FRAUD: The Strategy Behind the Bush Lies and Why the Media Didn't Tell You

Paul Waldman, Author . Sourcebooks $24.95 (308p) ISBN 978-1-4022-0252-0

Building on tenets laid out in The Press Effect , which he coauthored with Kathleen Hall Jamieson, Waldman deconstructs Bush's image as plainspoken, compassionate Dubya and accuses the media of failing to properly scrutinize the values of his presidency. Bush's inarticulateness misleads a gullible public into perceiving the president as a "real," ordinary American, Waldman argues, contending that Bush's administration actually serves a business elite rather than the average American. Meticulously combing through footnoted sources, Waldman carves an alternative portrait of a privileged and ruthless Bush who was gleeful over executions as Texas's governor, guilty of Enron-style business practices and contemptuous of the protective role of government. American journalists, in Waldman's view, are either muzzled or lack the policy expertise and research strengths to expose Bush effectively; as a result, the public is woefully confused. Waldman goes on to demythologize the so-called liberal bias of the media, comparing journalists' past persecution of Clinton with the relative mildness of present-day critiques of Bush. In his breakdown of Bush's tax policies and of the Republican Party's dominance by ultraconservative Southerners, Waldman is particularly strident. An assembly of sources and facts and a useful guide to right-wing rhetoric makes this handbook of anti-Bush ammunition—complete with an appendix that provides a "Guide to Key Lies and Misdirections"—useful to partisans along with other Bush critiques by David Corn, Eric Alterman and Mark Green. 100,000 first printing. (On sale Feb. 3)

Reviewed on: 02/02/2004
Release date: 02/01/2004
Genre: Nonfiction
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