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51 of 59 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Root's approach is subtle
I have read the entire book, but I have not discussed it with anyone else who has read it. It seems to me that Root's major purpose with this book is to persuade conservatives to become libertarians in their thinking. This is not a book that seems to have the major purpose of persuading Libertarians to nominate Root for president.

Root's technique for moving...
Published on August 3, 2009 by Richard Winger

versus
32 of 43 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars A long title for a long-winded book
If nothing else, Wayne Root deserves some kind of prize for coming up with one of the world's longest book titles: 30 syllables by my count. The title is meant to evoke Barry Goldwater's "Conscience of A Conservative," published almost half a century ago, and I'm sure that Mr. Root would like his book to become as influential as Goldwater's was. Unfortunately for him,...
Published on August 3, 2009 by David F. Nolan


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51 of 59 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Root's approach is subtle, August 3, 2009
By 
Richard Winger (San Francisco, CA USA) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: The Conscience of a Libertarian: Empowering the Citizen Revolution with God, Guns, Gold and Tax Cuts (Hardcover)
I have read the entire book, but I have not discussed it with anyone else who has read it. It seems to me that Root's major purpose with this book is to persuade conservatives to become libertarians in their thinking. This is not a book that seems to have the major purpose of persuading Libertarians to nominate Root for president.

Root's technique for moving conservatives to more libertarian thinking seems to be to show at the beginning that he has been a conservative himself, and that he still appreciates the values that conservatives value. So, as one reads through the book, Root seems to evolve. For example, page 24 seems to indicate he is only opposed to drug prohibition when the federal government does it. If someone stops reading there, that is the impression one will have of Root's thinking. But, on pages 79-81, the book makes a strong case against any government (state or local as well as federal) from blocking medical marijuana. Then, on pages 225-226, he makes a stronger, more emotional case against drug laws. Then, on pages 260-263, he talks about the horrible way in which Steve Kubby was persecuted.

Root's education policy also seems to change as one reads further into the book. Pages 164-167 seems to endorse the idea that state and local government should handle education. But, when one reads further, there is a big shift. Page 207 says, "As long as most of our children are educated in government-run public schools, the government bureaucrats running them will instill the idea into the heads of their captive audience (our children) that more govenment is better."

In order for a book to persuade, the reader must be open to persuasion. Root's technique probably works better than most books do to persuade conservatives toward libertarianism. I have re-reviewed all the campaign books published by Libertarian presidential nominees (all LP presidential nominees wrote a campaign book, either before or after they were nominated, except for Andre Marrou). I believe that this is the best book for persuading conservatives toward libertarianism, of any of those books. There are times when I was angry at Root's book, but those moments came less and less frequently as I kept reading. It is not fair to the book to put it down without reading all of it. And, it is never boring. I spotted a few factual errors but no non-fiction book of this length is ever perfectly accurate.
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46 of 59 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Man with a Plan. Period., August 6, 2009
By 
This review is from: The Conscience of a Libertarian: Empowering the Citizen Revolution with God, Guns, Gold and Tax Cuts (Hardcover)
Wayne Allyn Root GETS IT. And he knows how to unscrew a screwed up country.

Wayne Allyn Root is a sharp, savvy, creative, free-thinking, ballsy Nevada politician, honest, with great no-nonsense communication skills, a small business owner, an authentic shrink-government libertarian, a big-thinker, a big-picture realist with foresight willing to reach out to different groups, a coalition-builder. He's a man with a plan.

And Wayne Allyn Root is running for president in 2012. He's worth watching. He's SUPREMELY INTERESTING. He's eminently quotable. There's a chance he might actually win. And this excellent book (1) describes him and his values (2) outlines his electoral strategy for winning the presidency (3) critiques American politics and (4) offers his fix.

I'm non-partisan, an independent thinker and TOUGH CRITIC (see my other book reviews) but I couldn't help thinking, as I read through this excellent book, that Wayne Allyn Root UNDERSTANDS. I found this book refreshing, intelligent, speaking to the heart. There are a few things I disagree, with which will always be the case with any book I review, but I think America would be in much better shape with Wayne Allyn Root at the helm.

