cover image The Best American Political Writing

The Best American Political Writing

. Thunder's Mouth Press, $16.95 (401pp) ISBN 978-1-56025-517-8

Absorbing and provocative, Flippin's collection of political writings is as incisive as it is entertaining. The selection of essays is well balanced, presenting the best-written examples from both liberal and conservative perspectives, about both national and domestic policies. Indeed, the book gives an comprehensive vision of almost all the major events of the past year, including the 2002 elections, the 2003 tax cut legislation, the invasion of Iraq and the first weeks of the post-war rebuilding effort. Among the volume's 55 selections are James Carney and John F. Dickerson's analysis of Karl Rove's legendary campaign to create a Republican majority in Congress (""W and the Boy Genius""); Michael Ignatieff's argument that America is in the process of building an international empire (""The Burden""); and James Wolcott's discussion of how the Right dealt with anti-war protesters (""What if They Gave A War And Nobody Cared?""). The inclusion of speeches by Senator Robert Byrd and President George W. Bush round out the book's perspective. Hints of the what the future elections hold appear in Lawrence Kudlow's claim that""victory on tax cuts is vital to the president's political credibility and his reelection"" and in Michelle Cottle's contention that""Democrats are forced to go begging to Al Sharpton"" for the black vote because they've neglected the African-American community since President Clinton left office. An intelligent and enjoyable compilation, Flippin's anthology is an excellent resource for both teachers and general readers.