Contrary to most media reports, negative campaigning is actually in decline, but our political system is no better off for it. Or so believes Washington Post political writer Dana Milbank, whose campaign book Smashmouth provides a witty yet ultimately very serious look at the sense and senselessness that occurred during the 2000 presidential campaign. What matters is not wContrary to most media reports, negative campaigning is actually in decline, but our political system is no better off for it. Or so believes Washington Post political writer Dana Milbank, whose campaign book Smashmouth provides a witty yet ultimately very serious look at the sense and senselessness that occurred during the 2000 presidential campaign. What matters is not whether a campaign claim is positive or negative, but whether the claim is relevant," writes Milbank. "The press should police outright falsehoods, of course, but otherwise let the candidates fight it out." Traveling by bus, plane and motorcade with the candidates, Milbank provides an indelible behind-the-scenes look at the brutal skirmishes that made up this century's first presidential campaign....
|Title||:||Smash Mouth: Two Years In The Gutter With Al Gore And George W. Bush -- Notes From The 2000 Campaign Trail|
|Number of Pages||:||416 Pages|
|Status||:||Available For Download|
|Last checked||:||21 Minutes ago!|
Smash Mouth: Two Years In The Gutter With Al Gore And George W. Bush -- Notes From The 2000 Campaign Trail Reviews
Well, it took me two years, but I finally was able to bring myself to look back at the 2000 election and read this book.It's so hard to read a book like this when you know the ending; harder still when you know you don't like the ending. I tried to start reading this several times, but the first chapter, titled The Rise and Fall of Mr. Nice Guy Al Gore, made me cringe, and I never got more than a few pages into it before running for another book — usually some mindless chick-lit. :)I'm glad I was able to get over this hump, though, as Milbank presented a side of presidential elections that has always made me curious: What is it like for those who are closest to the action? And not just Gore and George W. Bush, but the non-contenders, too. Milbank gave readers information on everyone from crazy Alan Keyes to aloof Ralph Nader, and spent quite a bit of time on Arizona Sen. John McCain and Bill Bradley, the Republican and Democrat runners up, respectively.There was just so much covered here that never made the 'papers, which is great in some respects and disappointing in others. Do political journalists focus on "the numbers" (polls) in their articles so they can sell book publishers all the human interest stories surrounding the candidates? Because it certainly seems that way.Milbanks even covers the campaign crews, which had me in stitches — particularly the stories about Chris Lehane, Gore's press secretary. His pranks (hiding random objects, such as bananas, in other campaign members' luggage) and especially "press bingo" (whereby he would pick a strange word and see how long it would take him to get the press to print it in a story) had me in tears — the good kind!Milbank's humor definitely made this touchy subject a little easier to digest, but one quote from the book stays with me: "Though large numbers of Americans are ill informed, ill mannered and ill prepared to choose a leader, when you add them up something magical happens. Individuals are transformed into a wise and noble creature: the American electorate." Wise. Heh. Noble. Right.
One of the funniest political books I've ever read. Milbank's description of Bob Smith as a "pear-shaped man in a pirate hat" in an early campaign parade nearly made me cry.
Not much to say about this one.