Since exiting the political stage after the controversial presidential election of 2000, Al Gore has pursued a lucrative business career while continuing his series of works of environmental warning, which began with Earth in the Balance (1992). While less admonitory than An Inconvenient Truth (2006), Gore’s green concerns persist in this new assembly of prognostications, which organize the author’s vision of humanity’s prospects into six categories. Those are economic globalization (which Gore tags as “Earth, Inc.”), instantaneous communication (“the Global Mind”), international relations, demography and capitalism, human health and biotechnology, and natural resources and climate change (“the Edge”). Identifying trends in each area, Gore the polymath posits directions and destinations he sees as desirable and scolds what he regards as the impediment to their realization, namely, a corruption of American democracy by corporations, lobbyists, and campaign cash. Certainly a wide-ranging socioeconomic and scientific survey of humanity’s next decades, Gore’s palpably political imperative is the distinguishing trait of this contribution to futurology, a genre with a checkered past. Time will tell whether the author’s predictions hold up. HIGH-DEMAND BACKSTORY: Some of former vice president Al Gore’s books have cracked best-seller lists, and though this title will not likely do so, Gore’s high media profile will draw plenty of attention to his new book. --Gilbert Taylor
. . . The passion is unmistakable. So is the knowledge. Practically every page offers an illumination.”—Bloomberg
“In The Future
. . . Gore takes on a subject whose scale matches that of his achievements and ambition.”—The New York Times Book Review
“Historically grounded . . . Gore’s strengths lie in his passion for the subject and in his ability to take the long view by putting current events and trends in historical context.”—Publishers Weekly
“Provocative, smart, densely argued . . . a tour de force
of Big Picture thinking.”—Kirkus Reviews
“A luminously intelligent
analysis that is packed with arresting ideas and facts.”—The Guardian
“This is a great book. From political policy and economics to science and the most thorny ethical issues, Al Gore has stated the human condition and the issues we face forthrightly, fearlessly, and in easily understood language
—and has said what must be done. I asked myself halfway through who else could have written a book of this magnitude. The only answer I could imagine was Jefferson.”—E. O. Wilson, Harvard University, two-time winner of the Pulitzer Prize
“I’m a pro-growth supply-side economist, so my admiration for Al Gore may seem like an oxymoron. It’s not. This book is amazingly rich in wisdom, practicality, and insight. Al Gore has a portfolio that warrants credibility and is an accomplished polymath who transcends ideology while turning our attention to big issues, big ideas, and big solutions
. The Future
frames the discussion whether you’re conservative, agnostic, or liberal. It’s a fascinating deep read.”—Arthur B. Laffer, Ph.D.
“Whether he’s discussing cyberspace, the environment, science, or the economy, Al Gore presents in this book, with impressive breadth and well-researched depth, the challenges we have to meet to ensure that they become opportunities rather than threats. If you are concerned about the massive changes the world is just heading into, then you should read this book. If you aren’t, then you must read it!
”—Tim Berners-Lee, inventor of the World Wide Web