8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on March 4, 2003
"War Without Bloodshed" is a truly outstanding book about American politics. By opening a window into the lives of different Washington players like Newt Gingrich (the speaker), Daniel Patrick Moynihan (the committee chairman), Sheila Burke (the staffer), Frank Luntz (the pollster), and others, the authors give us a sense of the daily goings-on inside the Beltway.
Although Eleanor Clift and her husband are coming from a left of center viewpoint, the information they pass on to the reader is not overly shaded by their biases. Having watched Ms. Clift on television's "The McLaughlin Group", I would never have imagined she was capable of producing such a well-balanced and insightful account. The book is a pleasant surprise and is another candidate for the required reading list of college government classes.
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on June 21, 1999
Here, the authors make a successful attempt to make a book on the inner workings of our political system.
Here, we see much of the recent occurances in Washington - the health care, social, economic and political debates which can change our lives in enormous ways. The ideologies of all parties involved is also well defined here.
This is for anyone who simply likes - or loves - politics or political history.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on April 15, 2004
The only reason I found and bought this book was because of the author Eleanor Clift. I am a fan of the "McLaughlin Group" and always have thought she holds her own most of the time. This book is a review of some Washington DC insiders and how they handled the Clinton Heath Care debate in the mid 1990's. The authors introduce us to 8 different members of the political establishment from pollsters to the Speaker of the House. Not only did I find the mini biographies of the individuals interesting, but I always enjoyed the way the author was able to take the heath care issue and weave it through the 8 characters chapters. It gave the reader a very good understanding of how different parts of the political machine handle and deal with a bill or issue.
I found the section on Gingrich probably the most interesting. I have never been fond of the man and this book gave me about 100 pages full of reasons to still dislike him. I am completely biased on this point, but I think the authors were fair in their treatment of him and he still came off is a bad light. I have the opinion that there is no fair telling of his actions in the mid 90's that would not show him in a negative manner. The other area I found the most interesting was the description of what the lobbyist, covered in the book, really does. I had always assumed it was a lot of bought lunches, dinners out and back room arm-twisting, but it is really just presenting the case of the clients over and over again to try and sway opinion.
Overall I found the book interesting for the most part. There were some areas that tended to drag. The section that covered the representative from California was a bit dull to me because I did not find the inter-workings she had with the others in the book to be a detailed or rich. If you are a die-hard political fan, interested in the politics around the Clinton failed heath care plan or are just looking for more detail on one of the subjects covered in the book, you will enjoy it.
3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on February 8, 1999
This book examines "the system" of politics by looking at how the best of the best preform their jobs within the system. It is a nice book for people who are studying the inner workings of Capital Hill because it is not policy heavy, but rather the methods of the individuals described heavy. The book also helps one understand how people involved in the art of politics think and tackle their work.
2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on January 22, 2001
A solid, neat account of the major structural players in Washington belt political system. The reporting isn't overly analytical, more descriptive. A useful entry in to the real world how politics is played US style.