New kids on the block, new team in town, and of course thousands have begged me to advise them.

Very well. One can hardly say no:

1. Decide at the very beginning whether a lie will work in the long run or not, and thus avoid errors of several former teams.

2. Get rid of anybody who yammers daily about salvation, the sacredness of the family and the honor of the republic, because it amuses people too much when the truth comes out.

3. Avoid saying things just for effect. People have a distressing (in my view) faculty for detecting -- God only knows how -- belief from pretense. They do not, for some reason, care to be treated like stupid yuks who were just born yesterday. It's all right to be dumb (else there would not be government persons), but it's not all right to be devious. Beyond a point.

4. Tact, on the other hand, is kin to the virtue of humility, by which you do not insist on grossly insulting those who happen to do wrong.

5. Do not get too carried away with praise. People commonly pay high compliments which they correct two minutes later when in small groups at the buffet.

6. Remember that if you get hit by a bus, hardly anybody will fret more than 10 minutes except the lawyers. Do not worry, therefore, that your great tasks may not be accomplished before sunset.

7. Avoid Brie cheese. It rusts the soul and fouls the breath.

8. Be brief. Do not try to tell all you know to everybody all at once. Whenever possible, shut up.

These guides are good for politicians. Others, too.