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Taking credit for change

August 11, 2007

Re "Alaska's 'Stevens money,' " Opinion, Aug. 7

In "War and Peace," Tolstoy recognized that individuals -- leaders -- do not change history. Rather, the masses of people affect change, and individuals rise up to take the credit at convenient moments.

It seems Alaska's Republican Sen. Ted Stevens exploited the winds of change and has convinced people that he is as responsible for events. This is the concept Tolstoy was undermining when he ridiculed those who would even go so far as to suggest that Napoleon and his assistants and pages were also responsible for altering history. It also seems Stevens manipulated some of these winds to fill his sail.

Tom Impelluso

San Diego

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