The Goal

To continue to read one book each week
To find authors who inspire me
To teach myself discipline
To share my experiences with others


Friday, November 30, 2012

Book 87: Conservatives without Conscience by John Dean (Audiobook)

Funny you should ask! No, I am not a conservative. I'm a liberal. However, what category liberal am I? Well, I could be a classical liberal? Or a social liberal? Or a Neoliberal? Until I read this book, I didn't know that liberals, conservatives, and everybody else you thought was already sorted into political groups could be even further categorized. Oh yeah. It's completely out of control.

If you can get through the scientific psychobabble in the first half of this book (and if you tend to be liberal), you'll love its second half. 

John Dean was a White House adviser to Richard Nixon. Dean, who was implicated in a number of Watergate-related crimes, with specific regard to funneling money and obstruction of justice. For most of his post-Watergate career he's insisted he was made a scapegoat during the investigation at the hands of prominent conservatives. Now, of course, this means he couldn't possibly be objective in his analysis of prominent conservatives, but I didn't care much. The book was fascinating, and had nothing to do with Watergate or Nixon.  

"Conservatives without Conscience" is a book about a specific type of personality - the "double-high." Newt Gingrich, Tom Delay, Dick Cheney, Pat Robertson, and Rush Limbaugh are all lumped into this category. If you look closely enough, you will see similarities in their tactics, in their lingo, and in the way they carry themselves. They are above the law. They do what they want, their way. Sometimes once you see something, you wish you could un-see it. 

I don't know all of Dean's motives as a writer. I'm sure he wanted to put some of the real creeps in the spotlight for more than just "the good of the nation." Whatever his drive, I found his analysis to be as valid as any other, and by unveiling some of the secrets of these public figures, he made them look, in my mind, forever foolish. 

Thank goodness that we have free speech in America. Books like this one may be slanted, but they punch holes in the pristine images that our best public bullsh*t artists have cultivated for themselves.

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