"Silvio Berlusconi may be a media magnate, a billionaire, a target of endless probes and, quite possibly, Italy’s next prime minister. But most of all, he’s a ‘supersalesman,’ in the words of his leading political rival. And his favorite product is himself: “There’s no one on the world’s political stage that can compete with me,” says Berlusconi. “None of them has the history and the human substance that I have.”"
—Newsweek Atlantic May 14, 2001
FDR Elected For a Record Fourth Term On This Date in 1944
The Tasks Ahead: In returning Franklin D. Roosevelt to the White House for another four years, the American people placed on his already heavy shoulders gigantic and unmeasured problems. A lesser man would have shuddered in contemplation of the roster:
- The final prosecution of the war against Germany and Japan
- The organization and perfection of machinery for maintenance of world peace.
- The highly delicate task of winning Congressional approval on the admittedly explosive issues involved in American in a peace organization
- Demobilization of troops once the war is won
- Postwar reduction of the national debt, already well over $200,000,000,000.
- Revision downward of the wartime tax structure, now a $47,000,000,000 annual burden on taxpayers.
FDR would live another 156 days.
Unexpected GOP frontrunner Herman Cain is on the cover of this week’s Newsweek, with the label, “Yes We Cain!” But while Cain is something of a newcomer to the political world, this isn’t the first time we’ve given the former businessman prime real estate in the magazine- In 1994, Cain became a sudden celebrity after clashing with Bill Clinton over how much his health-care plan would cost employers. Here’s an excerpt from our 1994 piece, with a dash of casual racism to boot:
The Clintons would later blame ’Harry and Louise’, the fictional couple in the ads aired by the insurance industry, for undermining health reform. But the real saboteurs are named Herman and John. Herman Cain is the president of Godfather’s Pizza and president-elect of the National Restaurant Association. An articulate black entrepreneur, Cain transformed the debate when he challenged Clinton at a town meeting in Kansas City, Mo., last April. Cain asked the president what he was supposed to say to the workers he would have to lay off because of the cost of the “employer mandate.” Clinton responded that there would be plenty of subsidies for small businessmen, but Cain persisted. “Quite honestly, your calculation is inaccurate,” he told the president. “In the competitive marketplace it simply doesn’t work that way. The switchboard at Godfather’s was lit up with supportive calls. It was as if the small business community-a very large and politically powerful group-had been told to march on Washington. Cain, said Larry Neal, an aide to Sen. Phil Gramm, “was the lightning rod.”