If you are fortunate enough to reach a certain age, and if you have been as fortunate as I have to had opportunities for extraordinary experiences, as I have, there is a kind of natural inclination to want others to know your stories and whatever meaning you may have derived from them. So, I’ve just published a memoir, The Thunder and the Sunshine.
It is about the odyssey of my life, an odyssey all of us experience in one form or another. This odyssey encompassed the rollercoaster, and misunderstood, McGovern presidential campaign, investigations of the CIA and bizarre occurrences that accompanied it, military tours, meetings with foreign leaders, my own presidential campaign, service with some extraordinary Senators, and experiencing a little of the worst and much of the best our nation has to offer.
And lessons were learned. In condensed form these include: the absolute requirement of respecting our Constitution, even when inconvenient; the necessity of honoring our nation’s best principles and ideals in our conduct; the seldom-followed need to learn from history; and, in the final analysis, the demand that our leaders trust the people of the United States by telling us the truth.
In a word, when we have not done these things, we have made some serious mistakes. When we have followed these lessons, our nation has been at its very best. Throughout my life in public service, I have done my best to observe these lessons.