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A Time for Truth Hardcover – 1978

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 248 pages
  • Publisher: Reader's Digest Press (1978)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0070573786
  • ISBN-13: 978-0070573789
  • Product Dimensions: 9.1 x 6.1 x 1.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #971,392 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

15 of 19 people found the following review helpful By David A. Lee on March 2, 2006
Format: Mass Market Paperback Verified Purchase
First of all, I must issue a disclaimer that I have belonged and do belong to the group of people who identify themselves as 'liberals'. I must also say that although I disagree with most of Simon's overall general observations about liberalism itself, I do agree with some of his observations of liberals in particular. However, mostly I admire the late William Simon himself, and this conservative treatise as being sincerely candid and indeed, prophetic. (Also, Edith Efron, Simon's ghostwriter, must be credited with the book's elegant cadence.)

In fact, I recommend shaking off some of the dust from the pages of this old, yellowed paperback especially to Republicans who today, in the estimation of this reviewer, have lost touch with the conservative heritage of their party. In short, I write this review as much paying homage as a member of Simon's loyal opposition.

Although in 'A Time For Truth', copyrighted 1978, Simon clearly displayed his partisan credentials, he also left no illusion that if Republicans were ever to take control of the government, they may very well create in their own image the very centralized absolutist state which Simon believed had been established by the Democrats of his era.

Simon greatly feared seemingly "uncontrollable" spending and national debt. He regarded deficit spending on his own watch during the Nixon administration as an experiment gone horribly wrong, from which he learned a profound lesson. As Nixon's Secretary of Treasury, he actually took responsibility (the forgotten virtue of conservatives) for the government's failed energy policies, which are ironically usually attributed to Carter, who actually inherited the crisis.
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9 of 12 people found the following review helpful By "ontherocks@mediaone.net" on June 3, 2000
Format: Hardcover
A must-read for anyone concerned not just about our country's economic future, but about personal freedom as well. Easy to read, trenchant, and incisive. William E. Simon comes across as one of our nation's greatest (and most overlooked) thinkers.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Larry on July 15, 2009
Format: Hardcover
Some books are so important that you wonder how they could be overlooked. Even though this is a personal account of Mr. Simon's tenure as US Treasury Secretary, and the country's first "energy czar", it is an even more compelling guide of the relationship between an out of control government and it citizens, energy policy, with a smattering of economics. Normally I would be skeptical about personal statements by people who have left office, but here we have thirty years to support everything he writes about. From the recession of the 70's, the energy embargo, New York's financial collapse he details his actions and recomendations at that time. He then shows what the government response was, and finally what the end results were. He then digresses with a philosophical evaluation, and prediction of what this all means. Milton Friedman calls this "a brilliant and passionate book by a brilliant and passionate man". I found it to be entertaining and eye opening. For anyone interested in politics or political philosophy, this book should be an essential read.
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5 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Melvin Hunt on March 7, 2003
Format: Hardcover
When you begin reading this book it turns into an interesting
read. The book is authored by William Simon who served as the
Secretary of the Treasury under Presidents Richard Nixon and Gerald Ford. Simon relates to you his beliefs and philosphies about the free market system.Simon had done well with this system
becoming mega wealthy.Simon attempts sucessfully to warn the
American peopleabout the unbreakable connection between economic
and political freedom.He warns that the expanding state is taking these freedoms away. A very interesting read by a very
wise man. Read this book. You will like it.
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Format: Paperback
William Edward Simon (1927-2000) was a businessman and a Treasury Secretary during the Nixon and Ford administrations; he also wrote A Time for Reflection: An Autobiography and Time For Action. ("A Time for Truth" was supposedly ghostwritten by libertarian author Edith Efron.)

He wrote in the Foreword to this 1978 book (RD condensation 1979), "What I had learned, above all, was that the country was in a precarious state, that its very cornerstone, economic and political liberty, had been seriously eroded... the reason for discussing economic issues is... to inspire a national awareness of the connection between economic and political freedom. The connection is real and unbreakable. To lose one is to lose the other. In America we are losing both in the wake of the expanding state. That was my constant thesis as Secretary of the Treasury, and that is the theme of this book."

He argues that "freedom... isn't a presence but an absence---an absence of governmental constraint." (Pg. 6) He notes that 130 million man-hours were being spent "filling out bureaucratic forms" (Pg. 37), and asserts that "40 years of liberal 'compassion' has created a politics of stealing from productive Peter to pay nonproductive Paul, creating a new class of Americans which lives off our taxes and pretends that its institutionalized middle-class pork is all for the sake of the 'poor.'" (Pg. 59) He adds, "Numerous other social programs also subsidize the middle class." (Pg.
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