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Friday, May 18, 2007

Al Gore Throws Hat In

OK, not really. But he has a new book out, boldly titled The Assault On Reason. From the editors at
A visionary analysis of how the politics of fear, secrecy, cronyism, and blind faith has combined with the degration of the public sphere to create an environment dangerously hostile to reason


We live in an age when the thirty-second television spot is the most powerful force shaping the electorate's thinking, and America is in the hands of an administration less interested than any previous administration in sharing the truth with the citizenry...


How did we get here? How much damage has been done to the functioning of our democracy and its role as steward of our security? Never has there been a worse time for us to lose the capacity to face the reality of our long-term challenges, from national security to the economy, from issues of health and social welfare to the environment. As
The Assault on Reason shows us, we have precious little time to waste.

Gore's larger goal in this book is to explain how the public sphere itself has evolved into a place hospitable to reason's enemies, to make us more aware of the forces at work on our own minds, and to lead us to an understanding of what we can do, individually and collectively, to restore the rule of reason and safeguard our future... Al Gore has written a farsighted and powerful manifesto for clear thinking.

A "farsighted and powerful manifesto?" From Al Gore? Whodathunkit? Personally, I'd have gone for Reason in the Balance as a title, but he's the one making the big bucks.

Seriously, though - Al's just come off of a giddy year, successfully educating a huge swath of the public on our eco-crisis, culminating in the film based on his lectures garnering an Acadamy Award. Now he's most certainly going on a book tour, where he gets to espouse on another key danger - misinformation to the public. A danger which is probably even a bigger legacy of this Corporate Presidency than even the evil Iraqupation (which arguably could not have happened without the boosterism of corporate media.)

If Mr. Gore successfully cuts through the inevitable fog of smears (h/t Mike's Blog Roundup, once again) that will inevitably follow, and if the leading contenders for the Democratic nomination continue to insist on triangulating to the imaginary center, how attractive would a "leftie" Al Gore be for the ticket? Maybe pretty damned attractive, and Al's a smart cookie, as the anti-intellecual right constantly reminds us all.

Yes, let's see how brightly Gore's star is shining after a summer of discussion over his book. Let's see Al throw his hat in somewhere between September-November.

As of this writing, the newly-released book stands at #2990 in sales over at Let's pump that number up.

Update:It is now less than six hours after this post, and the book has shot to #18. It had to be this post that did it. It couldn't, after all, be Crooks and Liars, could it?

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