office when he did. Many who did attack him (even Chevy Chase as the book recounts) would latter regret it.

Mieczkowski also does a good job of reminding readers was a state of crisis America was in the mid- 1970's. Rampart inflation, out of control energy prices and a generalized lack of confidence in the future and our leaders were all problems Ford inherited and tried his best to confront. A combative Democratic controlled Congress, with a high percentage of "new Democrat" freshmen made sure that Ford spent more time in veto wars with the House and Senate instead signing his name to bills, so in terms of policy he accomplished little, but he did succeed in bringing back some sense of trust to the White House. In the end Ford was a man who never labored to sit in the White House, but when called upon to try to rebuild the broken trust America had in the Executive branch after the lies of Johnson and Nixon, Mieczkowski shows how Ford stepped into one of the more difficult positions any President has ever faced and left an important mark. His pardon of Nixon largely killed his chances to be re-elected, but Mieczkowski makes a well-argued defense of Ford's decision *whether you agree with it or not) and that Ford did it out of a need to move America onto issues beyond Watergate; not becuase of any "secret deal" with Nixon as some had rumoured. Even then, during his re-election campaign, he managed to cut Carter's intial dominating lead to mere points making the 76 election one of the closest in the 20th century. His openness, moderation and dialogue when dealing with opponents and scrupulous honesty are characteristics that I'm sure many of would like to see make a comeback in Washington.
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12. Write It When I'm Gone: Remarkable Off-the-Record Conversations with Gerald R. Ford
by Thomas M. DeFrank
Kindle Edition: 272 Pages (2007-10-30)
list price: US$15.00
Asin: B000W93E5M
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

Product Description
The New York Times bestseller-and the candid voice of an American president

In 1974, Newsweek correspondent Thomas M. DeFrank was interviewing Gerald Ford when the Vice President blurted out something astonishingly indiscreet. He then extracted a promise not to publish it. -Write it when I-m dead,- Ford said- and thus began a thirty-two-year relationship.

During the last fifteen years of their conversations, Ford opened up to DeFrank, speaking in a way few presidents ever have. Here the award-winning journalist reveals these private talks, as Ford discusses his experiences with his fellow presidents, the Warren Commission, and his exchanges with Bill Clinton during the latter-s impeachment process. In addition, he shares his thoughts about both Bush administrations, the Iraq war, his beloved wife Betty, and the frustrations of aging. Write It When I-m Gone is not only a historical document but an unprecedented portrait of a president. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (55)

3-0 out of 5 stars Good not great
Good insight at times.Great to go back in time to such a pivotal point in history.A little too "fluffy" in some spots.

4-0 out of 5 stars Highly recommended for "political junkies" interested in the politics of the 1970's and 80's.
A unique portrait of a man with a far more insightful and complicated personality than seen by the public during his lifetime. Indeed, wasn't it Bismark (the 19th century German political leader) who said, "Laws are like sausages, it is better not to see them being made"? Pardon the expression, but -- for Ford's legacy -- Bismark's remark kept coming to mind as I read this book. The behind the scenes situation was far messier and nasty than I believed.

Reading about his strategies and somewhat naive views of those around him, I couldn't help but feel that Ford lived a life "by the rules," but rules that he interpreted for himself -- and, they weren't very pretty. Take for example, his drive and compulsive need to use his status as a former President to make millions of dollars on the lecture circuit and on corporate boards. Ford's position to justify his actions was, "I'm a private citizen now"; but, the reality is that the only reason he was in demand was for his previous taxpayer-funded status as a Senator and former President. He never "got that." As for being naive, consider Ford's respect for and political support for individuals who -- once they became politically mature -- cost the United States thousands of American lives and a trillion dollars of debt: Dick (no-bid deals for Halliburton) Cheney and Donald (let's use dogs and nudity to torture) Rumsfeld.

Still, we must remember that -- in the context of the times -- Ford was quite the Boy Scout compared to the character of most of his colleagues. Consider, for example, that colorful duo America elected in 1968 -- Richard Nixon who resigned to avoid impeachment and his early-neocon sidekick, VP Spiro Agnew, who resigned just as was being investigated for conspiracy, extortion, bribery and tax fraud. Both had quite a fraternity house party in the White House, let's see there was H. R. Haldeman and John Ehrlichman (indicted and sent to prison); White House Counsel John Dean (who sang like a canary but still paid his legal dues); Attorney General John Mitchell's wife whose colorful relationship with the Press let to uncovering of all sorts of shenanigans that led to his firing; and, all because a group funded by the 1972 "Committee to Re-Elect the President" (commonly referred to as "CREEP") decided to break-into an apartment at the Watergate.

