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What a Party!: My Life Among Democrats: Presidents, Candidates, Donors, Activists, Alligators and Other Wild Animals

The ex–Democratic National Committee chair and political super– fund-raiser lives up to his nickname Mad Dog in this boisterous memoir. McAuliffe is rabidly aggressive toward Republicans (whom he describes as "willing to lie and cheat any way they could"), savaging them on talk shows and facing them down in bristling social encounters. He relentlessly pursues donors, happy to wrestle alligators and sing karaoke for checks ("for $500,000 I didn't mind humiliating myself"). He golfs, dances and plays cards with his political masters Hillary and Bill Clinton ("the Babe Ruth of American presidents"), forever preening over the role his advice and prodigious fund-raising played in their success. But on the exchange of money for access implicit in his activities, he is blustery but evasive. McAuliffe has incisive comments on the Democrats' shortcomings, especially their faintheartedness in fighting Republicans. Though he champions the Democrats as the party of the little guy—contrasting their jeans-and-barbecue shindigs with "swank, hoity-toity" GOP fund-raising events —that stance is undercut by all the name-dropping ("Ben Affleck joined Robin, Marsha, Dorothy and me for a quick tour of the skeet range") and elbow rubbing with grungily dressed billionaires. McAuliffe's inflated self-regard may give more ammunition to Republican opponents than his partisan vitriol does to Democratic allies.


Seen and Heard: A Century of Arab Women in Literature and Culture

How are Arab women seen by others? How do Arab women see themselves? New York University professor Mona Mikhail's new collection of essays casts a wide net over literature, film, popular culture, and the law in order to investigate the living, often rapidly changing, reality of Arab women and their societies. Whether she examines Egyptian film, contemporary rewritings of the Sherazad story, or women in North African novels, Mikhail sheds valuable light on the role of Arab women within Islam and within the Arab world.


Addie: A Memoir
by Mary Lee Settle

This lively memoir has an unusual biographical twist--it focuses on an era well before the author Mary Lee Settle was even born. Not content to take the usual journey from childhood to old age, Settle instead focuses on the life and times of her own West Virginian Grandmother Addie. By exploring the roots of her family tree, Settle can give a broader perspective to her own life, her relationship with her mother and Grandmother, and the attitudes which she inherited from them.

Addie gives a fascinating insight into the culture of gentrified white Southerners at the turn of the century, a culture which ousted the young Addie for her scandalous relationship with a man who was far above her in status and class. Through meticulous research of family documents and court papers, Settle has painted a very personal but very telling portrait of a bygone era, and a life lived so long ago.

 

Celestron SkyScout Personal Planetarium

Recommended by Jed

SkyScout Personal Planetarium - The SkyScout makes star-gazing a whole lot easier, and a lot more fun! SkyScout works in one of two ways. You can point the SkyScout at what you are looking at in the sky, then via GPS, the SkyScout will tell you what exactly it is you're looking at. Or, you can select a celestial object you want to see via it's internal menu, and SkyScout will prompt you with directional arrows through the viewfinder. Follow it's directions and SkyScout will let you know when you're on target. SkyScout also has the capability to educate you on the object your viewing. Via audio and text, the SkyScout will give you facts, trivia, history and mythology on the most popular space-faring bodies. Over 200 audio descriptions of the most popular celestial objects Durable construction Graphic 3 (w) x 1 (h) LCD Display with Red LED Backlight Target Button Menu Navigation - 4-way control Out-Touch Controls - identify function, locate function, GPS function, & main menu Brightness Controls Volume Controls SD Card Slot USB Connection to a PC 3.5mm stereo jack for headphones Powered by 2 AA batteries (not included) Built-in Help 2-Year Manufacturer's Warranty Unit Dimensions - 2.5 (h) x 4 (d) x 7.4 (w) Unit Weight - 15.2 oz. (w/o batteries)

 

Philips HeartStart Home Automated External Defibrillator (AED)

Recommended by Jed

Product Features

* The first and only defibrillator available over-the-counter that can be used by virtually anyone with the materials included
* Easy to use with guided interactive voice instructions
* Safely delivers a shock only if needed
* Reliably runs daily self-tests for readiness
* Philips is the worldwide leader in portable defibrillators on airplanes, and in airports, workplaces, communities, and homes

Melissa Etheridge: Greatest Hits: The Road Less Traveled [Deluxe CD/DVD Combo]

Recommended by Nightbird

Melissa Etheridge's new cd and cd/dvd combo Greatest Hits: The Road Less Traveled includes her incredible performance at the Grammy Awards when she sang the Janis Joplin song, "Piece of My Heart" with Joss Stone. It also includes her new song "I Run For Life" which is an inspirational song for women everywhere who have had their lives, or the lives of a loved one, impacted by breast cancer.

Cirque du Soleil - Varekai (2003)

Even by the high standards of Cirque du Soleil, Varekai is outstanding. While this artsy circus often aspires to weave a narrative through its spectacular events, in Varekai that story (about a winged boy who falls to earth and falls in love with a caterpillar girl) is as delightful and engaging as the acrobatic feats--which is saying a lot, because these feats will leave you agog. Acrobats juggle each others' bodies with their legs; identical twins spin on aerial straps; a contortionist twists into uncanny pretzel shapes; and much, much more. The elaborate costumes truly do evoke an otherworldly place--one of the clown characters looks like a man's torso emerging from the mouth of a carnivorous plant. Exceptionally well-filmed, and featuring a wealth of extra features about the making of the show, Varekai is Cirque du Soleil at the peak of its powers: Dizzy, dazzling, and sexy. --Bret Fetzer

 

Electric Light Orchestra (ELO) - Zoom Tour Live

This superlative concert video is a godsend for fans of Electric Light Orchestra, since ELO's Zoom tour was cut short, sadly, because of lackluster ticket sales. Judging from this tour-opening performance (in May 2001, at the CBS studios in Los Angeles), those canceled gigs were a major loss, because Jeff Lynne's revamped ELO is in top form, playing six new songs from Zoom (ELO's first release in 15 years) and 17 hits from the band's beloved legacy. Like the meticulous producer he is, guitarist-composer Lynne plays cordial frontman to an appreciative audience, and his re-creation of ELO's classical-rock sound is astonishing in its fidelity to the studio recordings. From the moment ELO's signature "space-ship" stage blossoms to reveal Lynne's eight-piece ensemble (including, of course, two cellists), there's not a weak song in the brisk 98-minute set. Zoom Tour Live is ample compensation for those who bought useless tickets to an ill-fated show. --Jeff Shannon

Rod Stewart - It Had to Be You: The Great American Songbook (2002)

The dvd has 9 bonus tracks compared to the cd. The tracklist includes these songs

  1. Forever Young
  2. Some Guys Have All The Luck
  3. They Can't Take That Away From Me
  4. The Way You Look Tonight
  5. These Foolish Things
  6. Moonglow
  7. Every Time We Say Goodbye
  8. The Very Thought Of You
  9. That Old Feeling
  10. You Go To My Head
  11. For All We Know
  12. The Nearness Of You
  13. That's All
  14. We'll Be Together Again
  15. Rhythm Of My Heart
  16. Downtown Train
  17. Maggie May
  18. Young Turks
  19. Hot Legs
  20. Havin' A Party
  21. I'll Be Seeing You

