John McCain Was A POW - Who Knew?

These heady campaign days, John McCain answers any potentially critical, embarrassing or unflattering inquiry with same answer. He was kept for five and a half years as an American prisoner of war in what was called the Hanoi Hilton. It answers why he's clueless about how many houses he has, why he picked the beauty queen gov as his running mate, why he offered his current wife up as Ms. Buffalo Chips in South Dakota at a hardcore biker nudity rally and informs his faith as stated after he was removed from Rick Warren's faith-based Cone of Silence. I mean, exactly how many times do you use it verbally to the lazy press, who at least know that already (it didn't involve the hard work of an investigation) when he's written and had it written about extensively. Good gracious! McPOW even said it on the Tonight show when Jay Leno offered him a million bucks to come up with the answer how many houses he owns. Then, it came up again when it was pointed out about the number of homeless veterans made worse by the odious Bush adventures in presidenting. Next week, it will be repeated over, and over, and over, and over, and over again, that John McCain was a POW, leaving him remote and an untouchable in his own rendering of a George Washington like apotheosis. Seriously, can he just repeat it once more for clarity, John McCain was a POW.

John McCain has his name as author on at least five books. One was actually really ghostwritten good entitled Faith of My Fathers and yep, being a P.O.W. is mentioned in a more honorable fashion there too. Another is the seminal book by Robert Timberg, The Nightengale's Song, that just lays out 5 naval academy grads histories with a discerning eye towards truthtelling humbled by the personal and the bedeviling of their individual experiences. But then Robert Timberg decided to write about it again and again and again because we so didn't understand John McCain was a POW.

But now, he was a POW is the ready republican whine to every little criticism, its getting forty years old as an excuse for bad behavior, rotten decisions and his snappishness. His 72nd birthday was yesterday along with the 3rd anniversary of this nation's worst disaster, Katrina, where he was slurping frosting from his fingers celebrating with the Pretender-in-Chief while others drowned. Now he is having ANOTHER republican celebration as New Orleans prepares to go down for the second time as Gustav homes in on the Gulf Coast. Of course we know the answer when asked what would he do differently, for goodness sakes, didn't you know he was a POW...

Olympic Sized Book Deals

Michael Phelps will get 1.6 million dollars to chronicle his 23 years on the planet in a memoir on becoming the world's best swimmer.ever.with 7 world records. This is his second book after an Olympic showing and he still has the 2012 London Olympiad to go before he's done collecting all his hardware and royalties. Several times in Beijing, his quest to earn eight gold medals almost died a premature death. One, one hundredth of a second slower and he would still have tied the still cocky Mark Spitz, which is a feat in itself.

Dara Torres on the other hand completed her fifth Olympics in her fifth decade at 41, earning three sliver medals against teenyboppers and twenty something sprint racers. After winning medals twenty years ago, Dara returned to swimming to keep fit during and after her pregnancy. The serious speed racers is where she she planted her fins to return. That first book has the potential to have a meatier look and heftier advance from Random House for both books at $3,000,000 US acknowledging the changes in Olympic swimming over twenty years, her battle against being accused of doping and her fight for the sport.

Not sure about his or a potential Simon & Schuster ghost writer's skills, but Phelps leaves no doubt about the damage he can do eating or racing in an Olympic sized pool.

Peeping Bob Woodward, Behind the Bush Curtain, Again

DC Bubble wrapped Bob Woodward is not in any danger of giving heavyweight author Robert Caro a run for his money on well written presidential biographies. The only thing they have in common is a years long fixation on a president each chose to chronicle. Woodward does his from a self serving political infotainment insider Bush perspective while Caro strives for the true LBJ essence with a million word army of fab footnotes in an investigative fashion smarmy Woodward gave up hope on achieving. Woodward's "Bush Period", started with fawning to oops, public opinion is changing sharply negative - must change my take in the last one for continued long term stay on bestseller list.

President Bush's detestable presidency will receive its fourth Friday the 13th treatment next month in The War Within: A Secret White House History 2006-2008 a $21.12 book Woodward penned while protecting his ongoing access to Bush cronies, especially inside the Dick's Vice presidential suite. Woodward famously withheld information pertinent to America's security so his third sequel would not be compromised at the bookstores. It landed the journalistic ethically challenged Bob as a witness at the trial for convicted, then partially pardoned felon and vapid author Irving "Scooter" Libby, the shoot em in the face Veepsters piece-of-crap chief of staff.

