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131 of 173 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars DON'T JUDGE THIS BOOK BY ITS COVER - READ THE BOOK, THEN JUDGE
I invite curious people who take American history seriously to read this 527 page memoir by the 46th. vice-president of the U.S. from start to finish, just as I did. Forget what you've heard about the controversial Dick Cheny. Allow him to explain his life story. At age 70, having spent 40 years in Washington, D.C. serving 10 years in Congress and then holding various...
Published on September 9, 2011 by V. L. Wilson

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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars In My Time
I'll let you know up-front that I did vote for the Bush-Cheney ticket twice, though perhaps for different reasons than most.

In 2000, I was appalled by Clinton's air war against Serbia, and I liked W's line about 'listening more, talking less, and being a little more humble in foreign policy.'

In 2004, I was appalled by the whole line-up of...
Published 8 months ago by Erik Peterson


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131 of 173 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars DON'T JUDGE THIS BOOK BY ITS COVER - READ THE BOOK, THEN JUDGE, September 9, 2011
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This review is from: In My Time: A Personal and Political Memoir (Hardcover)
I invite curious people who take American history seriously to read this 527 page memoir by the 46th. vice-president of the U.S. from start to finish, just as I did. Forget what you've heard about the controversial Dick Cheny. Allow him to explain his life story. At age 70, having spent 40 years in Washington, D.C. serving 10 years in Congress and then holding various key positions under 4 Republican presidents (including being Secretary of Defense altho he is not a veteran,) he has plenty to explain.

There are 16 interesting chapters, some riveting, some exasperating, some will make you mad, plus excellent pictures. An epilogue and notes for fact-checking are included. The tragic events of 9/11 changed our country and President Bush and his cabinet. Dick Cheney has earned the right to defend himself from years of media bashing so the average person (like me) can be the judge of him, to some degree. I certainly feel he loves this country.

Many questions remain unanswered. There is very little about Cheney's years with Halliburton. He discusses his family, travels, fishing and hunting hobbies, and his "best friends". He begins his memoir with 9/11 and the awfulness of it - the shock of it - and how he and everyone in the administration reacted in the emergency. It isn't until much later in the memoir as the "road to Iraq" is explained from his point of view, that you will perhaps have questions still needing answers. He explains also how both parties worked together on the "war on terror". Prepare for surprises. Both parties are first of all, Americans.

Having also lived 70 years and having read dozens of books about every administration since Washington, I compared this memoir to previously published books by Bush administration staff. Surprise! Cheney was highly esteemed by most everyone he worked with. I dare you to tackle this book and see why - and also why I'm unhappy that Cheney chose to change the tone of the book after 300 pages or so. As Scowcroft said "Cheney changed." After reading his memoir there is no doubt some of his friends will have second thoughts about their association with Dick Cheney, or maybe not. I wasn't there.

5 stars because this memoir held my interest to the end. Try and remember he was only one of many advisors to the presidents - his advice was not always heeded (fortunately in some cases). He is an ambitious man with a supportive wife and family and unafraid to speak his mind. History will judge him just as it has every other public servant. Hopefully, Joe Biden is keeping a journal.

I am an independent voter. For a more perfect review of this book, please check out Richard Stoyeck's review. I discovered his review reflects my own thinking.
Thank you for reading mine.
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9 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Traitor faced toilet tissue, January 31, 2014
This review is from: In My Time: A Personal and Political Memoir (Hardcover)
If I were rating this book based on the personal pleasure it could give awakened Americans to use each individual page as toilet paper while considering this man's oversized ego, his cowardly excuses for exterminating the start struck banner waiving, brainwashed soldiers marching into his profit war based on lies and a pre arranged inside terror job I might give it a 5 star rating. This man is a traitor and direct opposition to government by the people and for the people, and freedoms we engineered into our constitution. What would have really impressed me would have been full disclosure of the brilliant masterminding and involvement of the US government in the terror attacks to gain pubic support for a war. That would take some balls and I could respect that. [That apparently was edited out LOL]. But over all brainwashed Americans need reading material about false idols and intelligent people need toilet paper so I give it a 5 out of 5
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522 of 754 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Like Him or Dislike Him - You Will Want to Read His Story - 5 STARS !!!!, August 30, 2011
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This review is from: In My Time: A Personal and Political Memoir (Hardcover)
History can be a very strange subject. First of all, it is written by the victors, secondly time has a strange effect on history. Harry Truman was vilified during his years as President. When he left the White House on January 20, 1953 there was no one to say good bye to him. Arriving at Union Station for the long train trip back to Independence, Missouri there were no crowds, no bands. America was glad to be rid of him and welcome Ike into their arms. As it was then, perhaps is how it is now. A half century later Truman is lauded for making extraordinary decisions with neither the experience nor the advice of his predecessor. It is the subject of numerous revisionist biographies.

