Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Maine Sunday Telegram reviews American Character

This week's Maine Sunday Telegram includes a review of my newly-released American Character: A History of the Epic Struggle Between Individual Liberty and the Common Good. Thomas Urquhart is the reviewer. He calls it "a big-dipper ride through four centuries as first collectivists then individualists tae their turn at managing the country."

As an author and book reviewer myself, I appreciate Urquhart's critical eye and thoughtful distillation of what is a complicated book.

One point of fact to push back on here because, hey, where else would I do it? It's not true that I trot Cornel West out to attest to Barack Obama governing similar to an Eisenhowerite Republican; West -- the honorary chair of the Democratic Socialists of America -- is instead quoted refuting the thesis that Obama is a "socialist." It's Bruce Bartlett -- the former Reagan and George W Bush aide who helped Jack Kemp perfect the argument for supply-side economics -- who makes that "Obama as Old School moderate Republican" pitch, right in the very same paragraph, backing up an idea fleshed out elsewhere in the book by W speechwriter Michael Gerson. But I digress....

My real message: thanks to Urquhart and the Telegram for a erudite and thoughtful first review.

Earlier today I was the guest on Maine Public Broadcasting's "Maine Calling"; tonight I'll be speaking at River Run Bookstore in Portsmouth, New Hampshire, and tomorrow I'm doing twelve radio interviews back to back with stations in ten states coast to coast and the District of Columbia. Long-form highlights include an hour with Oregon's Jefferson Public Radio at 9 Pacific, a half hour with Napa Broadcasting to be taped later, and fifteen minute segments with WAMC/Northeast Public Radio at 2:30 Eastern and WTOP in D.C. at 2:10.

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