Photos from the tour
Videos from the tour
What Karl's Reading
I made an all-too-hasty promise at the start of 2010 to list my reading and comment on the books as I made my way through the year. I failed, in large part, because my book tour (110 cities in 90 days) put me behind on my own reading and way behind on writing about it. While I did a little bit better in 2011, this year I’ll attempt to get my notes on books I’ve read done in a more timely fashion.
So here’s what I’ve knocked out so far, starting with the book I finished most recently and working back to 2010.
Here are my latest reads or you can view the full list.
A disappointment. After an odd nine-page preface that opens with a Robert F. Kennedy 1968 speech about the notion of GDP, there are 121 herky-jerky pages on how an Italian monk and Venetian merchants used Arabic numerals and Greek math to construct the rudiments of modern accounting. One hundred and twenty-two pages follow on how accounting has contributed to the decline of the planet and the growth of rapacious capitalism, while hiding the fact that the true cost of a Big Mac is $200. No kidding. I’ll look for a better volume on the same topic and report later.
This is a wonderful, brisk exploration by a talented historian of the Civil War’s first year. Adam Goodheart tells the story of America’s descent into conflict through sketches of memorable characters who may be unfamiliar now, but who were very well known to the country then. These include the commandant of Fort Sumner, the young military officer whose tragic death plunged President Abraham Lincoln into despair, and the three slaves whose escape to freedom helped alter public opinion in the North and seal the fate of the South’s “peculiar institution.” This is a great read.
Horowitz and Laskin have penned a sharply worded, deeply informed expose of the powerful, very wealthy network of liberal foundations that's spending hundreds of millions to reshape America's politics, culture and economic structure.
Purchase Your Copy
Courage and Consequence is a candid and behind-the-scenes view of some of history's turbulent and momentous years. It tells how Bush got to the White House and what happened during his consequential presidency. It's a frank account of what I witnessed and my often-controversial role.