Now Bob's unleashing on America his latest purported sussed out findings from the King Iraq Surge Sockpuppet, General David Petraeus with inside details on the callowness of the Bush administration and the access the general enjoyed as part of their seven year coup. His books have a breathless Marilyn Monroe tone as real life characters speak in hushed tones as if Woodward was right in the room at the time, his trademark. The fact that Woodward is/was a highranking executive at the Washington Post at the time he wrote his last book, knew Bush felons were lying, withheld info during the federal investigation while prattling on to Larry King and other DC outlets that there was no outing while sticking up for the Bush/Cheney clan, never made him think ethically or critically about the inconsistencies of what he was saying, doing and writing. Once an intrepid reporter who doggedly pursued the details of Watergate, he has gone on to hack for the Bush administration making money off of book
deals when concurrently deciding which reporters covered what for his newspaper. How Washington. And that's exactly the lens through which his work should be judged on September 8th even as much as his information exposes the question will always be what did he leave out and why.

Corsi - Portait of A Smear Merchant Sleaze Addict

On the matriculation front, Harvard has to figure out how to get the rogue scalawag alumns from tainting other fine scholars that normally emanate from its august environs. Imagine having to own up to a screw loose author preening from his crap-filled primordial ooze about his second dull Lizzie Borden candidate ode plus a historian-authenticated worst.president.ever as two Harvard slimy examples of being able to graduate, but wholesale incapable of Grace. Harvard's pig pen dwellers, Corsi & Bush, used their faux conservative alligator arms to throw mud that lacked consistency of facts or merit at another Harvard legal scholar running for president, Barack Obama. Bush tried and failed rhetorical sophistry in the Knesset while Corsi tried and failed as sleaze peddling author to portray Barack & Michelle Obama as equals in rightwing political squalor.

The gobbledygook served up for the huddled lemmings yearning to read stood on its tippy toes, whined for a twisted fact or two to aid it in making the cut into a (non)fiction remainder bin came from the robust personage with slim pickings in the small copy and paste mind of Jerome R. Corsi. Harvard granted him a PhD in Political Science. He used the discredited intelligent design science version. Barack Obama's campaign wasted 40 pages refuting Corsi's cartoonish, poorly-sourced blasphemy on truth, The Obama Nation: Leftist Politics and the Cult of Personality. I shall ignite but three paragraphs on a jowly auteur unfit to aspire to be the dingleberry on the backend of a leftover ampersand. Waldman already kicked and pinched both sets of Corsi's clinched cheeks on LKL.

Corsi is addicted to political spotlights fads of which, he is perennially the old style dunnyman, happily carrying the flaming refuse of George Bush's & John McCain's Republican Party. He claims he is an independent. Corsi opened his poison inkwell, dipped in his shriveled quill and penned a 'book' used by his BFF AWOL George Bush to defeat a real war hero, John Kerry, in 2004. This year, following his flirtation with the Minuteman and all their racial drama, he was unable to stop himself from swallowing the most scurrilous crud to fashion another book in an attempt to lend credibility to his faded literary pretensions. Less than three years ago, Corsi, The Commode Dipstick Specialist First Class, tried to bamboozle people on the idea that there was not a looming peak oil issue in a 'book'. This publisher, Threshold Press, is trying to stay sewer level as Jerome Corsi sprays golden showers on all their behalve$.

Senator Barack Obama defines his plans in the foreword of Change We Can Believe In: Barack Obama's Plan to Renew America's Promise,to be released in paperback September 9th. His staff pulls together the policy details of what an Obama Administration will do in remaining chapters.

Parenting Advice From Britney Spears Mom Shapeshifts to Memoir

Spare me. Save trees. Do not expend brain cells on the pageant of irony that a bound non-comic book, distributed through a Christian bookstore, about parenting from Britney Spears' Mom would bring a reader. The aptly named cotton candy of how to parent books, Through the Storm: A Real Story of Fame, Family in a Tabloid World, streaks onto the stage amidst a seeming turnaround from her eldest daughter's serial tragic life. From being a ten year old Disney Mouse person, pop princess, a 55 hour Vegas marriage, annulment, KFed & his prior baby mama drama, marriage, Madonna kiss, babies, divorce, custody fight, ticket, child welfare investigation, rehab, baldness, rehab, court, tickets, fender bender, the saddest TV musical comeback followed by a besotted brainless press corps acknowledging her appearing normal as a ditsy receptionist on The Office. She is only twenty something and her father is her court appointed conservator. Britney is bouncing back.

Mommy Spears learns in the midst of Britney's drama saga, that her other Disney daughter is preggers at 16 and she delivers a baby girl, Maddie, at 17. Lynne gets a new granddaughter and it is deemed safe to release the book before anything else happens. Now it's a doorstop masquerading as a memoir rather than a tome on parenting after all that success. We are so in for a prank, Pulitzer or fireplace fertilizer starting on September 16, 2008.