Yep, Gerald Ford, as a moderate Republican (a VERY rare breed these days), certainly did look like the Lone Ranger coming in to save the day compared to that group. And, with this book, we FINALLY get the inside story as to what he really thought and his rationale for pardoning Nixon. This book is a real contribution to American history as -- through it -- we get remarkably candid interviews and comments regarding Ford's views of dozens of issues that occurred during his lifetime: his opinion that Bill Clinton's relationship with Monica Lewinsky was indicative of a psychological sexual illness; his distain for the views of but eventual friendship with Jimmy Carter; his lack of respect for Ronald Reagan, whom he views as a great communicator but "intellectually lazy"; his sense that O.J. Simpson was guilty and had a "dark side"; that Colin Powell could easily gain the Republican nomination for VP or President and could easily (have) beat Clinton; and, so forth.

In the end, despite his compulsive desire to earn money during his post-White House years, Ford comes across as one of the few sincere, "good guys" who contributed with the best of intentions to move America forward during a painful, turbulent, but fascinating time of American history. Thomas DeFrank's book is well-written and nicely-crafted, reflecting his seasoned, but somewhat biased (for Ford) view of the former President.

Highly recommended for public library and college/university library collections and for "political junkies" interested in the politics of the 1970's and 80's.

R. Neil Scott
Middle Tennessee State University

4-0 out of 5 stars Ought To Be Required Reading for Every Congressman and Senator...,
Whether you are a Republican or a Democrat, Liberal or Conservative, there is something for you in this book, something for all of us who care about our country and are disgusted with the way it is being governed now by both parties.

Whether you agreed with Ford's decison to pardon Nixon or not (and this book makes no effort to justify it, just explaining the reasons and regrets for the decison), this book offers insight into how politics and government should be managed and run.

Ford talks--and Tom Defrank writes--about a time when people in Washington could disagree without being disagreeable, a time when old enemies can become friends and how they reach out to one another at various times, across the lines of party affiliation, from one President to Another. How they can reach out to each other and understand each other as no one else can because "they've been there," they've sat in the hottest, most cussed and discussed seat in the free world, the seat behind the desk in the Oval Office.

And can you imagine President Clinton reaching out to President Ford during the Impeachment Proceeding, and Ford's willingness to help?

This book does not gloss over differences and mistakes, but it does empasize that people can work together, how they can disagree andnot take things so personal as in Washington today.

Like Gerald R. Ford or not, this book is good, and it has something for you...and for all Americans.It ought to be Required Reading for everyone in Congress and in the Senate. We might have a different tone of government. And that is greatly needed.

5-0 out of 5 stars Excellent read and all true!
Recommended to anyone with a love of history, current events. There is so much here; worked at a White House Agency, across from the Nixon White House, when all of Watergate was going down. Glad I was close to history in the making, in a way --relieved and delighted, finally, the story was told. Recommending you find volume in hard/soft/whatever. First saw at local bookseller; sat quietly, using the index...laughed and cried. Almost "an easy read." Easy for those who love and treasure non-fiction!

3-0 out of 5 stars Some Conversations, But Not a Lot of New Material
Write It When I'm Gone: Remarkable Off-the-Record Conversations With Gerald R. Ford originated in an interview Newsweek's Thomas DeFrank had with then Vice President Gerald Ford in 1974 as the Watergate scandal was coming to a head.Ford made a political misstep, referring to a time when he would be president before that decision had been made by Richard Nixon.Ford and DeFrank made agreement at that moment that Ford's words would not be published until after Ford's death.This interchange began a series of interviews DeFrank conducted after Ford left office that covered much political ground, including some Watergate reflections and thoughts on the contemporary political world.

DeFrank paints a friendly portrait of Ford, and he gives some genuine insights, like Ford's conversation with President Bill Clinton during some of Clinton's scandals.But these conversations do not give a lot of new information, and DeFrank has a way of repeating material and contexts that becomes wearisome.Certainly, DeFrank delivers what he promises: conversations.This is not intended to be an exhaustive study on Gerald Ford or his presidency.They are a window into Ford's thinking on politics and the men who preceded and then succeeded him in office. ... Read more

13. The Presidents from the inaguration of George Washington to the Inauguration of Gerald Ford: Historic Places commemorating the Chief Executives of the US
 Unknown Binding: Pages (1976-01-01)

