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Chasing Glenn Beck: A Personal Experiment in Reclaiming Our Hijacked Political Conversation Paperback – December 16, 2011
The Amazon Book Review
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From the Back Cover
Perhaps not, but when Michael Charney decides to plant that idea out in the "Twitterverse" some interesting conversations begin. People shout at him (MORON!), block him (SCUMSUCKER!), and belittle him (WAKE UP, IDIOT!). Eventually, though, some people start to listen.
Today's political dialogue has been stolen, hijacked from us by those with the loudest voices. Until we begin to take that conversation back for ourselves, we remain at the mercy of those with the most radical agendas, the most extreme visions, for our country. The risk is great: a country run by a vociferous minority that just happens to scream louder than the rest of us is NOT what democracy is supposed to be about.
With discussions about politics, education, national security, manifestos, the Pledge of Allegiance, the Flag Code--and the Senate Candy Desk--Charney cuts a wide swath through the issues facing our country, a country he claims has a serious case of "Electile Dysfunction."
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Top Customer Reviews
An unexpected benefit was how it helped to increase in my understanding of Twitter. Make no mistake, though, this is no dry read of definitions for things like hashtags and common Twitter abbreviations. It is a very witty but also serious and reflective treatment of how people communicate - and often fail to communicate - within and beyond the limitations of a tweet.
I lost count of the times I laughed out loud, as well as nodded my head in acknowledgement of a sad truth and then glimmers of hopefulness for a society that often seems to drift toward the gravitational pull of whomever is the loudest and most hyperbolic. (That's a hint, but doesn't give anything away. And don't let the title fool you. Thankfully, this is neither an attack nor a worship of GB.)
For me, this is a book about us as a society and what blind faith and extremism is doing to erase what little civility, rational thinking, and reason is left in American politics and the discourse surrounding it.
Buy it! Buy it for your Tea Party uncle and your Occupy Wall Street nieces and nephews. Buy a copy for yourself, too.
This rancor is nothing new and has been taking place since the origins of politics, yet somehow it is beginning to feel more dangerous. Perhaps it is the amplification level of people like Glenn Beck and Keith Olbermann-- who I, like Mr. Charney, suspect are actors who don't actually care about policies and outcomes. They are just getting rich.
Mr. Charney's book presents a unique take on the subject, through the use of his Twitter experiment as a narrative thread. As we follow his progress building a Twitter following, we learn about all sorts of other stuff that helps make the current state of nastiness both possible and desirable for so many people. Along the way he covers such territory as the cognitive processes that allow people to believe utter nonsense in the face of overwhelming contradictory information; how the anonymity of online discourse spurs personal attacks in lieu of reasoned debate; why it's too risky for politicians to actually try to fix things; and one of my favorite subjects-- how the pundits, media and the online screechers constantly present every issue in black/white terms, when all I see is shades of grey (not the erotic novel series, gawd.).Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
First off, this book is illuminating for Conservatives and Liberals alike, but especially for Conservatives who after the election in November are faced with serious... Read morePublished on January 27, 2013 by jc
Charney begins a journey through the Twittersphere to prove Glenn Beck is nothing more than an entertainer--a liberal in a conservative suit. Read morePublished on March 21, 2012 by cheryl c malandrinos
"Chasing Glenn Beck" is far more than its title implies. Within the structure of the informal Twitter-based on-line social experiment that author Michael Charney describes in his... Read morePublished on February 9, 2012 by Terry Sunday
Chasing Glen Beck is a remarkable achievement - Michael Charney has created a witty, engaging book that charts his recent journey in the political landscape. Read morePublished on February 6, 2012 by FranSan