Trade for Peace – Complete List of Praise

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Praise for Trade for Peace

“America’s founders sought to create a nation that, among its other attributes, would be a ‘commercial republic.’ Patrick Mendis, in this carefully researched book, seeks to explain how trade is encoded in the DNA of the United States and expressed in its Constitution. He provides an interesting approach for analyzing the nation’s commercial roots.”
~ WALTER ISAACSON, President the Aspen Institute and former Chairman and CEO of CNN, Managing Editor of TIME, and author of Benjamin Franklin, Einstein, and Henry Kissinger


“Patrick Mendis is a native of Sri Lanka and now an American. He has somehow managed to blend these two sources of insight to create both an insider and an outsider perspective. He is at once capable of seeing America through the eyes of the other while also seeing it concurrently with the eyes of a local. This is quite remarkable and gives his work a special quality. Particularly interesting is his observation and review of Freemasonry, its contributions to the commercial origins of America and, of course, his understanding of the work of Adam Smith. Moreover, he writes with clarity and lightness of touch that is rarely found in books of such serious academic purpose. I thoroughly enjoyed reading his work even as I learned from it, and I recommend it heartily.”
~ STEPHEN JOEL TRACHTENBERG, 33° Freemason, President Emeritus, and University Professor of Public Service at the Trachtenberg School of Public Policy and Public Administration, The George Washington University


“Americans from other cultures sometimes show the keenest sense of this nation’s values. In this insightful work, Patrick Mendis approaches the American narrative with a sharp scholarly edge, drawing richly on America’s classical roots, including a near-mystical appreciation of Freemasonry in the political architecture of the new American order. Mendis is focused on trade – as was George Washington in his Farewell Address – and celebrates the potency of what he calls the Commercial Republic, from its founding to the premises underlying today’s World Trade Organization. But he is unflinching in recognizing the contradictions within an unfettered free trade regime vulnerable to massive breakdowns. All in all, a tour de force.”
~ LINCOLN P. BLOOMFIELD, MIT Professor of Political Science Emeritus, former Senior Diplomat, and Director of Global Issues at the National Security Council in the Carter White House


“While working with Patrick Mendis on a series of workshops in the US, Japan, England, and France on Atoms for Peace after Fifty Years, I found his insights into contemporary foreign policy and international affairs are immensely valuable, precisely because his education and experience presented a different, often richer synthesis of diverse fields than those usually encountered. We visited his native Sri Lanka to interview his friend, the famous science-fiction writer Sir Arthur C. Clarke, the author of the Foreword to his previous book on globalization. Only then, the length of his intellectual journey from a three-acre rice field with water buffaloes in Sri Lanka to his work at the Department of State and in his writings becomes clear to me. He is genuinely an American story symbolic of the age in which we now live. In this book, he examines the American founding through a prism of combined Eastern and Western traditions to narrate a unique perspective of our nation and its future.”
~ RONALD F. LEHMAN II, Director of the Center for Global Security Research at the Department of Energy’s Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, former Ambassador and Assistant Secretary of Defense for International Security Policy, and Senior Director of the National Security Council in the Reagan White House


“Patrick Mendis effectively utilizes his scholarship and practical experience to deal with a grand idea of the Founding Fathers. It not only enshrines the power of the commerce clause in our Constitution, but also in the commercial vision revealed in the architecture of our nation’s capital. Readers will find this book to be impressive and will help them understand further the picture of the American experiment and its future.”
~ MAX KAMPELMAN, Former Ambassador and Counselor to the State Department, and U.S. Chief Negotiator to the Conference on Security and Cooperation in Europe under Presidents Jimmy Carter and Ronald Reagan


“Patrick Mendis extends a long tradition of insightful writing about America sparked by a perspective acquired abroad. Like de Tocqueville, Mendis sees cultural connections that those born in the U.S. often overlook. This fascinating book places international trade – domestic and foreign – at the heart of the American vision of a harmonious world. Economic nationalists who see themselves opposed to cosmopolitans will be forced to think again.”
~ ROBERT T. KUDRLE, Orville Freeman Professor of International Trade and Investment Policy at the Hubert Humphrey Institute of Public Affairs and the Law School, University of Minnesota


