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In this long season of searing political attacks and angry partisan passions, Peggy Noonan's Wall Street Journal column has been must reading for thoughtful liberals and conservatives alike.
Now she issues an urgent, heartfelt call for all Americans to see each other anew, realize what time it is, and come together to support the next President -- whoever he is. Because it is not the threats and challenges we face, but how we face them that defines us as a nation.
The terrible events of 9/11 brought us together in a way not seen since World War II. But the stresses and divisions of the Bush years have driven us apart to a point that is unhealthy and destructive.
Today, Noonan argues, the national mood is for a change in our politics and it is well past time for politicians to catch up. Americans are tired of the old partisan divisions and the campaign tricks that seek to widen and exploit them. We long for leaders who can summon us to greatness and unity, as they did in the long struggles against fascism and communism.
In this timely little book, written in the pamphleteering tradition of Tom Paine's Common Sense, Noonan reminds us that we must face our common challenges together -- not by rising above partisanship, but by reaffirming what it means to be American.
- Noonan's Grace - Brain Food For America's Future
As readers of her weekly column in the Wall Street Journal already know, Peggy Noonan is perhaps the finest political thinker, analyst and writer of her time. She has a unique ability to capture the look and feel, and the sensibility/insensibility of events, then translate them into understandable context. It is what made her a great speech writer for Ronald Reagan, and, not surprisingly, it is why "Patriotic Grace" is not only a great book, but an important book that hopefully will jump start a new dialogue about America, and what it means to be an American, and what it will take to lead Americans in the 21st Century.
It is not an insignificant note that the book is dedicated to Senators McCain and Obama (among others).
Noonan begins with two powerful metaphors. The first recounts the story of brave, scared GIs, all huddled together in Higgins Boats headed accross the Channel to their unsought, but undenied, rendez-vous with destiny at Omaha Beach. The second is an accounting of a serious (but ultimately false) bomb scare that scattered dignitaries assembled in the White House for President Reagan's funeral. A wheel-chair bound older woman could not descend the stairs until she was quietly lifted up by others and carried to safety.
In both cases everyone knew that they needed to rely on the skills and strength, bravery and humanity of one another for their mere survival. And so, posits Noonan, it is now the same in America and for all Americans. The author urges that we must all learn, and expect, to carry one another - literally and figuratively - in a post 9/11 world that is more surly, more dangerous, and less accommodating of American arrogance and hubris than in the past. This means reducing/eliminating the symbols and distinctions that have increasingly divided us: red state/blue state; liberal/conservative; Democrat/Republican. These are the emblems of the past which do not serve us well in the future,
Noonan spends much time translating the meaning of the Bush years into a series of 14 common sense suggestions, and painful lessons, from which the next President, and coming generations can hopefully learn. They are too numerous to mention in a brief review, but, they clearly include comporting ourselves with a greater degree of grace and accommodation, both internally and internationally, to listen more to one other and to scream less at each other, and to work much harder at being a true beacon that other world communities strive to become.
And, all of this is written in a style as though the conversation were being held between the Author and her Reader. You read it. You understand it. You believe it. You want the new dialogue to begin.
Let's hope that our alleged leaders are listening. The world has changed and bad things have happened to the United States in this Millennium. Noonan predicts that even worse things are not only possible, but likely - which only accelerates the need to reduce and eliminate the noise and the bravado and the partisanship and the hubris, and to figuratively join together in a new, national Higgins boat in which people and politicians serve not with greed and corruption and partisanship, but with heartfelt grace and dignity and respect, to rediscover, to redevelop and to rejoice in real American solutions.
