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Books by and about 2020 presidential candidates
Crippled America,
by Donald J. Trump (2015)
Fire and Fury,
by Michael Wolff (2018)
Trump Revealed,
by Michael Kranish and Marc Fisher (2016)
The Making of Donald Trump,
by David Cay Johnston (2016)
Promise Me, Dad ,
by Joe Biden (2017)
The Book of Joe ,
by Jeff Wilser (2019; biography of Joe Biden)
The Truths We Hold,
by Kamala Harris (2019)
Smart on Crime,
by Kamala Harris (2010)
Guide to Political Revolution,
by Bernie Sanders (2017)
Where We Go From Here,
by Bernie Sanders (2018)
Our Revolution,
by Bernie Sanders (2016)
This Fight Is Our Fight,
by Elizabeth Warren (2017)
by Cory Booker (2016)
Conscience of a Conservative,
by Jeff Flake (2017)
Two Paths,
by Gov. John Kasich (2017)
Every Other Monday,
by Rep. John Kasich (2010)
Courage is Contagious,
by John Kasich (1998)
Shortest Way Home,
by Pete Buttigieg (2019)
by Michelle Obama (2018)
Higher Loyalty,
by James Comey (2018)
The Making of Donald Trump,
by David Cay Johnston (2017)
Higher Loyalty ,
by James Comey (2018)
Trump vs. Hillary On The Issues ,
by Jesse Gordon (2016)
Outsider in the White House,
by Bernie Sanders (2015)

Book Reviews

(from Amazon.com)

(click a book cover for a review or other books by or about the presidency from Amazon.com)

Quotable Elizabeth Warren
edited by Frank Marshall

(Click for Amazon book review)

Click here for 20 full quotes from Elizabeth Warren in the book The Quotable Elizabeth Warren.
OR click on an issue category below for a subset.

OnTheIssues.org BOOK REVIEW:

This book gives "excerpt books" a bad name. At OnTheIssues, we do like excerpt books because we publish many of them, but we don't like THIS excerpt book. The excerpts are too short – they need context, not just a dozen words and a citation. For example, "Real reform isn't easy. But I also know this: If we don't fight, we can't win -- to the AFL-CIO convention" (p. 117). That's only 16 words – What type of reform? Fight against what? Win what? So much is left out that it's merely a headline, not really an excerpt at all. The brevity of this book makes it feel like the usual mainstream media out-of-context blurbs – meaningless because they are so short.

Worse yet, the editor (he doesn't call himself "author") chooses to split up longer excerpts into several smaller blurbs. For example, we spotted the same citation ("Blog post, January 2014" – what blog? Her own? What context?) on page 22 in the "Financial Bailout" chapter; and on page 46 & 47 in the "American People" chapter. Might we see the fuller context by associating the items split up? An index would do that (this book lacks one), or a cross-reference to the other excerpts from the same citation (this book lacks that too).

Then there's the "date problem." Some citations have dates, while others do not. Often the lack of a date greatly diminishes the context and meaning of the excerpt. For example, in the chapter "On Health Care," an excerpt from Warren's campaign website is cited, "Federal policy is now moving in the right direction" (p. 141). Well, which policy is moving in the right direction? Obama's or Bush's? That would be determined if the year were cited, but it is not. Time-oriented terminology is also not explained, for example, "I support the president's recent actions to help these kids" (p. 153) – that one has a date (June 2012) but no explanation of what that "recent action" is – is the reader supposed to look it up? (We did – Warren meant DACA, the controversial executive order on "Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals" that President Obama implemented in June 2012 – but the book should explain that, not us!)

And speaking of a lack of explanation, the book also lacks any explanation of "insider terms" – they are just laid out "verbatim," presumably because the author was afraid to change one term in the original context [that is what editorial brackets are for!]. For example, "The CFPB and Warren had become a symbol" (p. 170) – what is CFPB? [it is the Consumer Finance Protection Bureau, proposed by Warren in 2007, which became a federal agency in 2011]. And another example, "an audience member… accused her of being a whore aligned with the OWS movement" (p. 178) – what is OWS [it is the Occupy Wall Street movement]. That is fine for pundits who know all those terms – but it feels like "Inside Baseball," where no one can follow the story after it falls out of the news (which could be after one week, or one year). Perhaps a glossary would be useful – there isn't one – or some sort of explanation – there isn't any – so the reader isn't left confused.

All of our complaints are encapsulated all in one excerpt – an undated citation from "Indian Country Today" asserting that "if one has to research to try and ascertain if they are Native American, I would have great concerns… and wonder if that was a vehicle she would want to use to her benefit. If that is the case, shame on her" (p. 201). Well, IS that the case? The opinion of the writer in "Indian Country Today" is certainly relevant – the issue at the time was whether Warren had cited her Native American heritage to get an affirmative-action appointment at Harvard University – but the reader doesn't get to see the writer's opinion, or an explanation of the context of the dispute, or its outcome, or even what year the excerpt was written, so we might figure out if the outcome was still pending at that time, or what was going on.

This book holds valuable lessons for anyone considering writing a similar book: Read this book to see every possible type of error one could make in a book of excerpts. OnTheIssues takes those lessons to heart, and our excerpt books follow these rules:

  • No excerpt shorter than about 50 words (to avoid the "out-of-context blurb" problem)
  • Link excerpts from a common source to other excerpts from the same source (we do that online; in our books, we provide an index and cross-references, so that readers can find the fuller context and avoid the "split excerpt" problem)
  • Every excerpt includes a date, every time, and an explanation [in editorial brackets], if needed, to explain what was obvious to contemporary readers but what might not be as obvious when reading it a year or more later (to avoid the "date problem")
  • When obscure terms are used (like "CFPB" or "OWS"), explain them, provide background information about them, and provide a glossary and index (to avoid the "Inside Baseball" problem).
We've been enforcing that list for five years now, and we reinforce our rules when we see awful books like this that have no rules whatsoever. Yes, you can use this book to find out some tidbits about Warren – but it is by no means a good source!

-- Jesse Gordon, editor-in-chief, OnTheIssues.org, Aug. 2016

 OnTheIssues.org excerpts:  (click on issues for details)
Budget & Economy
    When risk & cost aren't disclosed, it's bad for our country.
    Middle class grows economy, not financial sector.
    I share the frustration of Occupy Wall Street.
    Give college students the same deal as corporations get.
Energy & Oil
    Invest now in 21st-century energy.
Free Trade
    Make trade deals transparent, even if that causes opposition.
    Trade deals are Christmas gifts for big corporations.
Government Reform
    OpEd: Bullies regulated companies into donation disclosure.
Gun Control
    Huge difference between sportsmen's guns and assault weapons.
Health Care
    Insurance isn't on/off: real coverage vs. faux coverage.
    Obvious solution is universal single-payer healthcare.
    No Medicare vouchers and no privatization.
    Support the DREAM Act: let immigrants into army or college.
    Make it easier for workers to organize.
    Minimum wage workers haven't gotten a raise in 7 years.
Principles & Values
    Supported Republicans for years prior to political career.
Social Security
    Retirement benefits are about our values, not about math.
    Upgrade our aging roads, mass transit, & water lines.
War & Peace
    Strong sanctions against Iranian nukes, with other countries.
Welfare & Poverty
    Those in poverty fight for crumbs left over from the wealthy.

The above quotations are from Quotable Elizabeth Warren
edited by Frank Marshall.

All material copyright 1999-2022
by Jesse Gordon and OnTheIssues.org
Reprinting by permission only.

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