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The office of the Presidency has long demanded a study as luminous and incisive as that of Professor Burns. In this era of strong executive leadership and consensus politics, Professor Burns has vigorously proposed for the Presidency a strategy which transcends the contemporary deification of majority opinion. The plan had its origins in Jefferson's administration which was characterized by a cohesive and strong opposition group, party control over government, and a President who governs as party leader. It transcended the prudence inherent in Madison's anti-majoritarian model, and substituted vision and passion for Hamilton's attitudes of adjustment and accommodation. Burns advocates a strong executive office, but is apprehensive that acceptance of things as they are has become the norm. He desires to see the President make a commitment to ultimate values rather than be the grand technician and manipulator committed to incremental goods. He will act to transform the quality of American life and change laissez-faire mediocrity into creative conflict. Professor Burns has written a book rich with historical example, directed towards the analysis and transformation of the institution which can alter the direction of our society. He is one of the most widely known spokesmen in the field of political science today.

Pub Date: Jan. 20th, 1965
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin