Lee Iacocca

Writer’s note: Now that Jeb Bush is officially in the 2016 presidential race, here’s a reminder from Lee Iacocca

*In his book “Where Have All The Leaders Gone?” (Schribner 2007), Lee Iacocca, known as the brainchild of the Ford Mustang, and the savior of Chrysler Corporation back in the ‘80’s, reveals some very candid and insightful details about his life and everything else from the great Ellis Island migration, to dancing with British royalty.

Though published almost five years ago, Iacocca’s book offers very interesting assessments of the candidates most likely to run for president in 2008 including Mitt Romney and now President Barack Obama. It’s just as interesting to see how it all played out.

Once an American automaker who had a vested interest in foreign oil, Iacocca says, “The Bush family ties to Saudi Arabia are well documented. This may explain why even though Saudi Arabia had its fingerprints all over 9/11, the Bush administration refused to demand accountability.”

“Where Have All The Leaders Gone?” seems to be an addendum to Iacocca’s first book – an autobiography titled “Talking Straight.” It surprisingly tells of his own succession management failure as Chrysler’s CEO that led to the cleverly orchestrated takeover by German-owned Daimler. In doing so, the book allowed Iacocca to make some parallels to running a big corporation and former President George W. Bush’s administration; and to lay out what he calls the Seven Deadly Sins of the boardroom.

Iacocca, affectionately called Lido by family and close friends, shoots from the hip on such topics as the Enron debacle; foreign trade; voting as a duty; the war in Iraq; and religion, among other cultural anecdotes.

He shares personal encounters with the likes of Lady Sarah Ferguson; Fidel Castro; Bill Clinton; Pope John Paul II; Frank Sinatra; Ted Turner; and even rapper Snoop Dogg. The book dissects the failures and what isn’t working in America, but offers some inspiring basics of what true leadership is all about, and sends out a call to action to bring America back to the greatness it has been known for throughout the world. For those interested in the musings of someone whom Americans once wanted to run for president, “Where Have All The Leaders Gone?” is a must read.

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