High Hopes by Stanley Renshon

Essay by Anonymous UserUniversity, Bachelor'sA, April 1997

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High Hopes

Throughout Stanley Renshons' book, High Hopes: The Clinton Presidency and the Politics of Ambition, the president's ability to govern has to do with three main concepts: ambition, courage, and integrity. Proving this, Renshon believes that the presidents psychology explains everything. 'By examining the range of choices available to the president as well as those he selects, both within and across circumstances, one can begin to discern the underlying patterns of psychology that shapes his behavior' (4). I tend to agree with Renshon when he states that Clintons' psychology has a lot to do with how he reacts to a given situation and performs all tasks bestowed upon him.

'The term character is derived from the Greek word meaning 'engraving'' (38). It can be defined as a trait or distinctive combination of traits. Bill Clinton's personality, beliefs, and attitude are a very distinctive part of his character.

As Renshon states, 'Character shapes beliefs, information processing, and, ultimately, styles of behavior. It is therefore deeply embedded in the foundation of psychological functioning' (38). The three elements of character that Renshon states as being the 'core' factors of a persons character are: ambition, character integrity, and relatedness.

Ambition is a strong element is one's character which can be defined as; a persons achievement and self regard. I tend to disagree with Renshon, when he states that their is a danger with ambition, it 'reinforces their sense of being special... it may facilitate their grandiosity' (40). According to Microsoft Bookshelf '95, grandiosity is someone or something that is characterized by the greatness of scope of intent. Renshon says that childhood grandiosity is the foundation of adult ambition and that this is all instituted by a person's parents. I believe that a person's ambition is something that should be elaborated...