This is a must read!...more info
- Graceful Patriotism
Peggy Noonan is the writer I'd most like to talk with, to respond to her insights and listen to her straightforward opinions. Since we aren't acquainted, the next best thing is reading her new book. Her writing exudes innate decency, old fashioned virtues and enduring values. She decries the extremes on both sides of the political spectrum, and the degeneration of the level of national discourse. She describes the indignity of going through airline security as a middle aged woman, and although I do not travel by plane (since 9/11!), I am a middle aged woman, and I exist on dignity, so can well understand her silent outrage at what our nation has come to. Patriotic Grace is inspiring, uplifting, but also profoundly pessimistic about the future of our nation. I also deeply feel our country has descended to terrible depths of degradation, we have accustomed ourselves to vulgarity and ugliness, both verbal and visual, in the public sphere. That Noonan is aware of this is to her great credit. I hope many people read this small book and identify with its message. ...more info
- Peppered with Insight
You read Noonan and you stumble on one of her insights, put the book down, and think to yourself "Yeah, that's right. I never quite saw it that way before." Illustration: the presidency has changed because Bush and Clinton personalized it so that it stopped being about the office and started being about them.Bingo. The passage on the messages and calls made by those who were about to die on the 9-11 flights makes you want to cry. Noonan is right: "crisis is a great editor." They said what needed to be said, what mattered, and not one of their words was wasted or mean spirited. She is fair. On Bush and landing the plane on the carrier deck for the Mission Accomplished speech, she smacks their arrogance, saying "they were looking for trouble." On the Dems and Iraq---they looked for a way to oppose it without any political cost."There is always a cost." Her tone is sad yet hopeful. Her Big Idea? Judge Learned Hand said:the spirit of liberty is the spirit that is never sure that it is always right. I'd think she'd embrace that. Give her new one a read....more info
- Please: Distribute free to all members of Congress!
I am not Peggy Noonan's kind of woman. One of my first political memories is my sense of powerlessness, at 17, that I could not cast my vote against Ms. Noonan's mentor, Ronald Reagan. And I remained a Democrat, an east-coast, Harvard-educated liberal until recently.
I am still a liberal, but I am not a Democrat. Or a Republican. I am an American. Not in the way either party likes to use that term, but in the real, passion, love my country, believe we are, yes, the free-est nation there ever was, governed by laws and principles of right and justice, not by men (or women or politicians). We were and are and, if everyone reads this book, will still be a shining beacon to the world.
I believe that. Do you?
More and more, it seems like we have all--Republican and Democrat alike--lost America in the bickering and negative campaigning and silly partisanship. We are so busy arguing whether to paint the lifeboat blue or red that we cannot see the ship is sinking.
And then along comes Peggy Noonan's little book. A pamphlet, really, in the tradition of Tom Paine: Common Sense. It's not very well written. I picture Ms. Noonan dictating it in a fever of frustration and hope and fear and love for her country. No time to edit: just ship it out. But Ms. Noonan was right. It had to be said, even if it is repetitive and breathy and the editors were all on vacation that month.
We are at a critical juncture in our history: our principles of free conscience and liberty are under attack and we risk losing our world position as the standard-bearer for liberty. We can no longer afford to wonder, "Why can't we just get along?" The time for that has passed: if we are to uphold the freedom that is our birthright, we must put aside the partisanship that has frozen us. We must get along. We must rally around our common beliefs and leave the differences for another day. Our politicians must be brave. They must tell their advisors and funders and radio partisans: "Enough. Don't you understand? We can save America. We must save America. We are a great nation, all of us, but it will take all of us: the Republicans and the Democrats and the Christians and the Harvard-educated East Coast Liberals."
Peggy Noonan has taken the first step. Old line party politician or no, she has said what needed saying. The least you can do, is read it. It may just be the most important book you read this century....more info
- Please Say Something When You Write a Book
Having read several books and many articles by Peggy Noonan, I expected to be swept away by her mastery of language and prose. She is indeed one of America's most talented writers.
Reading this little book, I saw very little that was new or exciting. Maybe Peggy is a little weary of all the jostling for power that she just witnessed. What is said in this book could have been summarized in one of her columns for the WSJ....more info
- A Start!
Noonan states that the stresses and divisions of the Bush years have driven us apart - certainly an understatement, though still welcome from one otherwise expected to be more partisan. She continues, declaring it a mistake to make national security a partisan issue, putting Bush on stage for the "Mission Accomplished" declaration, emphasizing party-line thinking for what's best for the U.S., and implicitly admitting that there's some substance to other nations' current low opinion of the U.S. Finally, her prescription for calm thinking is also welcome and overdue.
The "bad news" about "Patriotic Grace" is that it does not go nearly far enough. A major part of how America got to where it is today is that so much of what we "know" ain't so, combined with cowboy diplomacy and a "Mad Magazine" approach ("What, Me Worry?") to reality.
