Fear: Trump in the White House
Democracy in Chains
I usually refrain from reading about politics. But recently, two books called my attention:
Fear: Trump in the White House, by Bob Woodward,
Democracy in Chains: The Deep History of the Radical Right’s Stealth Plan for America, by Nancy MacLean.
Click on the book covers to know more about them
One day, I saw the name Nancy MacLean treading on Twitter. I was curious who she could be and ended up listening to her book, published a year ago. The reason she was trending now was that the night before, she had been invited at a TV show – I don’t have TV and didn’t know about that.
MacLean’s book was very enlightening, showing how the current situation in American politics has roots back in the 1950s.
She also talks at large about school segregation, based both on races and money. Enormous college fees are one aspect of efforts made to limit education to the wealthy. Scary.
Even more scary is MacLean’s presentation of where the Koch brothers’ ideas are coming from and what Libertarians are all about. I was curious to see exactly what they wanted to change in the current U.S. Constitution, and are supposedly close to realizing, but unfortunately, I didn’t find these details explicitly mentioned, even though that’s what I had heard advertised about the book.
Despite this absence of details in this specific point, I thought the book was a fascinating research on the origin of what’s going on now. I learned a lot!
Besides, the narrator of the audiobook is very good, with a good pace for nonfiction.
Now to get a closer look at the current situation, I decided to read Fear, only because of the seriousness and reputation of its author.
I was hesitant, thinking I didn’t need to get more depressing details that we already get through the media – even though I avoid most of them.
Actually, I came out of the book (devoured in a couple of sittings) quite admiring of the staff who do all they can to salvage the situation and try to do something with what they have. This excerpt from page 226 gives a good idea:
Some have criticized actions such as staff members taking a paper off the presidential desk, to be sure a dangerous document would not be signed, and to avoid catastrophic consequences. Indeed these acts don’t seem normal, but the book shows that in desperate situations, desperate acts are needed.
I liked the style of the author, presenting daily vignettes with as much objectivity as possible. The book is extremely documented and tries to just state facts. Quite an unusual and refreshing perspective these days.
DID YOU READ ANY OF THESE?
WHAT DID YOU THINK?