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Thursday, March 1, 2018

Advice . . .

". . . In a letter John Adams wrote to Benjamin Rush, Adams famously observed that our first president had “the gift of silence.” Washington knew when to keep quiet — which was most of the time — and was able to make the things that he did say far more consequential. . . A year before George Washington was elected president, his nephew won a seat in the Virginia House of Delegates. The future president had suggestions for how his younger relative should conduct himself in the state legislature: "Rise but seldom — let this be on important matters — and then make yourself thoroughly acquainted with the subject," Washington wrote. . . "Never be agitated by more than a decent warmth, & offer your sentiments with modest diffidence — opinions thus given, are listened to with more attention than when delivered in a dictatorial stile". . . When George Washington broke his customary silence, he offered good advice — and he did it in concise sentences that would easily fit into one or two tweets. . . "

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