Monday, February 20, 2017
Authors Posts by John Scott G

John Scott G

John Scott G
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John Scott G, an admitted word nerd, writes books, plays, screenplays, and political commentary. Author of "Area Code 666," "Secret Sex," and "Ambient Deviant Speedmetal Polka," Mr. G also writes under the pseudonym Gerald Laurence. Every day he happily rubs a few phrases up against each other to create sparks in your brain. You're welcome.
Saving Capitalism: For the Many, Not the Few

Book Review: ‘Saving Capitalism’ by Robert Reich is a Capital Idea

REVIEW: Almost everyone who examines capitalism comes away with finger-and-thumb firmly pinching the nose. Taking a positive approach, Robert Reich exposes the faults but also recommends solutions in his superb "Saving Capitalism: For the Many, Not the Few" (ISBN: 9780385350570).
Killing the Messenger: The Right-Wing Plot to Derail Hillary and Hijack Your Government

Book Review: ‘Killing the Messenger’ Skewers Hillary Haters

REVIEW: David Brock goes after the American Taliban hate machine in 'Killing the Messenger: The Right-Wing Plot to Derail Hillary and Hijack Your Government' (ISBN: 9781455533763). Debunking the anti-Clinton memes and fake scandals is a never-ending job, so let us give thanks that Brock is willing to tackle it.
Dark Money - Book

Book Review: Dark Souls with their ‘Dark Money’

REVIEW: Jane Mayer will get your blood boiling in her superb 'Dark Money: The Hidden History of the Billionaires Behind the Rise of the Radical Right' (ISBN: 9780385535595). Every chapter reveals monsters who are perverting the ideals of America.

Book Review: ‘Data and Goliath’ – You Don’t Have Any Secrets Anymore

REVIEW: Privacy is becoming an antiquated concept. In "Data and Goliath: The Hidden Battles to Collect Your Data and Control Your World" (ISBN: 9780393244816), security expert Bruce Schneier leads you through a labyrinth of surveillance that should scare the hell out of you.

Book Review: Do You Believe in Magic? The value of ‘The God Delusion’

REVIEW: While it didn't convert me to atheism, 'The God Delusion' (ISBN: 9780618918249) by Richard Dawkins is still terrific and should be required reading for anyone who still thinks religion has any value in society. Dawkins' philosophical points are even persuasive, up to a point, but I cannot join him in his non-belief.

Book Review: Real-life Horror Story is a Prison of Disbelief in ‘Going Clear’

REVIEW: A beautifully crafted book on a mesmerizing but ugly topic, "Going Clear: Scientology, Hollywood, & the Prison of Belief" by Lawrence Wright (ISBN: 9780307745309) is a shocking investigation into the cult of Scientology. As with today's torture-porn horror films, its followers are berated, degraded, and psychologically harmed.

Book Review: Tome of the Unknown Woman Warrior

REVIEW: The fundamental principles of the United States were honored and extended by Frances Perkins, who was "The Woman Behind the New Deal: The Life and Legacy of Frances Perkins - Social Security, Unemployment Insurance, and the Minimum Wage" (ISBN: 9781400078561). A tireless worker for justice, Perkins has too long been hidden from history. Kirstin Downey seeks to remedy the oversight in her fascinating book.

Book Review: How and Why the US is Economically ‘Divided’

BOOK REVIEW: The collection of essays called “Divided: The Perils of Our Growing Inequality” (ISBN 978-1-59558-923-1) covers its important topic from a variety of viewpoints. While a valuable book, it's also a bit of a hit-or-miss affair because editor David Cay Johnston selected articles that emphasize facts and data whether or not there was any entertainment value in the writing.

Book Review: ‘Lightning’ Words about Bird

BOOK REVIEW: The first of a two-part biography of Charlie 'Yardbird' Parker, Stanley Crouch's  “Kansas City Lightning: The Rise and Times of Charlie Parker” (ISBN: 9780062005595) is as multi-layered and exciting as many of Bird's great alto sax solos.

Book Review: Next U.S. President Profiled in ‘HRC’

BOOK REVIEW: The inside story of the woman poised to become the next U.S. President, "HRC: State Secrets and the Rebirth of Hillary Clinton" (ISBN: 978-0-8041-3675-4; Crown Publishers) by Jonathan Allen and Amie Parnes is a delightful rarity: a serious book that is fun to read.

