Little Green Footballs

Tuesday, August 31, 2004

Books against Bush

"What We've Lost: How the Bush Administration Has Curtailed Freedoms, Ravaged the Environment and Damaged America and the World is a book that has been assembled rather more than written. With great recourse to lists and bullet-point breakdowns, it audits Bush's shortcomings across every department of government, opening each chapter with one of the president's goofy quotes ("It's clearly a budget. It's got lots of numbers in it") then slamming home wave after wave of damning facts and anecdotes: that Bush tried to reclassify "manufacturing" jobs to include people who worked in fast-food joints; that teachers in Missouri were ordered to remove every third light bulb from schools to save money; that parents of soldiers in Iraq were in some cases forced to buy their children's own body-armour vests ("$1,500 retail"), plus hundreds of statistics attesting to Bush's failure to help America's poor, sick and discriminated against. The result is so overwhelming that it reads a little as if someone has fed "Bush, presidency, fuck up" into a search engine on the internet and loosely organised the results. Carter says he intended to write a short handbook, but that the more he and his researchers looked into it, the longer the book got."

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