Angler: The Cheney Vice Presidency

Angler: The Cheney Vice Presidency

by Barton Gellman
4.3 11

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Angler: The Cheney Vice Presidency 4.4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 11 reviews.
Ethical-Magician More than 1 year ago
Barton Gellman is a journalist with the Washington Post. This year he shared the Pulitzer Prize for a series of stories about Vice President Cheney. He turned the work he did to write these articles into a biography of Vice President Cheney. One of the differences between a biography and an autobiography is that often the biographer reveals secrets about the person that the autobiography would never know.

When you write your autobiography, you don¿t feel it necessary to talk to everyone who knows you, friends and enemies to get your story right. After all, it is your story you should know. Barton Gellman behaved as an investigative journalist seeking many sources for the same story to see how they diverse or converge. He seems to be telling you a story. Gellman seems to want to story to be different than it is however he is resolved to stick to the story even if it goes in directions he would prefer that it not go. Gellman is an honest journalist. If you don¿t like his story¿it is not his fault, he is merely reporting what he discovered when he sought to find out what sort of a vice-president Richard Cheney has been.

I have read more than half a dozen books about the George W. Bush presidency written by former high level Administration officials. None of them had the clarity or broad view that Gellman¿s book brings to the secret life of George W. Bush. Among other descriptors this Bush eight year administration is cloaked in secrecy. The most secretive of all has been Richard Cheney. He has layers upon layers of secrecy. He has attempted to destroy all records of his work as Vice President. Only a court order prevented him from destroying important records that for every other former vice president were placed in his official records kept forever.

The book is called ANGLER because that is the code name used by the Secret Service when referring to Vice President Cheney. I don¿t know how the Secret Service decides on names, however for Cheney this name seems suitable for him. He is a leader who wants to leverage his influence by using every angle available to him politically or through his office. The story that Gellman tells is compelling. He has done his homework and met with all the important people necessary to get a 360 degree understanding of the roles Dick Cheney played as vice president of the United States. You will have no trouble following the story and seeing Dick Cheney emerge as the most powerful figure in the George W. Bush administration; more powerful than the president himself. You can see how Cheney worked as a puppet master getting the United States Congress to do his dirty work or angling to get the President to do his bidding, without the president knowing that he was being gamed by his number two.

The book reads like a novel. It is scary and shows sides of Dick Cheney that I do not believe Cheney himself understands. Gellman has enough distance to see the whole man and to report on what he finds without judging the Vice President. The evidence he presents encourages me to come to a conclusion. I Go out and get this book today. I wonder if Dick Cheney has read this book, I cannot image that George W. Bush has, it is n
Guest More than 1 year ago
Angler positions Cheney much as other books on the VP have done. He's a hard, driving force that won't allow people to get in his way. He also has an incredible ability to exert his influence and overcome foes. What's unique about this book is the level of detail Gellman delves into to back up this representation. It's quite an interesting look at Cheney's attacks on his adversaries and it's a timely book with the upcoming presidential election. Another leadership book I really enjoyed (and bought after seeing it recommended here) is Squawk! - How to Stop Making Noise and Start Getting Results
KenCady More than 1 year ago
In setting out to read this book, I wanted to come to a conclusion that Cheney did, in fact, put the interests of the United States first. I did not get there. The book seems as good a telling we will get of Cheney without release of the multitude of secret papers he has hidden from view...for who knows how long?
Guest More than 1 year ago
Angler draws a portrait of Dick Cheney that is well known in political circles: that is, a portrait of the vice president as a steamrolling force for the war in Iraq and enhanced executive power as a vigilant presidential filter who framed issues and information for ¿the Decider ¿ and as a shrewd, secretive operative who used his years of government service 'as President Ford¿s chief of staff and the first President Bush¿s secretary of defense' to hone his skills at bureaucratic in-fighting. What ¿Angler¿ does most impressively is flesh out this portrait with new details, connecting the dots to give the reader a visceral understanding of just how Mr. Cheney maneuvered within the administration, frequently circumventing traditional policy-making channels and sidestepping potential dissenters to get what he wanted. Quality leadership? You'll have to be the judge on that one. A historical vice presidency? Absolutely. As a lifelong student of leadership, I'm always coming across good books. This week was no exception! If you're interested in leadership, I suggest you read Squawk!
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