By Gerald and Natalie Sirkin Gerald and Natalie Sirkin have appeared in this space several times. It is time we review a book that offers hope for a civil and intelligent future for the United States. Such a book is not easy to find, but we have one: James L. Buckley’s Gleanings from an Unplanned Life, an Annotated Oral History ( Wilmington , Del.: Intercollegiate Studies Institute , 2006, pp. 308, $25). A country that can produce a man like James L. Buckley and see him rise to an important position in public life must have some chance of recovering from its present social squalor. As a member of the Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, Judge Buckley was interviewed for the program of the Historical Society of D. C. to record oral histories of the judges. His book is the transcript of the interviews with his notes to clarify and amplify. Judge Buckley called his life “unplanned.” Actually he had plans. The point is that nothing went according to plan, beginnin
go home from us in peace. We seek not your counsel or your arms. Crouch down and lick the hand that feeds you;
may your chains set lightly upon you, and may posterity forget that ye were our countrymen!"