Bonus Track: It Takes Two

It's so different when you see an artist perform in front of you & ROD STEWART was truly a treat to watch in this DVD. For a man who's over 50 he sure didn't act like one and that's a compliment coz you will see how much fun he was having in this concert! ... amazon.com

 


Rod Stewart - Stardust...The Great American Songbook: Volume III

Stardust...Volume III is as note-for-note solid as its predecessors--a cozy-up-to-the-fire treat that's also a pleasant reminder of these songs' staying power. "S'Wonderful" settles on the ears winningly, and Stewart's scratch-a-thon voice scalpels the cobwebs off of "Isn't It Romantic" in a way that compels the average listener to reconsider thinking it dopey. In addition, the parade of high-wattage pals recruited to pitch in continues here, resulting in a couple of must-hear combinations. Eric Clapton delivers a rather un-Clapton-like guitar solo on "Blue Moon" and Stevie Wonder blows harp like he means it on "What a Wonderful World," but it is the duets--"Baby It's Cold Outside" with the unsinkable Dolly Parton and "Manhattan" with the indomitable Bette Midler--that dazzle most. --Tammy La Gorce

 

The Nightmare Before Christmas (Special Edition) (1993)

Amazon.com
For those who never thought Disney would release a film in which Santa Claus is kidnapped and tortured, well, here it is! The full title is Tim Burton's The Nightmare Before Christmas, which should give you an idea of the tone of this stop-action animated musical/fantasy/horror/comedy. It is based on characters created by Burton, the former Disney animator best known as the director of Pee-wee's Big Adventure, Beetlejuice, Edward Scissorhands, and the first two Batman movies. His benignly scary-funny sensibility dominates the story of Halloweentown resident Jack Skellington (voice by Danny Elfman, who also wrote the songs), who stumbles on a bizarre and fascinating alternative universe called ... Christmastown! Directed by Henry Selick (who later made the delightful James and the Giant Peach), this PG-rated picture has a reassuringly light touch. As Roger Ebert noted in his review, "some of the Halloween creatures might be a tad scary for smaller children, but this is the kind of movie older kids will eat up; it has the kind of offbeat, subversive energy that tells them wonderful things are likely to happen." --Jim Emerson --This text refers to the DVD edition.

DVD features
Using the exhaustive laser disc version as a start, the Nightmare DVD is a fascinating disc with more than 450 production and design images, a deft storyboard-to-film example, and deleted scenes. Director Henry Selick delves deep into the making of the film in his audio commentary and in a 20-minute documentary. The film also features two Tim Burton shorts, the stop-motion Vincent (his first film, which is rarely seen) and the half-hour Frankenweenie. In a welcome trend, the disc contains DTS and Dolby Digital soundtracks. --Doug Thomas


The Fountain at the Center of the World by Robert Newman

Recommended by progressives

This is one of those book that before you are a few pages in, you know it's gonna be great. By the time I read 20 pages I was going online and recommending it. It's one of those books you start reading and you can hardly put it down till you finish. It's very Dickensonian, in the very best sense, making real the lives of the poor, the global poor, as well as the WTO rich. It follows the lives of two brothers, Chano, a poor Mexican activist and Evan, adopted by a rich British family, one of the World Trade Organization's movers and shakers. There's a Prince and the Pauper touch as well when the poor brother replaces the rich one to speak to those in power, who, of course, do not listen or hear only what they want to hear. There's also the story of Chano seeking his lost son Daniel who always seems to be flittering just out of his reach. I believe, as humans, that we like our lessons wrapped in stories, that stories makes it easier for us to learn, to understand. The story of Chano and Evan and Daniel is wrapped around a lesson about globalization, about the World Trade Organization, NAFTA and the Mexican maquiladora plants near the border as they pollute the environment and poison their workers - because they can. The human stories make the global economic stories easier to understand. It's also wrapped around the Seattle protests against the WTO, making them mythic in an almost John Reed way. Except for the beating and shooting and gassing…it makes you wanna be there.

The Fountain at the Center of the World is a book about global issues but also about personal issues and how the two intersect. That's something that's left out of books these days. People in most books seem to live in a vacuum, unaffected by global issues while in reality are all affected. The Fountain at the Center of the World shows us how we are all affected, shows us in the stories of the dying Evan, the despairing Chano and the lost Daniel. Despite Evan's wealth, his intelligence, his support for and his knowledge about the system, he is isolated even in his death, while Chano and Daniel are surrounded by friends and allies who help them survive and escape as they try to make the world a better place. As does this book.

Well worth the read!!


Cat Stevens - Majikat (Earth Tour 1976)

Recorded just past his commercial zenith and about a year and a half before he quit the music business for good, this concert recording from Cat Stevens's mid-'70s Majikat tour (filmed in Williamsburg, Virginia) lay unused in the vaults for the better part of three decades, and its 2004 release is a reminder of just how successful and talented he was. Playing acoustic guitar and piano and performing solo, with minimal backing, and with a full band (not to mention a trio of magicians and an impressive stage set), Stevens runs through some 20 songs, drawing from his entire catalog, with particular emphasis on Tea for the Tillerman. The remastered digital sound is excellent, and there are plenty of extra features, including a lengthy and informative contemporary interview with Stevens (now known as Yusuf Islam), six additional songs from the archives (one of which, "Moonshadow," is presented in animation), and a reproduction of the original tour program. Even if this weren't the only available visual evidence from Stevens's career, Majikat (Earth Tour 1976) would be a worthy and valuable record of one of the most popular artists of his time. --Sam Graham


The Family : The Real Story of the Bush Dynasty
by Kitty Kelley

An important polemic on wealth, power, and class in America, The Family is rich in texture, probing in its psychological insight, revealing in its political and financial detail, and stunning in the patterns that emerge and expose the Bush dynasty as it has never before been exposed. Ms. Kelley takes us back to the origins of the family fortune in the Ohio steel industry at the turn of the last century, through the oil deals and international business associations that have maintained and increased their wealth over the past hundred years. The book leads us through Prescott Bush's first entrée into government at the state level in 1950s' Connecticut, to George Herbert Walker Bush's long and winding road to the White House, to his son's quick sweep into the same office. Along the way, we see the complex relationships the Bushes have had with the giants of the century--Eisenhower, Nixon, Joseph McCarthy, Kissinger, Reagan, Clinton--as well as the often ruthless methods used to realize their goals.

Perhaps most impressive--and surprising--is the way the book delves behind the obsessively protected public image into the family's intimate private lives: the matriarchs, the mistresses, the marriages, the divorces, the jealousies, the hypocrisies, the golden children, and the black sheep.

At a crucial point in American history, Kitty Kelley is the one person to finally tell all about the family that has, perhaps more than any other, defined our role in the modern world. This is the book the Bushes don't want you to read. This is The Family.

