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After the Hangover: The Conservatives' Road to Recovery Hardcover – April 20, 2010


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Thomas Nelson; First Edition edition (April 20, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1595552723
  • ISBN-13: 978-1595552723
  • Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 6.1 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (76 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,717,169 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

R. Emmett Tyrrell Jr. is founder and editor in chief of the famous and feared The American Spectator. The author of several books including the New York Times best-selling Boy Clinton, Madame Hillary, The Liberal Crack-Up, and The Conservative Crack-Up, Tyrrell's syndicated column is published weekly in such papers as the New York Post, Los Angeles Times, and the Washington Times.

Customer Reviews

I honestly felt that he tried to put too much information in this book which made it hard for me to finish.
yoUniquemom
All in all, this seemed less of a book about conservative ideals than about Mr. Tyrrell's position in the conservative movement.
Sebastian (a lady)
If you need a program, consider reading this book for some very interesting insights --- and a lot of good humor.
Geoff Puterbaugh

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

35 of 40 people found the following review helpful By Ira E. Stoll VINE VOICE on April 8, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
The editor of the American Spectator, R. Emmett Tyrrell Jr., was once having dinner with Robert Bartley, the longtime editor of the Wall Street Journal; me, and my partner in the New York Sun, Seth Lipsky, when Seth remarked on how phenomenally well-read Tyrrell is.

Bartley remarked in the most constructive and encouraging way possible that this it wasn't always clear from reading Mr. Tyrrell's column, which we carried in the Sun.

Alas, Bartley did not live to see the appearance of Mr. Tyrrell's new book, After The Hangover: The Conservative' Road to Recovery. If he had, though, I think he'd have read it and come away marveling at Mr. Tyrrell's feat in pulling off, in the course of a relatively slim book, an impressive feat, a thoughtful, learned, and accessible extended essay that is part memoir, part intellectual history, part political philosophy and part prescription of policy and practice.

For conservatives - a group that for Mr. Tyrell includes those with "shared enthusiasm for constitutionally limited government, the rule of law, and free markets that spread prosperity and preserve freedom," those who stand "for liberty, the Bill of Rights, and the mild tug of traditions" - times today are both worse than is commonly thought and not as bad as is commonly thought.

Mr. Tyrell makes both cases simultaneously. That is a bit of a logical trick, but he is a smooth enough writer to accomplish it.

Start with the downside. Mr. Tyrrell quotes Eric Hoffer's The True Believer: "Every great cause begins as a movement becomes a business and eventually degenerates into a racket."

This, Mr. Tyrrell says, is what has happened to conservatism.
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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful By pencil holder on April 18, 2010
Format: Hardcover
"After the Hangover: The Conservatives' Road to Recovery," by R. Emmett Tyrrell Jr. is an insightful, refreshing, and optimistic, review of American conservatism. This book does not just talk about the problems that plague conservatism in the U.S. today, but instead reveals how those problems developed over time, and what can and should be done about them. Tyrrell's book is a refreshing antidote for those conservatives who are worn out and discouraged by today's political landscape. In fact, some may view Tyrrell as too optimistic, given today's political trends. However, Tyrrell confronts such discouragement with conservatism's historical record, as well as the large infrastructure in American today that supports a conservative agenda. In addition, Tyrrell points out that as Liberalism (with a capital L) in American leans more radically left, that an increasing number of Americans continue to identify as conservative.

Although I would recommend this book to virtually anyone who cares about today's political trends and challenges, I must also admit that Tyrrell's style of writing was at times hard to follow. He often simultaneously combines two to three thoughts or points into one sentence. In addition, Tyrrell does get caught up in a rather extended tribute to one of the conservative movement's great leaders, which at times seems a bit out of context in this book. However, for those readers who can wade through the run-on sentences, and who are willing to be subject to a lengthy personal tribute of William F. Buckley, Jr., this book is a treasure-trove of American conservatism's history and present-day status. In addition, it is presented with wit, humor, insight, and hope for the future.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Katherine Bartlett on April 12, 2010
Format: Hardcover
I can honestly say that I finished this book in one night- the same night it was delivered to my house! Tyrrell did a fine job for speaking for all the conservatives out there. He states that for conservatives - a group that for Tyrell includes those with "shared enthusiasm for constitutionally limited government, the rule of law, and free markets that spread prosperity and preserve freedom," those who stand "for liberty, the Bill of Rights, and the mild tug of traditions" - times are tough today.
Toward the end of the book, he endorses some policy ideas himself, including a cap on federal spending at 20% of GDP, a flat tax, personal retirement accounts as part of Social Security, tort reform, a mix of charter schools and school vouchers, and tax credits to encourage the use of natural gas. On national defense, he proposes a Tyrrell Doctrine that "recognizes that it is too costly and difficult to plant democracy on the unwelcoming soil of countries that have no sympathy for it, for instance, Iraq or Afghanistan. But that's another story. Overall, I thoroughly enjoyed this book, being a Conservative myself. I give it 5 stars!

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Thomas Nelson Publishers as part of their [...] book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255 : "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By BM Welter on April 22, 2010
Format: Hardcover
Emmett Tyrrell tells the history and perspectives of the conservative movement in the US through the personalities involved. After the Hangover shows that these thinkers, originally a tightknit group fighting against the tide of big-government Liberals in the 1950s and after, changed the political landscape in the country, eventually leading to the Reagan years.

Readers get a strong sense of the major ideas of conservatives, including the belief in individual freedom, the Constitution, and the Bill of Rights. For conservatives, the human is a mixture of good and bad, perfectly capable of choosing virtue yet easily swayed in the other direction. Government cannot legislate virtue. If someone is forced to do good deeds, rather than freely from his heart, it is not virtue.

Tyrrell calls on conservatives to quit the careerism and backbiting that became pronounced, he argues, during the Second Bush years. As one way to avoid this, conservatives must continue to work at changing American culture, and not only politics. The author fears many of the projects, including Obamacare, that are currently remaking America. Yet he confidently believes that conservatives are in or near the center of American life, even if the Liberals control the media and universities.

Aside from a few swipes at conservative personalities such as William F. Buckley's son, which tend to be confusing rather than informative, Tyrrell offers a solid introduction of the main beliefs and characters of American conservatism from the mid-twentieth-century onwards.
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