"I believe that American democracy is in grave danger. It is no longer possible to ignore the strangeness of our public discourse. I know that I am not the only one who feels that something has gone basically and badly wrong in the way America's fabled 'marketplace of ideas' now functions. I thought maybe it was an aberration when three-quarters of Americans said they believed that Saddam Hussein was responsible for attacking us on September 11th, 2001. But more than five years later, between a third and a half still believe Saddam was personally responsible for planning and supporting the attack." With The Assault on Reason, former vice president Al Gore presents more than a vigorous jeremiad on the decline of rational public debate. He also offers pathways to open inquiries about inconvenient truths.
… for all its sharply voiced opinions, The Assault on Reason turns out to be less a partisan, election-cycle harangue than a fiercely argued brief about the current Bush White House that is grounded in copiously footnoted citations from newspaper articles, Congressional testimony and commission reports — a brief that is as powerful in making its points about the implications of this administration’s policies as the author’s 2006 book, An Inconvenient Truth, was in making its points about the fallout of global warming.
The New York Times
Gore's faith in human nature is braver and sharper than (the cynics). . . . This book isn't about him; it's about the republic whose freedoms depend on increasing reasoned debate and reducing intimidating noise.
As scathing as it is meticulous, Gore's treatise on reason juggernauts its way through the Bush administration, never even needing to include the controversial nature of Bush's presidential elections. He identifies the growing concentration of power in the executive branch virtually ignored by mainstream media. Drawing on the great political philosophers of history and his lengthy career in government, Gore contends that the loss of a genuine public forum in the age of radio and television has led to the decay of democracy. He delivers a serious critique of the United States tempered by hope and faith in the restoration of checks and balances. The articulated venom of Gore's words can be heard in Patton's voice as he narrates. He reads with an intensity that makes this already engaging prose compelling. Patton maintains a distinct smooth and edgy voice, but maintains a cadence that reminds listeners of Gore's own speaking mannerisms. In quoting historical figures, Patton's voice is distinct but not haughty or pompous. The combination of Patton's performance and Gore's words make this an impressive audiobook. Simultaneous release with the Penguin Press hardcover. (June)Copyright 2007 Reed Business Information
Of all the vice presidents who have not later made it to the Oval Office on their own, Gore is beyond any doubt the most successful. It is not just that his 2000 bid for the presidency gained a solid plurality of the national popular vote and that the result in Florida was so narrow and controversial. Gore stands alone as the only former U.S. president or vice president ever to win an Oscar, and no former vice president can match Gore's literary output in either quantity or impact. The Assault on Reason is vintage Gore: tightly reasoned but passionate, partisan but not demagogic, sweeping and ambitious but closely researched and solidly grounded in particular issues and facts. Above all, it is earnest. Gore believes that the modern conservative movement represents a systematic attack on the role of reasoned debate in policy and public life by an alliance of economic special interests, religious fundamentalists, and other enemies of justice and truth. The Assault on Reason will strike many readers as a well-timed, well-aimed jeremiad. Others, looking back on U.S. political history, will wonder whether the deceit, chicanery, and polarization of politics today is really as unprecedented as Gore would have us believe.<
When 30-second sound bites preempt reasoning, reasons Gore, we're all in trouble. A manifesto for reintroducing sense into public discussion. Copyright 2007 Reed Business Information.
This book shows a fiery, throw-caution-to-the winds Al Gore, who . . . has decided to lay it all on the line with a blistering assessment of the Bush administration and the state of public discourse in America.”—Michiko Kakutani, The New York Times
“Gore’s faith in human nature is braver and sharper than (the cynics). . . . This book isn’t about him; it’s about the republic whose freedoms depend on increasing reasoned debate and reducing intimidating noise.”—The Boston Globe