Sporadically, pundits compare Donald Trump with Winston Churchill. There’s even a book coming out on the subject. I deprecate all this by instinct and will avoid that book like the Coronavirus. Surface similarities may exist: both said or say mainly what they thought or think, unfiltered by polls (and sometimes good advice). But Churchill’s language and thought were on a higher plane. Still, when a friend said that Churchill never stooped to derisive nicknames like Trump, I had to disagree.
Whether invented by the President or his scriptwriters, some of Trump’s nicknames were very effective.…
The English-Speaking Union posed a question which illustrates the problem of secondhand quotes. That is, something Churchill said which is not in his published canon. The quote is: “If you can speak in this country [Britain], you can do anything.” It was a concise celebration of the British right to free speech. The ESU has it on their website. But is it verifiable?
In 1966, the ESU Philadelphia Branch hosted an exhibit of my Churchill biographical stamp collection at the Philadelphia National Bank. It was the first public appearance of whatever limited Churchill knowledge I then had, my “awakening” as a Churchillian.…
Q: “Who made the crack that Churchill had a hundred ideas a day but only four of them were good?” —Bruce Saxton, Trenton, N.J.
A: There are several candidates and variations. Taking them as a group, Churchill had from six to 100 ideas daily, of which between one and six were good. In order of the most likely. But it could be one of those all-purpose cracks applied to many people.
Roosevelt: fifty to 100 ideas, three or four good.