Thoughts Thus Far on A PROMISED LAND

Self is on p. 88.

  • 44 is a very, very good writer. But dear blog readers knew that already.
  • The parts with Michelle are some of the best parts of A Promised Land. She is 44’s biggest ace in the hole.
  • Self loves that 44 is always questioning his motives. When the idea of running for President starts being broached, he is honest about his fears. But, in the end, he writes, “I had to know how this thing played out.” (p. 78)
  • After he announces his candidacy, he describes campaigning this way: “sleeping in a Hampton Inn or a Holiday Inn or an Americ Inn or a Super 8. I’d wake up after five or six hours . . . It was a life of not glamour but monotony, and the prospect of eighteen continuous months of it quickly wore down my spirit.”
  • But there’s also his singular dedication: “I was learning a lot and quickly. I spent hours dutifully poring over the fat briefing books prepared by my staff, inhaling the latest studies on the value of early childhood education, new developments in battery technology that would make clean energy more accessible, and China’s manipulation of its currency to boost its exports.” Contrast that with 45! Self heard that when Biden’s transition team was finally given access to the daily briefings, they were surprised at the extent to which the daily briefings seemed to have been tailored to 45’s inclinations, because they’d been whittled down to about two pages.
  • RE Bill and Hillary: He “admired” Bill, but was “more sympathetic” to Hillary because he saw in her what his “mother and grandmother had gone through . . . “

Stay safe, dear blog readers. Stay safe.

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