What I found profoundly interesting was his strategy for winning. Any serious student of American history knows that rarely, if ever, have third party candidates ever been successful. The American system is a two-party system. But there is tremendous disenchantment with both parties, particularly with the Republican party, by voters -- he uses the term "battered voter" syndrome. I think he's right that the electorate leans center-right. He criticizes both parties for having an agenda at odds with public well-being. But voters describing themselves as libertarian may be, perhaps, 1% to 2% of the electorate. So, what's a libertarian to do?

He details nine segments to appeal to:
(1) Independent minded small business owners (like himself; sizeable numbers, $ for support)
(2) Parents upset with poor education, particularly home-schooler types
(3) On-line gaming and poker enthusiasts -- casino owners will have much-needed cash to support his candidacy
(4) conservative voters who feel abandoned by the GOP (sizeable chunk of voters)
(5) Ron Paul supporters (5% perhaps of electorate?) -- he's "Ron Paul on steroids", younger, more energetic
(6) Younger voters and college students (helpful for campaigning, but younger voters mostly don't vote)
(7) Healthy and holistic living types (some may not be happy with his stance on global warming; he feels it's overblown)
(8) Gun rights (hunters, owners) -- a significant, passionate group
(9) Locally elected officials, mostly Republicans disillusioned with the GOP and Bush (sensible)

He reaches out to Christians, as well, saying he prays every day. The word "God" appears in the book's subtitle. But he argues persuasively for separation of church and state -- Christians mustn't impose their ideas on others lest another religion come to power. Perhaps many Christians will buy into this, but whether they'll accept his Jewish background remains to be seen. Doing Venn diagrams of these groups -- Christians, gun-owners, and gamblers -- and you've got significant voters if you use the word "OR" to conjoin the circles, but few if you use "AND". Will Christians not vote for him because of his pro-gambling stance? Or will he pick up both Christians and gamblers?

My rudimentary knowledge of marketing suggests this is a sensible beginning for a political campaign. He knows his base. So there's a chance that he might be able to break out of the libertarian box, get some traction, become a viable candidate, and in a campaign move to the center, and possibly win. He might pull off a Ross Perot, hopefully better. But surely he knows what political consultants know, that this will be a tremendously uphill battle. America is image-land, entertainment-ville; candidates succeed by looking pretty, saying pretty things, numbing people with bromides and inane promises. And Wayne Allyn Root speaks truthfully and doesn't present his face on the book's cover -- a seasoned political consultant would sense an image problem from two counties away.

Wayne Allyn Root's critique of America is tough and intelligent. Government employee unions have gone wild. They're a privileged bunch. "Why do public employees ... deserve higher compensation than private sector employees?" he asks. He's critical of California's big government, big taxes, special interests. I delight in his plain-writing ability: "No politician in the US at any level of office should serve more than two to three terms. Period." He writes with a plain, no-nonsense, easy-to-grasp style which people instantly get. If he speaks like he writes, he'll be a strong contender.

He grasps the fundamental importance of states' rights. He believes "competition among the states for business and residents (will) likely becomes fierce". This means freedom for us -- fifty ongoing political experiments vying for our approval -- and this is one part of my solution to prevent tyranny and terrorism (see my book below).

If elected president, Wayne Allyn Root would impound funds (Jefferson did this, Nixon too) and return unused monies to the people. I approve. He argues "most government spending today is in violation of Article I, Section 8, of our Constitution". His hero is Barry Goldwater, a tough free-thinking Arizona Republican from the sixties. He'd stop all unfunded mandates. He'd abolish the alphabet soup of government agencies and -- what's particularly ballsy -- he lists the agencies by name over two pages. Perhaps 70 agencies in all (sorry, I didn't count) including Amtrak, Ginnie Mae, the IRS. I agree with him that employees of these mostly useless agencies do very little to help us, work 9am-5pm while private-sector Americans sometimes work 12 and 14 hour days. The Internal Revenue Service with it's 70,000+ page tax control is a behemoth of outrageousness in my view (great alternative: "FairTax"). I'd go further: I'd abolish the US Post Office. Wayne Allyn Root would abolish the Federal Reserve System, noting that there's nothing in the Constitution allowing a central bank. He's right. He writes: "When we're done, the US government will be so small that it will be a one-line listing in the white pages of your local telephone directory." I love it.

