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Tempting Faith: An Inside Story of Political Seduction Paperback – October 2, 2007
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Read Tempting Faith, written by a real compassionate conservative, and weep for the loss of what could have been. Then beware of those who would manipulate genuine faith for partisan political purposes."
-- Jim Wallis, bestselling author of God's Politics
"The best kind of sermon, the most revealing and meaningful kind of testimony. At [Kuo's] call for action, you want to give [him] a loud 'amen.'"
-- The Hartford Courant
"Though Tempting Faith is a story about the Bush presidency, it is even more a story about Mr. Kuo. As much as it is a story about politics, it is also a story about faith."
-- The New York Times
"Tempting Faith is one of those rare Washington books that is worth reading -- clearly written, disarmingly honest, thoughtfully introspective, and unusually substantive.... A refreshingly honest account of how politics can seduce the best intentioned and the most naïve."
-- The American Conservative
About the Author
David Kuo served as Special Assistant to the President under George W. Bush from 2001 to 2003. He has worked for numerous conservative leaders, including John Ashcroft, William Bennett, Jack Kemp, Bob Dole, and Ralph Reed. He is the author of the Good Morning America Book Club selection Dot.Bomb: My Days and Nights at an Internet Goliath. He currently serves as the Washington editor of the Beliefnet Web site.
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Top Customer Reviews
Rating-wise, I would have given Kuo, whom I greatly now admire, a 5. However, although he generaly writes very well, - his profession- there were sections where he lost me and I missed the point - most likely my fault, but anyway -1 star. Well worth reading for anyone interested in the relationship of religion, social welfare, and politics in today's world.
This book is a great insider's tale / autobiography. I view President Bush in a new light now, positive and negative.
A review by a who/what? Five stars? Yes, and an explanation is in order. I don't ordinarily read, much less, review current conservative authors. Like everyone else, I see the daily barrage of political scandal, deceit, hypocrisy, ad infinitum- ad nauseam on the daily news and the patterns are clear: the faith-based amongst us are constantly being prevailed upon to support whatever political schemes and candidates the GOP is promoting. The platitudes and biblical one-liners/phrases are tossed around like candy to attract favor in the single-minded effort to get that precious vote. So blather the "wolves in sheep's clothing", me thinks and gag me with spoon.
So how could so many good God-loving, faith-based, well intentioned people be taken-in in light of these obvious blatant scams, nonsense and unfulfilled promises? What's the psychology here? Are the faith-based blind, naive? You know: lights on, but nobody is home. I really wanted to know just exactly what goes on in the noggin of the average faith-based that would have them routinely casting their vote for the GOP/Corporate ticket.
So when I first heard that David Kuo's book "Temping Faith" was reportedly suggesting that the Bush admin and the GOP in general was taking advantage of the faith-based for their votes while not following through with promises, my interest was piqued. This "revelation", while an obvious no-brainer to anyone even partly paying attention to politics, is potentially huge. And to boot, this from a Bush admin insider! Hmmm.
My first reaction was Hallelujah! A good standing member of the flock finally wakes up and gets it! Considering what the conservative vote has inadvertently wrought on this country and the world: the GOP blessed de-regulating of polluting/predator corporations, war, poverty, a trashed economy (except for the rich and Wall Street), denial of global warming- again, ad infinitum- ad nauseam- well, I just had to find out what David Kuo has to say.
David Kuo`s "Tempting Faith" is for the most part, autobiographical: his upbringing, coming to the Christian faith, family, education, trials and tribulations, aspirations, politics, etc.
I found his writing style flowing, informing and at times, heart wrenching- he has been through some rough rows in life- the kind that would test anyone's faith. Overall, I was left with the impression that he is candid, honest, decent and sincere, albeit, somewhat naive or at least overly trusting. Although many of his political views differ from mine, he seems like the kind of person who could easily take part in a civil, non-confrontational political debate.
His political "insider" experiences include working for Ted Kennedy, being a policy advisor to John Ashcroft, speechwriter for amongst others, Ralf Reed, Pat Robertson, and Bob Dole, et al. Kuo eventually became second-in-command in the Bush admin's Faith-Based and Community Initiatives committee.
It was in this role that he was exposed to the cynical, back stabbing treatment that pervaded in the White House towards the Evangelical Christian leaders who were looking to the Bush admin to fulfill election promises in exchange for encouraging their flocks to vote republican, yet getting almost nothing but derision for thanks- the vote was all that they were interested in.
I was amazed to learn that Kuo still holds George W. Bush in fairly high regard and this is due to his opinion that the shortcomings and betrayals of the Bush admin are mostly with the advisors such as Karl Rove, et al. Naive? I should think so. To suggest that Bush is not aware of what's going on in that regard is hard to swallow, but who's to argue that point with such a nice, decent guy like Kuo? One gets the feeling he actually believes this.
Kuo's bottom line message in this autobiography/political expose' is that American politics is in serious need of a cleansing- gee, ya think? Kuo's line: "The politically untainted can help wash those of us grown dirty with the filth of politics." and that Christians need to take a "temporary step back from politics" for a "...reexamination of political involvement."-- leaves one with a bad taste if they subscribe to the notion of separation of church and state like our wise forefathers tried to carve in stone for us.
This book is a sobering read for those of faith, the secular and everybody in between- one might not agree with Kuo's politics, but all will surely agree on his honesty and courage to speak out, especially about how the GOP has been taking the faith-based for a major ride! The index is extensive and allows for good reference. Well done David Kuo, 5 stars!