We had seven book suggestions! I’ve listed them in the order that I received them… So look through the books and let me know which one you vote for for our March selection. I’ll let you know next week which book was selected.
Wrong and Dangerous by Garrett Epps
The primary purpose of the United States Constitution is to limit Congress. There is no separation of church and state. The Second Amendment allows citizens to threaten the government. These are just a few of the myths about our constitution peddled by the Far Right—a toxic coalition of Fox News talking heads, radio hosts, angry “patriot” groups, and power-hungry Tea Party politicians. Well-funded, loud, and unscrupulous, they are trying to do to America’s founding document what they have done to global warming and evolution—wipe out the facts and substitute partisan myth. In the process, they seek to cripple the right of We the People to govern ourselves. In Wrong and Dangerous, legal scholar Garrett Epps provides the tools needed to fight back against the flood of constitutional nonsense. In terms every citizen can understand, he tackles ten of the most prevalent myths, providing a clear grasp of the Constitution and the government it established.
Twilight of the Elites By Christopher Hayes Over the past decade, Americans watched in bafflement and rage as one institution after another – from Wall Street to Congress, the Catholic Church to corporate America, even Major League Baseball – imploded under the weight of corruption and incompetence. Christopher Hayes offers a radically novel answer. Since the 1960s, as the meritocracy elevated a more diverse group of men and women into power, they learned to embrace the accelerating inequality that had placed them near the very top. Twilight of the Elites is the defining work of social criticism for the post-bailout age.
Our Divided Heart By E.J. Dionne Who are we as a nation? And what is it that’s tearing us apart? One of our most respected political commentators, argues that Americans can’t agree on who we are because we can’t agree on who we’ve been. The American tradition, points not to radical self-reliance and self-interest, but to a balance between our love of individual freedom and our devotion to community., Dionne crafts an incisive analysis of how hyper-individualism is poisoning our current political atmosphere. He shares the Tea Party’s engagement with the American past, but takes on its distortions of our history while rooting the Occupy Wall Street movement in America’s civic and Populist traditions. Dionne offers both a fascinating tour of American history-from the Founding Fathers to Clay and Lincoln, on to Populism, the Progressives, and the New Dealers-and an interpretation of our moment’s politics that shatters conventional wisdom. He reclaims the American idea of the federal government as an active and constructive partner with the rest of society in promoting prosperity, opportunity, and American greatness. And he challenges progressives to embrace their country’s story-to redefine progress and to put an end to our fears of decline.Our Divided Political Heart is indispensable for all who seek a path out of America’s current impasse.
The Republican Brain: The Science of Why They Deny Science- and Reality From climate change to evolution, the rejection of mainstream science among Republicans is growing, as is the denial of expert consensus on the economy, American history, foreign policy and much more. Why won’t Republicans accept things that most experts agree on? Science writer Chris Mooney explores brain scans, polls, and psychology experiments to explain why conservatives today believe more wrong things; appear more likely than Democrats to oppose new ideas and less likely to change their beliefs in the face of new facts; and sometimes respond to compelling evidence by doubling down on their current beliefs.
2030 by Albert Brooks Is this what the future holds?June 12, 2030 started out like any other day in memory—and by then, memories were long. Since cancer had been cured fifteen years earlier, America’s population was aging rapidly. That sounds like good news, but consider this: millions of baby boomers, with a big natural predator picked off, were sucking dry benefits and resources that were never meant to hold them into their eighties and beyond. Young people around the country simmered with resentment toward “the olds” and anger at the treadmill they could never get off of just to maintain their parents’ entitlement programs. But on that June 12th, everything changed: a massive earthquake devastated Los Angeles, and the government, always teetering on the edge of bankruptcy, was unable to respond. The fallout from the earthquake sets in motion a sweeping novel of ideas that pits national hope for the future against assurances from the past and is peopled by a memorable cast of refugees and billionaires, presidents and revolutionaries, all struggling to find their way. In 2030, the author’s all-too-believable imagining of where today’s challenges could lead us tomorrow makes gripping and thought-provoking reading
Team of Rivals: the Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln by Doris Kearns This brilliant multiple biography is centered on Lincoln’s mastery of men and how it shaped the most significant presidency in the nation’s history.
Fair Game: my life as a spy,my betrayal by the White House by Valerie Plame. On July 6, 2003, four months after the United States invaded Iraq, former ambassador Joseph Wilson’s now historic op-ed, “What I Didn’t Find in Africa,” appeared in The New York Times. A week later, conservative pundit Robert Novak revealed in his newspaper column that Ambassador Wilson’s wife, Valerie Plame Wilson, was a CIA operative. The public disclosure of that secret information spurred a federal investigation and led to the trial and conviction of Vice President Dick Cheney’s chief of staff, Scooter Libby, and the Wilsons’ civil suit against top officials of the Bush administration. Much has been written about the “Valerie Plame” story, but Valerie herself has been silent, until now. Some of what has been reported about her has been frighteningly accurate, serving as a pungent reminder to the Wilsons that their lives are no longer private. And some has been completely false–distorted characterizations of Valerie and her husband and their shared integrity. Fair Game is the historic and unvarnished account of the personal and international consequences of speaking truth to power.