- Audible Audio Edition
- Listening Length: 11 hours and 24 minutes
- Program Type: Audiobook
- Version: Unabridged
- Publisher: HarperAudio
- Audible.com Release Date: November 13, 2007
- Whispersync for Voice: Ready
- Language: English
- ASIN: B000Z7FH9W
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank:
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Heroic Conservatism Audible – Unabridged
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Top Customer Reviews
For me, this book was stimulating and thought-provoking. Thank you Mr. Gerson!
As Gerson notes, this idea is grounded in both American notions of natural rights and Roman Catholic social teaching, with its tandem emphases on subsidiarity (which favors a decentralized polity in which government does only what civil society cannot) and solidarity (which recognizes the responsibilities that all citizens have for one another, but especially for the most vulnerable; it therefore urges a "preferential option for the poor."). Such a notion overcomes the unnatural bifurcation in American politics between a right that attends almost wholly to limiting government and therefore denies its ability to ameliorate human suffering effectively and a left that has been at the forefront of movements for social justice but is often suspicious of, or impatient with, the efforts of non-governmental institutions like traditional religion, the family, and states and localities. Gerson's call for a political vision that recognizes the legitimate role of the state in providing for the common good while respecting the value of "little platoons" in fostering social and cultural renewal will appeal to those like him who wish to be "pro-life and pro-poor...[who] have often felt homeless in the traditional camps of American politics.Read more ›
Can compassion and decency - "idealism," in the words of Gerson's book - go horribly wrong when forming policy? Yes. We've seen that on both sides of the aisle, and earlier examples soured me completely on the government's role in doing good to and for others. But in recent years, I've had to rethink that. Government CAN be a force for good, when used appropriately. And that's a Conservative view, involving defense spending, war spending (in some cases), and, of course, spending on more immediate needs here at home, like the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. But it also refuses to turn a blind eye toward a massive humanitarian crisis in Africa, toward Islamic militants, toward regimes based on tyranny.
I'm sorry if that sounds like political "rhetoric" to some. To me, it sounds like common decency. The sooner we acknowledge urgent needs here and abroad, the better for BOTH political parties, and the better for our country as a whole.
In terms of what I did not like about this book, let's put first things first. It is frustrating when an author quotes someone without providing any footnotes. None of the quotes provided any reference. There were some quotes that I found hard to believe. Now I am not saying that the author was not quoting accurately, but I was very interested in seeing the context of the quote. Since there were no footnotes or endnotes it would be difficult to follow up on the quote.
Also, he would state things as if they were facts, but I am not sure of the basis of those facts. For example, he noted that a person was a constitutional expert. Who says? I looked up the person on Google and I found some one with the same name who is a law professor in Florida. Even if that were the right person, which I am not sure, does that make them an expert? I could find no writings by that person. Maybe that person is a constitutional expert, but I see nothing that supports the claim.
All that aside, what I disliked the most about the book is the very heavy bias. It was more of a defense of the Bush administration than anything else. When referring to liberals they were judged most harshly. I would expect that from a liberal, but when evaluating the conservative position the author glossed over some very big moral failings. For example, he referred to what the Bush campaign did to John McCain in 2000 as a "hard fought campaign.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I was hopping for some inside materiel on what it was Really like to write for the President. This is just an academic attemp at best. There was nothing special about this book. Read morePublished on April 11, 2013 by ChuckyB18
Today, I heard Michael Gerson on a radio talk show ("Forum" on KQED FM, San Francisco) claiming that, by the time Bush made his 2002 State of the Union remarks about the... Read morePublished on April 28, 2008 by RD_C_4_life
Reading this book is like being stuck in church for hours. I'm sorry but don't think it is the job of the government to "tax and give away. Read morePublished on March 15, 2008 by Amazon Customer
I'm sure that Michael Gerson, former speechwriter for George W. Bush, is an earnest, thoughtful individual but his new book, "Heroic Conservatism" adds nothing to the understanding... Read morePublished on March 7, 2008 by Jon Hunt
THIS BOOK IS NO MORE THAN A POOR RATIONALIZATION OF TRANSFORMING CONSERVATISM INTO A POORER VERSION OF LIBERALISM.Published on January 13, 2008 by Dr. Jones
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