Here are a few thoughts that ran through my head as I listened to Edward M. "Teddy" Kennedy's memoirs:
1. The rich really
are different from us.
2. Teddy Kennedy really
loves to sail.
3. I'm not sure that America is capable of producing great statesmen like Teddy Kennedy, let alone statesmen like his brothers. Bobby was the best of the three.
4. I don't understand how Richard Nixon ever got elected president.
5. Ditto Jimmy Carter.
There is a lot of history here, and it is well told. Teddy doesn't hold a lot of grudges and speaks ill of no one - a trait that imbues his words with a little more weight than your average politician. He isn't afraid to admit to mistakes, though his reticence to speak on subjects that cross too far over into 'personal' territory abrogates that a bit. It's really hard, also, knowing from other sources what a dirty man his father could be, to hear him lionize him the way that he does. After so much of Teddy's bad behavior outside of the Senate, I also wish that maybe he'd show a little more humility in his memoirs for the life that he has had the priviledge to lead.
I was moved, in spite of my owwn prejudice against his personal behavior, by the homage he pays to his Catholic faith: he's my type of Catholic, committed to social justice and service of the poor in the name of Christ.
This is highly recommended for anyone interested in the history of American politics and government in the 20th century and fans and non-fans of the Kennedys alike.