The Best Speech I’ve Heard by a Policymaker

I was an invited guest at the annual Autumn Opening of the University of Istanbul. The guest speaker was Suleyman Demirel then in the relatively ceremonial role as President of Turkey, but he had been a controversial Prime Minister. To my admiration, his entire talk was both informative and inclusive. He clearly and methodically described the different issues that Turkey would be faced with and need to address in the next few years and decades; however, he did not describe how they should be resolved. In doing so, he set a clear agenda of needs but left open for creative ideas the means for addressing them. Consequently, he allowed coalitions, negotiations, and compromises that, hopefully, would come to agreeable solutions.