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New York Times Book Review “A stout defense--indeed, the best I have read--of the Obama years." A New York Times Bestseller David Axelrod has always been a believer. Whether as a young journalist investigating city corruption, a campaign consultant guiding underdog candidates against entrenched orthodoxy, or as senior adviser to the president during one of the worst crises in American history, Axelrod held fast to his faith in the power of stories to unite diverse communities and ignite transformative political change. Now this legendary strategist, the mastermind behind Barack Obama’s historic election campaigns, shares a wealth of stories from his forty-year journey through the inner workings of American democracy. Believer is the tale of a political life well lived, of a man who never gave up on the deepest promises our country has to offer. Believer reveals the roots of Axelrod’s devotion to politics and his faith in democratic change. As a child of the ’60s in New York City, Axelrod worked his first campaigns during a tumultuous decade that began with soaring optimism and ended in violence and chaos. As a young newspaperman in Chicago during the 1970s and ’80s, Axelrod witnessed another world transformed when he reported on the dissolution of the last of the big city political machines—Richard Daley, Dan Rostenkowski, and Harold Washington—along with the emergence of a dynamic black independent movement that ultimately made Obama’s ascent possible. After cutting his teeth in the rollicking world of Chicago journalism, Axelrod switched careers to become a political strategist. His unorthodox tactics during his first campaign helped him get Paul Simon unexpectedly elected to the Senate, and soon Axelrod’s counsel was sought by the greatest lights of the Democratic Party. Working for path breakers like Hillary Clinton, Deval Patrick, and Rahm Emanuel—and morally conflicted characters like Rod Blagojevich and John Edwards—Axelrod, for better and worse, redefined the techniques by which modern political campaigns are run. The heart of Believer is Axelrod’s twenty-year friendship with Barack Obama, a warm partnership that inspired both men even as it propelled each to great heights. Taking a chance on an unlikely candidate for the U.S. Senate, Axelrod ultimately collaborated closely with Obama on his political campaigns, and served as the invaluable strategist who contributed to the tremendous victories of 2008 and 2012. Switching careers again, Axelrod served as senior adviser to the president during one of the most challenging periods in national history: working at Obama’s side as he battled an economic disaster; navigated America through two wars; and fought to reform health care, the financial sector, and our gridlocked political institutions. In Believer, Axelrod offers a deeper and richer profile of this extraordinary figure—who in just four years vaulted from the Illinois State Senate to the Oval Office—from the perspective of one who was at his side every step of the way. Spanning forty years that include corruption and transformation, turmoil and progress, Believer takes readers behind the closed doors of politics even as it offers a thrilling call to democratic action. Axelrod’s Believer is a powerful and inspiring memoir enlivened by the charm and candor of one of the greatest political strategists in recent American history. DORIS KEARNS GOODWIN, author of The Bully Pulpit and Team of Rivals “Beautifully written with warmth, humor, and remarkable self-awareness, Believer is one of the finest political memoirs I have ever read.” From the Hardcover edition.
Believer: My Forty Years in Politics by David Axelrod | A 15-minute Summary & Analysis Preview: David Axelrod was the son of Joseph Axelrod, who left Eastern Europe at the age of eleven, and his wife, Myril Davidson, also a daughter of Jewish immigrants. Joseph became a psychologist with a small practice that insisted on charging patients a minimal fee. He also occasionally administered psychological tests at settlement houses. Myril, on the other hand, rose to the top on Madison Avenue as an advertising executive. Their marriage ended by the time Axelrod was eight. David Axelrod was five years old when he became fascinated by politics after seeing John F. Kennedy at a 1960 presidential campaign rally in New York. Despite JFK’s assassination, young Axelrod continued to believe in the power of politics to effect change. He became a youth volunteer for Robert Kennedy’s 1964 Senate campaign and, later, his 1968 presidential campaign. Axelrod attended the University of Chicago. He was drawn to the city by… PLEASE NOTE: This is an unofficial summary and analysis of the book and NOT the original book. Inside this Instaread Summary & Analysis of Believer: • Summary of entire book • Introduction to the Important People in the book • Analysis of the Themes and Author’s Style
Though they work largely out of the public eye, political consultants-"image merchants" and "kingmakers" to candidates-play a crucial role in shaping campaigns. They persuaded Barry Goldwater to run for president, groomed former actor Ronald Reagan for the California governorship, helped derail Bill Clinton's health care initiative, and carried out the swiftboating of John Kerry. As Dennis Johnson argues in this sweeping history of political consulting in the United States, they are essential to modern campaigning, often making positive contributions to democratic discourse, and yet they have also polarized the electorate with their biting messages. During the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, political campaigns were run by local political parties, volunteers, and friends of candidates; but as party loyalties among voters began to weaken, and political parties declined as sources of manpower and strategy, professional consultants swept in to fill the void. Political consulting emerged as a profession in the 1930s with publicists Leone Baxter and Clem Whitaker, the husband and wife team who built their business, in part, with a successful campaign to destroy Upton Sinclair's 1934 bid for governor of California. With roots in advertising and public relations, political consulting has since developed into a highly professionalized business generating hundreds of millions of dollars. In fact, some of the top campaign consulting firms have merged with others to form multinational public relations conglomerates, serving not just candidates but also shaping public advocacy campaigns for businesses and nonprofits. Johnson, an academic who has also worked on campaigns alongside the likes of James Carville and pollster Paul Begala, suffuses his history with the stories of the colorful characters who have come to define the profession of consulting, from its beginning to the present. More than just the story of the making of a political business, Democracy for Hire's wide-ranging history helps us to better understand the very contours of modern American politics.
