54. The Town: Two Parties And A Funeral — Plus Plenty Of Valet Parking! — In America's Gilded Capital
I am not sure if this would appeal to everyone, but it was fascinating to read how MONEY motivates everything in the US Capitol!
Here is the blurb:
A New York Times political feature correspondent examines the power wars and exploitative practices of the government in Washington, D.C., revealing how journalism careers are made and broken while news events and scandals are used as networking platforms.The following excerpt really sums up Washington, D.C. The context is a group of Sarah Palin loyalists protesting at a party for Game Change, a movie which portrays Palin in an unfavorable light:
They [the protesters] reiterated the former Alaska governor's oft-quoted charge that Game Change was based on "false narrative." Whether it was or not, much of Washington ceased being about true narratives long ago, anyway. It is about virtual reality the video game is which we are all characters and try to be players It brought to mind a line that I had underlined years ago, in 1993, from the late great Michael Kelly, in a New York Times Magazine profile of David Gergen ("Master of the Game," it was titled). "What happens in the political world is divorced from the real world," he wrote, "It exists for only the fleeting historical moment, in a magical movie of sorts, a never-ending and infinitely revisable docudrama. Strangely, the faithful understand that the movie is not true -- yet also maintain that it is the only truth that really matters." (I didn't write down the page number before I returned the book! Sorry!)This sums up much of what the book is about. The games that all the people in Washington play, and much of it comes down to greed (Washington, D.C. has a very low unemployment rate compared to the rest of the country because government is BIG BUSINESS!).
This book made me want to walk the streets of D.C. and the halls of Congress and just pray. I even looked up how much it would cost for a plane ticket to go and do just that. I still might. I am troubled by what this book brings to light, but I sort of already knew how bad it was. I wish that could all change, but the power is not in the people. In fact, the book makes a point of saying that the Washington elite think we are too dumb to really know anything! So sad!