Wayne Allyn Root would legalize gambling from coast to coast, and in this respect, I'm somewhat more cautious. He believes gambling revenues would bring in huge revenue, which is probably correct. He writes: "That's $50 billion -- with a B." But I see gambling as a negative regressive tax, a non-productive activity, a statistical trick to extract money from fools; yet, at the same time, I'm highly in favor of freedom of people to do what they want. My preference is each state to regulate gambling as they choose. But generally I like the idea of his "Nevada Model" being extended from coast to coast.

He'd legalize medical marijuana. I believe all drugs should be legalized (again, part of a terrorism prevention strategy) because it undermines the incentive of criminal enterprises to supply these drugs. I think an intelligent compromise is to restrict drug use to specific times and places, and to penalize violence, not vice. Wayne Allyn Root correctly notes that there are huge swaths of the government which owe their livelihood to the dubious activity of trying to enforce drug laws.

As a government reformer, he thinks big. To solve the problem of lobbying controlling congress, he's expand its size to 3000 members, with a ratio of one congressperson for every 100,000 voters, and make being a congressperson a part-time job, with limits of two six-year terms. It would be much harder to bribe such a huge body, he argues. While I think suggestions like these demand more thinking, particularly by an enlightened body such as a Second Constitutional Convention, I applaud Wayne Allyn Root for directing his attention to this problem. He wants a return to "true citizen legislators" who could possibly meet by video-conferencing. He'd rethink voting, perhaps with a "ranked choice voting" method which is fairer to underdog third-party candidates. He favors federal referendums, eliminating earmarks ("Period." he writes), banishing corporate welfare, decreasing foreign aid, allowing any immigrant to move here who agrees to buy a $250K+ house ("That solves our foreclosure problem", he writes; what a smart solution), presidential vetoes, a balanced budget amendment, spending freezes (first day in office, he says, he'd freeze spending), encourage renewable energy, restoring the power of parents regarding matters of educating their children.

He draws a sharp contrast with President Barack Obama. Barack Obama was a law student, law professor, lawyer, community activist, career politician; in contrast, Wayne Allyn Root has been a small business owner, founded a business, created jobs, risked his own money, paid other peoples' health insurance and payroll taxes, faced endless government regulations which interfere with all businesses.

Summing up: a great book by a savvy up-and-coming politician, perhaps the next Ron Paul or Ross Perot or Barry Goldwater, energetic, quotable, sharp. Wayne Allyn Root -- you have my vote. Last, I believe Wayne Allyn Root is sharp enough to be a delegate to the Second Constitutional Convention in July 2010, and I invite him to be a delegate, and I hope he decides to attend.

Thomas W. Sulcer
Author of "The Second Constitution of the United States"
(free on web; google title + Sulcer)
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32 of 43 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Our Next President, August 5, 2009
By 
Kip Herriage (Sugar Land, Tx. United States) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: The Conscience of a Libertarian: Empowering the Citizen Revolution with God, Guns, Gold and Tax Cuts (Hardcover)
Wayne Allyn Root has written an absolute masterpiece that is required reading for anyone that is "mad as hell and not going to take it any longer". If you feel that your voice no longer matters, and that the always conflicted beltway insiders have taken over our once great Republic, then simply read this book...it will embolden and empower you. Unlike many well-known authors, each written word was his own, as he chose not to use a ghostwriter. And for those that know Wayne, either personally or through his many television, radio, and personal appearances (not to mention the fact that he was the VP nominee for the Libertarian Party), you can hear his always conservative, consistent and determined voice speak the words as you read each page. This is Wayne Allyn Root at his absolute best.
Soon, either next month or next year, the public will see the Obama administration for what it is...an attempt to overthrow essentially every important principal that our founding fathers risked their very lives for. When this day comes, Wayne's book will propel him into the center of the debate for returning America to the greatness we once enjoyed. Wayne Allyn Root for President in 2012!

Kip Herriage
CEO, Wealth Masters International
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32 of 43 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars A long title for a long-winded book, August 3, 2009
By 
David F. Nolan (Tucson, AZ United States) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Conscience of a Libertarian: Empowering the Citizen Revolution with God, Guns, Gold and Tax Cuts (Hardcover)
If nothing else, Wayne Root deserves some kind of prize for coming up with one of the world's longest book titles: 30 syllables by my count. The title is meant to evoke Barry Goldwater's "Conscience of A Conservative," published almost half a century ago, and I'm sure that Mr. Root would like his book to become as influential as Goldwater's was. Unfortunately for him, it almost certainly won't.

