First, the latest TTM Newsletter, Doing It Your Way, is available.

The political season has begun, and though I don't expect that I'm going to get much into politics in this blog, even though it is a presidential election year, I think it's something to look at when it comes to trying to evaluate how leadership is supposed to work, or not work.

For example, something I absolutely hate is mudslinging. I was interested in what was going on early last year, but once it got personal I stopped listening, and I know I'm not the only one. Yet, I understand that a big part of getting elected is trashing your opponent in some fashion. Something we see, though, is how, sometimes, it's someone else within a particular political camp that "takes one for the team" and says something that's somewhat controversial, so that their candidate can apologize for it later, after the ramifications of what has been said have reverberated. I'm sorry, but there's no way I can believe that a political candidate that sees themselves as presidential material don't have a clue as to what their subordinates are saying or doing, especially when it's released directly to the media.

These days are a far cry from Harry Truman, who said what he had to say, then backed it up with his famous statement "the buck stops here". I understand that the media is much more intrusive now, runs 24/7, and almost nothing is missed. I also understand that there's so many candidates who are vying for attention that they may not care who says something, because, as Britney Spears seems to be proving lately, even bad publicity sells. But I have to ask if this is what we think of when we think of the term "leadership."

I remember a commercial from the 70's when, supposedly, the leader of the United States and the leader of the USSR went out in a field and had a fistfight, as opposed to going to war. Not that it might be quite fair to have Hillary Clinton and Fred Thompson standing across from each other, engaged in fisticuffs, but I'm thinking that if most candidates believed that it just might come to that if they kept going over the line, it might bring a bit more civility back to the political process.

Then again, American Gladiators was one of the most popular TV shows on last week; maybe I'm th odd duck here.