Harry Potter in Arabic A No Go In Israel

In many cases all over the world, Harry Potter fans wait a YEAR or more for translations of the original books. Arabic reading Muggles in Israel are getting their supply cut off just as they about to learn the fates of Harry & Lord Voldemort. Israel's Ministry of Magic Pureblood Publishing (Trade Industry & Treasury) objects on legalities to the source of the Arabic translations originating from Israel's most undiplomatic version of Death Eaters, Syria and Lebanon.
Arab-Israeli publisher Salah Abassi told Israeli public radio on Monday that authorities ordered him to stop importing Arabic-language children's books from the two longtime foes of Israel.

"The trade and industry ministry and treasury warned me that importing those books is illegal," said Abassi, who imported the books through Jordan.
Let's see in the last two years, Israel destroyed the ominous threat of a Syrian nuclear facility and tried to bomb Lebanon back to the Phoenician era as the IDF chased down kidnappers and terrorists. Whether a state of war exists is important to the wooden puppet turned into a lying boy and the sacrificial boy lamb turned into a wizard as it forms the foundation of the Umbridge-like decree. Since 1939, before Israel was a vested nation, laws were set that prohibited trade with any nation at war with Israel, even if it involves selling beloved children's books. Seems the boy wizard, Hermione Granger & Ron Weasley caused other trouble last year in Israel on the Sabbath with some booksellers, risking fines, opening to meet the demand. Whatever will happen with Rowling's December's release of The Tales of the Beedle the Bard with all that commentary from the late Professor Dumbledore?

Maybe, Jiminy Cricket at the Ministry of Translation Magic can get the Italian born Pinocchio to join the IDF.
The Tales of Beedle the Bard, Standard Edition uh, oh who's translating...

Random House Afraid of Book

Good golly Miss Molly, controversial books have been arbiters of fierce debate and discussion the world over since presses could belch them out. Good books are not about gentility or saving the sensitive readers sensibilities from a shock. Somebody, somewhere, will ALWAYS be offended. Now, a yellow bellied publisher fears doing what better independent publishers have done for a lifetime - put a perspective out there for the public to decide come what may. Instead, we have a vanguard of fraidy cat editors weighing a subset of a subset of the public reactions against a book they had already decided to publish. Then, they ran away from their decision. Truly, it would have been better to never say yes to the author Sherry Jones if the benchmark is somebody is going to be mad in academia.

"We decided, after much deliberation, to postpone publication," it added.

The decision was taken "for the safety of the author, employees of Random House, booksellers and anyone else who would be involved in distribution and sale of the novel," said the company's deputy publisher Thomas Perry in a statement.

The novel traces the life of A'isha, who is often referred to as Muhammad's favourite wife, from her engagement at the age of six, until the prophet's death.

Salmon Rushdie got a fatwa, a biographical book blathering security detail plus award worthy recognition on a lasting literary work. More context to comprehending the Islamic faith in all its permutations is a worthy publishing endeavor. Not everyone agrees within the faith, hence, Sunnis and Shias. There are degrees that are helped with a novel or book that advances the dicussion rather than staying stuck at a low level of knowledge. Now Random House has decided staying on empty think tanks to keep their speed right where it is, oh what will we do to make money off of more paper trash nobody will remember after the last page. Based on the objections of one non-Muslim Professor Spellberg with puritan pride issues deep in the heart of Texas. RH is trying to sugar coat it as we are oh so concerned about everybody in our supply chain, except the Muslim professor who was in favorite of publishing the book.

Ludlum Franchise Fritters Away Bourne Legacy

The quill of Robert Ludlum developed a style that made him a legend in his lifetime of the spy thriller.  After his  departure to a permanent heavenly psyops, the Ludlum Enterprise hired folks to write under his banner - blech.  They should have just become a publishing company and offered an endorsement and let the author rise or fall off a cliff from their own lack of merit.  One of Ludlum's iconic characters, now a Jason Bourne movie franchise, exists on a one dimensional monetary plane that isn't taking off for this reader. 

Ludlum once lamented the draconian and dreary traditions of the staid publishing prison that decreed fast writing reflected poorly and too many books in a certain amount of time must be kept in abeyance to protect the public from becoming bored.  There's a reason publishers get into trouble, their thinking is still remains lodged in controlling a Gutenberg press and who gets to use it.  Ludlum or his heirs sped this disaster along by letting his name be used sort of like ghostwriting in reverse.  Please make them stop after releasing the one from last week.  If you have it at the beach, take mercy on it and leave it buried in an abandoned sand castle. 

