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True Compass – Senator Ted Kennedy’s Memoirs

True Compass is the memoirs of a man whose legacy will live on far beyond the book, politics and even his famous health care reform platform. Senator Ted Kennedy hails from a time and a family that held so much promise for the nation. On the loss of Ted Kennedy, the nation has lost a man who believed in right and just causes, not just because it was a platform to be elected or re-elected, but because he believed in support of the common individual.

In True Compass, Ted Kennedy offers us a view into the reasons why he was so beloved by both Democrats and Republicans. He was candid and humorous about stories of meetings with Bill Clinton in the White House, learning about his illness, and even how he grew up in a competitive family. All of these stories enhance our feelings for the man, the husband, the father, the uncle and, yes, the politician. ifb senator wss 8 kg

Some of the stories in the book include talks he’d had with his brothers, John and Bobby as well as remembrances of discussions he’d had with his father. One in particular was a turning point for him in whom his father basically gave him a choice to really buckle down and work hard for what he wanted. Essentially if Ted was not going to be serious about his life, than his father would have little time for him.

In True Compass, Ted Kennedy also gives us a glimpse into his studies at Harvard, as well as his work on and off the football field. He learned the value of the game and how in order to succeed he had to work harder than the rest of the team, because he wasn’t necessarily as good as them. He also gave a lot of credit to the fact that he was also very lucky.

Relationships were always a part of the Kennedy family. All of the brothers had plenty of them and really didn’t make any bones about it. Ted Kennedy expresses regret for his failings, both in decisions around relationships as well as some regret over drinking too much. Be that as it may, who amongst us is perfect anyway? His acknowledgment of failings just goes to prove again that the man was as down to earth as anyone can be.

Ted Kennedy had a deep love for his family and a commitment to helping others who had far less than he was born with. In addition, he never harbored any ill feelings toward his Lyndon Johnson, even though he knew his brother Bobby did not care for him at all. In fact, he was clearly amused by many of the angles that Mr. Johnson tried to use to get him to side with him.

Probably the most moving part of True Compass was his remembrance of Bobby Kennedy and after his death. Mr. Kennedy talks about how he had a hard timing focusing on Senate work. He went on long sailing trips just to get his mind off of the tragedy. I can certainly relate this feeling of emptiness having lost my own brother 10 years ago.

 

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