McPherson on Lincoln and Obama

Someone was kind enough to send in this link. James "Concentration-in-Time" McPherson was asked to name similarities between Lincoln and the president elect. He names just one: cool disposition.

I don't understand how someone can see Lincoln this way. His verbal jabs come in an unending stream indicating a continuously poor temper. Centennialists try to make this a McClellan thing, but Lincoln snapped at everyone. When he fully unloads on somebody - say a Carl Schurz - the result is frightening and yet it brings him no lasting peace (he's soon jabbing again). He is often bored and expresses boredom in bad jokes and inappropriate behavior. In between his restlessness from boredom and his uncontrollable flashes of anger are troughs of depression marked by listlessness, inattention, and not-too-masterful inactivity.

At times, he publicly loses control of his impulses. He invites the officer in charge of his security detail to sleep in his bed. He has his cabinet sign a bizarre document signifying nothing but the imminent election of McClellan. He stages an amphibious assault consisting of himself and a few aides against Norfolk. He signs cotton trading permits like there's no tomorrow. He solicits Ben Butler to be his running mate in '64. He gazes over the parapet to watch early assault his position.

The list goes on: cool is Lincoln's missing ingredient.