Asin: B001AOGIC4
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14. Gerald Ford Facts about the Presidents:
by Joseph Nathan / Podell, Janet Kane
Kindle Edition: 720 Pages (2009-03-01)
list price: US$9.99
Asin: B0029LJ3QA
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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Product Description
Gerald Ford chapter from the book-Facts about the Presidents, featuring data on the president-s background, life, and administration. Here you will find comprehensive,-uniformly arranged data on birth, family, education, nomination and election, congressional sessions, cabinet and Supreme Court appointments, vice president, first lady, and more--highlighting both the personal and political. Bibliographies guide readers to additional information on the president. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (2)

5-0 out of 5 stars The Facts about the Presidents
I know this product well of old. I have previous editions. I enjoyed the current edition. I am a history lover so this well within my experience

5-0 out of 5 stars Now in a fully updated eighth edition
Now in a fully updated eighth edition, "Facts About The Presidents From George Washington To Barack Obama" is an essential, core addition to every school and community library. Divided into two distinct parts, "Facts About The Presidents" offers biographical data on all 44 of America's presidents, as well as comparative data with respects to presidential chronology, family history, personal background, education and career, residence, physical characteristics, death and burial, commemoratives, and general statistics. Of special note is the section devoted to presidential elections, conventions, candidates, election returns, the vice-presidents, and more. "Facts About The Presidents" is an 816-page compendium of superbly researched, organized and presented information covering everything from presidential vetos to presidential salaries, making it an invaluable reference for students as well as an engaging browse for non-specialist general readers with an interest in those who have held the office and responsibility of presiding over the nation from its founding to the present day.
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15. Presidents & Near Presidents I Have Known
by Lionel Rolfe
Kindle Edition: Pages (2009-11-12)
list price: US$9.95
Asin: B002WTCIL6
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Lionel Rolfe, the author of Presidents & Near Presidents I Have Known, has written seven books, but none is devoted directly to politics. His books, including such titles as Literary L.A. and The Uncommon Friendship of Yaltah Menuhin and Willa Cather, have been about classical music, history, religion, philosophy, literature and culture. But Rolfe has also been a working newsman for years, published in such newspapers as The Los Angeles Times and the San Francisco Chronicle. The Guardian of London described him “an LA-based raconteur and journalist” when heralding his book Literary L.A. Even though he has written widely on politics in newspapers and on websites, he has never penned a book about politics. Now he writes about person to person encounters with Hubert Humphrey, Ronald Reagan, Eugene McCarthy and Gerald Ford, as well as a huge array of other wild characters. He pegs the perplexing times we live in with deadly accuracy.

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16. 31 Days: The Crisis That Gave Us the Government We Have Today
by Barry Werth
Hardcover: 416 Pages (2006-04-11)
list price: US$26.00 -- used & new: US$4.68
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0385513801
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

Product Description

In 31 Days, Barry Werth takes readers inside the White House during the tumultuous days following Nixon’s resignation and the swearing-in of America’s “accidental president,” Gerald Ford. The congressional hearings, Nixon’s increasing paranoia, and, finally, the devastating revelations of the White House tapes had torn the country apart. Within the White House and the Republican Party, Nixon’s resignation produced new fissures and battle lines—and new opportunities for political advancement.

Ford had to reassure the nation and the world that he would attend to the pressing issues of the day, from resolving the legal questions surrounding Nixon’s role in Watergate, to dealing with the wind down of the Vietnam War, the precarious state of détente with the Soviet Union, and the ongoing attempts to stabilize the Middle East. Within hours of Nixon’s departure from Washington, Ford began the all-important task of forming an inner circle of trusted advisers.

In richly detailed scenes, Werth describes the often vicious sparring among two mutually distrustful staffs—Nixon’s and Ford’s vice presidential holdovers—and a transition team that included Donald Rumsfeld (then Nixon’s ambassador to NATO) and Rumsfeld’s former deputy, the thirty-three-year-old coolly efficient Richard Cheney. The first detailed account of the ruthless maneuvering and day-to-day politicking behind everything from the pardon of Nixon to why George H. W. Bush was passed over for the vice presidency, to the rise of a new cadre of Republican movers and shakers, 31 Days offers a compelling perspective on a fascinating but relatively unexamined period in American history and its impact on the present.

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Customer Reviews (13)

This is an account of the maneuvering within the Ford Administration between his inauguration on 8 Aug 1974 and the controversial pardon of his predecessor 31 days later.I felt Mr. Werth presented a balance and non-judgmental synopsis on a daily basis - for the first 31 chapters.

The main characters of this drama were President Ford, his staff, deposed President Nixon, his staff who went with him to California (primarily Ron Ziegler), his staff that stayed behind at the White House to participate in the transition (primarily Alexander Haig), and the lawyers -- both those representing Nixon and the special prosecutor.It becomes obvious to the reader the complexities surrounding Nixon's case.But prosecuting a former president and the impact that would have had on the country were issues that all sides were concerned about.Would it be fair to the Nixon aides who were to stand trial for following the orders of their boss who would stand trial?Was the nation prepared for additional months and maybe years of Watergate or should the nation just move on and put that unhappy event behind them?

