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Armed Madhouse: Who's Afraid of Osama Wolf?, China Floats, Bush Sinks, The Scheme to Steal '08,No Child's Behind Left, and Other Dispatches from the FrontLines of the Class W Hardcover – Unabridged, June 6, 2006

4.6 out of 5 stars 178 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Palast (The Best Democracy Money can Buy) is a refreshing, fearless witness to the American political landscape-and he doesn't really care whether or not you like him for it: "I am not a nice man. You want something heartwarming ... buy a puppy." Though Palast comes right out and calls George Bush II un-American ("'Greg, you have no respect for the office of the President.' No, I don't. Not one iota."), the author is not another TV or radio personality with an axe to grind. A former corporate fraud and racketeering investigator, Palast is an economist and investigative journalist, and his arguments are based on research and fact. At once scary, infuriating, fascinating and frustrating, this book covers almost all the controversial political territory of the new century (see the subtitle), including Hurricane Katrina. Palast believes that this crucial period has put every working citizen's rights at stake-"from the Wage and Hour Law's 40-hour week to the Clayton Antitrust Law"-and his well-reasoned outrage makes a convincing case. Unfortunately, Palast is short on solutions; the only actions he advocates are signing up at his web site and voting the bums out-even though, as Palast points out, Bush already "lost the election. TWICE."
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.


Upsets all the right people. (Noam Chomsky)

Courageous reporting. (Michael Moore)

Gripping, provocative, inspiring. (John Perkins, the New York Times bestselling author of Confessions of an Economic Hit Man)

The type of investigative reporter you donÆt see anymoreùa cross between Sam Spade and Sherlock Holmes. (Jim Hightower)

I urge you: read PalastÆs latest book, Armed Madhouse. The story is like a spy thriller. (Robert F. Kennedy, Jr., on Air America Radio)

A Truth Hound . . . . PalastÆs stories bite. TheyÆre so relevant they threaten to alter history. (Chicago Tribune)

Palast, a tough-talking, fedora-wearing corporate fraud investigator turned intrepid journalist, has a habit for finding actual documents and then using them in edgy exposTs. (Los Angeles Times) --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Product Details

  • Hardcover: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Dutton Adult; First Edition edition (June 6, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0525949682
  • ISBN-13: 978-0525949688
  • Product Dimensions: 6.4 x 1.2 x 9.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (178 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #276,002 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Greg Palast is the author of Billionaires and Ballot Bandits, Vultures' Picnic and the New York Times bestsellers, Armed Madhouse and The Best Democracy Money Can Buy.

Palast turned his skills to journalism after two decades as a top investigator of corporate fraud. Palast directed the U.S. government's largest racketeering case in history-winning a $4.3 billion jury award. He also conducted the investigation of fraud charges in the Exxon Valdez grounding.

Following the Deepwater Horizon explosion, Palast set off on a five-continent undercover investigation of BP and the oil industry for British television's top current affairs program, Dispatches
Palast turned his skills to journalism after two decades as a top investigator of corporate fraud. Palast directed the U.S. government's largest racketeering case in history-winning a $4.3 billion jury award. He also conducted the investigation of fraud charges in the Exxon Valdez grounding.

Following the Deepwater Horizon explosion, Palast set off on a five-continent undercover investigation of BP and the oil industry for British television's top current affairs program, Dispatches.

Palast is best known in his native USA as the journalist who, for the Observer (UK), broke the story of how Jeb Bush purged thousands of Black Florida citizens from voter rolls before the 2000 election, thereby handing the White House to his brother George. His reports on the theft of the 2000 and 2004 US elections, the spike of the FBI investigations of the bin Ladens before September 11, the secret State Department documents planning the seizure of Iraq's oil fields have won him a record six Project Censored awards for reporting the news American media doesn't want you to hear. "The top investigative journalist in the United States is persona non grata in his own country's media." [Asia Times.] He returned to America to report for Harper's Magazine.

Palast's Sam Spade style television and print exposés about financial vultures, election manipulations, War on Terror and globalization, are seen on BBC's Newsnight and Amy Goodman's Democracy Now!

Palast, who has led investigations for governments on three continents, has an academic side: the author of Democracy and Regulation, a seminal treatise on energy corporations and government control was commissioned by the United Nations based on his lectures at Cambridge University and the University of São Paulo.

Beginning in the 1970s, having earned his degree in finance at the University of Chicago studying under Milton Friedman and free-trade luminaries, Palast went on to challenge their vision of a New Global Order, working for the United Steelworkers of America, the Enron workers' coalition in Latin America and consumer and environmental groups worldwide.