Σε μια μικρή πόλη της δυτικής Νιγηρίας τέσσερα νεαρά αδέλφια –ο μικρότερος είναι εννιά και ο μεγαλύτερος δεκαπέντε– εκμεταλλεύονται την απουσία του πατέρα τους από το σπίτι για να πάνε για ψάρεμα στο απαγορευμένο κοντινό ποτάμι. Εκεί θα συναντήσουν έναν επικίνδυνο τρελό που θα προφητεύσει ότι ο μεγαλύτερος αδελφός θα δολοφονηθεί από ένα από τα αδέλφια του. Αυτή η προφητεία θα σταθεί η αφορμή να διαλυθεί ο ισχυρός δεσμός τους και η αφετηρία μιας αλυσίδας τραγικών γεγονότων σχεδόν μυθικών διαστάσεων. Μια ιστορία αγάπης, μίσους και εκδίκησης που διαδραματίζεται με φόντο τις κοινωνικοπολιτικές εξελίξεις στη Νιγηρία της δεκαετίας του ’90. Μια συγκλονιστική αφήγηση με τη φωνή του μικρότερου αδελφού, του Μπέντζαμιν, και εξαιρετική χρήση της γλώσσας. Αναφορές στην αφρικάνικη φύση, στους μύθους και τις δοξασίες της Νιγηρίας, καταγραφή της καθημερινότητας με κύριο άξονα τη σύγκρουση μεταξύ παραδοσιακού και δυτικού τρόπου ζωής, σε ένα έξοχο πρώτο βιβλίο ενός λογοτέχνη που αξιοποιεί με μοντέρνο τρόπο την αφρικάνικη αφηγηματική παράδοση και φαίνεται να έχει μακρά καριέρα μπροστά του.
Secular society coupled with religious culture has inadvertently created a climate in America that blindly praises political correctness and the legislation of questionable laws. Religious traditionalists must now contend with how to remain spiritually relevant in perilous and polarizing times without compromising age-old biblical practices and principles. A glorified biblical commentary, you might say this book addresses almost everything you wanted to ask your local traditional religious leader but was afraid to. If I cant share my wisdom and experiences and exercise my talents, gifts, and skills at the slight chance I may inspire and help others, what good is my life?
This book is a compilation of my columns for the Montgomery County Sentinel during the period leading up to and including the 2016 election season. These weekly columns for the Sentinel, which began in February of 2015, comprise the content of this book. The topics are topics that captured the attention of the members of our society. As such, these columns represent a snapshot of the issues we have faced and my analysis of them. I have categorized the columns under six themes relating to societal challenges, such as those that we experienced somewhat recently in Baltimore and Charleston; needed steps to improve our communities, such as our failing infrastructure; today's political landscape, including voter identification to fix a nonexistent problem; the impact of Supreme Court rulings; campaigns and candidate interviews; and the economy, which includes the ever-shrinking middle class and its relation to the Reagan cure-alltrickle-down economics. More than anything, these columns are intended to capture the hypocrisy rampant throughout today's society. As you will see as you read these columns in order from earlier to later, some prognostication was a bit more accurate than others. Please consider the time frame within which each column was written as you read them. While the columns cover more than just what has turned out to be a presidential election like no other before it, it is the 2016 election that is the main focus of this book. However, it was always my intention in writing these columns to capture the many challenges we face as a society, provide you with my own personal perspective on those challenges, and motivate the reader to consider widening his or her own perspectives on the various issues reflected in the columns. I will leave it to the reader to determine if I succeeded.

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