From the Publisher
"The best book I've read on how the media works since Neil Postman's Amusing Ourselves to Death: Public Discourse in the Age of Show Business. . . .If you want to understand how politics and the media work today, how the Republican party has betrayed the principles it purports to defend, and how opinion is manipulated by appeals to fear, prejudice, and other irrational emotions, Great American Hypocrites is indispensable.
"You won't be able to put it down, and you'll never read the paper or watch the news the same way after."
“Those who ignore what Greenwald has to say act at our collective peril.”
—John W. Dean, former Nixon White House counsel and author of Conservatives Without Conscience
“There are few patriots on Capitol Hill. You can count them on your hand. . . . Glenn Greenwald, constitutional lawyer, is one such patriot.”
“One of the smartest and most important new voices to emerge in politics in years.”
—Markos Moulitsas Zúniga, founder of Daily Kos and coauthor of Crashing the Gate: Netroots, Grassroots, and the Rise of People-Powered Politics
"Glenn Greenwald has done it again. He’s about to release another great book. . . . From the myth that John Wayne was a great American hero (he was a WWII draft dodger), to how the media perpetuates false images of right-wingers (so much for the “liberal media”) . . . to the falsehood that Republicans bring us smaller government, Glenn lays it out beautifully."
"I rely on Glenn Greenwald, above all, for understanding the assaults by this administration on the Constitution, and for pointing the way toward regaining a republic. There's no one whose work has impressed me more."
"This book is written with such vicious joy that it is just really fun to read....I'm always amazed by the clarity of [Greenwald's] writing and his ability to indict the conservative mindset with well-articulated factual patterns."
—Matt Stoller, Open Left
"The peerless Glenn Greenwald."
"One of the best political commentators out there . . .Unlike most other bloggers, Greenwald practices journalism . . . Few others are better than Greenwald at sussing out the accidental propaganda inflicted on us by the mainstream press"
—The Village Voice
"Perhaps the most influential civil-liberties writer on the Web"
—The American Prospect
"Among the most intelligent and widely read practitioners of blogging"
From the Hardcover edition.
With this provocative book, Greenwald, a former constitutional lawyer and author of A Tragic Legacyand How Would a Patriot Act, purports to expose the "rank myth-making and exploitation of cultural, gender and psychological themes" by the Republican Party. The author begins his attack by targeting John Wayne, whom he sees as a template for right-wing notions of "American courage and conservative manliness." Wayne's avoidance of military service and his string of divorces, both at odds with his public image, are emblematic in this account of a fundamental hypocrisy implicit in conservative mythologies. Greenwald goes on to argue that prominent Republicans from Ronald Reagan to Mitt Romney display the same hypocrisy in their public ideologies and personal lives. Shouldering much of the blame are the press and the media, including Matt Drudge, Ann Coulter, Chris Matthews and even Maureen Dowd, all of whom propagate popular attitudes about virile Republicans and effeminate Democrats. Despite the antipathy the author feels for Coulter, his writing is much like hers. More a partisan screed than a reasoned argument meant to persuade undecided readers, this repetitive text frequently devolves into personal attacks and vast generalizations. (Apr.)Copyright 2007Reed Business Information
Attorney-turned-blogger Greenwald's hypocrites-e.g., John Wayne, Ronald Reagan, Rush Limbaugh, and the Bush administration-have been thus labeled before. Greenwald's examination of them as marketers who successfully created images of themselves and their causes through use of favorite American themes (e.g., the rugged cowboy, the thirst for freedom) isn't all that new either. He's caustic but supports his points with sound research. The results may well have appeal in public libraries.
Donna L. Davey, Margaret Heilbrun