 

 

Dreams from My Father : A Story of Race and Inheritance
by Barack Obama

U.S. Senate hopeful Barack Obama has an inspiring story to share, and yet he doesn't simply rest on his laurels in this critical evaluation of his life and in his continuing search for himself as a black American. He wrote "Dreams From My Father: A Story of Race and Inheritance" almost ten years ago, but his stock has obviously surged since his star-making speech at the Democratic National Convention last month, perhaps to the chagrin of Hillary Clinton...unless she is dreaming of a Clinton-Obama ticket in 2008! Growing up mulatto in Hawaii and Indonesia, Obama discusses trying to come to grips with his racial identity through a period of rebellion that included drug use, becoming a community activist in Chicago and traveling to Kenya to understand his father's past. It is in Kenya where he discovers a nation with 400 different tribes, each of them saddled with stereotypes of the others. It is also in Kenya where he recognizes the dichotomy that has been his lifelong existence between the graves of his father and his grandfather. His description of this defining moment is worthy of a passage in Alex Haley's "Roots".


Farenheit 911 by Michael Moore

To anyone who truly understands what it means to be an American, Michael Moore's Fahrenheit 9/11 should be seen as a triumph of patriotic freedom. Rarely has the First Amendment been exercised with such fervor and forthrightness of purpose: After subjecting himself to charges of factual errors in his gun-lobby exposé Bowling for Columbine, Moore armed himself with a platoon of reputable fact-checkers, an abundance of indisputable film and video footage, and his own ironically comedic sense of righteous indignation, with the singular intention of toppling the war-ravaged administration of President George W. Bush. It's the Bush presidency that Moore, with his provocative array of facts and figures, blames for corporate corruption, senseless death, unnecessary war, and political favoritism toward Osama Bin Laden's family and Saudi oil partners following the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001. Moore's incendiary film earned Palme d'Or honors at Cannes and a predictable legion of detractors, but do yourself a favor: Ignore those who condemn the film without seeing it, and let the facts speak for themselves. By honoring American soldiers and the victims of 9/11 while condemning Bush's rationale for war in Iraq, Fahrenheit 9/11 may actually succeed in turning the tides of history. --Jeff Shannon --This text refers to the Theatrical Release edition.


Outfoxed - Rupert Murdoch's War on Journalism

Outfoxed: Rupert Murdoch's War on Journalism uses the inflammatory tactics of the Fox News Channel to demonstrate the conservative bias that's handed down by Fox's owner, media mogul Rupert Murdoch. The documentary gathers interviews from media watchdogs and former Fox employees (including a former anchor, Jon Du Pre, who describes his flailing efforts to create a celebration for Reagan's birthday when the one he was sent to cover never materialized), but their overwhelming condemnation of Fox's skewed news practices isn't half as effective as footage taken directly from Fox itself--an appalling montage of pundit Bill O'Reilly telling guests to shut up; repeated efforts to paint Democratic presidential nominee John Kerry as weak and waffling, while President Bush is captured in respectful, reverent images; and management memos dictating language, subject matter, and point of view. Outfoxed is unlikely to persuade Fox News fans to change their views, but it may spur outraged liberals to take action. --Bret Fetzer


My Life by Bill Clinton

Book Excerpt from Chapter One
Early on the morning of August 19, 1946, I was born under a clear sky after a violent summer storm to a widowed mother in the Julia Chester Hospital in Hope, a town of about six thousand in southwest Arkansas, thirty-three miles east of the Texas border at Texarkana. My mother named me William Jefferson Blythe III after my father, William Jefferson Blythe Jr., one of nine children of a poor farmer in Sherman, Texas, who died when my father was seventeen. According to his sisters, my father always tried to take care of them, and he grew up to be a handsome, hardworking, fun-loving man. He met my mother at Tri-State Hospital in Shreveport, Louisiana, in 1943, when she was training to be a nurse. Many times when I was growing up, I asked Mother to tell me the story of their meeting, courting, and marriage. He brought a date with some kind of medical emergency into the ward where she was working, and they talked and flirted while the other woman was being treated. On his way out of the hospital, he touched the finger on which she was wearing her boyfriend's ring and asked her if she was married. She stammered "no"—she was single. The next day he sent the other woman flowers and her heart sank. Then he called Mother for a date, explaining that he always sent flowers when he ended a relationship.

 


Kenwood UBZ-LH14 2-Way Radio (Black)


Against All Enemies: Inside America's War on Terror
by Richard A. Clarke

Few political memoirs have made such a dramatic entrance as that by Richard A. Clarke. During the week of the initial publication of Against All Enemies, Clarke was featured on 60 Minutes, testified before the 9/11 commission, and touched off a raging controversy over how the presidential administration handled the threat of terrorism and the post-9/11 geopolitical landscape. Clarke, a veteran Washington insider who had advised presidents Reagan, George H.W. Bush, Clinton, and George W. Bush, dissects each man's approach to terrorism but levels the harshest criticism at the latter Bush and his advisors who, Clarke asserts, failed to take terrorism and Al-Qaeda seriously. Clarke details how, in light of mounting intelligence of the danger Al-Qaeda presented, his urgent requests to move terrorism up the list of priorities in the early days of the administration were met with apathy and procrastination and how, after the attacks took place, Bush and key figures such as Donald Rumsfeld, Paul Wolfowitz, and Dick Cheney, turned their attention almost immediately to Iraq, a nation not involved in what the attacks. Against All Enemies takes the reader inside the Beltway beginning with the Reagan administration, who failed to retaliate against the 1982 Beirut bombings, fueling the perception around the world that the United States was vulnerable to such attacks. Terrorism becomes a growing but largely ignored threat under the first President Bush, whom Clarke cites for his failure to eliminate Saddam Hussein, thereby necessitating a continued American presence in Saudi Arabia that further inflamed anti-American sentiment. Clinton, according to Clarke, understood the gravity of the situation and became increasingly obsessed with stopping Al-Qaeda. He had developed workable plans but was hamstrung by political infighting and the sex scandal that led to his impeachment. But Bush and his advisers, Clarke says, didn't get it before 9/11 and they didn't get it after, taking a unilateral approach that seemed destined to lead to more attacks on Americans and American interests around the world. Clarke's inside accounts of what happens in the corridors of power are fascinating and the book, written in a compelling, highly readable style, at times almost seems like a fiction thriller. But the threat of terrorism and the consequences of Bush's approach to it feel very sobering and very real. --John Moe


Corel Print House 6.0

Corel® Print House 6 puts a complete home-publishing package at your fingertips and lets you take your creativity to new levels. You can design scrapbooks, greeting cards, calendars, banners, paper toys, stationary, T-shirts, party theme sets—and lots more. Retouch and edit digital photos. Publish projects on the Web. E-mail them to friends and family. With an extensive selection of drawing tools; sample projects and graphics; and a host of other simple and intuitive features, Print House 6 makes home publishing a joy.

Corel® Print House 6 puts a complete home-publishing package at your fingertips and lets you take your creativity to new levels. You can design scrapbooks, greeting cards, calendars, banners, paper toys, stationary, T-shirts, party theme sets—and lots more. Retouch and edit digital photos. Publish projects on the Web. E-mail them to friends and family. With an extensive selection of drawing tools; sample projects and graphics; and a host of other simple and intuitive features, Print House 6 makes home publishing a joy.