Examples include America's unqualified and unjustified support for Israel - needlessly antagonizing billions of Arabs and Muslims, an embarrassing political system that is forever distorted by lies and lobbyists, our imperial over-reach - somehow justifying military expenditures equal that of the rest of the world combined, and interventions that repeatedly roil other nations and build distrust, obnoxious and ill-reasoned failure to take action on global warming - putting the very future of Planet Earth at risk, risking our economic (and military) security over two words (Free Trade) that no successful nation has ever held fast to, debating minor changes to out health care system - ignoring the obvious fact that we already spend about 2X/citizen that of most industrialized nations while subjecting millions to the fear of lack of care and/or bankruptcy, annually adding more spending to an education system that has repeatedly show an inability to improve pupil outcomes or even match those of most industrialized nations - despite already spending about 2X/pupil vs. our "competitors," and a financial management system on Wall Street and in Washington contrary to what we espouse and that can only result in currency failure....more info
- What Peggy Saw At The O's De-evolution
It started as Y2K, then became the" new millenium" when we realized the connected world wouldn't end with the turn of century or a clock. Some conservatively called it the 2000s. Conservative columnist Jonah Goldberg cleverly called it the "Oughts." In one horrible day it, and the rest of our lives, became the "post 9-11 world."
In the last weeks before the 2008 election, biographer/columnist/speechwriter Peggy Noonan looked at the years she called the "O's." She compared its wisdom and empathy with that lost from past generations (including her own) and even from 2001's quickly squandered months of national unity. Her result is "Patriotic Grace," both wish list and wistful retrospective.
George W. Bush's presidency and its definitive events -- 9/11, Iraq, even Hurricane Katrina, soak into Ms. Noonan's observations, many lifted from her Wall Street Journal "Declarations" column. In her eyes his presidency created, for "fairness," a world where Ms. Noonan and other middle-aged boomers are verbally abused and harshly frisked at airport security lines, where a gentle remembrance of President Reagan's life became mad panic after a U.S. Capitol false alarm (and a lesson in bi-partisanship for her and her son).
Ms. Noonan recalls Bush's era eloquently, in detailed disbelief. She shows anonymous, harsh Internet bloggers and YouTube uploaders democratizing yet corroding the right to politically, respectively disagree("Modern technology has empowered the unique and creative, but also the disturbed and destructive"). She devotes a third of "Patriotic Grace" to understanding her and the nation's disenchantment with the administration, starting with September 11's ashes and tears ("That day started in shock, and ended in unity") becoming what Bush staffer Scott McLellan called "overconfidence" taking America into Iraq. Ms. Noonan, who wrote for arguably the greatest foreign policy president of modern times, painfully writes of America needing "wise old men" and Republicans "squandering ...its reputation for foreign policy sanity." A conservative still, Ms. Noonan clearly sees Democrats having fared no better.
"Patriotic Grace"'s final chapter addresses our nation's future, yet is Ms. Noonan's most personal. She asks more respect for America's heroes and past ("We have to teach our history with more love"), shared media experience when Big Media has less power than ever and facts twist left and right ("The O's had no limits. And no boundaries either. But the truth seemed as elusive as ever.") She fears the aftermath when America - especially its vulnerable national grid - is inevitably attacked, something few can fathom but our leaders, must prepare for and keep us aware of.
Ms. Noonan's prose style is occasionally pompous but her defense of middle-aged women, and her boomer generation generally compared to the Depression-WWII "greatest generation," is on point. Ms. Noonan wrote for (Reagan) and about (Pope John Paul II) leaders understanding how reconciliation and communication help form coalition and unity. She dedicated "Patriotic Grace" to Barack Obama, John McCain, and the late Tim Russert. Those dedications point "Patriotic Grace" as the first template of a new administration and era's national dialogue. Highly recommended....more info
- Books that should be read.
Peggy is a very readable author and so far I have enjoyed it very much. She makes so much sense. ...more info
- Why I Read Peggy Noonan
I think Peggy Noonan is First Violin in the Opinion Orchestra.
This book is little. You will only spend a few hours reading it, the urgency of the 2008 election sends Peggy straight to the point.
The questions are enormous. What are we putting on our page of history before it turns? How prepared are we to defend ourselves, really? Despite such gravity, I felt my spirits lift when I closed the cover.
If you feel spattered by the toxic splash of election coverage, buy this book. Refresh yourself, then press it into the hands of kindred minds. ...more info
- Elevating our political dialouge
This book was wonderful. I pray the hannity's and oriely's of america and every other blowhard and diddo head who clammors for our attention would take the time to read this wonderful book. ...more info
- Hypocrisy in Published Form
It's hard to say what could be more laughably hypocritical than this drivel-filled book. Peggy Noonan, after all, is the same person who was boosting Sarah Palin for Vice President while Sarah was hopping around the country with such patriotically graceful actions as implying that Barack Obama was a terrorist's best friend, using her RNC speech to introduce herself by going on a 45-minute screed of negative attacks, and making speeches for "real Americans" around the country. It also comes a little late, as she's been boosting George Bush's "patriotic grace" for years... however, now that he's viewed with such malevolence by the public, a Republican must reinvent oneself as calling for grace and civility in politics if one wishes to sell books.
