Customer Reviews: The Revolution: A Manifesto
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VINE VOICEon July 30, 2008
Ron Paul presents the most logical and non-politically driven viewpoint on all facets of government that exists among the political elite. In The Revolution: a Manifesto, Paul briefly covers many facets of his objectives including views on foreign policy, monetary policy, abortion, free trade, and an assortment of laissez-faire convictions.

This book will immediately resonate with anyone already open to Paul's views or familiar with the Austrian school of economic thought. However, in anticipation of a book intended to cause a revolution, as its title would suggest, I was disappointed that Paul's work was not written in a more convincing manner. Having read Paul's book "A Foreign Policy of Freedom" and discovering one of the most convincing compositions on the topic I have ever read, my expectations were exceedingly high for the Revolution. While Paul presents a strong case in many areas of the book, he rarely dealt with common objections that skeptics reading this book typically would put forth. Thus I do not believe this rates high enough that I could put this in the hands of a skeptic and feel confident that Paul's positions would be adequately defined in a compelling enough manner.

Areas of this book that I felt Paul could have added far more focus:

- Government's Role: Paul asserts that one of this nation's problems is people's perception that government should be "providing from cradle to grave", an outstanding point. However, Paul would have been much better served explaining why a reliance on government is not only a detriment to oneself, but also to the population as a whole, but instead chose to stand meekly on the hopes that this point would be obvious to all with no further explanation. If that were true, this nation would already look vastly different.

- Federal Reserve: Paul states the importance of the issue of not being able to audit the Federal Reserve but makes little mention of the absolutely frightening realty of having a private entity printing our money with no clear auditing process. Paul was called a "kook" and seen as "crazy" by the public on a massive scale because people did not understand his views on removing the Federal Reserve; thus more attention to this topic should have been essential to the book. The bulk of the population is unfamiliar with economics beyond basic college entry courses and does not understand how the US would avoid future depressions without having a Federal Reserve managing its money supply. These are concerns Paul should have addressed if the true intent is really to sway public opinion. Had Paul provided as convincing a case against the Fed as he did regarding the explanation of inflation, this section would have been a giant success.

- Gold Standard: Although Paul has an entire book on his views of the Gold Standard, as a topic that is widely misunderstood, Paul missed a chance to provide a much more convincing case in this particular chapter. Paul unfortunately chose not to address some of the most common objections to the Gold Standard such as gold supply and limiting aspects relative to a growing economy and population, instead choosing only to suggest it is the answer to inflation.

- US Policing the World: Paul's position of reducing US military intervention and eventual reductions of US bases and forces around the world may be logical to those with a full understanding of his views prior to reading this book; however, to the average Republican, Democrat, or even Independent reaching for this book to gauge what Paul is all about, they will still be left with questions regarding how safe we are without policing the world and what in fact the troops would be doing upon returning to the US. Paul is more than equipped to aptly address these concerns, but regrettably does not in this book.

- The Constitution: The core of all of Paul's beliefs is centered on the fact that the constitution was created to protect the people from government, not the other way around. I was astonished to find so little explanation of the critical importance of understanding this principle considering this is so central to his views and perhaps is the most prominent issue that differentiates Paul from nearly all other politicians.

One of the most attractive aspects of Ron Paul's political agenda is that he has chosen to discuss the actual validity of policies while other candidates seem stuck on discussing how to implement policies already in place. If this book accomplishes nothing else but gathering support for a discussion on the soundness of US policies, than it is indubitably a success; however, considering the strength and soundness of Paul's positions, the lack of convincing arguments in this book leaves me wondering if he missed a golden opportunity to truly affect public opinion.
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on May 8, 2015
This book was an easy reading. It provide insight that I was personally missing. The book also helped me understand a new school of economic thoughts, inflation and more about the government intervention and the negative impact that could introduce. The author's call for nonintervention foreign policy sounds convincing yet poses a moral question that remained unanswered! The first two chapters of the book were vocal and speech type of text. The rest of the book chapters mellowed down and the tone became more book like narrative. I will definitely recommend the book to my friends yet wouldn't give more than three stars!
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on February 8, 2009
The lack of footnotes or end notes in this book is inexcusable. In spite of making excellent points about the state of the country, its founders, and its future, the lack of sources is baffling.

Furthermore, the one source that I tried to check (John Stewart interviewing Alan Greenspan), was misrepresented, I felt, in the book. Congressman Paul made it sound like Alan Greenspan didn't have an answer when John Stewart asked, "So why do we need a Federal Reserve?" Greenspan, in fact, did have an answer to this question. Go check it out on YouTube for yourself.

Finally, whoever typeset/proofread this book needs to be fired.

I like Ron Paul, and I wish there were more people like him in office. Unfortunately, the technical aspects of this book detract credibility from the excellent message he presents in it.
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on January 18, 2012

After painfully walking through all 25 pages of the 1-star
reviews, I was in search of one which was an "Amazon
Verified Purchase" (AVP) since I would then be interested
in their comment.

