Review: American Taliban: How War, Sex, Sin, and Power Bind Jihadists and the Radical Right

American Taliban: How War, Sex, Sin, and Power Bind Jihadists and the Radical RightAmerican Taliban: How War, Sex, Sin, and Power Bind Jihadists and the Radical Right by Markos Moulitsas
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

As I was reading this book, I found myself struggling with how I ultimately felt about it. In some chapters, it was a stunning and enlightening exposé on the ridiculously absurd policies held by the extreme right of the political spectrum. But in other chapters, it resorted to simple and immature mockery.

One of the arguments of the book is how civil discourse in this country has been compromised by ignorant citizens, complicity mainstream media, and impotent politicians — which is a fair point. But I don’t see how highlighting the most ridiculous and extreme examples of the GOP and then rightly or wrongly comparing them to political groups that sponsor terrorism does anything to help the conversation.

My final issue with the book is that it offers no ideas or suggestions on ways to overcome the ignorant rage stirred up by the Tea Party other than simply saying that in the long run, they are fighting a losing battle against changing demographics. That’s great and all, but how can we effectively and rationally engage with these elements now? Sadly, the only answer this book seems to offer is, "you can’t."

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