Which bring as to "Patriotic Grace". On some level, Peggy Noonan recognizes that it doesn't bother her to sell completely dishonest positions to the public, as she was caught on tape on television during the 2008 election expressing her true thoughts about Sarah Palin when she thought the microphone was off, saying then that Sarah Palin was a terrible choice for VP, unqualified, and that McCain chose to go for "political BS about narratives" in reference to his VP choice (choosing someone who people would ostensibly vote for due to identifying with her personally as a family woman and hockey mom or so forth, as opposed to political competence, etc.)
Horrified at having her true thoughts revealed on tape and not the Republican boilerplate that is the standard, she immediately tried to spin her words on the tape, instead immediately arguing the party line that Sarah Palin was a great choice for VP. It was the equivalent of the husband caught cheating saying "Who are you going to believe, me or your lying eyes?"
So Peggy Noonan really has no credibility to make a book; she's demonstrably proven that the honesty of an argument is not important as a factor when deciding whether to make it. What matters is whether a call for civility in politics can sell a book, and she's decided there's a market for that opinion now....more info
- Outstanding Book.
I just wanted to say thank you to Ms. Noonan for writing such a wonderful book. It is one of the more thought provoking books I have read in a long while. This is a self-help book for our current state of political and social affairs. This is a self-help book for America. It's a fast read (3-5 hours total?) that delivers a huge bang for its buck. A true must-read. Thanks again, Ms. Noonan....more info
- Literally couldn't put it down (and I'm a liberal)
Patriotic Grace is a short book (just 192 pages) that's long on insight. I'm a moderate Democrat, but I literally couldn't put the book down.
Whatever your politics, you can't argue that Noonan doesn't care about the future of her country. Yes, she comes across as a lot more freaked out about the possibility of a major terrorist attack than I am -- but then again she's a lot closer to the people who keep track of this stuff than I am. Makes you think.
The book isn't all about terrorism. It's about the way we treat each other. Few books make me reflect as much as this one did. I highly recommend it, whatever your political views....more info
- if she had only read her own book
To read this book in the context of Ms. Noonan's behavior during this election leaves one with a sense of bereavement....more info
- A Bit Disappointing
The book expresses great ideas and sentiments but I found it a bit disorganized and difficult to read. ...more info
- What do Noonan's previous books reveal?
Disclaimer: I haven't read her books, just listened to a Talk of the Nation show about this one. I like the forward-looking and constructive premise of it.
But I wonder if this message is undercut by Noonan's previous stance. The lead-in on her web site for her 2000 book "The Case Against Hillary Clinton" is just the sort of backward-looking biased attack that I would hope we would be trying to rise above....
"As the long, scandal-ridden trial of the Clinton years comes to an end--and as the first lady mounts her own campaign for independent political office--it is time for a summation. What is the legacy of Clintonism?"
I hope she addressed this in the new book.
- Downloaded on my Kindle....
Good thing too. I was able to scan its contents so much quicker. I didn't dislike the book, but simply tired of the usage of "I" early in the reading - longest essay ever! When Noonan recounted stories, interviews and used quotes to validate her points, I was engaged and engrossed. When she rambled, I scanned. However, she was on target with her observations and diagnoses - just wish she'd had the solutions. But, let's do be nicer and kinder; oh. and DEFINITELY get the Shop and Home Ec classes back in our schools! It's a start....more info
- A superb analysis of the need for change in America
Without a shadow of doubt, Peggy Noonan is the finest writer when it comes to describing politics, social conditions and personal attitudes of Americans.
She is a gem. This book is her eighth and finest yet. In addition to her facile intellect she presents a genuine cry from the heart about the tragedy of America today. After 9/11, Americans and the world united in support. Now, Noonan writes, "If we had a major terrorist attack tomorrow, half the country -- more than half -- would not completely trust the federal government to do what it has to do, would not trust it to tell the truth, would not trust it, period."
