Friday, May 21, 2004

All righty. I've been out sick for a couple of days and there's only so much television I can watch before my brain turns to mush, so I've got a bunch of books to write up, the first of which is 1968: The Year That Rocked the World by Mark Kurlansky. I've been recommending this one to all my friends who haven't drunk the Republican Kool-Aid. In other words, yeah, there's a liberal bias. But it's not shrill or strained and the author lets you know his intentions up front. But he's too good a researcher and author to let that overwhelm and color the simple facts and the stories. While a good part of the book follows the events in America, Kurlansky is equally concerned about student uprisings all over the world, especially in France and (then) Czechoslovakia (which are particularly moving and sad). He provides an astonishing (to me, at least) analysis of how Richard Nixon nimbly hijacked the Republican Party away from the middle and while there are no explicit parallels drawn to our current war, they are there to be seen. Very readable and fast moving.

"There is a time when the operation of the machine becomes so odious, makes you so sick at heart, that you can't take part... and you've got to put your bodies upon the gears... and you've got to make it stop." Mario Savio, Berkeley, 1964

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