Dick Cheney and President Bush have taken tremendous heat from just about everybody who holds both of them accountable for what seems like some poor decision making although history will have something to say about that. The lens through which we see history has a strange way of changing the facts and the conclusions, once the distance brought by time goes into effect and it will be the same for Vice President Cheney. We don't know if history will be kind or angry with the Vice President, we do know it will be different.

In his book "In Our Time", the Vice President gives his side of the story. Like all biography it is both self-serving, and overly complementary. Let us make no mistake about it, you expect bias in an autobiography as opposed to the pen of an historian, and so let us begin. This is the story of an extraordinary American who has led an extraordinary life experiencing world changing events first hand where he had influence. Having been a player in many of these same events I can attest that Dick Cheney is one of the smartest men to occupy public life in the last half century. I have seen him in action. The mind is razor sharp, his decision making capacity is unparalleled, and he has an innate ability to work through a problem in lightening speed, cutting right to the chase. Few men can stand with him, let alone match him, and then there's the influence.

At the same time we must recognized that such comments have been said about others such as Robert McNamara, Clark Clifford, McGeorge Bundy, and all of them got their Presidents into trouble as well, namely Kennedy and Johnson. "In My Time" lays out 40 years of service to his country. The book gives us 519 pages of narrative outlined in sixteen chapters. Cheney has appropriately begun Chapter I with Beginnings, and finishes the book with Chapter 16 Endings. The entire book evokes emotion in the reader. You are in the arena, feeling the heat, and watching the story unfold in front of you.

He covers everything that he feels is pertinent to getting his story out there. For me the chapters dealing with him becoming the youngest Chief of Staff to a President (Ford) in history are absolutely instrumental to understanding all consequent events in his life. For it is here that he forms a strong friendship and working relationship with a young Donald Rumsfeld, and a now retired General Brent Scowcroft. It is Scowcroft who has never received credit for perhaps being the indispensible player among the three of them for 40 years.

These three men, Cheney, Rumsfeld, and Scowcroft would together as a team render tremendous service to their country in several administrations and make history together. It is interesting to note that it is only when Scowcroft is missing from the three advisors during George W. Bush's administration that things seem to go awry. During the Bush I administration, it is Scowcroft who warns the first President Bush, beware of invading Baghdad, once in, you may not get out. During the Bush II administration, it is Scowcroft, now an outsider who urges Cheney to re-think this invasion of Iraq. It is Scowcroft who tells his friends, "Dick has changed." None of us understood it at the time.

It is Cheney on the inside who squelches all outside opinion and advice, and determines that once the course is set - STAY THE COURSE. It's all here and more. The book speaks for itself. You will read the story for yourself from his side of the table, and it is a fascinating read. Cheney did not write this book in his own hand. It is obvious that Liz Cheney who knows the Vice-President as well as anyone had a very big hand in the actual writing of this book, and that's okay. It is Cheney's thinking, and his personality that comes through the book. You feel what he feels as he is feeling it. You understand the process he is going through to make decisions, and see those feelings and decisions filtered through a politically conservative philosophy that has evolved for the Vice President over a lifetime of being in the arena.

Whether it is discussing being Secretary of Defense during the Bush I Administration in Chapter V, "Mr. Secretary", or "Liberating Iraq" in Chapter XII, the book is hard hitting, blunt, and takes no prisoners as demonstrated in the language the author employs. Some people will be upset by Cheney's bluntness on many topics including many of his assessments of the President he served for 8 years, and why not. This book is not about the Vice-President making a couple of million dollars. What he took out of Halliburton as CEO (Chapter VIII) "Out of the Arena" assured him that he would never have to work again.

Each of us as a reader will look to draw different things from a book like this. Some of us will find our needs wanting, and some will be more than fulfilled. In my case, I am a reader, and I required a book like this to help me get the other side of the story. Not what comes through a grossly distorting press on both sides, but a story from a guy who was actually there, making things happen. Since there are always other contemporaneous historical accounts of the same events, we are all free to interpret and weave the real story together, because we will never get it from any one book, nor should we as readers expect it.

