May 2, 2012
TO: The American People
FROM: Recommendation Committee of 1868
RE: ULYSSES S. GRANT
DATE: October 7, 1868
“Sam” Grant is a plain, ordinary man… “the typical American,” says his fellow general and good friend William Tecumseh Sherman. Yet he is not easy to comprehend. He is a man of contradictions:
he is withdrawn and verbally inarticulate, yet he (more…)
October 20, 2011
You're an honest businessperson with a strong moral compass. You don't cheat on your taxes, or your spouse. You regularly consult with your attorney to ensure that you're complying with the myriad regulations governing your business.
The possibility of a criminal prosecution is the last thing on your mind. "The government only goes after (more…)
October 22, 2010
JOB OBJECTIVE: 19th President of the United States
POLITICAN & CIVIC EXPERIENCE
1874-present GOVERNOR OF NEW YORK
Elected head of the nation largest state as a champion of reform. Fulfilled campaign promise: uncovered frauds, improved government administrative efficiency, and destroyed the Canal Ring. Specific accomplishments:
finalized cases against the Tweed Ring,and secured the imprisonment of Tweed himself
instituted vigorous new laws to punish government corruption
overthrew the Canal Ring, a consortium of businessmen and politicians who had accumulated fortunes through fraudulent bills for repairing the states canals
promoted honesty in public works and economy in expenditure
reduced New York State taxes from $15 million to $8 million
commenced construction of magnificent capitol building in Albany. (more…)
October 3, 2010
One of the common definitions of creativity is “looking at the unfamiliar familiarly, and the familiar unfamiliarly.” Certain no subject has been more written about the lives of American presidents. But wait! What we really want to know, when we go to the polling booth every four years to cast our vote for a president, is what qualities we should be looking for. History, if presented concisely, can be an invaluable guide.
Every one of us, when we go for a new job (or apply for a research grant), has to submit a resume. Then if we make the cut, we have to face a headhunter or an interview committee, which has probably done extensive “due diligence” and (more…)
September 28, 2010
“At the federal prosecutor’s office in the Southern District of New York, the staff, over beer and pretzels, used to play a darkly humorous game.Junior and senior prosecutors would sit around, and someone would name a random celebrity – say, Mother Teresa or John Lennon.
It would then be up to the junior prosecutors to figure out a plausible crime for which to indict him or her.
The crimes were not usually rape, murder, or other crimes you’d see on Law & Order but rather the incredibly broad yet obscure crimes that populate the U.S. Code like a kind of jurisprudential minefield: Crimes like “false statements” (a felony, up to five years), “obstructing the mails” (five years), or “false pretenses on the high seas” (also five years).
The trick and the skill lay in finding the more obscure offenses that fit the character of the celebrity and carried the highest sentences. The result, however, was inevitable: ‘prison time.’” (more…)