August 3, 2021

Tevi Troy’s ‘Fight House’ Holds Valuable Lessons for a Biden Administration

President Donald Trump and President-elect Joe Biden are quite different from each other. It is obvious in their personalities and in their policy positions. So, we can reasonably assume that their White House management styles will also be radically different. One thing is for sure: No matter how the new administration is managed, there will be some internal conflict.

That’s one of the many lessons I learned from Tevi Troy’s 2020 book, “Fight House: Rivalries in the White House from Truman to Trump.” The book was named one of the best political books of 2020 by The Wall Street Journal. Troy is a historian who has written many books about the presidency. This one is particularly entertaining, though, at times, disheartening. While many of us have shaken our heads in disapproval and dismay at the open chaos and infighting in Trump’s White House, Troy reveals some of the other epic battles in the modern White House.

The reasons behind the fights are numerous. Some were the product of Cabinet members butting heads with White House staff. There were, for instance, the intense conflicts that occurred during the Kennedy presidency between then-Vice President Lyndon B. Johnson and the president’s brother-slash-attorney general, Robert “Bobby” Kennedy. The two men hated each other and would sometimes end up not speaking. There were other noteworthy conflicts in the Kennedy White House.

Some administration fights have a lot to do with a president’s temperament and tolerance for disagreement. Trump is renowned for enjoying the chaos. So, unsurprisingly, his staff and appointees have had little incentive to refrain from backstabbing their enemies, tattling and other shenanigans.

The Truman White House, as Troy explains, was a whole different story. He cites historian Alonzo Hamby’s observation that while President Harry Truman’s staff “was no freer than any other from ordinary tendencies toward turf battles, personality conflicts, and back-biting, such episodes were minimal.” Unlike Trump, Truman loathed conflict. Instead, he valued close contact and oral briefings from anyone in his staff, which was guaranteed to scratch the ego of the traditionally higher-ranking individuals, such as Cabinet secretaries. But so it was.

Yet forbidding conflicts is no guarantee for peace. Troy’s chapter on the Obama White House is called “Conflict in the Era of ‘No Drama Obama.'” He writes, “There was no Baker versus Meese, no Kissinger versus Rogers, no Brzezinski versus Vance, let alone anything even close to LBJ versus RFK.” President Barack Obama was committed to his White House being different, and that required setting some strict rules for those working in his White House. They include the imperative to be nice, a strict no-leak policy and extreme loyalty to one another. Yet, internal tensions still existed. And to my great surprise, many of the Obama dramas were about gender — for example, female senior officials feeling dissed by their male counterparts. It created such drama that the senior female staffers even came up with a gender-specific name for themselves, “the Vagiants.”

And then there was the Clinton White House, which seems to have been dysfunctional in every possible way. Staff fought with political appointees, and these appointees fought among themselves because of profound ideological divides. The whole thing was made worse by “a principal willing to tolerate disagreement, as well as a messy internal process.” Interestingly, these internal tensions clearly quieted down during the second term, when Republicans impeached the president — showing that external opposition can serve as a unifying factor.

As important as a president’s policy positions and national leadership are, the presidency is about more than that. It’s also about leading a team of ambitious, competitive, high-achieving personalities — plenty of whom think they should be the one sitting in the Oval Office. It’s the ultimate CEO job.

So, as President-elect Joe Biden prepares to make his home in the White House, I wish him — and his staff — good luck and recommend that they promptly read “Fight House” and learn its lessons. It will not be a waste of time.

Veronique de Rugy is a senior research fellow at the Mercatus Center at George Mason University. To find out more about Veronique de Rugy and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate webpage at www.creators.com.

COPYRIGHT 2020 CREATORS.COM

Share on facebook
Facebook
Share on twitter
Twitter
Share on linkedin
LinkedIn
0 0 votes
Article Rating
simple-ad

This is a demo advert, you can use simple text, HTML image or any Ad Service JavaScript code. If you're inserting HTML or JS code make sure editor is switched to 'Text' mode.

Subscribe
Notify of
30 Comments
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

Yunhe (@guest_1093349)
7 months ago

That’s ok because he is not gonna be move into the White House anyway.

Mike Hayes (@guest_1093381)
7 months ago

biden and his whole crooked family need to be jailed for life

Billy Richard Wilson (@guest_1093394)
7 months ago

Boy it seems that crime does pay. Jail is needed for them.

froleprotrem (@guest_1118745)
6 months ago

Thank you for the sensible critique. Me & my neighbor were just preparing to do some research on this. We got a grab a book from our local library but I think I learned more from this post. I’m very glad to see such fantastic information being shared freely out there.

www.xmc.pl (@guest_1120317)
6 months ago

Stumbled into this article by chance but I’m sure glad I clicked on that link. You positively answered all the questions I have been dying to answer for some time now. Will certainly come back for more of this. Thank you so much

XMC Polska (@guest_1121308)
6 months ago

This article gives the light in which we can observe the reality. this is very nice one and gives indepth information. thanks for this nice article

Pianino.XMC.pl (@guest_1123189)
5 months ago

Superb blog post, I acquire book credible this internet website so alluringly I’ll see abounding added on this answerable in the answerable future!

