December 10, 2011

'Czar' Reed done a disservice

Mr. Speaker!: The Life and Times of Thomas B. Reed The Man Who Broke the Filibuster Mr. Speaker!: The Life and Times of Thomas B. Reed The Man Who Broke the Filibuster by James Grant

My rating: 2 of 5 stars


Cut it one-third and it would be better. Cut that another one-third and add some new stuff and it would be better yet.

James Grant, founder of Grant's Interest Rate Review, adds little to any in-depth understanding of one of our seminal Speakers of the House, Thomas B. "Czar" Reed.

He DOES, though, take the Panic of 1873 and the Panic of 1893 to repeatedly give discourses on monetarism, the gold standard, bimetallism, etc., almost as if he were a kinder, gentler, more academic Ron Paul speaking to the world of today.

Beyond that, Grant buys the "historical party line" on McKinley, a McKinley who in reality was looking to annex the Philippines from the time of his inauguration.

I wasn't thoroughly disappointed, but, I wasn't much more than that, either.

Reed needs a better, more comprehensive account than this, and one that looks at this history of his times in their own right, rather than a cheap didactic sounding board.



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Oh, and I have noticed that Amazon has officially killed its "classic review" ranking. I figured that two months ago, but "nice" of Jeff Bezos, aka Steve Jobs Jr., not to tell people like me.

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