Governar um país não é o mesmo que dirigir uma empresa


For, save with the very exceptional man, success in private life is not an adequate introduction to public office. The motivation of action is too different, the relation to other persons is too different also. It is not specialists in a departmental line whom the president requires as colleagues, but men who can take the kind of view he is compelled to take of the kind of problem with which he has to deal. The successful private lawyer – Mr. Ickes is a notable exception – can rarely think in this way; still less can the successful business man who is usually of little value in politics because that blending of wills in the give and take of compromise which is a large part of its essence is rarely a quality that distinguishes him. It is, above all, the quality the politician learns from handling matters of public responsibility. He comes to realize that words, there, are checks upon public account which there must be cash to meet, if credit is to be maintained. He learns, too, that decisions in politics differ from most decisions in private life, because they have to be defended with arguments that are certain to be attacked by the other side with all the resources at their disposal. That is why I think the cabinet of politically trained men will be indispensable to any president who is not himself so extraordinary that he could almost dispense with a cabinet altogether; and, Lincoln perhaps apart, there has been no such president in the history of the United States.

A crítica é a alma das democracias liberais

Hoje escrevo no Observador sobre como o processo de crítica imanente é central nas democracias liberais e na competição entre estas e potências revisionistas não-democráticas, como a China e a Rússia, que visam subverter a ordem internacional liberal. Aqui fica uma passagem:

A superioridade, nas mais diversas áreas, das sociedades demo-liberais em relação às não-democráticas resulta em larga medida deste processo de crítica que opera através da liberdade de expressão, do debate público, da concorrência e da inovação, permitindo às sociedades corrigirem o seu rumo com base nas experiências passadas, mudando de forma gradual, reformista ou evolucionista, não de forma revolucionária, como frequentemente acontece em sociedades fechadas.