“We polled the race stuff and it didn’t matter.”
— Stephen Bannon, quoted in Joshua Green’s Devil’s Bargain.
New York Times: “One of his main sins in the eyes of the president is appearing to revel in the perception that he is the mastermind behind the rise of a pliable Mr. Trump. The president was deeply annoyed at a Time magazine cover article that described Mr. Bannon as the real power and brains behind the Trump throne. Mr. Trump was equally put off by a recent book, Devil’s Bargain, by the Bloomberg Businessweek writer Joshua Green, which lavished credit for Mr. Trump’s election on Mr. Bannon.”
Sen. Jeff Flake (R-AZ) “has raised eyebrows by calling his new anti-Trump manifesto Conscience of a Conservative. That’s because Barry Goldwater’s 1960 book of that title, which stayed on the Times nonfiction list for 31 weeks, is still revered as a founding document of the modern conservative movement,” the New York Times reports.
“Right-wing commentators who aren’t as ready to abandon the president see Flake’s appropriation of the name more as apostasy than as the homage Flake intended, and object to the book’s attacks on the Republican establishment.”
“It’s too soon to say how any of this will affect Flake’s chances for re-election next year. But it hasn’t hurt him in bookstores: Conscience of a Conservative makes its debut on the hardcover nonfiction list at No. 4.”
Out next month: The Unexpected President: The Life and Times of Chester A. Arthur by Scott S. Greenberger.
“When President James Garfield was shot, no one in the United States was more dismayed than his Vice President, Chester Arthur. For years Arthur had been perceived as unfit to govern, not only by critics and his fellow citizens but by his own conscience.”
Coming soon: Win Bigly: Persuasion in a World Where Facts Don’t Matter by Scott Adams.
“From the creator of Dilbert, an unflinching look at the strategies Donald Trump used to persuade voters to elect the most unconventional candidate in the history of the presidency, and how anyone can learn his methods for succeeding against long odds.”
The Washington Post got a sneak peak at the Almanac of American Politics 2018 and finds that “if you really want to know why the Republican majority in the House has been so strong, the answer lies in these six states: Michigan, Indiana, Ohio and Pennsylvania — across the Rust Belt — and Virginia and Florida down South.”
“After the 2008 elections, those six states sent a combined 97 members to the House and Democrats held a 51-to-46 edge over Republicans among the lawmakers representing them. The disastrous 2010 showing for Democrats resulted in a net GOP gain of 21 seats in those states, 67 Republicans to 30 Democrats, and that margin has remained remarkably steady ever since. Today, after decennial reapportionment reduced those combined seats by two, there are now 64 Republicans to 31 Democrats in the House from those six states. It’s a bulwark created partly by Republican control of most of those states during the 2011 redrawing of the congressional districts — and partly by the House Democrats’ inability to field candidates who appeal voters beyond the inner suburbs.”
Out next month: Fantasyland: How America Went Haywire: A 500-Year History by Kurt Andersen.
“Over the course of five centuries—from the Salem witch trials to Scientology to the Satanic Panic of the 1980s, from P. T. Barnum to Hollywood and the anything-goes, wild-and-crazy sixties, from conspiracy theories to our fetish for guns and obsession with extraterrestrials—our peculiar love of the fantastic has made America exceptional in a way that we’ve never fully acknowledged.”
Out in a few weeks: The Kellyanne Conway Technique: Perfecting the Ancient Art of Delivering Half-Truths, Fake News, and Obfuscation – With a Smile by Jarret Berenstein.
“Constantly late to work? Caught cheating on your spouse again? Can’t stop tweeting unhinged rants against your political enemies at three in the morning? Then The Kellyanne Conway Technique is the book you need.”
Former FBI Director James Comey signed a book deal, the AP reports.
“Comey will write about everything from allegations of ties between Russia and Donald Trump’s presidential campaign to the bureau’s investigation into Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server… Comey will draw upon his career in government as he writes about ‘good, ethical leadership’ and how it influences sound decisions.”
The book is currently untitled and scheduled for publication next spring.
Just published: The Chickenshit Club: Why the Justice Department Fails to Prosecute Executives by Jesse Eisinger.
“Why were no bankers put in prison after the financial crisis of 2008? Why do CEOs seem to commit wrongdoing with impunity? The problem goes beyond banks deemed ‘Too Big to Fail’ to almost every large corporation in America—to pharmaceutical companies and auto manufacturers and beyond.”