For one thing, it's WAY too long for a campaign book. And make no mistake, that's what this is. Root is running hard for the Libertarian Party's 2012 Presidential nomination, and this bombastic tome - three and a half times as long as Goldwater's book - is bloated and turgid. He makes some points over and over and OVER, while ignoring many "liberal" aspects of the libertarian political philosophy.

Clearly, his intent here is to sell himself to disgruntled conservatives seeking an alternative to the tired and fractious GOP. This strategy may work, but most longtime libertarians (such as myself) are less than enthralled by his constant evocation of God, and his ludicrous assertion that the United States owes its success to its citizens' faith in God. There are lots of nations founded on adherence to one religion or another, and many of them are authoritarian hellholes.

Will this book help Root win the Libertarian Presidential nomination? I doubt it, because while it will win him praise on the Right, it is likely to alienate many of the Libertarian Party activists who choose their party's national ticket. I've met Wayne on several occasions and he's a likable guy, but his views are a still-evolving mix of libertarian and conservative positions. If they continue to evolve toward a more consistently libertarian stance, he will have a better shot at the 2012 nomination.

To sum up, this is surely not the worst book I've ever read, or even the worst political tract - Mein Kampf probably wins that dubious honor - but there are numerous better books on libertarianism available. Enter "libertarianism" into Amazon's search box (above) and you'll get a list of books on this topic. Almost all are better than Root's effort. (And shorter, too!)
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29 of 40 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars "A lack of depth in Libertarian principles", May 2, 2010
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This review is from: The Conscience of a Libertarian: Empowering the Citizen Revolution with God, Guns, Gold and Tax Cuts (Hardcover)
This book would be more aptly named "Conscience of Another Conservative" or even "Conscience of a Constitutionalist." A reader unfamiliar with the Libertarian Party (LP) will have difficulty understanding what distinguishes it from the Constitution Party or even from the traditional conservative wing of the Republican Party.

Nowhere does the author, who supported John McCain's GOP presidential bid before becoming an LP member in late 2007, indicate that he is even aware of the distinction himself. Indeed, on page 24 he states: "As a Libertarian, I believe that social and personal freedom issues are quite simply States' Rights' issues. ... Voters should decide these issues on the state and local level." Mr. Root's stand is Constitutionalist, not Libertarian. Libertarians believe that social and personal freedoms are individual rights. Government's role is to protect these rights, not to give voters the option of taking them away state-by-state.

Libertarians "oppose the initiation of force to achieve political or social goals;" new members are asked to acknowledge their support of this non-aggression principle or "Good Neighbor Policy" when they join. Libertarians extrapolate their positions from this cherished idea, which is why the LP is called the "Party of Principle." Mr. Root's failure to integrate his stands under this bedrock of libertarian philosophy makes them seem like a mishmash of unrelated positions. Indeed, much of what the author proposes, such as increasing the size of Congress and paying our elected officials more (pp. 201-203) directly contradicts the LP's pledge of "smaller government."

Throughout the book, the author calls himself a "libertarian conservative," a confusing and perhaps meaningless descriptor in a Party that historically prides itself as being "fiscally conservative and socially liberal." Mr. Root may not have fully grasped that libertarians consider themselves "beyond right and left."

While the author criticizes both Republicans and Democrats, he has never a bad word to say about conservatives and a multitude of denigrating comments about liberals, another indication that he still thinks of himself as a conservative, rather than a Libertarian. Consequently, liberal readers may get the mistaken impression that the LP is antagonistic to liberal goals.

As a former liberal, an LP member for almost three decades, and two-term At-Large representative of the governing body of the LP, I can attest to the fact that libertarian solutions have repeatedly been shown to save the environment, keep our streets safe, make health care affordable, and give the poor their best chance to escape the poverty trap. Liberal readers should not assume that Mr. Root's antagonism is representative of the LP's attitude towards the genuine issues that liberals seek to address.