Result: of the 242 1-star comments on 25 pages, NONE show
up as Amazon Verified Purchase. Not even ONE!!!

I decided to review the 5-stars. In the first 10 pages,
there were 65 Amazon Verified Purchase comments (may have changed slightly since this review).

Conclusion: VERY high probability that 1-star reviewers
are liars when they imply that they've read the book since there's
a high probability that they don't even own the book. Conversely,
5-star reviews have a high incidence of purchasing the book.
Its those 5-star AVP commentators that I take seriously as I
do any-star AVPs.
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on July 26, 2011
I purchased this book need to gain insight on Ron Paul, which it provided very well. I believe the author could have progressed on his thoughts and ideas more, as to explain the "cause and affects" of the direction he believes the country should go. My opinion is, ideas are well explained in some areas and very vague in others, seems like the book was written in haste without the proper thought and research. Overall, the authors values and morals are of the hightest standards and I believe he has the best intentions for the country, just not the most well thought out.
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on October 24, 2015
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on February 20, 2010
I already agreed with many of Ron Paul's political views and hoped to find a factual persuasive prose that might inspire the masses. Instead it created doubts in my support of Ron as a potential leader among leaders. I really liked his use of the term Republicrats, and his stance on finance, the Fed, our bloated military spending, Iran, civil liberties with some exceptions, and for the most part his interpretation of the original constitution. I have read many other works that centered on one topic that far better explained the topic than Ron's synopsis. Before one gives blind faith and heroic elevation to our founding fathers, I would suggest first reading: A Peoples' History of the United States by Howard Zinn. When Ron says there were "alleged monopolies" that ...dictated prices to hapless consumers. Laborers were forced to accept ever-lower wages. And thanks to their superior economic position, giant corporations effortlessly parried the attempts of anyone foolish enough to try to compete with them.", I was astonished, and when he continues with the next sentence I have to think he is ignorant in many aspects of US history.
"Every single aspect of this story is false, though of course this version of history continues to be peddled and believed." He refers to the struggles of the working masses (as little as they are portrayed in public schools) as " a comic-book version of history." WOW !!! Tell this to the West Virginia Coal Miners who were paid with company credit and had to live in company owned housing and whose "coupons fell short of covering the basics as they could only be used at company owned stores.This was not limited to West Virginia. To completely ignore the struggles of the working classes and believe unfettered free market capitalism is the answer to all our problems is beyond belief. Even today, we have sweat shops in this country, and certainly our predatory corporations have outsourced these sweat shops to foreign countries.
Our founding fathers created a working constitution that served their needs and remarkably has been flexible enough to change with the times. However we must remember that less than 50 % of the people were represented in the original government. One had to be a MALE LAND OWNER in order to vote and slavery was condoned as it had been from Jamestown to that time. The founding fathers were human.
I was most disappointed in a lack of clear plan to move his agenda forward. How would he propose to handle all the problems arising from a move to a gold standard and abolishing the FED ?
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on January 9, 2012
There is a poster on the wall of my university library that describes information found on the internet as being "A mile wide, and an inch deep." I don't know where this quote originally came from, but to me it pretty much sums up this book. Dr. Paul presents some very interesting and unorthodox ideas in this book, but unfortunately fails to give them much supporting evidence. This book tries to cover every topic imaginable... taxes, government spending, abortion, the federal reserve, civil liberties, foreign policy, the constitution, the drug war, etc. I am not saying that these are not topics worthy of discussion. The problem is that he does it all in about 180 pages. Every one of these topics could fill up an entire book, and he glosses over most of them in a page or two. I would guess that it probably took me a grand total of nine hours to read this book, and they were easy hours. I think he spread this book too thin, trying to cover everything without really explaining anything in detail. He sometimes changes topics in the middle of the page without any warning.
And then there are the things that I just plain disagree with. I won't go into it in detail. Some were historical, some were just personal opinions based on my own experiences. I won't bore you with them. I was a little bit surprised by the lack of negative feedback. For the record, I am a young moderate who has unfortunately had the opportunity to vote for both George Bush and Barack Obama. I think this is part of Dr. Paul's appeal. I may not agree with him all the time, but he is at least refreshingly unique.
The kindle version of this book is ten bucks. The hardcover 14 bucks. Would I recommend it? If you would like a general overview of Dr. Paul's opinions it is a decent read. If you are looking for in-depth analysis, or if you are already familiar with many of his opinions, you will probably be disappointed. Go to the library and read a respectable history book instead.
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on March 17, 2011
Even if you agree or disagree with the topics of this book, I found the book to be "light" and made for the masses. I can understand that is a book proposing one point of view. I would rather have a book that explore both point of view.

In general, the reason that I don't give this book 5 stars it is because doesn't have enough facts and too many opinions. For example, when he says : "... One of the great political and economic writers of all time... " it is purely based on a opinion.

I think Ron Paul, who I respect, could have a more lengthy book with more facts supported by lots of bibliography. As a highly educated person, I expect more than the average person.

I still think for people interested in history and current events, this is a book to have.