Pianino (@guest_1124273)
5 months ago

Howdy! I know this is kind of off topic but I was wondering if you knew where I could locate a captcha plugin for my comment form? I’m using the same blog platform as yours and I’m having difficulty finding one? Thanks a lot!

Socjologia (@guest_1127686)
5 months ago

Great post. I used to be checking constantly to this weblog & Im very impressed! Extremely educational information, especially the 4th sentences. I really want such info. I was looking for this particular information for many days. Thanks and best wishes.

frolep rotrem (@guest_1128534)
5 months ago

Hey this is kinda of off topic but I was wanting to know if blogs use WYSIWYG editors or if you have to manually code with HTML. I’m starting a blog soon but have no coding know-how so I wanted to get guidance from someone with experience. Any help would be greatly appreciated!

Japan (@guest_1130334)
5 months ago

For some reason only another half of the post is being scene, is it my web browser or the site?

Norwegia (@guest_1134888)
5 months ago

Zycie jest wspaniale, nalezy tylko spogladac na nie przez wlasciwe okulary. – Aleksander Dumas

www.Filozofia.XMC.pl (@guest_1141027)
5 months ago

I couldn t agree more! GJ! financial help

USA Biznes (@guest_1146436)
5 months ago

Thank you pertaining to spreading that wonderful content on your internet site. I noticed it on the internet. I may check back again whenever you publish additional aricles. http://www.xmc.pl/

Japonia Gospodarka (@guest_1152400)
5 months ago

Why isn’t a dime worth as much today as it used to be? Because the dimes have changed.

frolep rotrem (@guest_1153973)
5 months ago

Thank you for any other great post. The place else could anybody get that kind of information in such an ideal means of writing? I have a presentation next week, and I am on the search for such information.

Cukrzyca XMC (@guest_1157559)
5 months ago

Hello.This post was extremely motivating, particularly because I was searching for thoughts on this subject last Wednesday.

ClarkLaw (@guest_1159335)
5 months ago

ba5nx 87fpr kkix

amoxicillin uses (@guest_1169564)
4 months ago

amoxicillin for uti augmentin amoxicillin does amoxicillin cure yeast infections amoxicillin how it works

zithromax dosage (@guest_1170735)
4 months ago

zithromax for sinusitis z pack zithromax zithromax 1000 mg single dose what can azithromycin be used for?

ivermectin msds (@guest_1171463)
4 months ago

ivermectin solubility ivermectin 400 mg brands ivermectin dose for person 100 lbs how to take ivermectin for scabies cats

albuterol pharmacokinetics (@guest_1172315)
4 months ago

albuterol and mucinex buy albuterol usa proair hfa aer vs ventolin hfa aer how to use ventolin puffer

Notice Links (@guest_1193165)
4 months ago

Sick! Just received a brand-new Pearl and I can now read your blog on my phone’s browser, it didn’t perform on my previous one.

0mniartist (@guest_1200726)
3 months ago

Nice blog here! Also your website loads up very fast! What
web host are you using? Can I get your affiliate link to your host?

I wish my site loaded up as fast as yours lol 0mniartist asmr

0mniartist (@guest_1201379)
3 months ago

What’s up colleagues, its enormous paragraph concerning educationand fully defined,
keep it up all the time. asmr 0mniartist

0mniartist (@guest_1202107)
3 months ago

I am extremely impressed with your writing skills as neatly as with
the structure to your weblog. Is this a paid subject matter or did
you modify it yourself? Either way stay up the excellent quality
writing, it is uncommon to peer a nice blog like this one
these days.. asmr 0mniartist

0mniartist (@guest_1203096)
3 months ago

Hi there! This blog post couldn’t be written any
better! Going through this article reminds me of my previous roommate!
He always kept preaching about this. I will forward this article to him.
Fairly certain he will have a great read. Thanks for sharing!

asmr 0mniartist

Gospodarka Ekonomia (@guest_1213153)
3 months ago

Have you ever considered about adding a little bit more than just your articles? I mean, what you say is fundamental and everything. However think about if you added some great photos or video clips to give your posts more, “pop”! Your content is excellent but with pics and clips, this blog could definitely be one of the best in its field. Good blog!

Mellie Hedtke (@guest_1253790)
2 months ago

Hola, un amigo me sugirió que hiciera encuestas en línea. Nunca había oído hablar de las encuestas en línea, así que mientras buscaba más información, fui a su sitio. Mencionó que el umbral de retiro de dinero del Reino Unido es de 50 libras, ¿otros países pueden participar? Vivo en Suiza, ¿tienen encuestas en alemán? Mi inglés es terriblemente malo. Gracias por responder a Roamy.

Robbyn Sadhra (@guest_1257667)
2 months ago

I love this film

OUR TWEETS

PRESIDENT'S TWEETS

Sign Up For The Daily Newsletter

SYNDICATED NEWS

30
0
Would love your thoughts, please comment.x
()
x