Features and benefits

  • Create a near-endless array of personalized print projects, from calendars and banners to paper toys and party invitations
  • Get started quickly and easily with ready-made sample projects and templates
  • Draw from thousands of customizable clipart images, photos, illustrations, 3-D projects, and animated images
  • Retouch a variety of images, including photos from your digital camera or scanner, and clipart images
  • Create eye-catching original artwork and designs from scratch
  • Make every picture perfect—adjusting brightness, sharpening focus, and removing red eye, scratches and speckles
  • Dramatically enhance any digital image: remove objects from a photo; add text or clipart; replace or change colors; add decorative frames, borders or photo cutouts; and apply special effects

You get:

  • 35,000+ clipart images
  • 7,000 photos
  • 5,000+ sample projects

Go here and click on "Take Interactive Tour Now".

 

Back in the U.S. Live 2002 Paul McCartney

Double live CD includes 35 classic McCartney and Beatles songs from his sold out US tour. CD packaging includes 2 CDs in a slimline jewel box and a 32-page four color annotated collector's booklet featuring never before seen photographs from the tour. Capitol. 2002.


Roxy Music Live

When the news filtered out that Roxy (Bryan Ferry, Andy Mackay, Phil Manzanera, and Paul Thompson, but, alas, no Brian Eno) were reconvening, skeptics anticipated a nostalgia trip by superannuated globetrotters. How wrong they were. These 22 sonically excellent recordings (made in 16 auditoriums, from Stuttgart to Adelaide via Vancouver) exhibit an envious attention to detail (Lucy Wilkins supplants Eddie Jobson's violin on "Out of the Blue" and there are even revving motorbike noises on "Virginia Plain"), but are far from clinically sterile. The godfathers of glam still manage to stoke up a fire behind the likes of "Remake Remodel" and Ferry continues to sing like a man handling a poisonous spider or having his back scratched by a supermodel. Their influence is still palpable--Suede must have re-written "Street Life" three times over. Pretty much everything on Live--from the art-rock of the early years to the urbane sleekness of "Avalon"--sounds as fresh as the 6 o'clock news. --Kevin Maidment

Special enhanced (includes video for 'Both Ends Burning') double live CD from their World Tour in 2001.

Conspiracy : How the Paranoid Style Flourishes and Where It Comes From
by Daniel Pipes

Recommended by Marij

The New World Order, CIA drug rings, UFOs in New Mexico, the JFK assassination, the Elders of Zion--all are the products of politically disaffected and culturally suspicious minds, writes Daniel Pipes, author of The Hidden Hand: Middle East Fears of Conspiracy. Here he examines the nature of conspiracy theories and asks, "What makes otherwise intelligent people believe in phony phenomena?" and "Why is antisemitism so often its central feature?" Pipes usefully lays out a few hypotheses about conspiracy theories, and distinguishes them from actual conspiracies (which are real, of course). Although the book could benefit from some organizational improvement, it contains many astute observations. Readers interested in its subject will find it worth examining.

 


The X-President by by Philip Baruth

Recommended by progressives

This was a good book, a page turner set 60 years in the future when America is on the losing end of what are called the Tobacco Wars, wars that have their origins in two of Bill Clinton's minor actions while he was president, the expansion of NATO and the Anti-Tobacco Accords. The protagonist is Sal, the official biographer of the 109- year old Bill Clinton. Sal, along with three covert ops, is sent back in time to change the past and thus the future. She is drafted and forced to go because she knows more about Bill Clinton than anyone else in the world. Changing the past involves kidnapping the 16 year old Bill Clinton in 1963 and taking him to 1995 to convince his future self to avoid certain actions. It's a little scifi with the paradoxes of time travel but mostly it's a book for political junkies with much mention of the players and the scandals from the last dozen years. It's so well researched and written and includes so many facts that when it includes fictitious events I found myself assuming they were real. (There was no Anti-Tobacco accord propelling American Tobacco companies into foreign markets.)

The book is not really friendly to Bill Clinton, though not totally unfriendly either. It sees his flaws and his gifts. Despite it being such a political book I couldn't tell what side the author was on politically. I did learn two little conspiracy facts or fictions: 1) that Kurt Muse, who sounds like a CIA asset, was the real reason for the invasion of Panama and 2) that Timothy McVeigh had met both George Bush and General Schwarzkopf (couldn't find anything on that so it might not be true). It also uses the team's visit with the young Bill Clinton (aka, yBC) as the reason for Clinton's lifelong conviction that he was supposed to be president. Anyway, it was a fun book to read and can be enjoyed by both Clinton's supporters and detractors.


The Buying of the President 2004 : Who's Really Bankrolling Bush and His Democratic Challengers--and What They Expect in Return by Charles Lewis


Recommended by Deacon

The Buying of the President 2004 reveals how the process of choosing a president has moved from the voting booth to the auction block, and highlights the special interests that heavily invest in the politicians seeking the nation's highest office. Lewis and his team reveal and investigate the sponsors and the known and not-so-known conflicts of interest entangling each of the aspirants to the White House. This is the only book of its kind, containing investigative profiles and personal histories of the major presidential candidates.

Here you will find answers to questions like

  • Which candidate was paid by a pharmaceutical firm to give speeches while running for the Senate?
  • Who turned the Homeland Security Act into a bonanza for the biotech industry?
  • Which candidate proposed 32 separate tax breaks for big businesses that support his campaign?
  • Who is the "go-to guy" for the insurance industry

Fun, Games, And Big Bangs : The Home And Recreational Use Of High Explosives

Blowing things up is both fun and an effective way to get certain jobs done quickly. This layman's guide to the safe handling and use of explosives shows you how to have a blast doing chores by using demolition tricks of the trade to remove stumps, blast trenches and fell trees. (Buy the book!! Get on the FBI watch list!!)

This book is no longer offered by Amazon. Wonder why? *snicker*
The PLUTOCRACY MUST be KEPT SAFE!!!

 

Teach Your Cat to Read

I really recomend this book for people who have cats. It tells you how you can teach your cat to read! Yeah I'm not joking your cats I.Q. is acutually as high if not higher than a chimp! In this book you'll find a piture on the next page the word also it'll give info. on how to train your beloved cat.

 


Rats for Those Who Care by Susan Fox et al

Do NOT buy this book if you care about your rats. This author has no idea what she's talking about.


PANASONIC TH-50PX20U/P 50-Inch HDTV
Plasma Monitor


RingWorld by Larry Niven

Recommended by progressives (Make sure you click on the book and not the audiocassette)

Ringworld is a marvellously inventive story - two humans and two Aliens, a cariverous, Cat-like kzin and a herbiverous puppeteer - set out to explore a vast world built in a ring around a sun, with a surface area of billions of square miles on which all kinds of societies can flourish. Niven is a trained mathematician, and it makes the story more satisfying that the maths are worked out plausibly. It deserves its many awards for sheer non-stop inventiveness and action. The characters are plausible and fascinating, too.


