Does adversity build character? . . . It does not. Almost all people can stand adversity of one sort or another. If you want to test a person’s character, give him power.
Power corrupts. Trust me on this. And because power corrupts, humanity’s need for those in power to be of high character increases as the importance of the position of leadership increases.
We are discussing character, correct? Not intelligence. Some of the most intelligent leaders in history have brought disaster to their nations because intelligence is powerless to modify character. Great leadership is a product of great character. And that is why character matters.
—Abraham Lincoln (as imagined by Andy Andrews in The Final Summit
Excerpted from How to Kill 11 Million People. Copyright © 2011 by Andy Andrews. Published by Thomas Nelson. Used by permission. All rights reserved.