Books: The Sweet Draught of Power

THE JOURNALS OF DAVID E. LILIENTHAL. 1,400 pages. Harper & Row. $20.

For 17 years, through Roosevelt's New Deal and Truman's Fair Deal.

David Lilienthal rode the seas of controversy and survived. Perhaps he succeeded because he was a supremely practical administrator concerned with getting a job done, attentive to down-to-earth detail, indifferent to dogma. "The short and sure road to despair and surrender is this," he wrote, "to believe that there is, somewhere, a scheme of things that will eliminate conflict, struggle, stupidity, cupidity, personal jealousy. The idea of Utopia is mischievous. as...

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