“Dr. Patrick Mendis, one of our most original thinkers on global economic issues, has produced another timely and very interesting volume on International Trade and the American experience. I learned shortly after meeting him that any time spent with Patrick Mendis or with any of his books or articles is always time very well spent. Patrick’s unique perspectives build on his immigrant experience in the U.S., his Sri Lankan roots, and his impressive experiences as a scholar, a U.S. diplomat, and a world-traveling professor to give us new understanding of the interrelationships among history, economics, culture, and international relations.”
~ SHAUN DONNELLY, Former U.S. Trade Negotiator for the WTO and U.S. Ambassador to Sri Lanka, currently Senior Director of the National Association of Manufacturers


“At this time when Americans feel pulled between their free-trade impulses and their anxieties about the complexity of an international trade and financial system that seems out of control, Patrick Mendis’ book invites them to think about their commercial heritage and what it means for the future policy of the United States. This is a timely antidote to ahistorical pessimism.”
~ DAVID M. LAMPTON, Dean of Faculty and George Hyman Professor of China Studies at the Johns Hopkins University’s Paul Nitze School of Advanced International Studies, and author of The Three Faces of Chinese Power: Might, Money, and Minds


“As America prepares to reinvent itself yet again, it is important to reexamine the links between the future and the past. Patrick Mendis – master teacher, world citizen, and great American – provides a vehicle for that examination. If the international economy is interdependent, so are the tenets of American democracy, international diplomacy, and world leadership. This book is not about American exceptionalism; it is not about American idealism; and it is not about an immigrant’s love for his new home. It is about our past and our future. Through a trilateral prism of Jefferson, Hamilton, and Washington’s perspectives, Patrick Mendis sees it clearly and this Sri Lankan from Minnesota will help you see it too.”
~ SHELTON L. WILLIAMS, President of the Osgood Center for International Studies, Professor Emeritus at Austin College, and author of Washed in the Blood and Summer of 66


“In a time of economic crisis, when corporate and public sector responsibility are absolutely essential, Patrick Mendis offers us the ‘back to basics’ historical context that we need. Through the lenses of our Founding Fathers and philosophers, Americans are offered new insight on the problems that challenge them – and the world – today.”
~ KENNETH E. GOODPASTER, David and Barbara Koch Endowed Chair in Business Ethics at the Opus College of Business, The University of St. Thomas, Minneapolis, and author of Conscience and Corporate Culture


“Patrick Mendis skillfully wields his knowledge of Freemasonry and the esoteric origins of the American ‘Commercial Republic’ to explain how international trade has evolved to satisfy the commercial visions of our forefathers. Replete with information, this book presents a broad conception of American constitutional providence. Mendis has constructed a unique and thought-provoking portrait of history that offers an intriguing lens through which to examine the topics of democracy, trade, and the American spirit.”
~ JOHN W. MCDONALD, Chairman of the Institute for Multi-track Diplomacy and former U.S. Ambassador and the Deputy Director General of the International Labor Organization (ILO), and President of the Iowa Peace Institute


“With his combined experience in the legislative and executive branches of the U.S. government and the academy, Patrick Mendis synthesizes his unique perspectives of Washington, D.C., and the historical connectedness of trade, peace, and the Constitution. This excellent analysis is prologue and a glimpse into a possible future direction for history.”
~ MICHAEL GRAHAM, Vice President of the U.S. Institute of Peace and adjunct professor, American Military University


“The core ideas of the American experience include more than political rights. As Patrick Mendis explores in this book, American policy and experience has also been rooted in the ideas of free internal trade, as one basis for uniting the country, and free external trade, as the basis for foreign relations. In his sweeping and provocative discussion, Mendis traces these themes from the writings of Washington, Jefferson, and Hamilton up through the creation of the World Trade Organization and the economic policy dilemmas of a post-9/11 world.”
~ TIMOTHY TAYLOR, Managing Editor of the Journal of Economic Perspectives, the American Economic Association


“Patrick Mendis is a visiting scholar at the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) as he completes his book, Trade for Peace. Since its founding in the 1940s, the SAIS curriculum has focused on international economics balanced by a study of countries, language, and international relations theory and policy. Today students learn the economic theory that supports the views of our Founding Fathers. Trade is essential to increase the incomes of trading partners both through efficiencies described by comparative advantage but also by limiting monopoly forces through competition. This book examines the importance of trade and commerce by focusing on their origins. Pressure to avoid competition is huge and readers should become vigilant in fighting against protectionist tendencies.”
~ JOHN M. HARRINGTON, Jr., Associate Dean for Academic Affairs of the Nitze School of Advanced International Studies at Johns Hopkins University, and former State Department international economist for economics education and economic policy


