THE BELTWAY BEAST

HOW TWO TRIBES IN D.C. ARE STEALING FROM OUR CHILDREN, VIOLATING OUR PRIVACY AND DESTROYING THE MIDDLE CLASS

A political treatise that laments how America’s democracy inadequately represents its citizens and calls for the creation of a third party.
In his debut effort, Moon catalogs a host of familiar ailments that he believes currently infect the body politic, including corruption, fiscal irresponsibility, a chronically underperforming educational system, monumental debt and partisan stalemates. However, he unconventionally identifies the principal political challenge of our time as the disenfranchisement of citizens, particularly neglected minorities. He marshals impressive statistical evidence in favor of his thesis that government aggrandizement has come at the expense of voter power. His argument’s seductiveness is partially a function of his consistent bipartisanship. For example, it’s not often that one finds a book that argues for increased teacher compensation while also sharply criticizing public teachers’ unions or that advocates health care reform by competitively pitting private and public programs against each other. The argument’s scope is also dizzyingly wide-ranging, addressing such topics as the government’s response to cyberthreats and a plan for reforming the structure of the United Nations. Sometimes Moon issues overzealous, sweeping generalizations; at one point, for example, he declaims that “[l]obbyists are synonymous with corporations” and then contradicts himself, saying that they “represent labor unions, trade groups, foreign governments, and nonprofits, among others.” His vision for a third party, “The People’s Party of America,” is also a touch quixotic, as it “envisions a nation where every person has access to education, affordable healthcare, and job opportunities; poverty is eradicated and the tax system is fair for all; and our elected leaders term themselves out.” Still, armed with an MBA, Moon presents a pragmatic business plan for establishing this party and reflects with estimable acuity on the history of third-party success in the United States. For a self-professed “average American,” he offers a measured, serious diagnosis of today’s political difficulties, coupled with a wealth of provocative potential solutions.

An engaging critique that sees the two-party system as the source of the United States’ political travails.

Pub Date: Nov. 11, 2014

ISBN: 978-0-9913721-0-2

Page Count: 280

Publisher: Rare Bird Books

Review Posted Online: Dec. 10, 2014

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 15, 2015

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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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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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