Woodward's access to politicos still is without match. And Gaine's read is good. But story could be told as effectively in half the length.
Adequate but tiring
No follow-up. Interesting subject but entirely over cooked
What you will get here is a highly detailed, day by day, account of failure. As you know, none of the characters are particularly endearing, and this account of their meandering trek toward inevitable breakdown is mostly depressing. I couldn't wait for it to end, just like I can't wait for this horrible chapter in the country's history to become... well... history.
Fair enough, and well researched, this book is good for the budding journalist or polysci-er, who are looking forward to a spot on the wheel of our massive central bureaucracy. For those of us who value leadership, accomplishment, and greatness, this is like reading about the modern day fall of Rome with our progeny as the unwitting characters in the pitiful final chapters to come. While listening, I kept asking myself "why didn't I buy gold 10, 20, 5 years ago??". Did I ever think that our representatives in Washington would protect the currency, and seek responsible governance? You can listen to this account if you need more evidence that Nero is fiddling, and Rome is burning.
Instructional Designer is the area of Workforce Development.
Great insider story of Obama's White House. Seems based on Bob's reporting, most of Obama's current problems he created in some-part on his own. Not taking political sides just download book and reach your own opinion. Very written done story by author.
Anyone else. He tried to play Rich Little and imitate the voices of the main players.
The details on the exchanges between the White House and Congress during the budget crisis.
Just how little Obama and the White House knows about how to bargain with Congress.
Gaines stresses a few points that one might tend to overlook.
Too long for one sitting, but I did it in five days while on the road.
More in-depth portrayals of each of the participants interwoven with a richer contextual background of the day-to-day lives of Americans. It read too much like a court room transcript, and became monotonous after a while.
I am listening to the series "A Dance to the Music of Time" as well as a biography of Benjamin Franklin
I do not recall any scenes in the book. About halfway through, I gave up on it. It's as monotonous as that droning periodocity of news channels: "We want revenue, we want cuts, we want revenue", on and on, night after night--filling time and space with circles.
I thought it was difficult and exasperating to live through the manufactured debt ceiling crisis on the outside, as a citizen, watching our political "leaders" give priority to playing their own ideological games over the national, and indeed international, interest. None of the players come off well, least of all the Obama White House, so I'm glad I listened to most of this after the election. Whether this coloration reflects reality or just Woodward's preferences and ease of access to sources is open to question.
As someone with experience in both legislative and fiscal matters in Washington, I found the level of detail excruciating and am amazed that I actually plowed through it all, albeit not always with full attention. Now I realize that what can seem fascinating if you're on the inside is only tedious and frustrating to those in a more real world. The constant barrage of proposals for multi-billions and trillions of expenditure cuts, along with the [to me] incomprehensible resistance to including revenue increases and even more to allowing the debt ceiling increase, left me dazed and groping for some semblance of what all this means in the real world.
I'll end with two observations: The first is one I have often felt, which is fury at George W. Bush and those who went along with him in Congress for throwing away in a nano-second the hard-won surplus of the Clinton years in favor of an irresponsible insistence on both guns and butter, huge tax cuts and enormous increases in military/security spending. The second is a new one. Previously I had felt some regret that many of Bob Woodward's books are available only in abridged versions from Audible. Now I realize that this is a blessing. If only this one had been abridged, it might have been bearable.
I'm a newshound and a CNN junkie, but this book was a real snoozer. The author is preoccupied with reporting so many numbers, dollars, and Washington insider speak that you could play ten minutes from any part of the book (beginning, middle, end) and it ALL sounds the same. I've never wanted to get to the end of an Audible book so quickly.The narrator tries too hard to imitate the many people mentioned in the book. One minute he is trying an Ohio accent, next a Virginia accent, etc. He tries (very clumsily) to do the voices of every character in the book, to the point it becomes annoying.
Woodward has done better in the past, not a bad read. He plays it pretty middle of the road.
The incompetence of the Obama administration.
Why we need to fire Obama
The story is good and provides insight but has such detailed narratives (the constant back and forth asking for more cuts or revenue) that one can easily become lost.