It's not surprising. Noonan was a speechwriter for President Reagan whose philosophy was, "Government is the problem." Now she seems utterly amazed that Americans think government is a problem, not a solution.
It leads me to wonder: What if Winston Churchill, after being named Prime Minister in May 1940 and with Panzers closing in on the British army at Dunquerque, had not said, "I have nothing to offer but blood, toil, tears and sweat." Instead, citing his predecessors, what if he said government was the problem and advised, "Let's go down to the pub and have a Boddy or two."
True to her Reaganesque roots, Noonan still blames government. She's brilliant at this one-note song of sorrow, which makes her book very timely reading. She could be part of the solution if she'd go beyond her anti-government mood and think about how to make government effective and trustworthy again.
Harry Truman did it, when America faced much wider and far more dangerous challenges. Perhaps she's at her limit as a journalist -- defining problems but trusting others to maturely find solutions.
"The greatest generation" of journalists always had quick and ready solutions; journalists today are stuck with whining about problems but never offering solutions. They seem to fear perhaps being wrong. Noonan is as astute as any at such whining; that alone makes her book one of the best and most relevant for today's America.
Noonan writes, "It's beyond 'The president is overwhelmed.' The entire government is overwhelmed." Nonsense. If the government is truly overwhelmed, then America is finished. The answer is to make it work, not to whine about difficulties. Did Churchill whine? Former Sen. Phil Gramm, a McCain advisor, is absolutely right about America becoming a nation of whiners. It's time to stop whining and start working.
This book is a vital start. Buy it. Read it. Loan it to friends. Discuss it. Praise it. Condmen it. It will launch an intelligent conversation among caring people about the nature of America tomorrow.
Noonan offers a magnificent portrait of America today. However, instead of the feel-good "It's morning in America" complacency, the next president must offer some blood, toil, tears and sweat. It's a challenge Americans always respond to with magnificent courage, determination, effort and patriotism.
Noonan is brilliant. America is even better.
- What Peggy Saw at the O's De-Evolution in "Patriotic Grace"
It started as Y2K, then became the" new millenium" when we realized the connected world wouldn't end with the turn of century or a clock. Some conservatively called it the 2000s while conservative columnist Jonah Goldberg cleverly called it the "Oughts." In one horrible day it, and the rest of our lives, became the "post 9-11 world."
In the last weeks before an election which for many drew a spiritual end to the decade, Biographer/columnist/speechwriter Peggy Noonan looked at the last eight years she called the "O's." She compared their spirit with that lost from past generations (including her own) and even from 2001's quickly squandered months of national unity. Her result is "Patriotic Grace," both wish list and wistful retrospective.
George W. Bush's presidency and its definitive events -- 9/11, Iraq, Hurricane Katrina -- soak into Ms. Noonan's observations, many lifted from her Wall Street Journal "Declarations" column. In her eyes his presidency created, in the name of "fairness," a world where Ms. Noonan and other middle-aged boomers are verbally abused and harshly frisked at airport security lines, where a gentle remembrance of President Reagan's life turns into mad panic out of the Capitol (and a lesson in bi-partisanship for her and her son).
Ms. Noonan devotes a third of "Patriotic Grace" to understanding her own and national disenchantment with the administration. Eloquently yet with a sense of tragedy, she shows anonymous, harsh Internet bloggers and YouTube uploaders democratizing yet corroding the right to politically, respectively disagree ("Modern technology has empowered the unique and creative, but also the disturbed and destructive"). She starts with September 11's ashes and tears ("That day started in shock, and ended in unity") becoming what Bush staffer Scott McLellan called "overconfidence" taking America into Iraq. Ms. Noonan, who in Reagan wrote for arguably the greatest foreign policy president of modern times, painfully writes of America needing "wise old men" and Republicans "squandering ...its reputation for foreign policy sanity. It took fifty years to build it." Conservative still, Ms. Noonan sees Democrats faring no better.
"Patriotic Grace"'s final chapter addresses our nation's future, yet is Ms. Noonan's most personal. She asks more respect for America's past ("We have to teach our history with more love"), shared media experience when Big Media has less power than ever and news slants left and right ("The O's had no limits. And no boundaries either. But the truth seemed as elusive as ever.") She fears the aftermath when America - especially its vulnerable national grid - is inevitably attacked, something few can fathom but our leaders, must prepare for and keep us aware of.
