11 July 2014


Rick Perlstein explains the title of his forthcoming book about the consolidation of the The Invisible Bridge: The Fall of Nixon and the Rise of Reagan:

He recalled a conversation he had at the Soviet premier’s dacha back in 1959. After a long lunch Khrushchev became expansive. He said that sometimes in order to be a statesman, you have to be a politician. If the public sees an imaginary river in front of them, the politician doesn’t tell them there’s no river. A politician builds an imaginary bridge over the imaginary river. Nixon told the story as though there was guidance to be found in it, and I took his point to be that if the public thought food prices were a problem, the politician should offer a solution, thereby preserving his ability to make statesmanlike decisions another day.

He goes on to ask:

Who wants to join an ‪#‎invisiblebridge‬ hashtag virus in which folks tag (sure, bipartisan!) instances of political bullshitting in the spirit of the book's epigram of Khrushev's advice to Nixon?

I would!

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