We are getting Cheney's version of the unvarnished truth as he sees it, and that's a very good thing. He comes right at you the reader. It is his voice all right. It is his personality, his tone, his temperament. The Vice President retains all of his former brilliance that was displayed throughout his four decades of service. His discussion of 9/11 will more than convince you of that.

CONCLUSION

The most important concept I took out of a book like this is the actual operation of the wheels of government. How was Bush II different from Bush I (answer very)? How was Ford different from both of them? Why was Cheney not a principal player in the Reagan Administration? Why did Bush endear himself to Cheney during the Vice-Presidential Search period and why was Cheney chosen as Bush's Vice President. What was it like to sit at the epicenter of the action of so many history altering events, and finally what about regrets? Did Dick Cheney have regrets about the decisions, the advice, and the influence he wielded? Was there a dark side? I will not discuss his answers but it is in the book, and I urge you to read this wonderful narrative. Like Dick Cheney or dislike him, there is no one in the middle on this man, and thank you for reading this review.

Richard C. Stoyeck
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31 of 45 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Interesting, Informative, and Well Written, September 18, 2011
By 
S. Peek (Rocky Mountains, USA) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (REAL NAME)   
This review is from: In My Time: A Personal and Political Memoir (Hardcover)
I am not usually one who reads biographies of politicians. This is the first one I have read in a long time and I am glad that I did.

Love him or hate him, former Vice President Dick Cheney is a compelling figure who has had a front seat to history for several decades including being the youngest White House Chief of Staff ever (Ford), the Defense Secretary (Bush I), and Vice President (Bush II). Additionally he was a member of the House of Representatives for a decade and was in the minority leadership for several of those.

The history contained in this book is fascinating including inside views on the Nixon pardon, the Ford campaign against Carter, the Gulf War, the fall of the Soviet Union, the abrogation of the ABM treaty, the 'enhanced interrogation program, the current wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, as well as some of the internal differences he had with Colin Powell, Condoleeza Rice, and George W. Bush. Those parts will likely be of interest to most readers, even if they are not fans of Cheney. One thing is crystal clear about the former Veep: He is very firm in his positions.

Although I generally like Cheney, there are some issues about which I think he is very much in error. One is his view that the president can take us into a war without a Congressional declaration. Even though it has been done too many times to count by many presidents, it is clearly unconstitutional. The United States is not a dictatorship where one individual is allowed to make such a weighty decision involving countless lives. Unfortunately in this area, Cheney seems to be a good example of Lord Acton's maxim: "Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely."

In spite of my disagreement with the author in this area and a few others, this book is a very enjoyable read.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Go F word yourself, August 30, 2011
By 
As Senator Daniel Patrick Leahy discovered, the one thing Dick Cheney does not do is mince words.

Readers tired of Washington equivocations will discover this fact for themselves when they read this blissfully short memoir.

In his forty years of public service, Dick Cheney was a sort of Mr. Resume. He served as Chief of Staff to Gerald Ford, Secretary of Defense to George Bush Sr., Congressman and of course Vice President under George Bush Jr.

As Washington tell alls go, this one is mercifully brief. In about 400 pages, he brings you up to speed on his years in Washington.

Those looking for interesting tid bits won't be disappointed.

Probably his biggest disclosure is that he alone among Bush administration officials advocated the destruction of a Syrian nuclear facility in 2007 (just months before that same plant was taken out by Israel).

For those interested in who issued the 9/11 shoot down order, Cheney's contribution will be interesting. Whereas both George Bush and Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld both said that Bush was the one who issued the order, Chaney says it was him.

Cheney's version comports with the 9/11 report itself which declined to rule on the issue. It also comports with the fact that communications with Airforce One were sketchy on 9/11. Indeed, months after 9/11 the whole Airforce One sytem was revamped because of the problems it had back on 9/11.

Not surprisingly much of this book essentially re-asserts Cheney's view that he was right all along...about Watergate, about 9/11, about pretty much everything. But the way this book is written doesn't make the claim sound as self serving as what I just did.

For those mainly familiar Cheney through sound bites, this book will be an interesting peak behind the headlines and to the man who made them.

Because these political reviews are almost always death in terms of votes, all I can say to those voting against this review is...well...I think you know.

If I were Dick Cheney I would say it and I guess maybe that's what made him the history maker.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars In My Time, November 14, 2013
This review is from: In My Time: A Personal and Political Memoir (Hardcover)
I'll let you know up-front that I did vote for the Bush-Cheney ticket twice, though perhaps for different reasons than most.