RingWorld Engineers by Larry Niven

Recommended by progressives

An ingeniously thought out novel. In it, Larry Niven succeeds in reconcilling some of the apparent inconsistencies between the Ringworld books and his other Known Space novels (by demonstrating that the Ringworld was built by the Pak protectors), and incorporates the ideas and questions of his fans (spillpipes, attitude jets, and defense system) into the operation of the Ringworld, while at the same time telling an exciting, and fast moving story. That he manages all three so flawlessly is surely a sign of his genius as a writer...Amazon.com

 

 


The Price of Loyalty: George W. Bush, the White House, and the Education of Paul O'Neill

Saddam Ouster Planned Early '01?

“From the very beginning, there was a conviction, that Saddam Hussein was
a bad person and that he needed to go,” says O’Neill, who adds that going
after Saddam was topic "A" 10 days after the inauguration - eight months
before Sept. 11.

“From the very first instance, it was about Iraq. It was about what we can do
to change this regime,” says Suskind. “Day one, these things were laid and
sealed.”

"It was all about finding a way to do it. That was the tone of it. The president
saying ‘Go find me a way to do this,’" says O’Neill. “For me, the notion of
pre-emption, that the U.S. has the unilateral right to do whatever we decide
to do, is a really huge leap.”

And that came up at this first meeting, says O’Neill, who adds that the
discussion of Iraq continued at the next National Security Council meeting
two days later.

Confessions of a White House Insider

From his first meeting with the President, O'Neill found Bush unengaged and
inscrutable, an inside account far different from the shiny White House
brochure version of an unfailing leader questioning aides with rapid-fire
intensity. The two met one-on-one almost every week, but O'Neill says he had
trouble divining his boss's goals and ideas. Bush was a blank slate rarely
asking questions or issuing orders, unlike Nixon and Ford, for whom O'Neill
also worked. "I wondered from the first, if the President didn't know the
questions to ask," O'Neill says in the book, "or if he did know and just not
want to know the answers? Or did his strategy somehow involve never
showing what he thought? But you can ask questions, gather information and
not necessarily show your hand. It was strange." In larger meetings, Bush was
similarly walled off. Describing top-level meetings, O'Neill tells Suskind that
during the course of his two years the President was "like a blind man in a
roomful of deaf people."

The Awful Truth
By PAUL KRUGMAN

eople are saying terrible things about George Bush. They say that his officials weren't sincere about pledges to balance the budget. They say that the planning for an invasion of Iraq began seven months before 9/11, that there was never any good evidence that Iraq was a threat and that the war actually undermined the fight against terrorism.

But these irrational Bush haters are body-piercing, Hollywood-loving, left-wing freaks who should go back where they came from: the executive offices of Alcoa, and the halls of the Army War College.

I was one of the few commentators who didn't celebrate Paul O'Neill's appointment as Treasury secretary. And I couldn't understand why, if Mr. O'Neill was the principled man his friends described, he didn't resign early from an administration that was clearly anything but honest.

But now he's showing the courage I missed back then, by giving us an invaluable, scathing insider's picture of the Bush administration.

Ron Suskind's new book "The Price of Loyalty" is based largely on interviews with and materials supplied by Mr. O'Neill. It portrays an administration in which political considerations — satisfying "the base" — trump policy analysis on every issue, from tax cuts to international trade policy and global warming. The money quote may be Dick Cheney's blithe declaration that "Reagan proved deficits don't matter." But there are many other revelations.

One is that Mr. O'Neill and Alan Greenspan knew that it was a mistake to lock in huge tax cuts based on questionable projections of future surpluses. In May 2001 Mr. Greenspan gloomily told Mr. O'Neill that because the first Bush tax cut didn't include triggers — it went forward regardless of how the budget turned out — it was "irresponsible fiscal policy." This was a time when critics of the tax cut were ridiculed for saying exactly the same thing.

Another is that Mr. Bush, who declared in the 2000 campaign that "the vast majority of my tax cuts go to the bottom end of the spectrum," knew that this wasn't true. He worried that eliminating taxes on dividends would benefit only "top-rate people," asking his advisers, "Didn't we already give them a break at the top?"

Most startling of all, Donald Rumsfeld pushed the idea of regime change in Iraq as a way to transform the Middle East at a National Security Council meeting in February 2001.

There's much more in Mr. Suskind's book. All of it will dismay those who still want to believe that our leaders are wise and good.

The question is whether this book will open the eyes of those who think that anyone who criticizes the tax cuts is a wild-eyed leftist, and that anyone who says the administration hyped the threat from Iraq is a conspiracy theorist.

The point is that the credentials of the critics just keep getting better. How can Howard Dean's assertion that the capture of Saddam hasn't made us safer be dismissed as bizarre, when a report published by the Army War College says that the war in Iraq was a "detour" that undermined the fight against terror? How can charges by Wesley Clark and others that the administration was looking for an excuse to invade Iraq be dismissed as paranoid in the light of Mr. O'Neill's revelations?

So far administration officials have attacked Mr. O'Neill's character but haven't refuted any of his facts. They have, however, already opened an investigation into how a picture of a possibly classified document appeared during Mr. O'Neill's TV interview. This alacrity stands in sharp contrast with their evident lack of concern when a senior administration official, still unknown, blew the cover of a C.I.A. operative because her husband had revealed some politically inconvenient facts.

Some will say that none of this matters because Saddam is in custody, and the economy is growing. Even in the short run, however, these successes may not be all they're cracked up to be. More Americans were killed and wounded in the four weeks after Saddam's capture than in the four weeks before. The drop in the unemployment rate since its peak last summer doesn't reflect a greater availability of jobs, but rather a decline in the share of the population that is even looking for work.

More important, having a few months of good news doesn't excuse a consistent pattern of dishonest, irresponsible leadership. And that pattern keeps getting harder to deny.

American Dynasty: Aristocracy, Fortune, and the Politics of Deceit in the House of Bush by Kevin Phillips

Kevin Phillips, Author of "American Dynasty:
Aristocracy, Fortune and the Politics of Deceit in the
House of Bush"

A BUZZFLASH INTERVIEW

"Now what I get a sense of from all of this -- and then
topped obviously by spending all the money in 2000 to
basically buy the election -- is that this is not a family that
has a particularly strong commitment to American democracy.
Its sense of how to win elections comes out of a CIA manual,
not out of the Declaration of Independence or the
Constitution." -- Kevin Phillips

Panasonic 50
Panasonic 50" HD Plasma TV


For when you win the lottery!

