Hubert H. Humphrey

Denny Hatch is the author of six books on marketing and four novels, and is a direct marketing writer, designer and consultant. His latest book is “Write Everything Right!” Visit him at dennyhatch.com.

I've been around for 12 presidential administrations—starting with that of Franklin Roosevelt, who died in office when I was 10. In my memory bank are five deeply flawed men who turned the highest office into a national nightmare and were rendered politically impotent during the final years of their presidencies: John F. Kennedy (Bay of Pigs, Cuban missile crisis, assassination), Lyndon Johnson (Vietnam), Richard Nixon (Watergate), Jimmy Carter (Iran hostage crisis) and Bill Clinton (Monica Lewinsky).

My family was not Democratic nor Republican. Nor am I. I've always voted for whomever I believed to be the best person for the job. As a result, I'm a registered Independent, which means I never vote in primary elections. If that's a cop-out, so be it.

For the record, up to the current administration (on which the jury is still out) I voted Eisenhower, Kennedy, Johnson, Humphrey, Carter, Reagan, Bush 41 and Clinton.

Only twice in my life have I seen the country crippled and disfigured, resulting in genuine grassroots passion in a presidential election: 1968 and 2008.

The year I got passionate about politics—and dispassionate—was 1968.

For some reason, we don’t get Fox Movies on DIRECTV, so I have never seen the “Fox Legacy” series. But when I read about Fox Filmed Entertainment Chairman Tom Rothman making a name for himself as host of that series—acquiring a cult following and a ton of fan mail, including a note from Steven Spielberg—I chuckled to myself. In a world of simply terrible presenters and speechmakers, it’s a delight to come across someone that is really good. The Myth of PowerPoint The 10th issue of this e-zine, back in July 2005, was titled, “Power Corrupts, PowerPoint Corrupts Absolutely”—a quote by Edward Tufte,

Could not a Pearl Harbor-like national emergency cause the federal government to subpoena or impound the major public and private databases including those of Abacus, Acxiom, Experian and the Census Bureau? At that point Washington would know everything about everybody in the country, including the color of our underwear. —Famous Last Words, August, 2001 When John F. Kennedy was shot, many of his Secret Service detail had hangovers, the result of a night of drinking. Not only was it a national tragedy, but a national embarrassment—compounded by the murder of Lee Harvey Oswald, who was in protective custody of the Dallas police. To make

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