Getting in Touch with your Inner Racist: Book Review of ‘Dog Whistle Politics’

BOOK REVIEW: In the most important American book of the year so far, Ian Haney Lopez presents a ton of facts and a mountain of logical deductions about race, politics and the nation's future in 'Dog Whistle Politics' (ISBN: 9780199964277). Reading it is like pulling off a scab.

Book Review: Brilliant Words on Music in ‘Visions of Jazz’

BOOK REVIEW: It isn't easy getting a handle on a genre that ranges from the smooth swing of a Benny Goodman to the jagged edges of an Ornette Coleman but Gary Giddins' 'Visions of Jazz' (ISBN: 0-19-507675-3) is a beautiful book that makes delightful reading for any jazz lover.

Book Review: Breezy Writing about ‘Windfall’ Profits in ‘Windfall: The Booming Business of Global Warming’

BOOK REVIEW: Reading even a few pages of “Windfall: The Booming Business of Global Warming” (ISBN: 9781594204012) reveals heretofore hidden facts about the business aspects of climate change. Author McKenzie Funk takes you around the globe to reveal the gnarled hand of the marketplace at work.

Book Review: Loutish Voice in the Room, er, ‘The Loudest Voice in the Room’

BOOK REVIEW: Considering the filth-in-human-form known as Roger Ailes, the despicable lead character in "The Loudest Voice in the Room: How the Brilliant, Bombastic Roger Ailes Built Fox News -- and Divided a Country" (ISBN: 978-0-8129-9285-4), you might expect to come away from each chapter feeling demeaned. Instead, author Gabriel Sherman just leaves you shaking your head in shock and shame.

Book Review: A War Book with a Difference, ‘Blackett’s War’

BOOK REVIEW: Books about World War II rarely discuss probability theory, mathematics, and observation of logistics procedures, which makes "Blackett's War: The Men Who Defeated the Nazi U-Boats and Brought Science to the Art of Warfare" (ISBN-13: 978-0307595966) by Stephen Budiansky, a refreshing change. But the horrors of combat are not overlooked (warning; graphic descriptions ahead).

Book Review: ‘The Bully Pulpit: Theodore Roosevelt, William Howard Taft and the Golden Age of Journalism’

BOOK REVIEW: With the soul of America at stake, Teddy Roosevelt formed a rough alliance with crusading journalists to battle for workers’ rights and a better nation for everyone. Their foes were a familiar group: the vested interests of big corporations and their trusts. In Doris Kearns Goodwin's book "The Bully Pulpit: Theodore Roosevelt, William Howard Taft and the Golden Age of Journalism" (ISBN: 9781416547860), the skirmishes are exciting even if the writing is tepid.

Book Review: Music Career Guide Number 1,245,834, ‘The Artist’s Guide to Success in the Music Business’

BOOK REVIEW: When seeking a book about careers in music, you will find plenty of choices. Many of them seem to have titles similar to "The Artist's Guide to Success in the Music Business" (ISBN-13: 9781608325788), but Loren Weisman's volume emphasizes the practical things over which you can exercise some control.

Initial Reactions: Book review of ‘Franklin Delano Roosevelt, Champion of Freedom’ by Conrad Black

BOOK REVIEW: Was FDR a great president or the greatest president? That's one of the questions dealt with by Conrad Black in his lengthy (500,000+ words) biography of FDR -- “Franklin Delano Roosevelt: Champion of Freedom” (ISBN: 978158648184) -- a man who even today is known just by his initials.

Book Review: Doubling Down on Democracy

BOOK REVIEW: Recent events are made to feel like a Hollywood thrill-ride movie in “Double Down: Game Change 2012” (ISBN 9781594204401) a look at the 2012 presidential election from "Game Change" authors Mark Halperin and John Heilemann. Spoiler Alert: the book has a happy ending.

Book Review: The Permanent Political Cla$$ and ‘Extortion’

REVIEW: Despite a disturbing right-wing bias, "Extortion: How Politicians Extract Your Money, Buy Votes, and Line Their Own Pockets" is an eye-opening disclosure of the ways that money flows in Washington, D.C., as well as how the principles of Democracy are subverted and perverted by members of the "permanent political class." Because writer Peter Schweizer is a right-wing nut job whose fawning and boot-licking of the putrid memory of Ronald Reagan is thoroughly disgusting.

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