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New Threats to Freedom Hardcover – May 18, 2010


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Templeton Press; First Edition edition (May 18, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1599473518
  • ISBN-13: 978-1599473512
  • Product Dimensions: 9.1 x 6.5 x 1.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (21 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,491,099 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Book Description

In the twentieth century, free people faced a number of mortal threats, ranging from despotism, fascism, and communism to the looming menace of global terrorism. While
the struggle against some of these overt dangers continues, some insidious new threats seem to have slipped past our intellectual defenses. These new threats are quietly eroding our hard-won freedoms, often unchallenged and, in some cases, widely accepted as beneficial.

In New Threats to Freedom, editor and author Adam Bellow has assembled an all-star line up of innovative thinkers to challenge these insidious new threats. Some leap into already raging debates on issues such as Sharia law in the West, the rise of transnationalism, and the regulatory state. Others turn their attention to less obvious threats, such as the dogma of fairness, the failed promises of the blogosphere, and the triumph of behavioral psychology. These threats are very real and very urgent, yet this collection avoids projecting an air of doom and gloom. Rather, it provides a blueprint for intellectual resistance so that modern defenders of liberty may better understand their enemies, more effectively fight to preserve the meaning of freedom, and more surely carry its light to a new generation.
 
Contributors include: Anne Applebaum, Bruce Bawer, Peter Berkowitz, Max Borders, Richard A. Epstein, Jessica Gavora, Michael Goodwin, Daniel Hannan, Alexander Harrington, Mark Helprin, Christopher Hitchens, Robert D. Kaplan, James Kirchick, Greg Lukianoff, Barry C. Lynn, David Mamet, Katherine Mangu-Ward, Tara McKelvey, Mark T. Mitchell, Michael C. Moynihan, Chris Norwood, Glenn Harlan Reynolds, Naomi Schaefer Riley, Christine Rosen, Ron Rosenbaum, Stephen Schwartz, Lee Siegel, Christina Hoff Sommers, Shelby Steele, and Dennis Whittle.

Adam Bellow is vice president/executive editor at Harper-Collins. He has also been an executive editor at Doubleday (Random House) and was formerly editorial director of The Free Press (Simon & Schuster). His essays and articles have appeared in numerous publications. He is also the author of In Praise of Nepotism: A History of Family Enterprise from King David to George W. Bush (Anchor).

About the Author

Adam Bellow is vice president/executive editor at Harper-Collins. He has also been an executive editor at Doubleday (Random House) and was formerly editorial director of The Free Press (Simon & Schuster). His essays and articles have appeared in numerous publications. He is also the author of In Praise of Nepotism: A History of Family Enterprise from King David to George W. Bush (Anchor).

Customer Reviews

4.1 out of 5 stars
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All in all, I heartily recommend this riveting collection.
T. Gervat
Without pointing fingers at specific individuals, I will say that a few of the "threats" seemed somewhat overblown if not frivolous complaints.
Tyr Shadowblade (TM)
The writing is generally high quality but there are a wide variety of styles, themes and issues that make this an uneven read.
DWD's Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

24 of 26 people found the following review helpful By T. Gervat on May 18, 2010
Format: Hardcover
This eminently insightful compilation begs to be read, if for no other reason than its star value alone. Where else are you going to find everyone from Shelby Steele to Christopher Hitchens to Michael Goodwin all in the same volume with up-to-the minute relevantly readable essays? I couldn't stop reading one piece after the other, on into the night.
This volume is not "luminous" in the dreamy buzzword sort of way, but quite illuminating if you're not given to cowering in the face of reality. Avoiding the trap of clinical coldness, these pieces radiate strong arguments against the cultural/political insanity of the moment and in favor of exerting a gritty muscular truth against the delusional madness that surrounds us and imagines it can have it's way.
But through all of the smoke of battle, life, charm, and wit still manage to wonderfully assert themselves. My favorite gems were "The Rise of Antireligious Orthodoxy" by Mark Helprin (who manages to open with yet another one of his engaging Hudson River boyhood memories) and Mark T. Michell's "Ingratitude and the Death of Freedom". All in all, I heartily recommend this riveting collection.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Benjamin Lukoff VINE VOICE on September 8, 2010
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
"Reason" in the headline refers to the libertarian magazine Reason, which I've subscribed to in the past but have let lapse because it annoys me so much. Not because I disagree with what its writers and editors have to say, but because what they describe is so maddening. I suppose it's a form of denial. (One of its editors, Michael C. Moynihan, is a contributor to this volume.)

