Termed a "political king-maker" by Newsweek, and "the Dan Rather of infotainment" by Vanity Fair, Jon Stewart, along with the writers of The Daily Show, combines his riotous wit and razor-sharp insight in this hilarious book.
American-style democracy is the world's most beloved form of government, which explains why so many other nations are eager for us to impose it on them. But what is American democracy?
In America (The Audiobook), Jon Stewart and The Daily Show writing staff offer their insights into our unique system of government, dissecting its institutions, explaining its history and processes, and exploring the reasons why concepts like "one man, one vote", "government by the people", and "every vote counts" have become such popular urban myths.
Among the topics:
This program contains explicit language.
(P)2004 Time Warner Audiobooks
"Cheeky, irreverent, and playfully ingenuous....This humorous sendup of American politics never fails to entertain, poke fun, and provoke thought." (Publishers Weekly)
"The devil's own comedic handiwork, a side-splitting guide to the abuses and absurdities built into our political processes and institutions....Sustained clever writing and a smart, durable premise....As with Mr. Stewart's priceless anchorman persona and his show's hawk-eyed editing for real news gaffes, there is enough truth here to make America almost as instructive as it is sly." (The New York Times)
I did not take my own advice on this one. I have come to rely on Audible's customer reviews to make my book choices. They are, by far, the best guide to book buying. You can't trust a book jacket that is selling itself. You can't identify with most of the book critics in the Sunday Book Review (they're off doing their own thing for money and presenting a perspective that is alien to most readers, while still trying to sound profound enough to land their next job). You can trust the customer reviews. You can sift through them, find out why the reviewer liked or disliked the book, and most often find a common thread that reflects your own interests. I have bought books I wouldn't have bought, and not bought books I thought I would enjoy, all based on customer reviews. It works for me. I thought I would enjoy this book. I read the customer reviews. Based on them, I decided I would not like this book, so I didn't buy it. Then I heard this book won Publishers Weekly's Book of the Year Award. Maybe I missed something. So I bought the book anyway. Wrong decision. Trust the customer reviews. End note: Today I read that Publishers Weekly has fired its editor and is revamping the magazine. There is some justice in the book world.
Get Al Frankens Lies, and the lying liers who tell them. Much better satire with debunking of many lies the right tells. But told in an extremly funny way. I love the daily show and was looking forward to hearing this. Unfortunatly it doesn't live up to my expectation even remotely. Not bad just not great.
Anne in Happy Valley
Perhaps I'm attributing too much talent to the Daily Show writers, but I expected more from this audiobook. Especially from Rackoff. When I brought my expectations down a notch and listened to it in increments no longer than 30 minutes at a time (like the tv show), it became as enjoyable and clever as the show, which is to say, it's just TV, not world-class satire.
It is kind of funny. I laughed a few times. He drops the F-bomb a bit - to make something more shocking thereby funny. Overall, it left me wishing I would have chosen a different book this month.
To use the vernacular, Jon Stewart phoned this one in.
I LOVE him on "The Daily Show". Unfortunately, this is NOT that. The only similarity is the voice.
IF you just HAVE to buy this audiobook, fast forward to about 60 minutes in, wait for the laugh, and then fast forward again to 150+ minutes in. You will miss one other laugh, but it's more of a chuckle. I can't tell you what's after 150 minutes in 'cause I couldn't take it any more.
Save your money and, more importantly, your time. Pass on this book.
I am a fan of Jon Stewart and the Daily Show and this book was a real let down. I didn't finish the last hour of the book. The laughs were few and far between. It was real difficult to tell what the authors were spoffing and what really happened in histically.
I found this to be dull and NOT funny as most reviews said - cannot find too much to laugh at in this book - I would like to get my money back for this one...
Although I knew, having watched Jon Stewart on TV, that he could be fairly shallow - in a funny way - I guess I expected this to be a really sharp commentary on the pathetic nature of our current government and even the history of the form of government. I felt like I was sitting in a high school classroom with the remedial kids and a teacher who was trying desperately to get us to laugh so that we might not be distracted. Just such a disappointment - talk about speaking to the lowest common denominator... I try to pretend that Americans are not generally as ignorant as we actually are - but this book - given it's great success proves that we are pretty stupid. What a shame.
Despite his obvious hatred of the country, Jon Stewart and company from the Daily Show deliver an, at times, fall-out-of-the-chair funny examination of American politics. If you can put out of your mind the obvious liberal/socialist bias and anger, the book is quite enjoyable. Not lost on me, was the irony of Stewart's attempt to dispute the allegation that the media is a left-leaning, Republican-hating institution, while delivering left-leaning, Republican-hating diatribe after diatribe.
I gave this three stars solely because of Stewart's ability to make you laugh. There is no question that he and his co-writers are very funny. Lost are opportunities to take what no doubt would have been funny shots at both political parties. Instead, his vicious wit is reserved for conservatives and Republicans.
I recommend listening to the book while trying to block out the normal reaction, which for most Americans would hopefully be to defend our country against this hilarious assault.
I have this book in hardcover, and it is hilarious. If you care at all about the way the USA is run, and have a funny bone in your body, you will love this book. However, so much of the humor of this book are in graphs, tables, illustrations and charts -- i.e. visual communications. I don't own the audible version but I wonder how this would translate verbally?
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