When Lyndon Johnson (LBJ) was president, he wanted a personal advisor. Not a cabinet member or chief of staff. Someone much closer. A personal advisor to him and hm alone. He chose 30-year-old Bill Moyers who at the time was a journalist and political commentator.
Many of LBJ’s senior staff, friends, Congress, and Senate members looked at this advisor development as a bad idea for LBJ. One day a senior official asked LBJ, with all the resources and people available to him, why did he choose a 30-year-old inexperienced person to personally advise him. LBJ said – “Because he always tells me the truth.”
Many people reading this blog were not old enough during LBJ’s presidency to remember much about him. He was a man’s man. He was bold, brash, and headstrong. He was much loved by many and also greatly hated by many. Some described him as generous, compassionate, considerate etc. while others described him as dictatorial, grandiose, and arrogant. Needless to say, some people admired him, and others could not stand him.
He had many people (like us today) that would tell him what they thought he wanted to hear. Bill Moyers was never intimidated by LBJ and spoke his mind and opinions without any sugar coating. He would tell LBJ frankly if he liked his idea or thought it was dumb. LBJ, as many will remember, stepped into the presidency after Kennedy was assassinated in 1963 and he went on to serve as president until 1969.
It was Bill Moyers influence that greatly helped LBJ during a very difficult time of American history from the civil rights movement, economy, inflation to the war in Vietnam.
The point is this. Make sure you have someone in your life who you can really confide in and in whose wisdom, you can trust is pure and will tell you the truth. This is a very rare relationship to find, but one that could be very valuable to the person you will become. KT