“Patrick Mendis, a perceptive world traveler whom I first met in South Africa, is a scholar and diplomat. Above all, he is a great American, who has visited all the fifty states. A Sri Lankan by origin and a Minnesotan by nature, he has seen them all. Like Alex de Tocqueville, Dr. Mendis writes about the promise of America and the wisdom of our Founding Fathers. In this book, he observes that America’s inspiring history is still in the future.”
~ MICHAEL RETZER, Former U.S. Ambassador to Tanzania and CEO of Retzer Resources Inc.


“At a time when the United States and other democracies are revisiting their founding principles to respond to major global challenges, along comes Patrick Mendis with his unique perspective on how to achieve balance among seemingly conflicting ideals. Today, we find ourselves in the midst of a world-wide economic meltdown and global climate change crisis, with an understandable loss of public trust in both the public and private sectors. In the face of these enormously complex challenges, how do we also go about forming a more perfect union and promoting even greater freedom and economic equality for our democracies’ stakeholders?”
~ WARREN MASTER, Editor-in-Chief of The Public Manager and Chairman of the Board, The Bureaucrat, Inc.


“Dr. Patrick Mendis, a Kiva lender who donated his previous book royalties, now writes that our Founding Fathers’ vision, as we at are realizing in collaborating with in forty-seven countries with one entrepreneur at a time, is genuinely global. Read this book to learn more about America’s mission in the world, in which we are indeed acting on the founding creed for a kinder and better world.”
~ JESSICA JACKLEY FLANNERY, Co-founder and Director of, the first worldwide person-to-person micro-loan program


“Patrick Mendis is a witty, engaging writer with a knack for telling a good story. In weaving together fascinating anecdotes about America’s Founding Fathers with reflections on lasting friendships made in Minnesota, my home state, Mendis makes a convincing case that trade is the tie that binds all of us together – and is what has made America the country that it is today. This book takes the reader on a compelling tour of Enlightenment Era thinking even as it celebrates the foresight of our founders in creating the U.S. Constitution’s Commerce and Copyright Clauses, engines propelling American innovation. In this book, American history comes alive.”
~ JOHN D. BESSLER, Visiting Associate Professor of Law at The George Washington University Law School and author of Legacy of Violence: Lynch Mobs and Executions in Minnesota and Writing for Life: The Craft of Writing for Everyday Living


“Through his book, Patrick Mendis gives his readers a commercial history lesson. He humanizes our nation’s Founding Fathers through his interesting analysis of their foundation and construction of our nation’s capital city, the Constitution, and commercial principles.”
~ STEPHEN JORDAN, Executive Director of the Business Civic Leadership Center and Vice President of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce


“The author and I share a common inspiration from the forward-thinking great American diplomat, the late Harlan Cleveland, who was a contributor of enormous assistance to me as editor of the book entitled Adlai Stevenson’s Lasting Legacy. Now, Patrick Mendis has authored a book that mirrors Cleveland’s view of a “third try” for the world, after a second one following World War II. The book is seen as a new perspective of historical events along side of the visions of the nation’s Founders.”
~ ALVIN LIEBLING, Senior U.S. Administrative Law Judge, former Justice Department Attorney and Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Counselor


“When Patrick Mendis grew up in Sri Lanka, he dreamt about America and was inspired by great Virginians: James Madison, Thomas Jefferson, George Washington, and Patrick Henry. Patrick Mendis – now himself a proud Virginian – and former American diplomat and military professor, writes about our great foreign policy traditions – primarily on Jeffersonian and Hamiltonian worldviews – and explains how our commercial history could become a prism to see the American destiny. Get to know of this patriotic citizen and award-winning American educator through his unique analysis of the founding ideas of freedom, capitalism, and our Founders’ enduring gifts to the world.”
~ GEORGE ALLEN, Ronald Reagan Ranch Presidential Scholar, former U.S. Senator and Governor of the Commonwealth of Virginia