Speakerboxxx/ The Love Below [EXPLICIT LYRICS] by Outkast

Recommended by ItsMarty

"This is a great album. The main reason i got this is cause of "The Way You Move" Ever since this song came out, i was dying to have this album. And now i have. I heard every song, and i still think the way you move is the best. enjoy. " Amazon Review


Elephunk by Black Eyed Peas

Recommended by ItsMarty

"This album is absolutely awesome, and has something for everyone. It brings together R&B, Rap, and Jazz with socially conscious lyrics." Amazon Review


Preachers Son (Limited Edition w/ Bonus DVD) by Wyclef Jean

Recommended by ItsMarty

"Wyclef hits us off in the '03 with another Lp this time as the Preachers Son. His last Lp wasent that good but for the most part all his other cds have been hot. This cd continues the hot trend by keeping it moving with the hot new single "Party to Damascus" with missy. " Amazon review

 

Lies and the Lying Liars Who Tell Them: A Fair and Balanced Look at the Right by Al Franken

Recommended by M54CT

Having previously dissected the factual inaccuracies of a single bellicose talk show host in Rush Limbaugh Is a Big Fat Idiot, Al Franken takes his fight to a larger foe: President George W. Bush, the Bush Administration, Ann Coulter, Bill O’Reilly, and scores of other conservatives whom, he says, are playing loose with the facts. It's a lot of ground to cover, as evidenced by the 43 chapters in Lies and the Lying Liars Who Tell Them, but the results are often entertaining and insightful. Franken occupies a unique place in the modern political dialogue as perhaps the media's only comedy writer and performer who is also a Harvard fellow as well as a liberal political commentator. This unique and vaguely lonely position lends a charming quixotic quality to adventures such as a tense encounter with the Fox News staff at the National Press Club, a challenge to fisticuffs with National Review Editor Rich Lowry, and an oddly sweet admissions visit to ultra-conservative Bob Jones University (with a young research assistant posing as his son when Franken's real-life son refuses to participate in the charade).

 

Aristotle's Children: How Christians, Muslims, and Jews Rediscovered Ancient Wisdom and Illuminated the Dark Ages by Richard E. Rubenstein

Recommended by fatima3

From Publishers Weekly
In 12th-century Toledo, in Spain, a group of Christian monks, Jewish sages and Muslim teachers gathered to study a new translation of Aristotle's De Anima (On the Soul). In Rubenstein's dazzling historical narrative, this moment represents both the tremendous influence of Aristotle on these three religions and the culmination of the medieval rediscovery of his writings. In the fourth century B.C., Aristotle fashioned a new system of philosophy, focusing on the material world, whose operations he explained by a series of causes. As Rubenstein (When Jesus Became God) explains, in the second and third centuries A.D., Western Christian scholars suppressed Aristotle's teachings, believing that his emphasis on reason and the physical world challenged their doctrines of faith and God's supernatural power. By the seventh century, Muslims had begun to discover Aristotle's writings. Islamic thinkers such as Avicenna and Averroes, in the 11th and 12 centuries, embraced Aristotle's rationalist philosophy and principles of logic. Christian theologians rediscovered Aristotle through the commentaries of the monk Boethius, who argued in the sixth century that reason and understanding were essential elements of faith. There resulted a tremendous ferment in the study of Aristotle in the Middle Ages and early Renaissance, culminating in the work of Thomas Aquinas, who used Aristotle's notion of an Unmoved Mover and First Cause to construct his arguments for God's existence. Aquinas, too, argued that reason was a necessary component of faith's ability to understand God and the world. Although the book purports to trace Aristotle's influence on Christianity, Islam and Judaism, it devotes more attention to Christianity. Even so, Rubenstein's lively prose, his lucid insights and his crystal-clear historical analyses make this a first-rate study in the history of ideas.
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc.

 

Fumbling Towards Ecstasy by Sarah McLachlan

Recommended by progressives

I've kinda been aware of Sarah McLachlan since I started liking Candian music…which I define as anything they played on Due South. She sounded nice on TV but I rarely like female singers so I never bought anything but I liked her new song on MTV so I added her new album and her most popular album, Fumbling toward Ecstasy, to my shopping cart. I decided I couldn't get both so got Fumbling Toward Ecstasy. It's great. I can't recommend it too highly. She has a wonderful voice, the songs are great and the music is so good I found myself looking at the album notes to find out who the guitarist was. At least click on the link above and go listen to the samples on Amazon. If you decide to buy it come back and click on the Buy From Amazon button to the left. It a great album. I know now I'm gonna try to buy her entire oeuvre when I can.

 

Legends and Lies: Great Mysteries of the American West by Dale L. Walker, John Jakes

Recommended by Deacon

A collection of strange and intriguing tales about famous characters of American Western history. The author's research has come upon many mysteries that resist ultimate solution. Prolific writer of the Old West, Walker (a columnist for the Rocky Mountain News) examines the life and death of Davy Crockett, Meriwether Lewis and his Indian guide Sacajawea, Jesse James, Billy the Kid, Boston Corbett, the soldier who killed John Wilkes Booth, Ambrose Bierce, Custer, Crazy Horse and the Mormon leaders who instigated the mass murder of a wagon train of ``gentile'' men, women and children passing through ``Mormon land'' on their way to California. Walker, trying to fill gaps in the historical records by exposition of logical reasoning, finds conflicting testimonies, many rumors, bizarre tales and conspiracy theories, and also credible accounts of the deaths of these larger-than-life characters.


The Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown

Recommended by cbi: <cbi>I recommend the DaVinci Code. Dan Brown. It rocks. You can say I said so.

Recommended by Jed: This book was loaned to me by my sister. I rarely read best sellers, but she said I had to try this one. She was right...it captures your attention immediately, and you can't put it down. It explores two secret societies...both of which are part of the Catholic Church. The chapters are short...perfect for times when you want to read...and aren't sure for how long. I recommend it highly!

A murder in the silent after-hour halls of the Louvre museum reveals a sinister plot to uncover a secret that has been protected by a clandestine society since the days of Christ. The victim is a high-ranking agent of this ancient society who, in the moments before his death, manages to leave gruesome clues at the scene that only his granddaughter, noted cryptographer Sophie Neveu, and Robert Langdon, a famed symbologist, can untangle. The duo become both suspects and detectives searching for not only Neveu's father's murderer but also the stunning secret of the ages he was charged to protect. Mere steps ahead of the authorities and the deadly competition, the mystery leads Neveu and Langdon on a breathless flight through France, England, and history itself. Brown has created a page-turning thriller that also provides an amazing interpretation of Western history.


Classics, Volume 24: Cat Stevens

Recommended by Deacon

Deacon: I've always been a huge fan of Cat Stevens music. His style and tempo were distinctive. If you like Cat Stevens and you are not willing to shell out the money to purchase his anthology, then this is the CD you should buy. Most of his great, well-known songs are here.


The Singles 1992-2003 by No Doubt

Recommended by Deacon

Deacon: This CD provides all the hits they've put out. If you are a No Doubt fan you will like it. It's great for casual fans too; especially those that like to hear them on the radio, because it includes just those hits. No Doubt is new wave and fronted by lead vocalist Gwen Stafani. She is rich with energy and I think we can expect much more from this innovative troupe in the future.

 


Motown by Michael McDonald

 

Recommended by Deacon

Deacon: Michael McDonald pulled this off really well. I was really surprised. He has brought new life to some of the classic Motown favorites. The stand out songs for me are "I'm Gonna Make You Love Me" and " I Heard It Through The Grapevine." They are really amazing renditions. I highly recommend this release to all Michael McDonald and Motown fans. You can't go wrong with this CD.

 


The Best of INXS

 

Recommended by Deacon

Deacon: I highly recommend this disc to anyone who's looking for a collection of the band's most popular material. Most of the band's high points are featured and this is simply a fun CD to own.


