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The Secret Knowledge: On the Dismantling of American Culture Hardcover – Bargain Price, June 2, 2011
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Chap. 1: "We cannot live without trade. A society can neither advance nor improve without excess of disposable income. This excess can only be amassed through the production of goods and services necessary or attractive to the mass. A financial system which allows this leads to inequality; one that does not leads to mass starvation."
Chap 2: "I will now quote two Chicago writers on the subject, the first, William Shakespeare, who wrote 'Truth's a dog must to kennel; he must be whipped out, when Lady the brach may stand by the fire and stink'; the second, Ernest Hemingway, 'Call 'em like you see'em and to hell with it.'"
Chap 3: "The grave error of multiculturalism is the assumption that reason can modify a process which has taken place without reason, and with inputs astronomically greater than those reason might provide.Read more ›
Like other big media apostates, Andrew Breitbart, Tom Wolfe, John Stossel, Ben Stein, and Dennis Miller, Mamet realized the liberal assumptions that capitalism was evil and that Republicans were corporate lackeys had serious holes. When he began to investigate the logic behind free markets, he realized that it actually made sense. As Mamet puts it, modern liberalism is nothing more than a religion that its practitioners preach blindly on faith.
To examine the inanity of modern liberals, Mamet offers 39 entertaining essays that cover the gamut of modern living, including "Adventure Slumming," "Cabinet Spiritualism and the Car Czar," and, my favorite, "Oakton Manor and Camp Kawaga." Throughout the expose, Mamet makes use of his excellent perspective in the arts. With examples from his theater class, he shows exactly how absurd political correctness and the liberal agenda can be.
I recommend this book to anyone who enjoys a good story and wants to peer into the ultra-liberal New York/L.A. big media mindset. Of course, the culture wars are just a symptom of the problem, and, for anyone who wants an examination of how we got into this situation, I recommend the brilliant Juggernaut: Why the System Crushes the Only People Who Can Save It.
Mamet's revelations can be a little amusing to long-time conservatives, like hearing your child come home from school and saying "in Australia the seasons are reversed! Christmas is the hottest time of the year, and July 4th the coldest!"
Perhaps his best epiphany is that everything is a trade-off in life. For example, realizing that there's a very real reason why a country that can send a man to the moon can't provide free school lunches to all; because that nation chose to send a man to the moon instead. Government can some of the things we want it to do, but not all.
"All human interactions are tradeoffs, one may theoretically offer cheap health insurance to the twenty million supposedly uninsured members of our society. But at what cost-the dismantling of the health care system of the remaining three-hundred million plus? What of the inevitable reduction, shortages, abuses, delay and injustice caused by State rationing? There's a cost for everything."
Lots more insightful observations like the neo-Puritanism on the Left, for example, at his child's school, where the familiar music mnemonic of Every Good Boy Does Fine is changed to Every Good Baby Does Fine, to avoid using the masculine 'boy.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I was stunned by this erudite, compelling analysis of American culture. Mamet delves deep into history tracing, in several chapters, our quest for justice and freedom back to... Read morePublished 1 day ago by Brad Teare
Well known playwright David Mamet has written a rambling but erudite account of ideas that changed him from liberal to conservative. Read morePublished 12 days ago by USAF Veteran
Outstanding. A rich stew of ideas wrapped around an epiphany story. Would that more former liberals were brave enough to take this journey.Published 1 month ago by SweenFam
Profound. Mamet is a great writer. And the separate topics for each chapter make for easy reading. Highly recommend for those looking for insights into what drives the Left.Published 1 month ago by charles cochran
I have never forgotten something from one of David Letterman's Record Collection bits- an earnest Oklahoman telling the hippies that the Soviets would tell them "Sure. Read morePublished 2 months ago by Christopher (o.d.c.)
I found this book thought provoking due to his perspective. He states that he hadn't met a person of a conservative political view until he was 60 years old. Read morePublished 3 months ago by John K.
Crisp, insightful, lucid thinking, unshakable wisdom and common sense. A must-read book for all rational beings. :-)Published 3 months ago by Felicia
Good resource from someone that crossed over into sanity.Published 5 months ago by Patrick W. Caudill