Eric Van Lustbader have you no pride or imagination for your own brand or styling yourself as original.  Killing Bourne's life anchors to scribble a new story arc was predictable.  I really hate the Bourne books now.  My respect remains for the Bourne books Robert Ludlum wrote and has only his name on the jacket.  Whether with a speed typewriter or painstakingly, I appreciated his work. 

The One Time Only Tell All Tall Tales

For goodness sakes, since time immemorial the wannabe parasites have sold bits or anything that wasn't nailed down of others lives to interested third parties since the invention of people.  For the person being done up like a cherry-topped Christmas ham on paper, that doesn't make it easier to swallow.  It goes to who do/did you trust for all the good, bad ugly and indifferent reasons.  Filthy lucre beckons maiden and maven alike.  It spends the same.  That certainly isn't going to make the four time married Salmon Rushdie quiver with excitement or Madonna to name a children's hospital after her trash talking brother or get Princess Di's butler off the cooking sherry.  The tell all you can while you can book can only be written once, so avaricious publishers hype the hell out of them when they score one.

Not sure if the best selling Satanic Verses author would rather have a fatwa or give one on his ex-bodyguard once removed.  Said bodyguard may have been around for the Salmon Rushdie breakup with wife # 4, Top Chef Palate Princess, Padma.  Or maybe, Madonna just forgot to give a handsigned A-Rod baseball to her brother before he decided dishing on Life with Madonna paper was his path to the Ritchie riches.  The butler to Princess Diana lied at her inquest and wrote two fawning books to honor her as the world never imagined during her royally twisted ménage à trois marriage that everybody knew about because Andrew Morton got her version down on tape.  Can't imagine the Queen staying up late reading that one in bed with a flashlight.  But Her Majesty might note this:

The book, On Her Majesty's Service, published this week, claims the was locked in a cupboard while the officers went to a pub for a drink because they were "so fed up with his attitude".

It also claims that Rushdie was nicknamed "Scruffy" because of his unkempt appearance and that the author billed the police force £40 a night for putting up officers in his home. "We were paying, or rather the taxpayer was paying, Rushdie to protect him," the book says.
Some times the vipers are family or faux friends or household help.  But in today's book market, there is some sort of obsession with the inside scoop about the lives of people who garner some level of success.  Call this book genre what it is: payback gossip.

Swimming in Lincoln Books

Soon there will be some sort of list made into a book of the Top 1000 Lincoln Books of All Time with just the early years. Abraham Lincoln is one of the most written about people in American literary history. Honest Abe is some sort of keyboard catnip to historians, civil war buffs and general readers that compels aficionados to add to the collection of material, now probably comprising its own Lincolnesque vault in the Library of Congress.

Not even sure needing to write about Lincoln is treatable with a four score plan after folks pour years into buffing and polishing their works on everything from his migraines to his now publishing acceptable BFF, Frederick Douglass. See, even I am doing it here. The recent rediscovery of Frederick Douglass and his interaction with Lincoln is in time for a bicentennial that may herald a new presidency born of all that came after the Dred Scott decision. Senator Obama is aiming to be the third memorable Illinois connected politician to reside at the White House. Barack Obama shares much in common with Lincoln & Douglass.

There are many a book on Lincoln that are worth the time and expense. It doesn't mean everybody that writes about Lincoln gains entry into some mythical pantheon with verbal roses and golden pens strewn before them. Some of the best books in recent years about Lincoln are Doris Kearns Goodwin's take in Team of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln or David Herbert Donald's Lincoln. It would take years to write about the numerous and ponderous odes that have totally butchered Lincoln's biography for their own ends. Frankly, who wants to give more PR to the at best mediocre Lincolnphiles. Those who are without willpower or writing skill should review Douglass's words first.

China's Knickers In Knots over Book Mentions

China is excising any mention of His Holiness, the Dalai Lama and the China-Tibet border dispute in Australian nonfiction books published for export to China. Memo to China censors: Facts are stubborn things and denying them does not make them less true, just the population of Chinese readers more ignorant.

All of this publishing drama because of a biography written by an ancestor, Felicity Jack, about an Australian, Robert Logan Jack that made a reference to the China-Tibet border. Amazing their eagle eyes can catch book references, but not the tons of algae problem at an Olympic site right beneath their uptight noses. China massacred Tibetans demanding freedom and blame the Dalai Lama for the heaps of censuring remarks tossed their way in the aftermath. China's One China policy goes for Taiwan and Tibet.

It is one of those things that make you go hmmm, as Australian publishers got this message before. Now UNSW Press and Melbourne publisher, Hardie Grant, have seen this issue before. Keeping 1,500,000,000 people under intellectual lock and key is going to get harder not easier, somebody should tell the Chinese bureaucrats.