It Had to Be You... The Great American Songbook by Rod Stewart

Recommended by Deacon

Like many a pop singer, Stewart returns here to what's become generally known as the Great American Songbook, that evergreen body of mid-20th century songcraft that continues to inspire singers across oceans and generations. It's said that Stewart has been vocalizing many of these songs in private for years, and given the warm, human scale of most of the performances here, it's not hard to believe. Producer Phil Ramone's spare, unobtrusive arrangements inspire the singer to some of his most subtle and rewarding performances in years. Stewart's slightly weary vocal tack handsomely suggests the smoke, booze, and aching heart that lie at the best of these songs. Such back-to-the-future efforts can often sound like a last career gasp; here, they seem a refreshing breath of fresh air. --Jerry McCulley

 

 

As Time Goes By...The Great American Songbook: Volume II by Rod Stewart

Recommended by Deacon

Deacon: A token listen to this follow up CD of It Had To Be you... The Great American Songbook will give a flawed impression. Beautifully chosen songs give this collection a noteworthy distinction. Listen to it a few times and it will grow on you. Not as addicting as the first, but it's definitely worth a purchase.

 

 

The Law of Success In Sixteen Lessons (2 Volume Set) by Napoleon Hill

Recommended by Deacon

Deacon: The late Napoleon Hill was a pioneer of modern success thinking, and almost every achievement expert today refers to his ideas in one way or the other. His books provide timeless and illuminating advice on a wide spectrum of subjects that may very well be the best you'll ever hear. Whether you have minimal education or enough degrees to wallpaper a room, you are sure to gain knowledge of something new and enriching.


Flatland : A Romance of Many Dimensions [UNABRIDGED] by Edwin A. Abbott

Recommended by PlagueRat

Amazon.com
Flatland is one of the very few novels about math and philosophy that can appeal to almost any layperson. Published in 1880, this short fantasy takes us to a completely flat world of two physical dimensions where all the inhabitants are geometric shapes, and who think the planar world of length and width that they know is all there is. But one inhabitant discovers the existence of a third physical dimension, enabling him to finally grasp the concept of a fourth dimension. Watching our Flatland narrator, we begin to get an idea of the limitations of our own assumptions about reality, and we start to learn how to think about the confusing problem of higher dimensions. The book is also quite a funny satire on society and class distinctions of Victorian England.


The AnnotatedThe Annotated Flatland: A Romance of Many Dimensions by Edwin Abbott Abbott, Ian Stewart

Ian Stewart, the author of the equally witty sequel, Flatterland--which adds to Abbott's store of science the key discoveries made since--does a superb job of explaining the original book's enigmas, allusions, ironies, implausibilities, and what Douglas Hofstadter would call "metamagical themas." Among other things, Stewart comments on Abbott's comments on such things as the nature/nurture controversy, the fourth dimension and beyond, the role of multidimensional spaces in economic systems, infinite series and perfect squares, celestial mechanics, and other matters close to the hearts of cosmologists and science buffs alike.

Stewart's notes make an entertaining and learned addition to an already classic bit of writing--one that has never been out of print since its first publication. For both devoted Abbott fans and newcomers to his work, this is the edition to have.


The Hornet's Nest: A Novel of the Revolutionary War by Jimmy Carter

Recommended by MariJ

From Publishers Weekly
With this intricately detailed novel of the American South and the Revolutionary War, President
Carter becomes our first chief executive, past or present, to publish a work of fiction. By
concentrating on Florida, Georgia and the Carolinas from 1763 to 1783, Carter takes a fresh look at this crucial historical period, giving life and originality to a story usually told from the viewpoint of the northern colonies. There's a large cast of characters, but the focus is on the families of Ethan and Epsey Pratt and neighbors Kindred and Mavis Morris, backwoods Georgia homesteaders who are swept up, albeit reluctantly, in the revolution against the British. Among many other subjects, Carter covers military tactics, natural history, 18th-century politics, celestial navigation, the causes of the war, the sexual practices of both Indians and pioneers and how to tar and feather a man without killing him. Fascinating tidbits about well-known historical figures abound: "After some New Jersey militia actually mutinied [George] Washington decided to set an example of stern discipline; he forced the top leaders to draw lots, and the winners shot the losers." Carter's style leans toward the academic ("Mr. Knox, what's the difference between Whigs and Tories?"), but readers who can put up with the occasional lecture will learn fascinating truths about this exceedingly brutal war and the stories of the men and women who lived and died in the course of it. Those seeking a riveting prose style would be advised to look to more experienced fiction writers, but anyone who has ever wondered about the difference between a Whig and a Tory will find this an interesting and informative read.
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc.


The Conscience of a Liberal: Reclaiming the Compassionate Agenda by Paul David Wellstone

Recommended by ItsMarty

Minnesota Senator Wellstone opens this memoir with his attendance at the funeral service of archconservative Barry Goldwater. Wellstone was there because as a boy he had read Goldwater's Conscience of a Conservative. Paradoxically, he credits his admiration for Goldwater's political integrity with providing the moral basis for his own liberalism.

The first part of the book explains Wellstone's unlikely ascension to the Senate (he was once a college professor), and some of his campaign war stories are fun reading for political junkies. One of the most amusing passages describes how he once nearly clocked New York Republican Alfonse D'Amato over a disagreement: "When the train reached the Senate chamber, I jumped out and lunged forward, intending to catch D'Amato and deck him. My body was shaking with uncontrollable anger." Another senator held him back, and Wellstone calmed down.

The bulk of The Conscience of a Liberal, however, is given over to laying out a political agenda that includes universal health care, reversing welfare reforms, prekindergarten education, raising the minimum wage, and campaign-finance reform. He closes with a call for a new politics: "This is not a conservative America.... There is a huge leadership void in this country that the Democratic Party, emboldened by political courage and a commitment to the issues that made our party great, can fill." Sadly, one of the politicians who helped fill that void is now gone himself. Still, his ideas live on.


Winning Back America by Howard Dean

Recommended by ItsMarty


A Prayer for America by Dennis Kucinich, Studs Terkel

Recommended by ItsMarty

From Publishers Weekly
In 1977, aged 31, Kucinich was elected "Boy Mayor" of Cleveland. Now a U.S. representative from Ohio, he is one of the most interesting and unusual members of the Democratic presidential field for 2004. His strong, even radical positions on workers' rights, the environment, health care, foreign policy and defense give him a good claim to represent "the Democratic wing of the Democratic Party" and to challenge the business-oriented centrism promoted by the Democratic Leadership Council.



The Great Unraveling: Losing Our Way in the New Century by Paul Krugman


Recommended by ItsMarty

Amazon.com
The Great Unraveling is a chronicle of how "the heady optimism of the late 1990s gave way to renewed gloom as a result of "incredibly bad leadership, in the private sector and in the corridors of power." Offering his own take on the trickle-down theory, economist and columnist Paul Krugman lays much of the blame for a slew of problems on the Bush administration, which he views as a "revolutionary power...a movement whose leaders do not accept the legitimacy of our current political system." Declaring them radicals masquerading as moderates, he questions their motives on a range of issues, particularly their tax and Social Security plans, which he argues are "obviously, blatantly based on bogus arithmetic." Though a fine writer, Krugman relies more heavily on numbers than words to examine the current rash of corporate malfeasance, the rise and fall of the stock market bubble, the federal budget and the future of Social Security, and how a huge surplus quickly became a record deficit. He also rails against the news media for displaying a disturbing lack of skepticism and for failing to do even the most basic homework when reporting on business and economic issues.


