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The reviewer for once cannot complain of a lack of adjectives to describe the book under consideration; Mr. Rodgers' ""unauthorized view of Nelson A. Rockefeller"" is vulgar, biased, inconsequential and irritating. What makes it such a nasty business is not that it ""criticizes"" a public figure-- that surely is part of the democratic process, but the ways in which Mr. Rodgers manifests contempt for the reader, the American voter, and uses the submerged slur to befuddle his audience. Item I: the author implies, hints, suggests but rarely states. For instance in the 1930's Rockefeller was sued and the case dropped before trial. Adds Mr. Rodgers ""or just possibly settled out of court."" Honi soil qui mal y pense.... Item II: What Rockefeller does is described with pejorative formalisms: Rockefeller doesn't ask or invite-- he ""summons""; he does not call, he ""pulls (someone) into the matter."" The author even speaks of the ""Rockefeller church"" when he means the Protestant church the Rockefellers attend. Item III: the author ""supports"" every Rockefeller move he dislikes by a parallel of vaguely related actions attributed to his forebears or kinfolk. Since every writer knows how readily the cursory reader telescopes material in his mind, the casual reader of this book may well end up associating the Governor with his grandfather's doings.

Pub Date: Aug. 5th, 1966
Publisher: Stein & Day