Taking Charge - The Johnson White House Tapes 1963 1964
Michael R. Beschloss
Taking Charge brings you into the room with an American political legend, still hated and revered a quarter century after his death. We hear Lyndon Johnson as he schemes and blusters, rewards and punishes, and reveals a bedrock core of unshakable political beliefs. The only President to record his private conversations from his first day in office, LBJ ordered these tapes locked in a vault until at least the year 2023. But now they have been unsealed, providing a close-up look at a President taking power such as we have never had before -- from John F. Kennedy's murder in November 1963 to Johnson's campaign for a landslide victory. Taking Charge is filled with revelations about the full-blooded Texan behind the public image. You will hear LBJ: * Revealing his self-doubts and personal anguish over the responsibilities of the presidency * Receiving the frank criticism of his wife, Lady Bird Johnson * Staking his presidency on a revolutionaly civil rights bill * Scuttling Robert Kennedy's drive to be his Vice President * Using the Tonkin Gulf attack to expand the American beachhead in Southeast Asia * Unveiling his private, tortured early doubts that we could ever win a war in Vietnam Taking Charge gives us an unprecedented look into a crucial presidency that continues to shape our lives today. In LBJ's own words, it is history "with the bark off."