Had Enough? : A Handbook for Fighting Back by James Carville


Recommended by ItsMarty

From Publishers Weekly
For liberals who think Al Franken and Michael Moore show too much restraint, the Ragin' Cajun launches another no-holds-barred assault on the conservative powers-that-be. Carville's shtick remains intact, so the political commentary is saturated with jokes about being married to a Republican, stories about his family down in Louisiana and recipes for barbecue shrimp and bread pudding. But if you thought he was mad before, wait until Carville tears into George W. Bush and his administration. Not content with merely attacking Bush's Iraqi war strategy, Carville denigrates the entire war on terrorism, reminding readers that Senate Democrats proposed tougher homeland security proposals that the president consistently rejected. He also suggests that not only could Gore have handled 9/11 better, it probably wouldn't even have happened. And he's just getting started at that point, gearing up for tough criticism of tax cuts, school vouchers, tort reform and other GOP policies. But finger-pointing isn't enough; Carville provides a "nice little progressive playbook" of counterstrategies to rebuild economically and socially the way he says only Democrats can.


Prey by Michael Crichton

Recommended by Algorythm

Algorythm: Read all 500 pages in about one shot yesterday. I didn't realize how fast I read now. It's very hard sience fiction, all the chick stuff is basicaly a waste of time :) The interesting part is the nexus between AI, Biotechnology, and self replicating nanotechnology.

The gang: Not deep but fast and fun. A page turner. Though sometimes I think Crichton's greatest skill is writing characters that are annoying, as almost everyone in this novel is, except the hero. But still, worth buying and reading.

High-tech whistle-blower Jack Forman used to specialize in programming computers to solve problems by mimicking the behavior of efficient wild animals--swarming bees or hunting hyena packs, for example. Now he's unemployed and is finally starting to enjoy his new role as stay-at-home dad. All would be domestic bliss if it were not for Jack's suspicions that his wife, who's been behaving strangely and working long hours at the top-secret research labs of Xymos Technology, is having an affair. When he's called in to help with her hush-hush project, it seems like the perfect opportunity to see what his wife's been doing, but Jack quickly finds there's a lot more going on in the lab than an illicit affair. Within hours of his arrival at the remote testing center, Jack discovers his wife's firm has created self-replicating nanotechnology--a literal swarm of microscopic machines. Originally meant to serve as a military eye in the sky, the swarm has now escaped into the environment and is seemingly intent on killing the scientists trapped in the facility.


The Sound of One Hand Clapping by Richard Flanagan

Recommended by PlatterKat. From The Sound of One Hand Clapping:

All this you will understand, but can never know, and all of it took place
long, long ago in a world that has since perished into peat, in a forgotten
winter on an island of which few people have ever heard. It began in that
time before snow, completely and irrevocably, covers footprints. As black
clouds shroud the star and moonlit heavens, as an unshadowable darkness come
supon the whispering land.

At that precise moment around which time was to cusp, Maria Buloh's
burgundy-coloured shoes reached the third and lowest snow-powdered step
outside their wooden hut. It was then, as she turned her face away from the
hut, that Maria Buloh knew she had already gone too far and that she could
no longer return.

Richard Flanagan's beautifully written and very moving novel is a modern-day myth which has its roots firmly anchored in recent history. His flawed hero, Bojan Buloh, is like many thousands of refugees who, after surviving the horrors of war, tried to make a new life in Australia. But the story centres around Buloh's daughter, Sonja, who has the better chance of starting afresh in a safer world.

 


Nothing Sacred by Tom Flynn

Recommended by Sharonelle

Sharonelle read a review of it in Free Inquiry which she said was very funny. "It's a comic science fiction by Tom Flynn - Nothing Sacred - I might just buy this one."

 


Letters From the Earth by Mark Twain

Recommended by Trickster and the gang

This books consists of essays and fragments published long after Twain's death. "Letters from the Earth" are written by Satan to Michael and Gabriel after Satan is exiled to earth for a day, aka a thousand years. He reports on his Earthly investigations into the human-race experiment. There are other such writings, e.g., "Letter to the Earth," "Something about Repentance," and "The Damned Human Race."

"Man is a marvelous curiosity ... he thinks he is the Creator's pet ... he even believes the Creator loves him; has a passion for him; sits up nights to admire him; yes and watch over him and keep him out of trouble. He prays to him and thinks He listens. Isn't it a quaint idea."

   
On Killing: The Psychological Cost of Learning to Kill in War and Society by Dave Grossman


Recommended by LoneNut
From Library Journal: Grossman (psychology, West Point) presents three important hypotheses: 1) That humans possess the reluctance to kill their own kind; 2) that this reluctance can be systematically broken down by use of standard conditioning techniques; and 3) that the reaction of "normal" (e.g., non-psychopathic) soliders to having killed in close combat can be best understood as a series of "stages" similar to the ubiquitous Kubler-Ross stages of reaction to life-threatening disease.
 

 
Shattered Love: A Memoir by Richard Chamberlain

Recommended by Maggijo

 


 God Bless You Mr. Rosewater or Pearls Before Swine by Kurt Vonnegut

Recommended by the gang

He went into a small bar there, announced that anyone who could produce a volunteer fireman's badge could drink with him free. He built up gradually to a crying jag, during which he claimed to be deeply touched by the idea of an inhabited planet with an atmosphere that was eager to combine violently with almost everything the inhabitants held dear. He was speaking of Earth and the element oxygen.

"When you think about it, boys," he said brokenly, "that's what holds us together more than anything else, expect maybe gravity. We few, we happy few, we band of brothers-joined in the serious business of keeping our food, shelter, clothing and loved ones from combining with oxygen. I tell you, boys, I used to belong to a volunteer fire department, and I'd belong to one now, if there were such a human thing, such a humane thing, in New York City."

 Enemies Foreign And Domestic by Matthew Bracken

Recommended by SharpEye
:Book Description: Enemies Foreign And Domestic is a domestic terrorism thriller set in the near future. The novel begins on opening day of the NFL season, when bullets begin to rain down upon the upper deck of a packed football stadium. A panic stampede ensues, leading to mass casualties. The alleged sniper is found holding a smoking assault rifle, and is killed by a police marksman.

One week later, congress bans the private possession of all semi-automatic assault rifles. Gun
owners are given one week to turn in their semi-automatic rifles, or face a five year mandatory
sentence.

 

Ross Low Carb Chocolates

Recommended by Nightbird : Ross Low Carbohydrate Chocolates are a selection of low carb/sugarfree chocolate bars made from imported Belgium chocolate. I love them and buy them all the time. All of them are delicious and are great for diabetics or anyone on a low carb diet. I would rather have one of them than a Hershey bar. They are delicious.

 

 

 

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