A relentless, sometimes telling but one-sided and rancorous indictment of a former president.

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DECLINE OF THE U.S. PRESIDENCY

WILLIAM JEFFERSON CLINTON’S LEGACY OF CORRUPTION

Bill Clinton’s sins—great and small—are explored in this exposé of the 42nd president.

Debut author Anagnos, a political consultant who worked on George H.W. Bush’s 1992 presidential campaign, draws mainly on secondary sources to chronicle what he sees as Clinton’s dishonesty, lechery, and corruption, dubbing him “the American Caligula” after the notoriously depraved Roman emperor. (Hillary Clinton, painted here as an icy, power-mad harridan forever shrieking obscenities at anyone within earshot, plays a supporting role as Machiavellian co-architect of her husband’s misdeeds.) The author’s sources include conservative anti-Clinton books and Independent Counsel Ken Starr’s investigation report. Anagnos’ exhaustive narrative moves from Clinton’s student days pulling strings to dodge the Vietnam War draft to his supposed drug abuse, political sleazemongering, and womanizing during his period as Arkansas governor. The author then reconstructs Clinton’s many presidential scandals, from the Monica Lewinsky affair—recounted in entertaining detail here, complete with transcripts of his gassy prevarications—to allegations that he cheated on a New York Times crossword puzzle. (Anagnos spends less time discussing Clinton’s policies but criticizes him for shrinking the military, offering weak responses to terrorist attacks, and veering off on progressive social causes.) The author presents lucid, well-informed discussions of the better-attested failures of the president’s regime, including the bloody attacks on the Branch Davidian compound in Waco, Texas; the fund-raising improprieties of Clinton and Vice President Al Gore; and the pardoning of well-heeled miscreants like Marc Rich. Less convincingly, Anagnos sometimes runs down the rabbit hole of right-wing conspiracy theory, insinuating that the Oklahoma City bombing was masterminded by Muslim terrorists; the crash of TWA Flight 800 was caused by a U.S. Navy missile; the Vince Foster suicide was actually a murder; and some 60 Clinton associates and opponents met with “mysterious” deaths. The result is much dark and dubious rumination. The Starr investigation was actually controlled by Clinton, the author writes, calling the independent counsel “a coward, so paralyzed with fear in the face of naked evil that he would…pretend not to see it,” which doesn’t fit with the official’s bold pursuit of the Lewinsky probe to the point of getting the president impeached. There’s plenty of red meat here to delight Clinton critics, but Anagnos’ evident distaste for the man sometimes crowds out objectivity and common sense.

A relentless, sometimes telling but one-sided and rancorous indictment of a former president.

Pub Date: Oct. 20, 2018

ISBN: 978-1-949345-00-1

Page Count: 678

Publisher: Songona Publishing, Inc.

Review Posted Online: Jan. 29, 2019

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Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis...

THE ELEMENTS OF STYLE

50TH ANNIVERSARY EDITION

Privately published by Strunk of Cornell in 1918 and revised by his student E. B. White in 1959, that "little book" is back again with more White updatings.

Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis (whoops — "A bankrupt expression") a unique guide (which means "without like or equal").

Pub Date: May 15, 1972

ISBN: 0205632645

Page Count: 105

Publisher: Macmillan

Review Posted Online: Oct. 28, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1, 1972

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WHAT A WONDERFUL WORLD

A LIFETIME OF RECORDINGS

Noted jazz and pop record producer Thiele offers a chatty autobiography. Aided by record-business colleague Golden, Thiele traces his career from his start as a ``pubescent, novice jazz record producer'' in the 1940s through the '50s, when he headed Coral, Dot, and Roulette Records, and the '60s, when he worked for ABC and ran the famous Impulse! jazz label. At Coral, Thiele championed the work of ``hillbilly'' singer Buddy Holly, although the only sessions he produced with Holly were marred by saccharine strings. The producer specialized in more mainstream popsters like the irrepressibly perky Teresa Brewer (who later became his fourth wife) and the bubble-machine muzak-meister Lawrence Welk. At Dot, Thiele was instrumental in recording Jack Kerouac's famous beat- generation ramblings to jazz accompaniment (recordings that Dot's president found ``pornographic''), while also overseeing a steady stream of pop hits. He then moved to the Mafia-controlled Roulette label, where he observed the ``silk-suited, pinky-ringed'' entourage who frequented the label's offices. Incredibly, however, Thiele remembers the famously hard-nosed Morris Levy, who ran the label and was eventually convicted of extortion, as ``one of the kindest, most warm-hearted, and classiest music men I have ever known.'' At ABC/Impulse!, Thiele oversaw the classic recordings of John Coltrane, although he is the first to admit that Coltrane essentially produced his own sessions. Like many producers of the day, Thiele participated in the ownership of publishing rights to some of the songs he recorded; he makes no apology for this practice, which he calls ``entirely appropriate and without any ethical conflicts.'' A pleasant, if not exactly riveting, memoir that will be of most interest to those with a thirst for cocktail-hour stories of the record biz. (25 halftones, not seen)

Pub Date: May 1, 1995

ISBN: 0-19-508629-4

Page Count: 224

Publisher: Oxford Univ.

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 1, 1995

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