This book is a bit similar. I selected it because of the Christopher Hitchens essay, and he did not disappoint. I found much to agree with in the other essays, as well.

However, I did notice a bit of a rightward slant: Bruce Bawer, Christina Hoff Sommers, Michael Goodwin, Christine Rosen -- and the editor himself, Adam Bellow. None, of course, is Glenn Beck, and there's nothing wrong with right-libertarianism.

However, I think this book may be preaching to the choir. It might have been more useful to assemble a volume that spoke of the Bush administration as much as it did of the Obama administration, and that might have spoken more to the left-libertarians among us. They are less likely to be perusing this volume, I feel. Similarly, I see Republicans more than Democrats picking this one up. A different editorial approach might have made that less likely.

Still and all, a worthy volume.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Katherine Scott on July 29, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I haven't finished this quite yet, but I am breezing through it steadily. I would urge people of all political opinions to read this; it's not too narrow a viewpoint so as to exclude anyone from appreciating at least a few of the chapters, each written by a different writer. My particular favorite (so far) is been Christopher Hitchen's essay. For anyone concerned with how cavalierly this country is forgetting the core values of any good free democracy, there is indeed something in this book that will intrigue and stimulate you
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Tyr Shadowblade (TM) VINE VOICE on February 18, 2011
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
I received "New Threats to Freedom" for review and read it over the course of 2 weeks. 30 essays all written by different authors with a variety of political viewpoints. Myself, I'm rather open-minded on most issues, so whether someone is biased by the Left or the Right doesn't bother me, so long as they present their argument in an intelligent and well reasoned fashion. Most of the essayists managed to do this much. Without pointing fingers at specific individuals, I will say that a few of the "threats" seemed somewhat overblown if not frivolous complaints. A few of the writers were obviously very rigid in their beliefs and did not want to let things like facts and common sense damper their bombast. About a third of the essays either seemed exaggerated or fueled by the author's own bitter experience with unfair treatment by a soulless bureaucracy. That being said, there is indeed some solid data here, as well as a few patterns of abuse you might well be unaware of due to a virtual media blackout on certain taboo issues. You may be shocked by some of the essays herein. Life is not fair, and conspiracies do indeed exist (usually with the end goal being either profit or the advancement of some do-gooder social agenda). Overall, this book was a worthwhile read, but the value of individual essays is hit or miss. Check it out for yourself.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By E. Swope VINE VOICE on October 22, 2010
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
For the most part, or should I say, initially, I enjoyed reading New Threats to Freedom. The essays are intelligently written and go at a variety of issues from unusual perspectives. As a piece of literature it was a delight to read. However, while the essays addressed different themes, after reading several it was impossible not to note a decided slant. Several of the essayists lost the point they were carefully guiding the reader towards by decending into juvenile name calling. By the time I finished reading this book I felt like I was witness to a hostile high school debate tournament where the team had challenged itself to present intelligent arguments to counterpoint the perspective of the prevailing intelligencia, at this point in time, spearing the liberal left. The feeling of bitterness at being sidelined comes through loud and clear. This is unfortunate. What could have served to broaden people's minds (it was how I initially approached the book) and lend another perspective became a lightly veiled attack launched by highly educated and intelligent people with a bone to pick.
Nonetheless, I see some value in the book, but that mostly in the reparte; that is, I enjoyed reading intelligently written essays but was glad that I was not in a room (classroom, dinner table) with any of them.
The book would have benefited a great deal from a more balanced perspective.
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