Friday, February 19, 2016

Deep-dish Friday.

I just came across a sentence in an interview I read with the two-time Pulitzer winner and National Book Award winning author Robert Caro.

Caro, for those of you who don't know him, is the genius of modern biography. If anyone read anymore, or anyone cared, Caro would be regarded as one of our national treasures. What Shakespeare is to Andrew Lloyd Webber, Caro is to just about any other historian.

Continuing my aside, Caro's four-part story of Lyndon Baines Johnson is--all 3,000 pages of it--an absolute must read. You will learn more about America and the nature of power than you'd learn in a dozen years in the most exalted universities. In fact my brother, in all probability the smartest person I know, reads Caro in a circular fashion, like painting a bridge. He barely finishes his LBJ tetralogy before picking up volume one and starting again.

In any event, back to the sentence at hand.

Time equals truth.

Let it sit on your tongue a bit like a fine wine or an expensive bit of chocolate.

Caro, famously, took 14 years to write his seminal biography of New York's Robert Moses, "The Power Broker." He talked to everyone who knew him. Read everything about him. Interviewed Moses extensively.

Caro's spent literally the last 45 years writing about Lyndon Johnson.

Spending time so that he can get to the truth.

Today, especially in our business, we wallow in shortcuts. Expedience is our guide.

There is no time. There is no truth.

We toss "insights" around like cheap cable-company-giveaway frisbees.

Then we shake our heads.

And wonder why.

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