President Ford had a difficult decision to make and the members of his administration were pulling him in different directions.I think for him -- and the book indicates the special prosecutor as well -- the issue was never really in doubt.At some point President Nixon would be spared.The bigger questions were when and how.Although the main scene was within the new Ford Administration, Mr. Werth also showed the actions going on within the former president's compound in California.

I remember well the outrage when President Ford made the announcement.Before the announcement things were looking up for the Republican Party in the November elections -- not that they would have picked up seats but they could have minimized their losses.Once the pardon was official whatever hopes the GOP had to minimize their losses were dashed.But I personally felt at the time -- and I was in the minority doing so -- that President Ford did the right thing.Now many historians concur that his ability to govern was being negatively affected until the fate of his predecessor was resolved once and for all.

The first 31 chapters -- each representing a day between Nixon's resignation and Nixon's pardon -- were straight forward without passing judgment.The Epilogue, however, was editorial.Mr. Werth sub-title of "The Crisis That Gave Us The Government We Have Today" overstates the significance of those 31 days.It is true that some of the power brokers of the George W. Bush Administration had roles in the early Ford Administration - mainly Donald Rumsfeld and Richard Cheney.But Werth tries to draw a parallel that their roles in the Ford Administration somehow twisted and turned into the Bush Administration's policy toward the Mid-East - primarily Iraq - that Werth makes little effort to hide his disagreement with.To me, to equate the policies of George W. Bush in Iraq to something that happened thirty years earlier - granted some of the individuals were the same - is a stretch.After 31 chapters of solid reporting of the events of 1974 Werth's summation drifted too much into an editorial that was inconsistent with the rest of the book.

Another problem - and I had the same issue with another book I reviewed, Strange Bedfellows, an account of the less than optimum relationship between President Nixon and Vice President Agnew - is the lack of photos.Photos could add so much to the book and give a better feeling for the environment the players were operating in and, for that matter, who the players were.As with Strange Bedfellows, there were certainly many photo opportunities to supplement this book but Mr. Werth did not take advantage of them.

Werth's editorializing in the Epilogue, in my opinion, detracts from the book.But overlooking that and the absence of pictures, this is still an excellent book - for the first 31 chapters.

4-0 out of 5 stars A Man For the Times
Gerald Ford was a man for the times as he became President of the United States.Truly, the political times we have now are outlined in what we had then.

The pardon was a necessity at the time, and he paid for it, but history has now understood.What history will not understand is how we did not getit then and endedup with Jimmy Carter.History will not improve the malaise we had with him.

A good book for those interested in Ford or the post-Watergate era.Also a good book for those who want to understand some of the inside workings of a White House or the workings of those who are hungry for power and how they work to manipulate things in their own personal favor.Ford did not put up with much of that but it was all around him.

A good read.


4-0 out of 5 stars Rare Look At Ford
Barry Werth's 31 Days is an intriguing look at the first 31 days of Gerald Ford's presidency.The book intertwines a look at Richard Nixon, Watergate and how staffers such as Donald Rumsfeld and Dick Cheney would go on to help shape the political climate of today.Mr. Rumsfeld & Mr. Cheney are a very small part of the book (Cheney isn't really looked at all), but the overall tone foresees the Bush White House.Mr. Werth provides a short bio on Mr. Ford and how his decision to pardon Mr. Nixon essentially destroyed his re-election bid.Mr. Ford was the accidental president never being elected in a general election, but the ramifications of his short presidency set the stage for Reagan and the two Bushes.

5-0 out of 5 stars The transition from bad to good.
Nixon falls and we escalate Ford into the Presidency, after Agnew was knocked out of the picture as well. The brillance of our goverment and this book is that there were no tanks, no soldiers, no havoc. There was confusion and this book details how our goverment functioned during the most internal strife in the history of the Presidency that was not Assasination related. The author portrays Ford's intent to be a moral and strong leader very effectively. The book could have benefitted with some pictures from that period in time.

4-0 out of 5 stars Interesting look into Richard Nixon's pardon
This is a fantastic book and I really enjoyed learning about how big a deal Watergate really was.As a person born after Watergate, I really don't know as much as I should about it and its impact on our government.Also, I've always assumed that Gerald Ford's pardon of Richard Nixon was shady at best; however, after reading the book, I have a new found respect for Gerald Ford and the difficulties he faced in office - pardoning Nixon was no easy decision. ... Read more

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