Ms. Noonan's prose is occasionally pompous although her defense of middle-aged women, and of her boomer generation (compared to the preceding "greatest generation") in on point. But Peggy Noonan wrote for (Reagan) and about (Pope John Paul II)leaders who understood how reconciliation and communication formed unity. "Patriotic Grace" was published before the election and dedicated to Barack Obama, John McCain, and the late Tim Russert. Those dedications point to "Patriotic Grace" as the first template of national dialogue for a new era and administration.
Highly recommended....more info
- Hopeful optimism when fear grips the heart
I have just invested the better part of a Sunday afternoon reading the new Peggy Noonan book, Patriotic Grace. Through the years I have enjoyed her gracious pen taken to topics, many of which I agreed and some which I felt she was far too gracious, only to find myself moderating my strident position. Since 9/11 it is apparent that things changed for Ms. Noonan and this has been reflected in her writing. Indeed, it appeared that everything had changed for all of us as Americans after 9/11. I remember well members of Congress standing on the steps of the Capitol affirming their love and support for America. I remember the flags, I remember the prayers, I remember the extraordinary efforts that ordinary Americans made to reach out to people whose roots extended to the Middle East. I was profoundly moved to see America find its soul when so many souls had perished. Of course there was and will always be a radical element that decides that it was an "inside job". There will always be those among us who represent the darker side of our family. I know it is impossible to win those people over to any sense of a greater good reality.
However, Ms. Noonan's call is for us to do the very thing that it seems it has become impossible to do today, have civil, if somewhat spirited, conversation. As the books unfolds, one cannot help but feel her anxiety, her sense of intuition that hard times are coming. Calling upon that great lion of the Democrat Party that we conservatives have loved to hate through the years, Teddy Kennedy (p.124) when he speaks in a moment of unguarded honesty among family, "I'm glad I'm not going to be around when you guys are my age."..."Because when you guys are my age, the whole thing is going to fall apart." Even the most cynical among us need to consider these words. Regardless what one may think about Sen. Kennedy, these are words of deep importance. "If I am right that we are facing a hard time, and if deep in your heart you believe we're going to face a bad time, why don't all of us think about it a lot?" "Because it is too big." (p. 138)
This is not about some Republican who senses that defeat is around the corner and there will be lynchings enough to go around beginning with Cheney and of course Bush. It is bigger than the small pea-brained intramural sport that politics has become. This is more than following your favorite college team. As Americans we must recognize that our elected representatives are men and women with clay feet and while insider information has the effect of making one seem wiser than citizens, it does not necessarily make anyone smarter or more capable to discern the complexity that we face as a people and as a nation. When we as citizens of this great nation abdicate to our hired representatives all decisions without hearing our voice we will get what we deserve. The beauty of our system of government is that government works for us, not us for it!
"We have been asking a great deal of the mere mortals who lead us. And while we ask too much of them we keep them from doing- we allow them to avoid doing-the primary thing we need them to do well, which is to know what time it is and act accordingly." (p. 135)
Without question Noonan's call for grace will fall on many deaf ears. As I survey the books on my shelf I see other books by theologians and sociologist calling for a renewed civility. If we fail to grasp the importance of this, we will kill ourselves from the inside out. I join Noonan in seeking to "try in a renewed way, each day, and within my abilities, to be fair." (p.40) If a leftist blogger thinks that is evidence of bad faith, I will extend grace and hope that they too will own their culpability in the disruption of civil conversation. This book will likely irritate the hardcore Republican who feel as though they are always the one being asked to moderate their deeply held convictions. Listen to the words, let them speak to your sensibilities. We can disagree and not be disagreeable. The stakes are too high to do otherwise.
Read this book.
- Noonan describes change we can believe in
Although I disagree with Noonan on occasion, I always, always like her writing style.
This book described very much the change I would like to see in American politics....more info
- Leaves you Empty
Being mostly a fan of Noonan's periodic articles in the Wall St. Journal, I was somewhat disappointed in this book. Her newspaper articles generally indicate a decent conservative with the right ideas about smaller government and individual responsibility. Granted she published this before the election outcome was known, but she tends to give the radical left democratic agenda sort of a pass. She seems to buy in to this liberal hand-wringing about America needing to have a better image in the eyes of the rest of the world, plus she jumps right on the Monday morning quarterback silliness of blaming Bush for Iraq exit strategy tactics. This was not the Noonan I expected. Also, the entire book was sort of like a long version of one of her editorials, and a poorly written one at that. It didn't feel like something that warranted a hard cover....more info
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