In 2000, I was appalled by Clinton's air war against Serbia, and I liked W's line about 'listening more, talking less, and being a little more humble in foreign policy.'

In 2004, I was appalled by the whole line-up of Democratic Senator Presidential hopefuls, all of whom had voted for the Iraq War Resolution, spending their time twisting and swerving, 'voting for it before I voted against it', playing at being doves one minute, then turning around and viciously trashing the one Democrat who actually was against the war as a matter of consistent principle.

I didn't ever like the war, but I figured, at least W was consistent, a known quantity by then.

Having got that confession out of the way, let me say I liked the tone of how Cheney presented himself in this book. Like me, he had a mid-twentieth century middle-American youth living in a small western town, so I could relate to his family background and his love of the wild outdoors which he describes.

I was surprised to learn about the two drunk driving arrests.

There was a very believable quality to the broad outline of how he described the general nature, if not the specific details of, his bureaucratic and Congressional careers.

The funniest part of the whole book for me was his description of what happened when Rumsfeld caught him out once, conspiring with the office staff to deflect the vast torrent of directives issuing from his boss's desk.

I also appreciate the quality of character implicit in the deep and sincere loyalty he expresses for Gerald Ford, Donald Rumsfeld, Scooter Libby, and other long-time associates.

He also appears to be devoted to the bride of his youth, and seems like a good family man. These are also significant virtues.

Cheney was not forthcoming about how it came about that a young man from a modest background went into modestly paid political work and ended up with a personal fortune estimated (as of 2013) as being in excess of $ 90 million. It reminds me of that quote from Balzac which Mario Puzo inserted in his preface to The Godfather - 'Behind every great fortune there is a crime'.

Omissions aside, this book is a worthy read for anyone trying to get a handle on what happened to the United States during Dick Cheney's time. It's a version of the truth, just not the whole truth.
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5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars A wasted read, June 13, 2014
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This Memoir is a true waste of time, A man trying to justify past actions and very poor judgement, !!
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5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Diminished Stature, March 12, 2013
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This review is from: In My Time: A Personal and Political Memoir (Hardcover)
Is Vice President Cheney an intelligent, extraordinary man from Wyoming or an elitist Washington political hack? After reading the book I lean toward believing he is 40% the former and 60% the latter.
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14 of 21 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars One plus, one minus, September 10, 2011
By 
Charles A. Krohn (Panama City Beach, Florida) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: In My Time: A Personal and Political Memoir (Hardcover)
The best passage in the book is on page 419.

"And throughout the 1980s and 1990s, terrorists had learned two dangerous lessons from America's weak response to previous attacks...First terrorists came to believe they could strike with impunity, that the U.S. response was likely to be inconsequential. Second, they learned that if they did attack U.S. assets or personnel, we might well change our policy or withdraw."

The least persuasive is the argument for urging the President to reject Secretary Rumsfeld's proffered resignation in 2004 over the Abu Graib scandal. Actually, there is no argument presented, simply that the Vice President admires Rumsfeld. I wonder, however, if some aspects of the scandal might have been abated had Bob Gates moved into the Pentagon earlier?

No one is likely to change his position regarding Cheney by reading this book, but it does have its interesting moments and provocative passages. I'll give him this: he does have the courage of his convictions, like it or not.
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6 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Whatever Your Take on the Man...This Book is Worth the Read, December 5, 2011
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Forget everything you think you know about Dick Cheney...good, bad, or otherwise. This personage has experiences few have matched in Washington. With more than 40 years serving 4 different Presidents in various capacities, his story is unique and worth understanding. While I am not a fan of all his decisions/opinions, etc. during his vice-presidency, this book gave me a greater insight into his rationale for those views. Most interesting, I thought, was his description of the negative interplay between the President's senior officials during George W. Bush's administration...something that didn't quite come out as clearly in the chapters on previous Presidents he served.

While I am careful to take too much of what I read in biography as historical fact (such facts require much more in-depth research), I appreciate that Cheney included excellent sourcing in this book. These sources, while not offering a complete justification for all of Cheney's actions, go a long way to set some of the record straight. Few biographies bother to include sourcing to the depth presented here. I am thankful for that. No doubt, other books and research must be done to compliment what is offered in this book; but no definitive research of the period could be complete without consulting it. Highly recommended.
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In My Time: A Personal and Political Memoir
In My Time: A Personal and Political Memoir by Richard B. Cheney (Hardcover - August 30, 2011)
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