From yesterday’s Houston Chronicle. This piece makes a similar point as the Times editorial today and offers an implicit opening for SMU leaders to help fix the presidential library system even as they try to land its latest addition.
Ponying up to the shrine; into the health care debate
January 27, 2007
A university of any pretensions should be slobberingly eager to house a president’s archive, be he warlord, prophet of peace or thundering dud.
Unfortunately, the mass of executive papers that researchers will mine for years tends to come these days as part of a non-negotiable package that includes what amounts to a shrine to the former leader.
The papers can be pristinely preserved and managed by the National Archives and Records Administration, but accompanying museums/centers/institutes exist in large part to tend the past leader’s flame if not be the actual home of any post-White House dips by the former leader into national or international affairs.