Mostly Good and Competent Men

By Sorensen, Mark W. | Journal of the Illinois State Historical Society, Autumn 1999 | Go to article overview

Mostly Good and Competent Men


Sorensen, Mark W., Journal of the Illinois State Historical Society


Mostly Good and Competent Men. By Robert P. Howard. 2nd edition, revised and updated by Peggy Boyer Long and Mike Lawrence, (Springfield: The Institute for Public Affairs, University of Illinois at Springfield, 1999. Pp. xii, 422. $19.95).

This revised edition of newsman Robert P. Howard's 1988 work is a mostly good and competent book. For the most part, government reporters Lawrence, Long and Ed Wojcicki have improved the former Mostly Good and Competent Men: Illinois Governors 18181988. This edition completes and reevaluates the tenure of James Robert Thompson and introduces us to Illinois' 38th and 39th governors, Jim (ng James R.) Edgar and George Homer Ryan.

Both the late author and the current editors agree that the book is concerned with the governors and not with the governorship. This edition contends that by studying the governors, we "can draw inferences about the evolving nature of political power and leadership (p. xi). Yet the additions to the book focus more on an explanation of events than on an analysis of the motivations of the people involved. Mike Lawrence's excellent and succinct essay explains the changes in the nature of the governorship over the past thirty years. He opines that "the foremost challenge of a modern governor... is not having an agenda, but discovering the means by which it can get implemented" (p. 355). As a means to this end, according to Lawrence, a former Edgar staffer, "A governor must appoint the best and brightest to his staff and cabinet." (p. 360) That being said, the authors (who tend to lament the loss of patronage) usually only mention the governor's subordinates in relation to their criminal indictments.

The new edition is structured in the same manner as the first. A new Preface and reworked Introduction precede the text. Following the thirty-nine biographies (all white males) and Lawrence's essay are: a list of the governors and their terms; the vote totals for all gubernatorial elections; an explanation of how Illinois' four constitutions affected the power of the governor; a Bibliography and an Index. Changes that make the publication better for quick reference include starting each biography with a timeline of that governor's life and adding topical headings over the sections of each biography.

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Mostly Good and Competent Men
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.