History

Michael McMenamin: How Churchill Became Churchill

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Reason.tv's Nick Gillespie recently sat down with Reason contributing editor Michael McMenamin, co-author with Curt Zoller of 2007's Becoming Winston Churchill, now out in a paperback edition from Enigma Books. The volume promises "the untold story of Young Winston and his American mentor."

Churchill's mentor was the Irish-born New York orator and politician Bourke Cockran (1854-1923), who served in Congress and advised President Grover Cleveland. Recognized as the one of the greatest public speakers of his day (William Jennings Bryan refused to appear on the same stage with him), the classical liberal Cockran introduced Churchill to the benefits of free trade, anti-imperialism, soaring oratory, and, even more important, says McMenamin, the idea that "government is not the source of wealth…[Cockran] gave Churchill a healthy distrust of government and other organizations (like the Church of England) that could hold power over people."

Approximately 7.15 minutes. Shot by Roger M. Richards and Alex Manning; edited by Roger M. Richards.

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