December 5, 2008
Will Obama Become the Statesman That America Needs?
One of the factors that unites a nation is its shared values -- a universal understanding about such things as what is right or wrong, legal or illegal, good or bad. These commonalities were referred to by Philip Rieff, an author of the 1960s, as "a system of moralizing demands." According to Rieff, those leaders who live up to the moralizing demands of leadership, always a minority, are accorded the title of "statesman," and that high honor is an accolade greatly desired. Such leaders keep the culture from disintegrating by embodying those qualities admired by the public and effectively articulating and restating those values necessary for society to be regenerated and renewed for contemporary times. In the absence of statesmanship, society crumbles as crucial values cease to be reflected in leaders' behavior or in governmental and institutional processes; inevitably, then, those values are also absent from the public square and are not embodied...(Read Full Article)