However, I was expecting a bit more from Ron Paul and maybe next book will be much better!
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on June 22, 2011
Ron Paul is an interesting individual considering he's the Dennis Kucinich of the ultra- rightwing Paleo -Conservative movement. Some of his ideas seem practical on the surface, but when you ponder deeply upon his suggestions, one starts to see a lot of holes in his axiomatic conclusions.
The truth is I totally agree with him that the Keynesian economic system that is being propagated and executed by the liberal (socialist) left doesn't work, but we have to be mindful that the Milton Friedman economics model doesn't work either.
Friedman's philosophy falls in line with Adam Smith's laissez-faire economics, which the neo-liberal Reaganites dubbed Reaganomics. Some of us older folks remember when this was called "VOO DOO ECONOMICS!"

At some point the American people need to come to an elucidation that we need an amalgam of Keynesian economics fused with Friedman's philosophy. The problem with Ron Paul's perspective is that he wants to slowly wean us off of government programs and let the private sector have complete control over commerce, medical, educational institutions, and so on.... which is a utopian philosophy that is not viable simply because you have to factor in human nature. The bottom line is the poor and downtrodden individuals would get trampled upon if Dr. Paul's Manifesto became reality.

But what I do like about Dr. Paul is that he is anti-war and he had the gonads to vote against the Iraq war at the expense of being ostracized by his own party. Furthermore, he seems to be sincere about his politics, but the free market system as we know it can't sustain itself because the avaricious oligarchs will always take advantage of the middle class, working poor and the impoverished. I suggest reading Yale Law Professor, Amy Chua's book "World On Fire... How Exporting Free Market Democracy Breeds Ethic Hatred & Global Instability."

In addition, Noam Chomsky in his book "Profit Over People: Neoliberalism & Global Order" quotes a former World Trade Organization official as saying, "This is the place where governments collude in private against their domestic pressure groups. If the walls are breached, the World Trade Organization and similar secret organizations of the rich and powerful might be turned into a happy hunting ground for special interest"(meaning the common people.) Furthermore,"resources are efficiently used when they are directed to short-term profit for private power [which are] served by the governments that collude in private to protect and enhance their power."

This is but one example of how omnipotent the World Trade Organization is.

The World Trade Organization is nothing more than a secret society that is regulating trade throughout the entire world, and they accomplished this feat by using Milton Friedman's free market system, which allowed them to monopolize nearly all the markets in the world. And it is wonderful that Dr. Paul opposes this repressive economic entity.

However, what is disappointing is that many right-wingers never point the finger at what John Perkins author of "Hoodwinked" refers to as the "Corporatocracy" and that's where the battle has to be fought.

Dr. Paul seems to have an isolationist mindset, which to some extent I'm in favor of because of what our country and economy metastasized into, but how do you combat the iniquitous behavior of the IMF, The World Bank, and USAID?

Well, Dr. Paul vehemently attacks the World Trade Organization and the Federal Reserve Banking system, and rightly so, but my question is if we dump the FED what monetary system are we going to use? We can't trust the Government to govern our money supply on it's own any more than the FED. I suggest reading G. Edward Griffin's " The Creature From Jekyll Island," which Ron Paul indorses, but Dr. Paul and Griffin both seem to have trouble envisioning viable solutions to America's overall problems.

Nevertheless, I agree with Ron Paul that our elections are a farce. In Chapter 1 of his book he was spot on about the false choices we have in presidential candidates every four years.
It is also a marvel considering that the grassroots movement mobilized behind Dr. Paul was all but ignored during the 2008 elections. To find out why this happens so frequently I suggest reading Jeff Cohen's "Cable News Confidential" you'll witness first hand how the mainstream media spins the news and regurgitates neo-liberal talking points.

I also agree with Dr. Paul about our Constitution being trounced upon by certain government officials and that we desperately need to adhere to what the founding fathers laid down for us, but I don't agree with him about health care. Health care should be a constitutional right not a privilege. I do agree that there is a lot of government red tape when it comes to our health care system, but that's because the government really doesn't want to provide an adequate universal health care plan that will service every American. And let's be mindful, universal healthcare does work. For proof I suggest reading T.R. Reid's "The United States of Europe" to see how the EU healthcare system works for the underprivileged class.

Overall, "The Revolution" is an excellent read even though it has faults, but it pretty much falls in line with Howard Zinn's book "Passionate Declarations." Of course, Zinn's book embraces a Marxist principles, but the historical facts in it are staggering and correlates with much of what Dr. Paul writes in his Manifesto.

After reading this book I concluded that Dr. Paul possess the heart and soul of a leftwing liberal, but the pragmatism of a true conservative,which is refreshing to see because he's one of the few Republicans that I believe would work with the Democratic party even-handedly.

"The Tea Party" lost its way when they left him out in the cold.

Other books I recommend to read along this one are:

Martin Luther King Jr. "I Have a Dream: Writings & Speeches That Changed The World"

Cornel West "Democracy Matters"

David Harvey "A Brief History of Neoliberalism"
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