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Boiling Mad: Inside Tea Party America First Edition Edition

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ISBN-10: 0805093486
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Editorial Reviews


“Required reading for anyone who wants to understand the Tea Party movement.”—Gail Collins, The New York Times
“Illuminating… a picture of how different some Tea Partiers are from the Republican establishment’s view of the movement.”—The New York Times Book Review
“[Zernike’s] concise, elegantly written book is a refreshing reminder of what traditional journalism — so often despised and discounted these days — can contribute to the public conversation. . . . A convincing portrait of the [tea party] movement’s most ardent activists.”—Los Angeles Times
“A brisk chronicle of the people who have streamed to the protests [and] flocked to the polls.”—The New Republic
“The most informative and readable.”—The Hill
“The beauty of Boiling Mad is that it’s room-temperature calm. With fresh and surprising reporting, Kate Zernike cuts through the hype on both sides to show the Tea Party as it really is, not as partisans depict it. It’s a complete, balanced, incisive and important account of a reactionary movement that’s changing the country.”—Jonathan Alter, author of The Promise: President Obama, Year One

About the Author

Kate Zernike is a national correspondent for The New York Times and was a member of the team that shared the 2002 Pulitzer Prize for explanatory reporting. She has covered education, Congress, and four national elections for the Times and was previously a reporter for The Boston Globe. She lives with her family outside New York City.

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Times Books; First Edition edition (September 14, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0805093486
  • ASIN: B0055X6QVO
  • Product Dimensions: 5.6 x 0.9 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #278,668 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

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The author (a national correspondent for The New York Times) wrote in the first chapter of this 2010 book, "Its critics dismissed the Tea Party as 'Astroturf'" (i.e., "looking like a grassroots movement but actually fake and manufactured by big interest groups"), and "It certainly had its fringe elements" (such as the "birthers" who insisted that President Obama was "a Kenyan-born Muslim infiltrator"), yet argues that "this fringe did not define the Tea Party." (Pg. 4-5)

Noting that the movement "had failed to attract nonwhites in proportion to their numbers in the country at large" (Pg. 5) they are "Almost uniformly white... disproportionately older than the general public, more likely to have a college or advanced degree, and more likely to describe themselves as fairly or very well off." (Pg. 6) Although conservative about issues such as abortion, "they were more likely than ordinary Republicans to say that they wanted to focus on economic issues." (Pg. 7)

Although the movement is often traced to the 2009 rant on the floor of the Chicago Merchantile Exchange by financial commentator Rick Santelli, Zernike considers the origin of the movement as from a 29-year old woman named Keri Carender (who is "Half-Mexican, with a pierced nose"). (Pg. 13-14)

She asks along with the critics, "If these new grassroots protesters were so upset about deficits and the national debt, why hadn't they massed on the streets during the Bush administration as the numbers soared?" and suggests that "their complaints about fiscal responsibility and big government (was) just a thin disguise for their revulsion against the nation's first black president." (Pg.
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7 of 12 people found the following review helpful By William Courson VINE VOICE on August 7, 2011
Format: Hardcover
"Boiling Mad: Inside Tea Party America" is Kate Zernike's fascinating look inside the American social phenomenon known as the Tea Party, introducing us to a cast of extraordinarily colorful characters and the ideas that motivate them.

What is America's Tea Party: a "constitutionalist" libertarian surgence? The reactionary rump of the GOP, struggling to remake itself after it's dreadful performance in the 2008 general election? A mass movement of angry white traditionalists resentful of every socially progressive notion from racial and gender equality to religious tolerance? A gaggle of decerebrate "Birthers" irremediably dedicated to the notion that our forty-fourth President is a Sumatran orang-utan, and worse, a Muslim to boot? Is it some of these, or all of these?

Whatever else it may be, the Tea Party is 'sui generis,' wholly in a class by itself: it is the first large-scale political movement of the twenty-first century and, along with the struggle for democratization in the Mideast, it along with the epochal the movement for an "Arab Spring" may set the tone for national and international political life for years to come.

The Tea Party burst on the scene at the height of the Great Recession and on the eve of the election of the first Black man to the highest office in the land: angry, white voters gathering by the hundreds of thousands to protest bank bailouts and big government. Evoking the Partisans of the Revolutionary War and the framers of the Constitution, they called themselves the Tea Party.
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Boiling Mad: Inside Tea Party America
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