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The Strange Death of Republican America: Chronicles of a Collapsing Party Hardcover – April 1, 2008

4.1 out of 5 stars 9 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

In this incisive and timely essay compilation, Blumenthal, a former adviser to both Bill and Hillary Clinton, charts the fatal radicalization of the Republican Party, its imminent great unraveling and the consequences for the 2008 election. Blumenthal argues that the presidency of George W. Bush heralds the decline of the Republican Party after 30 years of political dominance, moderating his otherwise passionate indictment of the GOP by acknowledging that power ebbs and flows between the two parties over time. He likens the current shift to the implosion of the Johnson presidency and subsequent weakening of the Democratic Party, saying, Vietnam ended a Democratic era as definitively as Iraq is closing a Republican one. The consummate Washington insider, Blumenthal has a host of high-ranking (albeit often anonymous) sources, and surprising portraits of power pepper the book: of Bush as a classic insecure authoritarian given to imposing humiliating tests of obedience on his staff (such as locking Colin Powell out of a cabinet meeting for being late), Laura Bush as deeply disdainful of Rove (allegedly dubbing him Pigpen), former Majority Leader Tom DeLay as the Republican Stalin, the ruthless consolidator and centralizer. Authoritative, meticulously researched, these previously published pieces evade many of the clichés that ensnare partisan political writing and is instead a lively—if deeply sobering—panorama of political life during the Bush presidency. (Apr. 1)
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Review

In this incisive and timely essay compilation, Blumenthal, a former adviser to both Bill and Hillary Clinton, charts the fatal radicalization of the Republican Party, its imminent "great unraveling" and the consequences for the 2008 election. Blumenthal argues that the presidency of George W. Bush heralds the decline of the Republican Party after 30 years of political dominance, moderating his otherwise passionate indictment of the GOP by acknowledging that power ebbs and flows between the two parties over time. He likens the current shift to the implosion of the Johnson presidency and subsequent weakening of the Democratic Party, saying, "Vietnam ended a Democratic era as definitively as Iraq is closing a Republican one." The consummate Washington insider, Blumenthal has a host of high-ranking (albeit often anonymous) sources, and surprising portraits of power pepper the book: of Bush as "a classic insecure authoritarian" given to imposing "humiliating tests of obedience" on his staff (such as locking Colin Powell out of a cabinet meeting for being late), Laura Bush as deeply disdainful of Rove (allegedly dubbing him "Pigpen"), former Majority Leader Tom DeLay as the "Republican Stalin, the ruthless consolidator and centralizer." Authoritative, meticulously researched, these previously published pieces evade many of the clichés that ensnare partisan political writing and is instead a lively—if deeply sobering—panorama of political life during the Bush presidency. --Publisher's Weekly (Apr. 1)

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 339 pages
  • Publisher: Union Square Press; 1st edition (April 1, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1402757891
  • ISBN-13: 978-1402757891
  • Product Dimensions: 9.1 x 6.4 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 (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #256,676 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Format: Hardcover
Sidney Blumenthal established his journalistic credibility long ago. Because of his pit-bull loyalty to the Clintons, he is despised and reviled by right-wingers who have never read a word of what he's written. But for people who want an elegantly written book that puts the entire conservative movement into perspective, this is it.
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By rcpmac on April 9, 2008
Format: Hardcover
In this incisive and timely essay compilation, Blumenthal, a former adviser to both Bill and Hillary Clinton, charts the fatal radicalization of the Republican Party, its imminent "great unraveling" and the consequences for the 2008 election. Blumenthal argues that the presidency of George W. Bush heralds the decline of the Republican Party after 30 years of political dominance, moderating his otherwise passionate indictment of the GOP by acknowledging that power ebbs and flows between the two parties over time. He likens the current shift to the implosion of the Johnson presidency and subsequent weakening of the Democratic Party, saying, "Vietnam ended a Democratic era as definitively as Iraq is closing a Republican one." The consummate Washington insider, Blumenthal has a host of high-ranking (albeit often anonymous) sources, and surprising portraits of power pepper the book: of Bush as "a classic insecure authoritarian" given to imposing "humiliating tests of obedience" on his staff (such as locking Colin Powell out of a cabinet meeting for being late), Laura Bush as deeply disdainful of Rove (allegedly dubbing him "Pigpen"), former Majority Leader Tom DeLay as the "Republican Stalin, the ruthless consolidator and centralizer." Authoritative, meticulously researched, these previously published pieces evade many of the clichés that ensnare partisan political writing and is instead a lively--if deeply sobering--panorama of political life during the Bush presidency.
[...]
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Format: Hardcover
We can finally thank a Clinton aide for something - putting into words what seemingly was happening in 1944 - but due to some incredible PR - and a lot of filthy money - evidently did not. People talk about 30 years of Republican dominance - as this book seems to - starting with Reagan - but really we should start counting froim the rise of Nixon in Earl Warren's California and Bush family interests in Texas. After Dewey, the Republicans knew they were licked in the East, and presciently pinned their hopes and extended their energies Westward. Yet, who did the Republican Party ever represent, at the core, but the corporate elite and old (east coast) country club money? Blumenthal articulates much of what is happening today - hopefully - our Middle-East Policy - our entire policy of militarism and militarization - ardently supported by those two recalcitrant bastions of Republican popular support - the military and the defense and defense related industry - accounting for 1/3 of the working population in real terms. How any service (working for wage) person could vote Republican has always befuddled me. The phenomena of people voting against their own best interests and stuffed ballot boxes are not exactly novel. But Blumenthal does not allay my fears - after all, as the departing Pope Greenspan said: "Billy (Clinton) was a good Republican". Truly, the line between the two parties is as blurred as ever (even Mark Twain commented on it), especially when it comes to pilfering the taxpayers' money (our money). Yet, in honor of the Elder Cato, he gives me a chance to say it once more: FOR AMERICA TO SURVIVE, THE REPUBLICAN PARTY MUST BE DESTROYED. And for that, he deserves as many stars as there are in the sky - whether or not his justifications will endure for long.
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Format: Hardcover
Sidney Blumenthal rates as the best modern analyst of the American political scene. His work is rooted in a deep knowledge of the currents of American history, and couples that knowledge with a literary gift. Against the background of the Clinton-Obama feud, Blumenthal's title may itself seem a little strange -- and may turn out to be wrong. Nonethless, Blumenthal remains essential reading as a seminal thinker of our time.
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Format: Hardcover
An interesting companion book to this one is The Strange Death of Liberal America, if you want to understand both sides of the picture. It is also sold by Amazon.
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