The author spends most of the book regaling his readership with entertaining anecdotes about the dangers of government waste and overspending. Although a bit long-winded and repetitious at times, his common-sense analysis of our economic woes helped me justify a two-star rating for this book. The misleading statements about what it means to be a Libertarian keeps me from recommending it more highly.
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9 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Revolution Is Here!, August 29, 2009
This review is from: The Conscience of a Libertarian: Empowering the Citizen Revolution with God, Guns, Gold and Tax Cuts (Hardcover)
Wayne Root is the anti-candidate, unlike all others he won't compromise his values to get elected. He is the politician (I don't even like calling him that) that I have been waiting for all my life. What I like most about his explanation of Libertarianism is that it makes sense. He makes that case that one can not use government to impose their view on others or confiscate wealth, an important part of liberty that hopefully will bring divergent electors into the party.

Reading this book was such a treat, I looked forward to Root's practical concepts and plans that could actually put a Libertarian in the White House. If Wayne Root is unable to save America I foresee secession as the only option to bring back a republican form of governance, either way something good is going to happen.
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11 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars WAR for small business, August 12, 2009
By 
DannyG (Los Angeles, CA) - See all my reviews
This review is from: The Conscience of a Libertarian: Empowering the Citizen Revolution with God, Guns, Gold and Tax Cuts (Hardcover)
I thought this was a great book! I am a small business owner from the non-friendly business state of California and I know Wayne to be the most prominent small business supporter in all of politics. He is a fighter for the interests of people like me...I own a small growing company with two employees. This doesn't seem like much, but companies like mine produce 75% of the new jobs in America. We need someone with small business experience who understands the interests of enrepreneurs in the White House. Wayne is the anti-Obama as he has started and funded businesses, created jobs, taken care of payrolls and health insurance. Unfortunately, Obama has never done any of that. Obama is proving himself to be 'the king of debt, deficit, bailouts, earmarks, and (wasteful) stimulus'. Wayne knows how to run a business on a budget and shouldn't our leaders know that?? We need somelike like Mr. Root to save this country from itself. I recommened this book for all of the small business owners out there.
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18 of 25 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I can't believe I love a political book!, July 14, 2009
This review is from: The Conscience of a Libertarian: Empowering the Citizen Revolution with God, Guns, Gold and Tax Cuts (Hardcover)
I am sick of the 2 party system that is failing us all. I got this book and loved it. It is wonderful insightful book that gets right to the point. It makes so much sense. This should be required reading for Congress.
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30 of 43 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Better: The Conscience of an American, July 15, 2009
This review is from: The Conscience of a Libertarian: Empowering the Citizen Revolution with God, Guns, Gold and Tax Cuts (Hardcover)
The United States of American is not about
Socialism, Totalitarianism, Dictatorship.

It is not about government control and ownership of corporations...including banks.

It is not about government stealing one person's money
and handing it to another.

The United Statse of America is about Freedom, Liberty, the
driving force of the American Dream.

Wayne Root exemplifies the word American and cuts to pieces
the notion that what is in Washington DC today is in any way
the "right direction."

Root knows his subject. It's about creating a clear cut line
between socialistic philosophy and freedom, liberty.

Root believes in God, the right to bear arms, the right to do
what you want to do within your own home (crazy notion that is),
the right to gamble. This author believes that you are the author
of your destiny and not the government.

Because of these principles, this philosophy that founded this
country...that drove people to live and thrive here...it takes
very little to prove that in almost every facet of government...
we are moving in the wrong direction at an accelerating pace.

This book brings back the concepts of freedom and liberty and puts
them at the forefront of the thinking man and woman's mind.

At no point does Root yield that the government can do a better
job at running your life than you can.

He's not only for smaller government he is vocal about a VERY SMALL
government.

Prepare to be moved, prodded and pushed into bringing this nation back
to it's original thinking.

This book should be required reading for every American. The solutions
to some of the biggest problems facing the United States are here.

It has my highest recmmendation.

Kevin Hogan, Psy.D.
Author of The Science of Influence
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15 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Just Glad I Bought This Book!, August 5, 2009
This review is from: The Conscience of a Libertarian: Empowering the Citizen Revolution with God, Guns, Gold and Tax Cuts (Hardcover)
I just received my copy of Wayne's new book, "The Conscience of a Libertarian" and I am very glad I bought this book. I have read political books before and many of these have been a struggle to get through, but Wayne's sense of humor makes this a fast paced read. Don't let the title fool you, this is not a book for just libertarians but for everyone. If you are concerned with the out of control spending by our federal government and its out of control growth. If you are tired of our elected officials ignoring the Constitution and the Bill of Rights, then I think you will enjoy reading this book.
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