Customer Reviews: 2012: Political Self-Righteousness, A Time for Self-Reflection
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on December 14, 2012
As a conservative, some parts made me cringe but overall his views are right on! It was nice how he presented all the issues of today, dissecting them so normal people could understand what that issue was all about and then showing where both sides stand on that particular issue. Common sense politics for those who hate the politics. I'd vote for him for President!
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on August 26, 2012
This was an excellent book. Although I don't agree with the author on every issue, I appreciate that he has presented well-thought-out discussions of most of the major problems facing the United States today. More rational discussions such as this and less political polarization are badly needed in the United States today. I also liked that, instead of just presenting the problems, the author also suggested specific ideas for solving the problems. This was a quick read that I was able to complete in less than a day.
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on July 26, 2012
There were 51 individual issues addressed here and each one was brimming with an intriguing insight. In fact, every imaginable issue facing America today is discussed with great solutions that both sides of the political spectrum should be able to embrace as a starting point to enact meaningful legislation. As the cover says, really is a book to initiate some self-reflection.
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on August 25, 2012
This is an eye-opening discussion of all the political issues the US is currently dealing with - and definitely worth spending the time reading. I couldn't put it down - and read it all in one sitting. The author does an excellent job of outlining all of our trials and tribulations, starting with a short definition of each issue. Then, he explains the right's opinion, the left's opinion, and his no no-nonsense 'from the middle' opinion. I completely agree that politicians of both parties are more interested in self righteousness and never compromising - to the detriment of our nation. If you're unsure of the issues, would like to brush up on them, or would just like to hear some rational methods that could be utilized to put us back on the right track, this book is for you. Very well done!
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on July 18, 2012
Coyle's insightful book couldn't have arrived at a better time- in the context of the presidential campaign, this highly readable tome is refreshing; while most political writers criticize life in the US, Coyle doesn't bring up a single problem or a raise a concern without proposing a reasonable solution first. Its' unpretentious language belies a great deal of underlying thought, suggestive of all sorts of political leanings and issues (everything from the bailout to healthcare, foreign affairs, and Dodd-Frank is covered here). As far as writing goes, the amount of meaning Coyle gets into one sentence, the dimensions and intensity he makes a paragraph carry, are really extraordinary. "We are in a death spiral of political gridlock. Washington not able to practice the art of politics (which is compromise) because of ideological self righteousness," Coyle writes in an eloquent plea to end mudslinging and return to statemanship. There's a slight cautionary note here: "Our founding fathers were statesmen. They had many differences and argued them vehemently. In the end they gave up their own sovereignty, compromised and formed a more perfect union," he writes, noting that the inability to reach a consensus on slavery led to one of America's bloodiest wars. "Let's learn from history and deal with this huge issue of the economy," he suggests, raising the all-important question: "Why can't we have civilized discourse? Does it not sell enough newspapers or TV commercials?" Coyle writes what we're all thinking, giving a voice to everyone who hopes for a future where "people actually believe in their government again" while setting forth a coherent vision for "passion without self-righteousness."
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on May 25, 2012
In this election year it is refreshing to read a clear and concise summary of the many issues being discussed in the political arena. If only we could get that from the mainstream media,and even more importantly, from the candidates themselves. All through my adult life, I have had a keen interest in government and politics. I do remember when, once elections were over, members of both parties settled down to the art of governing, which does require as stated by "Fairway Frank", statesmanship. Though I do not agree 100% with all the positions "From the Middle" stated in the book, I found them all to be worth considering and discussing. It would be wonderful if this book became the catalyst for a sensible approach, and cooperation among all Americans, to find solutions now before we join the PIG club! Thanks to the author for presenting so much food for thought.
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on July 15, 2014
Frank Coyle has a lot of good, nonpartisan ideas for how we can deal with the various issues affecting the United States. He also has some not-so-good ones (his ideas on energy policy, in particular, need a serious update), but the majority are well-thought-out, practical and could be adopted by both major political parties. His major criticism - that neither the Democrats or Republicans have been sufficiently amenable to compromise - is as spot-on now as it was in 2012, perhaps more so.

The book itself, however, does not match up to the quality of the ideas. The type size is way too small for a Kindle, forcing the reader to boost the font two or three times to make it readable (and then knock it down two or three sizes to read a properly formatted book). The text itself tends toward being repetitive, a lot of his headings could be left out (some of them contain nothing but "See <name of previous topic>"). And his solution to what he considers America's core political problem - a lack of statesmanship - is basically "someday, from somewhere, a statesman will come ..." Surely, there's something we, the people, could do to make sure statesmen arise? If there is, he doesn't give us any hints.

I hope Coyle updates this book for the 2016 campaign - fixing the formatting, eliminating redundancies, clarifying issues that have changed in the intervening four years ... and giving a more comprehensive solution than "a hero will rise." I would look forward to reading such an improved and updated version. As it is, the current one is a good start, but ultimately unsatisfying.
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