In 1998 Palast went undercover for Britain's Observer, worked his way inside the prime minister's inner circle and busted open Tony Blair's biggest scandal, "Lobbygate," chosen by Palast's press colleagues in the UK as "Story of the Year." As the Chicago Tribune said, Palast became a "fanatic about documents--especially those marked "secret and confidential" from the locked file cabinets of the FBI, the World Bank, the US State Department and other closed-door operations of government and industry--which regularly find their way into his hands. The inside information he obtained on Rev. Pat Robertson won him a nomination as Britain's top business journalist.

Palast is Patron of the Trinity College Philosophical Society, an honor previously held by Jonathan Swift and Oscar Wilde. His writings have won him the Financial Times David Thomas Prize--and inspired the Eminem video, Mosh. "An American hero," said Martin Luther King III. In the BBC documentary, Bush Family Fortunes, Palast exposed George Bush Jr.'s dodging the Vietnam War draft. Greg Palast, says Noam Chomsky, "Upsets all the right people."

Palast won the George Orwell Courage in Journalism Award for his BBC documentary, Bush Family Fortunes.

What they're saying ...
"Greg Palast is one of my heroes. The last investigative reporter in America. In Armed Madhouse he has the best inside story of the war inside the White House over the war in Iraq, the battle between the neo-cons and Big Oil." -Robert F Kennedy Jr. -Air America Radio
"Twisted and maniacal" -Katherine Harris

"We hate that sonuvabitch." -The White House

"Doggedly independent, undaunted by power. His stories bite, they're so relevant they threaten to alter history" -Chicago Tribune

In England, Tribune Magazine calls him, "The most important investigative reporter of our time."

"Greg Palast is investigative journalism at its best. No one has exposed more truth about the Bush Cartel and lived to tell the story." - Baltimore Chronicle

"Armed Madhouse is great fun. Palast, detective style, provides ... pieces of the secret puzzle." - The New Yorker

The Chicago Reader asks about Greg Palast, "Can one reporter change the entire political discourse of the nation?"

In Britain he's called, "The most important investigative reporter of our time." -Tribune
After exposing on BBC TV the contents of a stack of documents from inside The World Bank and the World Trade Organization, the WTO called his report, "Rubbish rubbish rubbish," and CNN reported, "The World Bank hates Greg Palast" for stories the Wall Street Journal's Jude Wanniski called, "Extraordinary reporting on the IMF," and Nobel Laureate Joesph Stiglitz called, "Excellent on the WTO."

"The information is a hand grenade." - John Pilger, New Statesman

"Up there with Woodward and Bernstein." -Manchester Guardian

"Just read Armed Madhouse - fantastic work." - Comedian Doug Stanhope

"What does a multi-award winning reporting investigator do when he has a huge story to break? If it's Greg Palast, one of America's foremost journalists, he goes to England! Greg Palast has repeatedly scooped the U.S. networks, and newspaper elites, reporting for London's Guardian newspaper, and BBC television's current affairs flagship program, Newsnight. He's reported on the truth behind George W. Bush's theft of the 2000 presidential election, the attempted theft of Venezuelan democracy, the World Bank's willful destruction of Argentina, Enron's looting of California, and the cozy relationship between the Bush and Bin Laden dynasties. The problem is: The men behind the curtain of America's media don't want you to know about these, or any of the other stories he has to tell. Undeterred by the sucking vacuum of America's mainstream media, Greg put together a few of his greatest journalistic hits in the book, "The Best Democracy Money Can Buy: the Truth About Corporate Cons, Globalization, and High-Finance Fraudsters." Ironically, the stories the New York Times didn't find fit to print have become a New York Times best-seller. Now Greg Palast is releasing a DVD, "Bush Family Fortunes," based on "The Best Democracy Money Can Buy," and featuring some of his reports from Britain." - Chris Cook, Canadian Broadcasting Corporation

"Armed Madhouse is a work of Genius" -Robert F Kennedy Jr. -Air America Radio

Patron of the Philosophical Society, Trinity College (an award previously given to Oscar Wilde and Jonathan Swift)

The Upton Sinclair Freedom of Expression Award The American Civil Liberties Union

George Orwell Courage in Journalism Award: Freedom Cinema Fest at The Sundance Film Festival

The Financial Times David Thomas Prize

Nominated for Business Journalist of the Year 1998 (UK)

Politics Story of the Year on Salon.com 2001

Guerilla News Network's Reporter of the Year

The Peace and Justice Award -Office of the Americas

Path Breaking Investigative Journalism Award--Long Island Progressive Coalition

National Press Club's Arthur Rowse Award for Press Criticism, Book Category, First Place.

