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Journalist Blumenthal documents the movement of conservative evangelicals from the political wings to center stage, delving into the psyches of those who now lead a Republican Party "fixated on abortion, homosexuality and abstinence education; resentful and angry." Guided by Eric Hoffer's 1951 cult classic The True Believer ("Faith in a holy cause, is to some extent a substitute for the lost faith in ourselves,") and Eric Fromm's 1941 psychoanalytical study of the Nazi movement (Escape from Freedom), Blumnthal suggests that childhood abuse has shaped the personalities of key leaders, including Focus on the Family guru James Dobson. Blumenthal is at his best examining these characters up close, including presidential hopeful Newt Gingrich and his born-again conversion; John Hagee, a Pentecostal pastor who lauded Hitler for "forcing the Jews to Israel"; Sarah Palin, whose political aspirations first came to her as part of a religious conversion; and evangelical pastor Ted Haggard, a self-proclaimed spiritual warrior caught in a relationship with a male prostitute. For those who enjoyed Jeff Sharlet's Capitol Hill exposé The Family, this makes a spicy follow-up.
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"With scarcely more than a pith helmet, a notebook, and a tattered copy of Escape from Freedom, Erich Fromm’s great study of authoritarian psychology, the dauntless Max Blumenthal set forth years ago to explore the dank forests of American Christianism. Now he has returned to civilization, bringing back a fine collection of shrunken heads and a riveting account of a religio-political subculture that’s even weirder than you thought it was. Republican Gomorrah is an irresistable combination of anthropology and psychopathology that exerts the queasy fascination of (let’s face it) something very like pornography."
“A brave and resourceful reporter adept at turning over rocks that public-relations-savvy Christian conservative leaders would prefer remain undisturbed.”
—Rick Perlstein, New York Times Book Review
“Max Blumenthal’s bold and brash reporting style should not overshadow his keen understanding of the extremist ideology that passes for “conservatism” in America today. A witty writer who thinks for himself, he shows the mainstream media where the story is, not vice versa. And his short videos have transformed the conservative crack-up into must-see TV.”
This book gives great insight as to how the republican party was ruined and became the party of crazy religious zealots.Published 5 months ago by M. Davitt
A very readable account. Mr Blumenthal recites a lot of history that we may already know but adds interesting background that was not broadcast during the actual events.Published 6 months ago by Grateful
Disclosure: I haven't finished this book yet, but I can't put it down! I just finished the first section last night. Mr. Blumenthal's insights are keen and illuminating. Read morePublished 8 months ago by Lawrence Siden
Fascinating book filled with facts and in depth explanations of the thought processes behind hard right thinking.Published 9 months ago by Amazon Customer
This is the second book I read by Blumenthal. It is the best political book I have read in a while. It is a page-turner that I had a hard time putting down from start to finish. Read morePublished 9 months ago by Francis de Sales