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
If you really want to know how Bush got to be President, the real reasons we're in Iraq, the details of the infighting that made our occupation such a disaster, and the manifest and nefarious electoral machinations that the right inflicted on the democratic process in 2000 and 2004, and is putting in place for the elections of 2008, READ THIS BOOK. Palast has the interviews, the documents, and the facts that never get reported in the mainstream U.S. press. It's the first thing I've read that makes sense of how the battle for power between the Pentagon, the State Department, the neocons, Big Oil, and the Saudis played out on the ground in Iraq. It's a complex but fascinating sequence of events that explains the revolving-door administrations we put in place there and the flip-flopping approaches we tried to use, especially dealing with Iraq's oil. True, Palast comes across as an arrogant, in-your-face know-it-all. But I'm more than willing to put up with his abrasive style, given that he's willing to track down the real stories behind the most important events of our times and lay them out for us. I learned more per page of this new edition of _Armed Madhouse_ than almost any book I've read. If you're sick of the pap that passes for news, and eager to understand what's really going on, this is a crucial book. Robert Adler, author of Medical Firsts: From Hippocrates to the Human Genome and Science Firsts: From the Creation of Science to the Science of Creation
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Format: Hardcover
There's a spiffy, hip kind of feel to this nouveau Wobblie update on how George W. Bush and his craven cronies and currish corporate sponsors are trying to turn America into a kind of gargantuan banana republic. Even if half of world-renowned journalist Greg Palast's indictment is even fifty percent correct, Momma, pack the kids and the dog and my old guitar: this country is going to hell.

I've got a friend or two who have actually left the good old US of A for places like Panama and Canada, not so much out of fear of a neo-fascist takeover, but out of pure disgust, the kind of disgust that can only be bought with stolen elections and massive redistributions of the nation's wealth from the poor and the middle classes to the conspicuously rich.

Before reading this I couldn't believe that the Democrats were so incompetent and so stupid as to allow the Republicans to steal two national elections. Now I wonder if it matters whether they can prevent a third. Probably Hillary will win, but after four years of her, the power structure will have had enough and it'll be the reincarnation of some cardboard flunky like Reagan or some idiot like the present occupant who will be installed in power and who will again rob the treasury, sell off the public lands and start a war for ExxonMobil and kill a gook for God.

People like Cheney and Rumsfeld will probably be dead or deathlike, writing their mendacious memoirs, but there'll be others from the think tanks and the corporate world to look out for the interests of the ruling class. And, yes, the rich will get richer and the poor poorer and there's nothing new under the sun--although this "nation, conceived in Liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal" once seemed so.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
If you are concerned with America, our way of life, our political process, and there is only one book you can read this year, I recommend you make it this one. Using creative colloqualisms that may annoy or amuse you, you cannot get away from the author's facts, statistics, leaked documents and information that prove why we really went into Iraq, how your vote was stolen or not counted, and how you are producing more today and earning less, and how your rights and security are being taken away from you.

In five long chapters, Palast covers a wide range of topics. I began highlighting important portions of the book for this review. In short order there was too much highlighted text to add here.

But it's Chapters 4 and 5 that will really scare the hell out of me because I realize that even if all of us vote, it is not enough. Palast shows:

*how the republican machine kept minorities from voting in 2000, 2004 and will keep them from voting in 2008.

* with statistical evidence how voting machines were too few in minority communities or too far away. Either the lines were too long or the trip back and forth was.

* that Kerry's name didn't even show on the ballot in some places.

* statistical anomalies where Black, Hispanic and American Indian votes where not even counted, or their machines didn't even register a vote for president. In white neighborhoods, such anomalies were almost nonexistent.

* how provisional and absentee ballots were simply discarded, or mailed to the voters too late to be returned and counted.

* how voting machine error and evidence were destroyed even after there were calls for an investigation that secretaries of states ignored.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
There is a great deal of substance in this book, but it is irritatingly cavalier, desperately trying to be "hip" and often coming across as glib. This book is not nearly as serious as "Best Democracy Money Can Buy," and that is a pity because it could have been a better book with less of the breathless banter.

Here are my notes from the flyleaf:

Usefully reviews US obsession with Iran and US special relations with Iraq under Reagan (then Secretary Rumsfeld being the bearer of bio-chemical weapons and satellite imagery--a photo of Rumsfeld shaking hands with Hussein and smiling very broadly on the web).

After investigation, finds that most of the US "global war on terror" is focused on regimes in Latin America that are anti-Bush.

Explores the idiocy of repurposing Virginia class submarines from anti-Soviet missions to being able to shoot nine Marines in a large torpedo on to a beach--notes that Israeli's use much less expensive canvas kayaks.

Notes that right before the war on Iraq Bush passed into law a drop in corporate taxes on "war profits" from 21% to 7%.

Notes that Bush's most important first public announcement to the Iraqi people as the war began was not about "welcome our troops" but rather "don't destroy the oil wells."

Points out that General Garner was fired as the first pro consul in Iraq because he ignored orders to delay elections until the oil fields could be sold off to "friends of the family."

Provides a rather extraordinary list of idiot laws and astonishing looting under new pro-consul Bremer, who was given $8.8B to spend and cannot account for $8B of it--cites specific examples of people taking $25M and coming back with no receipts or receipts for a fraction, zero accountability.
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